Online Sports Massage Courses and Training Programs

Sports massage courses and training courses are sometimes offered at colleges and career schools as part of online or distance-learning programs in massage therapy and related fields. Since massage is a hands-on practice, most training must take place on campus. Online courses in massage therapy are most commonly found through continuing education programs for individuals with prior experience in the field.

Online Courses in Sports Massage

Below are examples of some online courses related to sports massage, general massage and exercise science.

  • Intro to Exercise Science Course: Massage students in this course are introduced to the many subjects of study within exercise science. Topics include current exercise science applications and the role of exercise science in professional organizations.
  • Sports Massage Course: This course provides students with the knowledge and skills required to work with sport injury symptoms and ailments and typical conditions needing rehabilitation. Students will perform a full sports massage in a clinical setting.
  • The Business of Massage Course: Students learn all aspects of a massage business, including regulations and policies, forming alliances in the industry, successful therapeutic relationships, marketing, insurance and administration processes and ethical standards of business. Part of this course involves students developing a business plan for a massage practice.
  • Intro to Human Anatomy and Physiology Course: Students learn about the function and structure of the human body. This course incorporates medical terminology, lab exercises and body systems, including skeletal, sensory, nervous, muscular and endocrine.
  • Special Client Techniques Course: Every patient is unique, and this course teaches students how to treats clients with unique needs, such as those used in geriatric, infant, pediatric or rehabilitative massage therapy. Students learn to make the massage environment meet the needs of the patient and how to work with those who are developmentally and physically challenged.
  • The Basics of Massage Course: In this course students will learn basic techniques of massage, and variations in strokes and pressure. Students will also learn about creating a soothing massage environment, and gain an introductory understanding of essential oils and their benefits.
  • Massage Clinical Techniques Course: This course will examine body mechanics and muscle actions. Other topics include reflexology, chair message techniques and lymph drainage.
  • Intro to Health Psychology Course: In this course students will cover the biological and social aspects of dealing with illness. Students will also address health-related behaviors, stress and how psychologists treat health issues.

Program Information

Students interested in sports massage typically enroll in a massage therapy program and choose sports massage as a specialty. Students can earn diplomas or certificates in massage therapy or pursue degrees that incorporate massage therapy, such as an Associate of Applied Science in Massage Therapy. Completion of some programs qualifies graduates to sit for the certification exam administered by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. Due to the hands-on nature of massage therapy, fully online programs are rare. Many online courses have in-person segments that require attendance at one or more on-campus sessions to gain practical experience. Continuing education courses in massage therapy and sports massage are more commonly found online, and can help working therapists to stay up to date on new trends, techniques, and requirements.

Online sports massage courses are available from diplomas, certificates and associate's degrees. Areas of study include the basics of massage, clinical techniques and the business of massage.


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