15 Best Massage Therapy Schools in Phoenix | 2023 Ranking

Massage therapy is a rewarding and in-demand profession. Although the profession is classified as allied health, there are numerous specialties from which to choose as a career focus. 

Maternity massages, deep tissue massages, sports massages, and aromatherapy are all popular areas for specializing. 

All therapists, regardless of specialty, use their skills and knowledge to relieve stress and pain by applying pressure to various points on the body.

Massage therapists are in high demand in healthcare settings. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment is expected to grow by 21% between 2019 and 2029. 

There will be numerous opportunities for new entrants in clinics, spas, hospitals, patients’ homes, sports medicine, and various other settings.

Applicants who meet the criminal background and citizenship requirements are granted a license by the Arizona State Board of Massage Therapy. 

Applicants who do not speak English as their first language may be required to take an English proficiency test.

Keep reading to learn more about the best massage therapy schools in Phoenix.

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Are There Massage Therapy Schools In Phoenix?

There are very few massage therapy schools in Phoenix. These massage therapy schools are considered to be the best in the city. They are:

  • Phoenix College
  • Avalon School of Cosmetology
  • Gateway College – Deer Valley
  • Sigma College University Trade Schools
  • Arizona College of Nursing
  • Maricopa Community Colleges
  • Cortiva Institute Phoenix Campus

How Does One Become A Massage Therapist In Phoenix?

When professionally practicing massage therapy, you must meet specific requirements depending on where you intend to practice.

You must have some credentials to work as a massage therapist in 48 of the 50 states, and each state has its own rules.

To become licensed to practice as a massage therapist in 44 of the 48 states mentioned above (plus Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands), you must take and pass the MBLEx.

Furthermore, licensure is not a one-time event. You will usually be required to complete continuing education (C.E.C.E.) course hours to renew your license.

In addition to obtaining and renewing your license, you will be required to follow your state’s specific acts, rules, regulations, and laws governing the practice of massage therapy.

To become an Arizona Licensed Massage Therapist, you must complete 700 hours of massage therapy school. 

If you graduate from an Arizona school accredited by the U.S. Department of Education, such as ASIS Massage Education, you will be eligible for the license immediately; you will not need to take an exam.

If your massage therapy school is not accredited, you must pass the N.C.E.T.M.B. or MBLEx exams after completing your studies.

What Are The Best Massage Therapy Schools In Phoenix?

Below are the best therapy schools in Phoenix with some information about them:

Phoenix College

Phoenix College is one of ten in the Maricopa Community Colleges District and is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools Higher Learning Commission. 

The Therapeutic Massage Program is housed in the Department of Health Professions, Fitness, and Wellness. It has a student population of 11,109 as of 2018.

Students must complete 64 credit hours or 750 clock hours to earn a Certificate of Completion in Therapeutic Massage from the university. 

There are fewer elective courses required when compared to the Associate’s degree option. Graduates should be able to develop a business plan for a massage therapy practice.

There is also an Associate of Applied Science in Therapeutic Massage program, which requires students to complete 64-68 credit hours. 

Medical terminology, self-care for providers, and an overview of massage therapy are covered in class. 

Therapeutic massage practices, Swedish massage, trigger-point therapy, and small business management are all core curriculum components. Eight elective credits, such as healthy living and meditation, must also be completed.

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Avalon School of Cosmetology

The massage therapy program at Avalon School of Cosmetology prepares students for various careers in the massage industry. 

The extensive curriculum covers basic anatomy, stone massage, and aromatherapy techniques. 

Also, Swedish Massage, Deep Tissue Massage, Athletic/Sports and Stretching, Clinical Approach to Bodywork, Lymph Massage, Anatomy and Kinesiology, Hydrotherapy, and Business and Ethics are some of the other areas of study. 

A supervised clinical internship is included as part of the training. Due to their hands-on experience, students will gain confidence as they transition from the classroom to the massage industry. 

To prepare for the world of work, students will learn resume writing, mock interviews, and career planning. 

Day classes are held from 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. Evening classes are held from 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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Gateway College – Deer Valley

The Massage Therapy Program at Deer Valley College combines theory with hands-on training to prepare students for success in the massage therapy industry. 

The curriculum focuses on structural massage, which requires an understanding of anatomy and tissue sculpting techniques to encourage change in the body. 

Students will learn how to manipulate soft tissues in the body using their fingers, hands, knuckles, forearms, fists, and elbows. 

Also, Swedish massage, deep tissue massage, sports massage, pregnancy massage, and Asian modalities are all massage techniques. 

Business classes help students improve their professionalism, communication, marketing, and customer service skills. 

To continue to the next course in the sequence and graduate from the program, students must complete each module with a minimum grade of 80% and attend 100% of course hours. 

Graduates of the program will be awarded a Massage Therapy Certificate and be eligible to apply for a license from the Arizona State Board of Massage Therapy.

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Sigma College University Trade Schools

Massage Therapy students at Sigma CUTS will learn the techniques to work in the massage therapy industry. 

The program will include classroom lectures, lab skills, real-world massage therapy, and business development experiences. 

Graduates are guaranteed a job upon completion of the program and licensure by the Arizona State Board of Massage Therapy. 

Monday through Friday from 3:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Clinicals are only available by appointment on Sundays.

Program Overview:

Massage Therapy Certificate

Duration: 8 months (full-time)

Contact Hours: 700

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Arizona College of Nursing

The comprehensive massage therapy curriculum provided by Arizona College of Nursing prepares students to apply for licensure and entry-level employment in the field. 

Experienced faculty will cover core massage and business courses in the classroom, followed by hands-on training with modern equipment in the school’s lab. 

