Connecticut requires massage therapists to have completed accredited coursework and to be licensed. Some programs take up to two years to complete and require full-time attendance.
Two accredited schools in Connecticut are The Connecticut Center for Massage Therapy and Ridley-Lowell Business & Technical Institute. Both schools offer complete massage curriculums. The Connecticut Center has campuses in Groton, Newington and Westport, and Ridley-Lowell has campuses in Danbury and New London. Comprehensive curriculums require students to learn musculoskeletal rehabilitative practices and broad-based practical knowledge of the health sciences.
Ridley-Lowell Business and Technical Institute is accredited to award certificates and diplomas by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) and by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).
The Connecticut Center for Massage Therapy is accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA). Educational loans, including Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) are available to assist students with tuition if the school is accredited.
Massage Therapy Licensing Requirements in Connecticut
The Connecticut Department of Public Health requires that therapists have not less than 500 classroom hours from an institution that is accredited by an agency recognized by either the United States Department of Education or by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation. Online instruction does not count toward the 500 classroom hours. Therapists must also pass the National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB). A notarized application for the examination must be submitted along with the required fee (currently $375) to the state treasurer. The massage therapy institution must also directly submit a verification form stating that the coursework has been satisfactorily completed.
Employment Outlook for Massage Therapists in Connecticut
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary of a massage therapist is $34,900, and that the employment rate for massage therapists will grow by 20% by the year 2020. The average annual salary of a licensed massage therapist in Connecticut is estimated at $42,000, and there are an estimated 5,000 new job openings for therapists every year. Licensed massage therapists have multiple venues to choose from when they are ready to practice; opening a private practice is just one option. The demand for massage therapy is growing, and there are job opportunities at senior citizen centers, assisted living facilities, day spas, sports clinics, gyms, cruise ships and even small airport kiosks. Some massage therapists choose to work with chiropractors and acupuncturists, or set up an office with multiple massage therapists, each with their own specialty type of massage.