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How to Become a Massage Therapist in Louisiana

Picture a relaxing atmosphere -- A warm, dimly lit room with soothing music playing and the gentle, calming fragrance of aromatherapy candles burning as they flicker on the walls. Now, picture this being your job. If this thought appeals to you and you live in Louisiana, you may want to consider becoming a massage therapist in LA.

Here's how to become a Massage Therapist (MT) in your state:

Every state, (at least those that are regulated) has different requirements and regulations for individuals wishing to start a career in massage therapy. In the state of Louisiana, there are several requirements that a person must meet before being considered a Licensed Massage Therapist or LMT. The Louisiana Board of Massage Therapy (LBMT) located in Zachary, LA is the MT regulator for the state.

Becoming a Massage Therapist in Louisiana

The only prerequisite for training to become an MT in Louisiana is a high school diploma or GED equivalent. There are a variety of LBMT-accredited schools for Louisiana residents to choose from ranging from online courses to earning a degree (from Associates to Doctoral) in Massage Therapy. Those wishing to become a Massage Therapist in Louisiana will need to select an accredited school. After selecting a qualifying school, Louisiana MTs are required to complete 500 hours at an accredited school prior to being eligible to take the license examination. The student is required to complete the 500 hours under the guidance and supervision of a qualified instructor. The breakdown of the 500 credit hours should be, as follows:

(information is subject to change)

  • 325 hours -- Basic massage therapy technique and clinical practice and related field work
  • 125 hours -- Studying Anatomy and Physiology
  • 50 hours -- Career-related courses including, but not limited to business practices, professional ethics, health and hygiene, hydrotherapy, cardiopulmonary necessitation (CPR) and first aid related-courses.

After completing the required hours, submitting a transcript of school hours and completing the application form (and any other necessary requirements) -- a Louisiana resident must pass the NCETMB (National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork) exam OR pass both the written and oral exam.

After successfully passing the test, the individual will be considered a Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT), legally eligible to practice massage therapy in Louisiana.

Out of State MT License in Louisiana

If you received your license outside of the state of Louisiana, you will need to provide documentation of the following:

  • Copy of current out-of-state license that meets with the requirements for practicing massage therapy in Louisiana
  • Transcript from accredited or board-approved school where you received credit hours
  • Proof of passing the NCETMB

Renewing a Massage Therapist License in Louisiana

The Massage Therapist license is good for up to one year. At the end of each year, MTs are then, required to complete 12 continued education unit (CEU) hours in an accredited school, every year in order to maintain MT licensure.

Keep in mind when you are granted licensure, that the majority of MT jobs in Louisiana are located near more heavily populated cities such as, New Orleans and Shreveport. However, opportunities are readily available throughout the state.