What It Takes to Become a Licensed Massage Therapist

by dan billick, lmt

If you would like to confirm whether or not a particular health professional, therapist, or business is properly licensed, you can visit TDLR to do a quick & easy search:



In the United States, standards & regulations for Licensed Massage Therapists (LMTs) are set from state-to-state. Each state is free to set their own standards for schooling, background checks, and testing. As of this writing, 46 states currently have laws to help regulate the practice of massage therapy.

In general, individuals wishing to become an LMT must meet the following requirements before receiving their LMT license:

1) At least 18 years of age
2) Complete and pass 500+ hours of training from an accredited school
3) Complete a Personal Criminal Background check
4) Pass the MBLEx certification exam
5) Maintain CPR/AED training certification

In Texas, the Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation (TDLR) is responsible for issuing, maintaining, & enforcing regulations for LMTs throughout the state. As of this writing, the following are required of anyone wishing to become an LMT in Texas:

1) Applicant must complete 500+ hour program from an accredited school within the last two years

2) Receive a passing score on the MBLEx administered by the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards (FSMTB).

3) Complete a Personal Criminal Background check

4) Maintain CPR/AED certification


After completing the requirements listed above, an LMT must complete Continuing Education Units (CEUs) on a regular basis to maintain their license.

dan billick