Swedish Massage, Client Care in Massage Therapy, Eastern and Energetic Approaches, Spine and Thorax Palpitations, Lower Body Palpitations, Sports and Injury Massage, Spa Techniques, Upper Body Palpitations, Muscular System: Lower Body, and Pain Solutions in Massage Therapy are among the courses on the course schedule. 

Graduates can apply to the Arizona State Massage Therapy Board for a massage therapy license. New classes begin every five weeks.

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Maricopa Community Colleges

The Certificate of Completion (CCL) in the Massage Therapy program is intended to provide students with the foundational and advanced technical skills required to meet the State of Arizona licensure requirements, as well as to prepare students for employment as massage professionals. 

Massage therapy is a holistic profession that helps people improve their physical and emotional well-being. 

Students will understand massage therapy deeply by collaborating with instructors and fellow students in a hands-on learning environment, integrating classic techniques such as Swedish, deep tissue, and therapeutic. 

Additionally, students will have opportunities to work with various people in clinical and classroom settings.

After completing this program, students will be prepared to work in various settings, including private practice, physical therapy clinics, chiropractic offices, corporate/franchised spas, the sports industry, and destination resorts. 

Credits earned in the CCL transfer directly to the Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree in Massage Therapy.

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Cortiva Institute Phoenix Campus

The Phoenix Campus of Cortiva Institute (Formerly Arizona School of Massage Therapy) is located in Phoenix, Arizona. 

This school provides training in 15 qualifications, the most popular of which are a Massage Therapy License, an Esthetician License, and an Arizona Massage Therapy License. 

Depending on the qualification, the time required to complete this education training ranges from 4.5 months to 1 year, with an average time of 8 months. 

The cost of attending the Cortiva Institute Phoenix Campus (Formerly the Arizona School of Massage Therapy) ranges from $10,000 to $14,000, with a median cost of $12,000. 

When asked how they paid for their education, most reviewers said, “I received grants and/or scholarship funding.”

The most frequently mentioned benefits of attending Cortiva Institute Phoenix Campus (Formerly Arizona School of Massage Therapy) are “Good teachers” and “Hands-on training.” Still, respondents also mentioned “Positive environment” and “Helpful career services.” 

Cortiva Institute, Phoenix Campus (Formerly Arizona School of Massage Therapy), 3.97 out of 5 stars by 34 customers. 

79% of reviewers recommended Cortiva Institute Phoenix Campus (Formerly Arizona School of Massage Therapy) to a friend.

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How Long Are Massage Therapy Schools In Phoenix?

You must complete 700 hours of massage therapy school to become an Arizona Licensed Massage Therapist. 

You will be eligible for the license immediately if you graduate from an Arizona institution accredited by the U.S. Department of Education, such as ASIS Massage Education.

If your massage therapy school is not accredited, you must complete your studies and pass the N.C.E.T.M.B. or MBLEx tests.

Furthermore, certification is not a one-time event. To renew your license, you will usually need to complete some Continuing Education (C.E.C.E.) course hours.

In addition to obtaining and renewing your license, you must follow your state’s specific acts, rules, regulations, and laws governing massage therapy.

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How Much Are Massage Therapy Schools In Phoenix?

Massage therapy is a fulfilling and in-demand career. Although the field is classified as allied health, there are several specialties to choose from when deciding on a career path. 

Popular areas of expertise include maternity, deep tissue, sports, and aromatherapy. 

Regardless of specialization, all therapists use their skills and knowledge to relieve stress and discomfort by applying pressure to various body parts.

Massage therapists are in high demand in hospitals and other healthcare facilities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment will increase by 21% between 2019 and 2029. 

New entrants will have many opportunities in clinics, spas, hospitals, patients’ homes, sports medicine, and various other settings.

The program will cost approximately $13,500. Tuition, books, supplies, a tech charge, a material fee, and a licensing fee are all included in the registration fee. 

Students who meet the eligibility requirements can apply for federal student aid through Pell grants and student loans.

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How Much Do Massage Therapists Make In Phoenix?

In 2017, the median hourly wage for a massage therapist in the Phoenix-Scottsdale-Mesa area was $19.84. 

Massage therapists in the tenth percentile earned $10.01, while those in the ninetieth percentile earned $38.59.

Workplace conditions are highly variable. Some employers provide a variety of benefits to massage therapists. 

Some people work as independent contractors. Massage therapists may be self-employed but maintain close relationships with other wellness professionals. 

For example, some chiropractic offices will occasionally advertise for massage therapists to rent out rooms in their suites.

According to Phoenix College, the therapeutic massage market has expanded to include members of the general population, many of whom seek massage regularly for general wellness.

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Conclusion

Individuals working in the massage industry in Arizona are granted a two-year license by the State of Arizona and the Massage Board, renewable with re-registration.

Therefore, this career is worth trying if you love working with your hands. Complete your education and pass the licensing exams to get your license and be on your way to an enjoyable career.

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F.A.Q.s

How much is a massage license in Phoenix?

All application materials become the permanent property of the Board and will not be returned. The total payment is $217.00 ($195.00 for the application + $22.00 for the background check).

How many hours do you need to become a massage therapist in Phoenix?

Massage therapist certification requires at least 700 hours of massage school.

Is being a massage therapist a good career choice in Phoenix?

Overall, massage therapists report a high level of job satisfaction. Massage therapy was named one of the best career paths in the U.S.U.S. News 100 Best Jobs survey for 2021.

How much do massage therapists make an hour in Phoenix?

The average hourly wage for a massage therapist in Arizona is $39.78.

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