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How to Become a Massage Therapist in Florida - FL

Florida massage therapy certification for licensure is required to practice massage therapy, in addition to being certified by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB).


The following information is a step-by-step guide regarding licensure requirements for a massage therapist in the state of Florida.

  1. Complete a massage therapy program from a Board of Massage Therapy approved school.  One may complete an apprenticeship program approved by the Board.
  2. Successfully pass the national certification examination.

    There are 3 eligibility pathways in order to take the national examination.  One eligibility pathway is the education/training method.  This includes a minimum of 500 hours of instruction.  The school must have a National Certification Board (NCB) assigned school code.  The breakdown of those required 500 hours are as follows:  300 hours must be conducted in person or in approved education format (online, cd, or dvd), 200 hours of practical coursework (hands on) conducted in person.  The second eligibility pathway is called the portfolio review process.  One must submit all training in a portfolio format for a panel to review.  The third eligibility pathway is the National Examination for State Licensing (NESL) option.  Under this option, you can test before your 500-hour education requirement has been completed.

  3. Completion of the “Prevention of Medical Errors” course, which is two hours long.
  4. Fully complete and submit the application for massage therapist.
  5. Pay the application fee, which is currently $205.

There is an additional Florida massage therapy certification for Colonic Irrigation (Colonics).  Colonics is a process of injecting large amounts of fluid into the colon for cleansing purposes. This requires a separate application and fee.  You must hold a Florida massage therapist license or have submitted an application for licensure.  Also, one must meet all other educational and training qualifications.

Once the above steps have been completed, you are now considered as a dedicated professional with the credentials to pursue a career in massage therapy in the state of Florida.

Massage Therapy Schools

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            Massage Therapy Program
            Cortiva Institute , Pinellas Park
            • Students may get real-world experience at each campus's public massage therapy spas.
            • Career assistance services are available to help students plan, prepare and promote their careers, from placement assistance to career fairs to resume help.
            • Programs are designed to prepare graduates to work in clinics, hospitals, health clubs, spas, resorts, sports therapy clinics, or start their own private practices.
            • Massage therapy school with 11 locations across the country.
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            • Accredited
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            Massage Therapy
            Sunstate Academy , Clearwater
            • Providing cosmetology training in Florida for over 35 years. 
            • Stands as a Redken Premier School with qualified instructors who have Redken professional training and salon experience.
            • Allows students to practice their skills with top Redken products.
            • Has full-service salons run by students available at both campus locations.
            • Offers career placement help for students, and regularly holds recruitment events for employers.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Diploma in Professional Clinical Massage Therapy
            Southeastern College , West Palm Beach
            • Owns a public spa where students can get real-world experience.
            • Provides scholarship opportunities and financial aid to students who qualify.
            • Offers many start dates throughout the year, with part-time and full-time attendance options.
            • Has 3 main campuses in Greenacres and Jacksonville, Florida, with 4 branch campuses in Miami Lakes, New Port Richey, St. Petersburg, and Tampa.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Associate of Science in Massage Therapy

            Since 1977, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals.  Our student-centered approach remains at the foundation of the Keiser University mission and continues to attract students who prefer a more personal learning experience. 

            Skin Care Specialist - DIP
            • Has specialized in career training since 1982.
            • Offers beginning to advanced training in computer repair, medical assisting, cosmetology, nursing, and more.
            • Continually maintains programs according to industry needs by working closely with industry experts and employers.
            • Provides well-equipped training facilities to give students the advantage of hands-on training.
            • Its instructors attend seminars and workshops to keep current with new technology and topics.
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            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits