Becoming an RMT in Ontario

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Massage Therapy consists primarily of hands-on manipulation of the soft tissues of the body, specifically, the muscles, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and joints for the purpose of optimizing health.

Ontario’s Massage Therapists are primarily self-employed health professionals, working in a variety of settings such as Massage Therapy clinics, chiropractic or multi-disciplinary clinics, health spas, long-term care facilities, community health clinics and hospitals, as well as private practice.

To practise Massage Therapy in Ontario, you must first obtain a Certificate of Registration from the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO). Only those registered with the College may use the protected titles “Registered Massage Therapist” (RMT) or “Massage Therapist” (MT). Both titles are equivalent and mean that the holder of the title is a registrant of CMTO.

The requirements to become an RMT in Ontario are found in the Registration Regulations under the Massage Therapy Act, 1991.  To become an RMT in Ontario, an applicant must:

  • Successfully complete a Massage Therapy diploma program recognized by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (or equivalent).
    • If the education was completed more than three years prior to attempting the Certification Examinations or prior to applying for registration, you must successfully complete a CMTO Refresher Course.
  • Successfully complete CMTO’s Certification Examinations.
  • Arrange for the regulator to submit a Letter of Standing Form directly to CMTO if you have previously practised in any regulated profession including Massage Therapy in Ontario or any other jurisdiction to demonstrate that there has been no finding of, and that there is no current proceeding involving an allegation of professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacitation or any like finding or proceeding against you that affects your fitness to practise the profession.
  • Satisfy the Registration Committee that you have not been convicted or charged with, and not found “not guilty” or acquitted of, an offence that affects your fitness to engage in the practice of the profession (you will be required  to submit a Vulnerable Sector Check).
  • Demonstrate you are a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident of Canada, or authorized under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) to engage in the practice of Massage Therapy.
  • Be able to speak and write either English or French with reasonable fluency (meet the requirements of CMTO’s Language Fluency Policy).
  • Provide proof of professional liability insurance.
  • Satisfy the Registration Committee that your past and present conduct provide reasonable grounds for the belief that you:
    • Will practise Massage Therapy with decency, honesty and integrity, and in accordance with the law;
    • Do not have any physical or mental condition or disorder that could affect your ability to practise Massage Therapy in a safe manner; and
    • Will display an appropriately professional attitude.


Initial Registration

As noted above, you must successfully complete the Certification Examinations. From the time you receive your final certification examination results indicating that you have passed the examinations, it can take up to ten (10) business days for the College to send you an e-mail confirming your eligibility to apply for registration and providing information about CMTO’s Initial Registration (IR) process. This email will include notice of your Initial Registration fees and a list of documents (the Initial Registration Checklist) required for your IR application.

Complete details of the requirements and documents needed to accompany the registration application are found in the Initial Registration Guide. After completing the registration application, use the checklist to ensure you are sending all the required documents. Additional information about registration and professional liability insurance can be found in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section.

Submitting the Application for Initial Registration

After you have received confirmation from CMTO that you are eligible for registration, you may apply for Initial Registration online by logging in to your Online Profile using the same login and password you used to book your certification examinations. You will be presented with an Initial Registration option. Follow the steps, pay the registration fee and send in the required documents to CMTO. Alternatively, a paper copy of the Initial Registration Application can be printed out and mailed to CMTO with the required documents.