The Massage Therapy Program is designed to provide the essential skills to become a bodywork practitioner. The curriculum focuses on the integration of the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of our students. The Student Massage Practice Center provides a hands-on opportunity for students to improve their skills in a professional-type atmosphere under the guidance of a licensed therapist/instructor. Discover more by attending one of our monthly Massage Therapy ORIENTATIONS (see Forms/Resources on left).
In only a few semesters, you can be on your way to working as a licensed therapist in a spa, health club, medical clinic, or other exciting location!
Knowledge and Skills
Skills and knowledge gained in the program include the ability to:
- Explain the physiology, benefits, indications, and contraindications and effects of the nine basic massage techniques
- Appraise and refine therapeutic massage techniques to cultivate mastery of skills, abilities, and aptitudes.
- Describe and demonstrate the attachments, actions, therapeutic stretches, and palpation of trigger points of skeletal muscles.
- Perform a complete body massage appropriate for the client.
- Use massage therapy skills in a clinical setting under the direct supervision of a site director and the program coordinator.
There are 15 credits of prerequisite courses that need to be completed (AND which count towards licensing hours) before the hands-on “CORE” Program is taken. See Check Sheet on left under “Forms/Resources”. Once the prerequisite courses are successfully completed and the student is accepted into the Massage Program at Phoenix College, students may select between a DAY or EVENING CORE Program of Study*:
DAYTIME COHORT: Mid January – July Monday – Friday, 9 am – 1 pm
EVENING COHORT: Mid August – April Monday – Friday, 4 pm – 8 pm
*schedules may vary slightly.
Career and Employment Outlook
At one time, massage treatments were primarily requested by the wealthy, vacationing, athletes, or those with health-related issues. Today, people of varied income levels are receiving massage more frequently, even on a routine basis, as society has taken a greater interest and involvement in their own health and well-being. This has created a great need for more therapists in every aspect of the field, both holistic and allopathic.
The beginning salary greatly depends on where the therapist is working. For information about careers in your area of study, visit O*NET OnLine for detailed job descriptions, education requirements, wage and employment trend information
Note: A massage therapist may have anywhere from 2–6 clients per day, depending on the place of practice and volume of clientele. Although some establishments will pay hourly for the time the therapist is on shift, most pay on commission. Overall, the rate per hour can increase significantly by the amount of gratuities earned.
It is strongly advised that all massage therapists, whether working independently or in an establishment, be affiliated with a professional bodywork organization that provides liability insurance to protect oneself from any possible lawsuits. The two most common providers are Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals (ABMP) and American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA). Many other services and support are also provided; yearly membership is approximately $200–$250, depending on membership level.
Eligibility for Licensure
In Arizona, one must obtain a license from the AZ Board of Massage Therapy before being able to practice. This can be obtained only after the successful completion of a minimum of 700 clock hours of professional training at an accredited school recognized by the Board.
Upon completion of the certificate program or AAS degree in Massage Therapy, students are eligible to apply for Arizona State Licensure. To obtain an application packet and/or seek additional information on state licensure visit: https://massagetherapy.az.gov.
See current CEU Brochure under "Forms/Resources" on left.
AAS graduates can transfer credits to other colleges/universities for their Bachelor’s degree in various health or recreation related fields. In addition, the AAS transfers directly to the Bachelor of Applied Science in Wellness at ASU East Campus and Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies at all ASU locations. The AAS graduate can also transfer credit to NAU to pursue a BS in Health Sciences: Allied Health. Students who plan to transfer should contact an Academic Program Advisor.
The Arizona Course Applicability System provides information on courses, course equivalencies, and program requirements at all public universities in Arizona.