Coalition of National Massage Therapy Organizations Releases Report

massage therapy trainingReport gives recommendations on massage therapy training hours and core content

February 2014. Earlier this month, the Coalition of National Massage Therapy Organizations announced that it had released the Entry-Level Analysis Project (ELAP). This publication, available at http://www.elapmassage.org/, gives recommendations on the core content for massage therapy training programs, as well as the minimum number of instructional hours.

The authors’ aim was to construct “from the ground up what they believe should be the fundamental building blocks within every entry level massage therapy instructional program” so that graduates are prepared for safe and competent practice in the massage profession. With this aim, the report offers a detailed blueprint that spells out the essential knowledge and skills areas, and the level of depth in which they should be covered in massage therapy training programs.

The authors of the report also point out that the blueprint is not a complete curriculum. It is the core knowledge that every beginning massage therapist should have, but it is not intended as a full curriculum. The authors emphasize that they value diversity and innovation as strengths of the profession, and do not intend to prescribe the entire curriculum.

Using the blueprint, which is organized by subject, topic, and subtopic, the coalition tabulated hours, based on the objectives for each area. Based on this calculation, the informed recommendation that the report sets forth is a minimum of 625 training hours.

Massage therapy training programs can access report online

The final report contains two parts: The Core: Entry-Level Analysis Project Report and The Core: Entry-Level Massage Education Blueprint. In addition to these reports, there are informational webinars about the project. Each of the two webinars is about one hour in length.

The reports and webinar are available online at http://www.elapmassage.org/. The website also contains a page of resources, where educators can see the guidelines on special areas, such as proprioceptive approaches, seated massage, and adapting sessions for clients with disabilities.

The Coalition represents the input of the following seven organizations:

Alliance for Massage Therapy Education
American Massage Therapy Association
Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals
Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation
Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards
Massage Therapy Foundation
National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork

For more information about this report, visit the ELAP website at  http://www.elapmassage.org/.