Top Schools for Massage Therapy

Learn about education programs in massage therapy. Find out about some top schools that offer programs in this field and distinctions that make these programs stand out. View article »

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School Information

Aspiring and experienced massage therapists can find relevant training programs in the field through full degree and certificate programs, as well as individual courses. These programs can be found at health-focused schools, as well as traditional two- and four-year institutions. For 2017, U.S. News & World Report ranked massage therapist as the #8 best health care support job. As of January 2017, there were more than 500 institutions with educational offerings in this field, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. The National University of Health Sciences, Miami Dade College, New York College of Health Professions, and Arizona Western College are among the top schools offering programs in this field. These schools provide wide-ranging training that covers many topics related to massage therapy. Some of them also offer students the opportunity to focus their studies on a particular type of massage.

National University of Health Sciences

The National University of Health Sciences offers massage therapy training in Lombard, Illinois. Students can pursue a massage therapy certificate program and an Associate of Applied Science in Massage Therapy. Students learn about anatomy, business, and various massage techniques, including sports massage, deep tissue work, Swedish massage, and trigger point therapy. Graduates of National University's massage therapy program generally score above state and national averages on the compulsory licensing exam, according to the school's website. In 2015, the pass rate for graduates of National University was 100%. The school also offers a chiropractic assistant program that includes massage therapy coursework.

Miami Dade College

The Medical Campus of Miami Dade College in Miami, Florida, is home to a Career Technical Certificate in Massage Therapy program that has three track options. The accelerated track is designed for current physical therapists or physical therapist assistants and the transitional option is available to other healthcare professionals. These tracks allow students to skip some of the introductory health courses and move directly into core massage therapy courses. Other students can select the generic track, which is offered to those who don't have a current healthcare credential.

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New York College of Health Professions

The New York College of Health Professions the first U.S. college to offer a massage therapy degree in therapeutic bodywork. Students at the institution can earn an Associate in Occupational Studies in Massage Therapy. In addition to the main campus in Syosset, the college has satellite schools in New York City and operates a medical facility in the People's Republic of China. The New York College of Health Professions offers students and faculty the opportunity to spend two weeks at Luo Yang Medical Center, where they can attend presentations and immerse themselves in Chinese culture.

Arizona Western College

Arizona Western College in Yuma, Arizona, operates a student clinic for stress reduction and relaxation massages. Aspiring massage therapists can earn an Associate of Applied Science or Occupational Certificate in Massage Therapy. In these programs, students learn the major types of massage, and they complete clinical experiences in the field. For experienced massage therapists looking for advanced education, the school offers the Massage Therapy Mastery Program, which leads to a certificate and may include a paid internship.

Top Schools with Massage Therapy Degrees

These schools also provide excellent massage therapy training:

School Name Distinction Location
Idaho State University Offers a massage therapy technical certificate program and an associate's degree, the latter of which qualifies graduates for transfer to a bachelor's program in health sciences Pocatello, ID
Lake Washington Institute of Technology Massage therapy students learn relevant business skills as part of their coursework Kirkland, WA
Ohio College of Massotherapy Offers an online massotherapy program Akron, OH
Parker University Offers massage therapy certificate and associate's degree programs Dallas, TX
Siena Heights University The Bachelor of Applied Science in Massage Therapy builds on students' associate degree studies Adrian, MI

Whether you want to begin a career in massage therapy or advance your existing skills, there are relevant programs available in schools across the country. Most include a combination of classroom coursework and hands-on training in the field.

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