Best Massage Therapy Schools In Oregon | Cost, Requirement & How To Apply

Working with people to improve their physical health and overall quality of life is the goal of massage therapy. Massage therapy schools in Oregon offer a path to a fulfilling career that is growing in popularity and professional respect.

Massage therapy schools in Oregon offer quality training to develop personal and technical skills and meet state licensing requirements.

Enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Pacific Northwest as you prepare for a career that offers many specialization options, such as sports, pregnancy, or geriatric massage.

Massage therapy schools in Oregon are located throughout the state in cities known for their variety of recreational and cultural activities.

Are There Massage Therapy Schools In Oregon?

There are six massage therapy schools in Oregon. These include private institutes, public colleges and a private university. Locations include Portland, Salem, Bend and Grants Pass.

Certificate programs last a year or less, while associate degree programs last about two years. Training includes lectures, laboratory sessions, and real-world clinical experience.

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How Much Do Massage Therapy Schools Cost In Oregon?

The average tuition for a massage school—tuition only, not books, massage tables, equipment, etc.—was $13,605 in 2014, with the average cost of attending corporate and for-profit programs (programs with multiple campuses in different states that are mostly a corporate entity) with a skew towards the higher end of the spectrum.

The type of institution can affect the total cost, but the length of the massage therapy program and the number of credit hours included can also make a difference.

More expensive programs may be longer and offer a wider range of coursework to allow students to learn more specialized techniques such as hydrotherapy, sports massage or trigger therapy.

On the other hand, less expensive programs may involve fewer hours of instruction and focus on the fundamentals of massage therapy.

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What Are The Requirements For Massage Therapy Schools In Oregon?

Massage therapy schools in Oregon, as in other states, must be licensed by a valid organization. The Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) website is a good place to start.

An Oregon student will need 625 hours of study. The Board considers this to be the equivalent of 15.74 semester credits or 25 quarter credits.

The program must include 200 hours of health sciences: pathology, kinesiology, anatomy and physiology. It should include 300 hours of theory and practical application.

This content area should include an opportunity for clinical practice. Other mandatory topics include sanitation, communication, business practices and ethics.

Hydrotherapy is a commendable subject. The remaining 125 hours are somewhat discretionary. The program may include additional hours in any of the above topics.

The programs differ in terms of their philosophical approach and specific modalities. Some Oregon schools offer multiple programs of varying lengths.

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Community colleges sometimes have associate degree options. Even non-degree institutions may have master’s or higher level credentials.

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What Are The Best Massage Therapy Schools In Oregon?

Oregon has standards for massage and bodywork schools and practitioners. State code not only sets the minimum required curriculum, but also dictates which institutions are eligible to offer programs.

Wisconsin Approved Programs can be a resource at many points along the way. Below is a list of some of the best massage therapy schools in Oregon.

East West College of the Healing Arts

A private school in Portland, EWCHA boasts an MT program recognized by the prestigious Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation.

The 800-hour study program comprises four 12-week terms spanning one year (full-time) or 15 months (part-time). Morning, afternoon and evening/weekend schedules available.

Students learn various massage techniques, as well as hydrotherapy and myofascial techniques. Optional sessions include Craniosacral Therapy, Tha Massage, Spa Therapy and Chinese Massage.

Programs start in January, April, July and October. The average student-teacher ratio in massage classes is 14:1. The school conducts continuing education courses and master classes.

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University of Western States

Another great choice is this private, non-profit institution founded in 1904. Located on campuses in Portland and Salem, the school’s MT program is accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation.

The part-time program offers a flexible schedule of up to 18 hours per week. Students study Swedish, deep tissue massage techniques, sports/orthopaedics/rehabilitation and medical massage.

They have full access to the university’s award-winning anatomy building and library. The student/teacher ratio in practical classes is 13:1.

Graduates can submit a certificate for an Associate of Applied Science degree at Chemeketa Community College.

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Sage School of Massage & Esthetics

This private institute in Bend offers a 740-hour MT certificate program that takes seven months of full-time classes.

The curriculum includes 230 hours of state-mandatory science courses; and 104 hours of professional development and health lessons such as communication and ethics, career success, healthy eating and self-care.

Students spend 406 hours on massage and related subjects. There are courses

Swedish Basics, Soft Tissue Techniques, Introduction to Assessment and Treatment, Introduction to Myofascia, Introduction to Interactive Body Balancing, Integrative Techniques, and Hydrotherapy and Spa Techniques.

A clinical practicum and community service round out the program.

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Carrington College-Portland

Founded in 1967, Carrington operates in eight western states, including a campus on the third floor of the Lloyd Center in Portland.

Graduates of the massage program receive certificates of success. The curriculum consists of 660 hours (35 credit hours), which provides approximately nine months of study.

Coursework covers subjects mandated by civil servants as well as Swedish, sports, deep tissue and chair massage techniques. Students also learn shiatsu.

The program concludes with an online career development workshop and externship. Career services include job search strategies, resume writing, and interviewing techniques.

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Rogue Community College

This public school in Grants Pass offers two certificates in massage therapy.

The three-semester entry-level program and the four-semester one-year program include classes in college reading, composition or academic literacy, hydrotherapy and cancer massage.

