How To Become A Registered Massage Therapist In Colorado
There's a boggling amount of information on the Internet about how to become a massage therapist, but much of it is confusing!
At CIMT, we believe your education should begin immediately, not after you start class. We hope the following information takes some of the confusion out of the process of becoming a professional massage therapist:
1. Research to see if a massage career is a match for you.
Massage is a unique career field. If you haven't done so already, visit our massage career information page to see if the industry feels right for you, and contact us to request more information on careers in massage.
2. Experience it, to see if you are a match for a massage career.
Not everyone is cut out to be a therapist, and you can only learn so much by reading. It's important to have “hands on” experience giving and receiving massage, before enrolling in school. Click here to reserve a space in our free “Introduction to Massage Therapy” workshop, and in just two hours you'll know if a massage career is right for you!
3. Choose the right school for you
It doesn't matter if you start massage school, it matters if you finish it, because you can't legally practice without completing an approved program. Education is a commitment, so it's crucial that you feel supported by the school you choose. The best way to determine this is to tour the school and ask questions. It's also a good idea to experience their education approach for yourself, to make sure you and the school are a match. The best way to do that is to participate in an introductory workshop and/or schedule an appointment to visit a class.
4. Choose the right program
Next, choose the program that's best for your short term and long term goals. If your priority is becoming a professional as quickly and affordably as possible, consider CIMT's Essential Massage Therapy Certification Program. If you want the greatest amount of preparation and opportunity, consider the Advanced Neuromuscular Massage Therapy Certification Program, which includes neuromuscular and trigger point release therapies.
5. Commit to your dream and get started!
Every year we meet prospective students who admit they've been thinking and talking about going to massage school for far longer than the eight and a half months to eleven and a half months it would have taken to complete massage school! If you wait for the perfect time, you may never do it because there never will be a perfect time. If you've made it to step 5, it's time to go for it!
6. Do your best in class
At CIMT you're less than a year from a career you'll love for a lifetime, so make school attendance and performance your priority, and let friends and family know you need their support. Confident massage therapists are magnets for clients, so pay attention, participate, ask questions, and learn as much as you can from the experts, before going out on your own!
7. Meet and exceed your lab and clinical massage hours
Massage education is literally a hands-on experience, and Colorado law requires students to complete a minimum of five hundred hours of course and clinical work. In addition to being mandatory, lab and clinical practice, which take place outside of classroom hours, are crucial to your success. Also, to gain the most experience, preparation and confidence, you should volunteer for as many massage events in your community as possible.
8. Pass the certification examination
After completing an approved program, you must pass a certification exam to become a registered massage therapist. The state of Colorado recognizes two tests, the Massage and Bodyworker's Licensure Exam (MBLEx), or the national certification examination offered by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork (NCBTMB). Be sure to take advantage of any resources your school offers to prepare you for the certification exam of your choice. It's important to complete your exam as soon as possible, so your preparation and confidence are at their highest.
9. Register with DORA (Department of Regulatory Agencies)
To register in Colorado you must submit an application and fee, and complete a fingerprint and background check. Once you've provided everything that's required for registration, the approval process can take up to 12 weeks, so timing is important. Click here for more information on registration.
10. Invest in malpractice insurance and get started!
Even if you work for an employer who carries liability insurance, Colorado law requires that massage therapists maintain professional liability insurance of not less than $50,000 per claim, with aggregate liability of $300,000 for all claims within a one year period. The professional massage associations ABMP and AMTA both offer affordable insurance.
Since 1985, CIMT has helped hundreds of people realize their dream of becoming massage therapists, and we'd like to help you too! Please contact us for more information on becoming a massage therapist.