Colorado Massage Requirements

Colorado massage requirements establish the educational and examination requirements for an individual to become a massage therapist in the state.  In Colorado individuals who practice massage therapy are considered Licensed Massage Therapists as of July 1, 2014 prior to that date they were considered Registered Massage Therapists.  To become a Licensed Massage Therapist a candidate must graduate from a board approved  school and pass a board approved national examination.

According to the Colorado Massage Requirements a candidate for massage therapy licensure must submit fingerprints to the Colorado Bureau of Investigations (CBI), for the purpose of conducting a state and national fingerprint-based criminal history record check utilizing records of the CBI and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI). The Division of Professions and Occupations (DPO) must receive the results of both background checks prior to issuance a new license.   The following information is offered as an assistance to those considering a career as a massage therapist.  The information should be verified by consulting the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies and Office of Massage Therapy Licensure.

Colorado Massage Requirements

Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies

Office of Massage Therapy Licensure

1560 Broadway, Suite 1350
Denver, CO 80202

Phone   (303) 894-7800
FAX      (303) 894-7764

To see Colorado State Laws & Rules go to:

Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies

Find Colorado Massage Schools


Application & Initial License    $80

Renewal                                      $59

CBI Fingerprint                         $39.50

Education requirements:

500 hours from an approved massage school


Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards MBLEx

CEU requirements


Page last Updated June 16, 2015

The National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork is no longer offered as of November 1, 2014 and National Certification will no longer be offered as of December 31, 2016.  Those who are Nationally Certified will need to upgrade their Certification to Board Certified. Please go to for further information on Board Certification. 

Colorado Office of Massage Therapy Licensure
Chapter Definitions Reference Resource for Colorado Massage Requirements 

Colorado Massage Requirements Law Definitions Excerpt

§ 12-35.5-103. Definitions

As used in this article, unless the context otherwise requires:

(1) "Advertise" means to publish, display, or disseminate information and includes, but is not limited to, the issuance of any card, sign, or direct mail, or causing or permitting any sign or marking on or in any building or structure or in any newspaper, magazine, or directory, or any announcement or display via any televised, computerized, electronic, or telephonic networks or media.

(2) "Applicant" means a person applying for a license to practice massage therapy.

(3) "Approved massage school" means:

(a) A massage therapy educational school that has a valid certificate of approval from the division of private and occupational schools in accordance with the provisions of article 59 of this title;

(b) A massage therapy educational program certified by the Colorado community college system;

(c) A massage therapy educational entity or program that is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency; or

(d) A massage therapy program at a school located outside Colorado that is approved by the director based on standards adopted by the director by rule.

(4) "Compensation" means something of value or benefit, whether in cash, in kind, or in any other form. ARTICLE 35.5: MASSAGE THERAPISTS

Effective July 1, 2013 Page 2 of 14

(5) "Director" means the director of the division.

(6) "Division" means the division of professions and occupations in the department of regulatory agencies.

(6.5) "Licensee" means a person licensed in this state to practice massage therapy.

(7) "Massage" or "massage therapy" means a system of structured touch, palpation, or movement of the soft tissue of another person's body in order to enhance or restore the general health and well-being of the recipient. Such system includes, but is not limited to, techniques such as effleurage, commonly called stroking or gliding; petrissage, commonly called kneading; tapotement or percussion; friction; vibration; compression; passive and active stretching within the normal anatomical range of movement; hydromassage; and thermal massage. Such techniques may be applied with or without the aid of lubricants, salt or herbal preparations, water, heat, or a massage device that mimics or enhances the actions possible by human hands. "Massage" or "massage therapy" does not include therapeutic exercise, intentional joint mobilization or manipulation, or any of the methods described in section 12-35.5-110(1)(e).

(8) "Massage therapist" means an individual licensed by this state to engage in the practice of massage therapy. The terms "masseuse" and "masseur" are synonymous with the term "massage therapist".

(9) "Person" means a natural person only.

(10) Repealed by Laws 2013, Ch. 286, § 4, eff. Aug. 7, 2013.

Resources and References

Go to State Laws & Rules

Go to Become a Massage Therapist

Go to Get Massage Smart Home Page