A State by State Massage Therapist Licensure Guide

Massage Therapy School in Hartford, Connecticut

If one believes in the transformative power of massage, the Hartford area can be a peaceful place in more ways than one. Here massage is about healing. The area is very open to CAM practices. Massage is used to provide relief for individuals with very serious illnesses. It is also used for minor body aches and for general relaxation, and is promoted as one component of a mini-vacation or holiday get-away.

Massage therapists may be stationed in day spas or beauty shops or in healthcare settings such as hospitals or physical therapist offices. Franchises are another common setting. One may think of franchises as just places to work, but some massage therapists choose to own their own. The Hartford Courier recently profiled an entrepreneur who opened his own Elements Massage franchise after having had a very positive experience with an existing franchise (https://www.courant.com/community/avon/hc-va-avon-elements-massage-1101-20181030-story.html).

An entrepreneur may instead develop his or her own unique offerings, opening a studio alone or together with other massage therapists or holistic practitioners. Entrepreneurship is very common in the massage world.

Massage therapists often affiliate with chiropractors. Other affiliations are possible. West Hartford Yoga, for example, combines massage and bodywork practice with yoga and with other healing arts disciplines such as nutrition practice.

Top 3 Massage Therapy Schools in Hartford, CT

There is a surprising number of massage schools in Hartford and the surrounding towns.

The Cortiva Institute-Newport is accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA). The school offers a 900-hour massage therapy program.

Tunxis Community College represents a public school option. The program includes more than 750 classroom hours; this is complemented by 100 hours of clinical practice. The Tunxis program is WIOA-eligible.

The American Institute (West Hartford) is also an AMTA member. The school boasts quite a few modalities, among them, Trigger Point Therapy, acupressure, reflexology, and energy modalities.

Spotlight on Integrative Health and Oncology Massage

Integrative medicine is big at Hartford Hospital; the hospital website notes that treatments can be helpful for a variety of conditions, including pain, headaches, and allergies – they can even support lifestyle changes such as smoking cessation (https://hartfordhospital.org/services/integrative-medicine/conditions-treatments).

Cancer represents a special case. The Hartford HealthCare Cancer Institute at Hartford Hospital is one of eight centers around the nation that receives grant funding from Angie's Spa Cancer Foundation. This allows the cancer center to provide massage, along with other therapies like Reiki and acupuncture, free to cancer patients (https://www.courant.com/health/breastcancer/hc-fea-bc-angies-spa-breast-cancer-1028-20171027-story.html).

In the summer of 2015, one of the area’s massage schools hosted a four-day oncology massage intensive from a very well-known oncology massage provider. (It is not uncommon for massage therapists who are experts in particular therapies to offer specialty trainings periodically at host sites around the nation.)

The Massage Therapist Hiring Market in Hartford

Early 2019 found a number of employers advertising for massage therapists in Hartford and the surrounding areas. Organizations include day spas, fitness and wellness centers, and massage franchises. Even JC Penney was hiring for its salon.

Highly Rated Central Connecticut Massage Practices

Swedish, deep tissue massage, sports massage, and acupressure are among the most common modalities. Massage practices may provide a list of services to select from. They may also provide bios for their practitioners with details about individual competencies. The following is a sampling of what successful Hartford area massage practices have to offer:

A Touch of Bliss in West Hartford offers various specialty and signature massage treatments: Thai herbal compress; ‘Ultimate Bliss’, which combines elements of Swedish, deep tissue, and hot stone along with the relaxing properties of essential oils; and ‘Royal Indulgence’ which is performed simultaneously by two massage therapists. Not surprisingly, this last one is more costly from the client's perspective!

Elite Massage boasts hot stone massage, sports massage, and ‘gentle touch’ among its offerings. Massage therapists can travel for chair massage.

Therapeutic Massage Associates boasts a team of massage therapists who are competent in common modalities like Swedish, sports, deep tissue, and pregnancy massage. The organization notes some related modalities that are available, including reiki, energy medicine, and intraoral massage.

West Hartford Massage Theory has posted bios for five different practitioners online, noting the modalities they have expertise in and the specialty certifications they have earned. Among the areas of expertise: Lomi Lomi Hawaiian massage, Jin Shin Do acupressure, Thai massage, and neuromuscular techniques. The proprietor is well versed in movement techniques.

Connecticut massage practices use multiple methods to promote themselves. They frequently sell gift certificates. They may even issue coupons. Websites may include blogs.

Hartford Massage Therapy Income

Massage therapists in the Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford area earn wages that are on average well above the national average. The median is $21.95. Even those at the 10th percentile make $15.43; this is more than $5.00 higher than what their counterparts make nationwide. Those at the 90th percentile meanwhile make $38.34 -- only slightly above the national 90th percentile.

If one heads east slightly to the Norwich-New London area, they will find a lower average wage but a much higher employment concentration – this area has one of the highest massage therapist job concentration levels in the nation.

Additional Resources

Massage License Requirements in Connecticut

Massage Schools in Connecticut