What Is a Massage Therapy License?

Article Details
  • Written By: K. Kinsella
  • Edited By: Shereen Skola
  • Last Modified Date: 07 May 2020
  • Copyright Protected:
    Conjecture Corporation
  • Print this Article

A massage therapy license enables a trained massage therapist or physiotherapist to operate within a certain nation or region. Typically, a massage therapy license remains active for a certain period of time after which the licensee must renew it or cease to work as a therapist. Most licensed therapists are able to perform a variety of different massage techniques such as Swedish, Thai or deep tissue massages.

Massage techniques can prove difficult to master and untrained individuals who attempt to perform massages can actually make physical problems worse. Consequently, many national and regional governments require therapists to obtain licences so that consumers can easily distinguish licensed professional from those who are not qualified to offer these services. In many countries, laws require massage therapists to display their operational licences in their reception area or elsewhere in the workplace. Additionally, municipal and national governments generate revenue by requiring therapists and people working in other professions to obtain licenses and this revenue covers some governmental administrative costs.

Prior to obtaining a massage license, a therapist must undergo some type of formal training. Some universities offer college level degree courses that focus on massage therapy and similar types of treatment. Vocational schools in many countries offer classes that focus on one type of massage therapy while other educational institutions offer longer term courses in which participants are schooled in a variety of different techniques. Generally, a message therapist must provide the government department that issues licences with a certificate of completion, diploma or some other evidence that the training has been successfully completed.

Different countries and regions have varying massage therapy license rules but in many nations licenses are only available to legal adults. In some nations, terms such as masseuse, therapist and masseur are used interchangeably so regulators have to publish guidelines that detail the types of services that licensed therapists can perform. Generally, any type of therapy that involves rubbing or kneading muscles or is aimed at addressing muscular skeletal issues is regarded as massage therapy.

Consumer protection laws exist in many countries that enable government authorities to strip an individual of a massage therapy license in certain circumstances. Regulators usually have to power to invalidate licenses that were obtained with falsified information. In some countries, massage therapists are subject to the same regulations as health care providers which means that regulators can revoke licenses of therapists who commit some kind of professional misconduct. Generally, a license is only valid for use within a certain region or country so therapists who relocate often have to apply for new licences that are issued by the local authorities.


Discuss this Article

Post your comments

Post Anonymously


forgot password?