The required courses are College Success and Survival, as well as previous algebra or other math courses.

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Students in the one-year program must also take a course in psychology or human relations, as well as expository writing. The selection test determines whether additional general education classes are required.

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Central Oregon Community College

Massage therapy students at this public school in Bend can earn a certificate of completion or earn an associate of applied science degree.

The 830-hour certificate program includes required coursework plus classes in rhetoric/critical thinking or academic composition, massage practice management, hydrotherapy, English composition, and pre-algebra.

Available day or evening, the AAS program also requires courses in mathematics and communications, as well as executive office solutions, applied accounting, and computer concepts.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Massage Therapy Career, Massage Movement, Spirit of Massage, and Aromatherapy I. The faculty has more than 150 years of teaching experience.

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How Much Do Massage Therapists In Oregon Earn?

According to a 2020 report from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, licensed massage therapists in Oregon earn a median annual salary of $60,360, excluding tips.

This state holds the record when it comes to employment and wages compared to other states. Oregon has the fifth highest number of massage therapist jobs and jobs in the profession.

The Portland metropolitan area ranks seventh in the country for employment of massage therapists. Corvallis, Oregon also has the 2nd highest average salary for massage therapists among all metropolitan areas, while the Eugene-Springfield metropolitan area ranks 6th in this category.

Southern Oregon and Linn County rank 5th highest in the nation for non-metric regions surveyed by the BLS. With these opportunities in mind, we encourage you to consider attending a massage therapy school in Oregon to begin your next career.

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How Do I Become A Massage Therapist In Oregon?

The first qualification to become a massage therapist in Oregon is to obtain either a high school diploma or a GED. The student must then enroll in an accredited post-secondary institution that offers an MT program approved by state officials.

The Oregon Board of Massage Therapists requires curricula to include at least 624 hours of teaching and learning. This is 25 quarter credits or 15.74 semester credits.

Health science courses covering anatomy and physiology, pathology, and kinesiology must total 200 hours (eight quarter credits or 5.34 semester credits).

An additional 300 hours (12 quarter credits or eight semester credits) must be devoted to the theory and practical application of massage therapy, clinical practice, business development, sanitation, communication, and ethics.

The remaining 125 hours (five quarter credits or 2.4 semester credits) may be within any of the required subject areas. Programs vary in the types of massage techniques and other therapeutic methods they teach.

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Best Paying Massage Therapy Jobs In Oregon

Companies are looking to hire professional, courteous massage therapist to provide guests with a wide range of massage services in Oregon.

The massage therapist will consult with guests to screen them for underlying ailments and assist in selecting appropriate services. You will perform the massage in such a way as to prevent injuries to the wrists and other parts of the body.

Oregon Health & Science University – Licensed Massage Therapist

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Body of Light Family Chiropractic – Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT)

McMenamins, Inc. – Grand Lodge Licensed Massage Therapist

Pronghorn Resort – Massage Therapist

Samaritan Albany General Hospital –  Licensed Massage Therapist

Falling Waters Injury & Health Management Center – Licensed Massage Therapist

Indigo Wellness Center – Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT)

Synergy Health and Wellness – Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT)

​St. Charles Health – Massage Therapist Oncology ( Full Time) Temporary

Massage Therapy Schools In Oregon FAQs

What Is The Requirement For Message Therapy License In Oregon?

In this state, the Oregon Board of Massage Therapists regulates the practice of massage therapy. To become a licensed massage therapist in Oregon, applicants must complete at least 500 hours at approved massage therapy schools

How Long Does Massage Therapist License Last In Oregon?

Oregon cosmetology license renewals occur every 2 years at the end of the month of initial licensure. Cosmetology licenses can be renewed online for $40, in person or by mail for $45.

What Is The Average Hourly Wage Of A Massage Therapist In Oregon?

Oregon massage therapists earn well above the national average. The average hourly wage is $27.93. Wages vary greatly from one part of the state to another. Eugene and Medford report the highest wages in the state at $32.43 and $31.00, respectively. In the Bend/Redmond metropolitan area, the median salary is $27.80. The Portland/Vancouver area is not far behind at $27.44; Salem costs $25.43.

Can I Work As Massage Therapist In Oregon With License From Another State?

If you are already licensed in another state that has similar requirements, you may be able to avoid having to take the state exam. Support is on a case-by-case basis and only includes those coming from Arkansas, North Dakota, New Hampshire, Washington, and several Canadian provinces (Newfoundland, Ontario, and British Columbia).
If your license came from a state not listed above, you can request a credential check. You can approve your study units, but you still have to take the exam. You will need to provide a transcript detailing your 500 hours for the board to decide whether or not to accept your training.

Conclusion

No matter what path you choose to take to get your massage therapist license in Oregon, it is important that you first complete an approved massage therapy education. The Oregon Board of Massage Therapists requires a minimum of 500 hours at an approved school.

Of these hours, 200 must cover health sciences including anatomy and physiology, pathology and kinesiology. The rest should cover massage techniques including practical application, business development, clinical practice, communication, sanitation and ethics.

Most are licensed massage therapists in Oregon after taking the exam. After completing the required courses, you can apply to take the state licensing exam. You must pass a written and practical exam.

References

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