Conducting a Clinical Massage Therapy Practice


Massage therapists work in both traditional and non-traditional practice settings. All Massage Therapists are expected to adhere to the College’s Standards of Practice regardless of where they practice. These guidelines have been drafted to assist members in conforming to College standards by documenting the Council’s expectations relating to the operation of a Massage Therapy practice.


The Council believes that Massage Therapy practice should be client centred. This means that, to the extent possible, the client should be in control of the encounter and the attitude of the staff and physical setting of the practice should facilitate client comfort.


Physical Setting

The physical setting should be consistent with the public’s expectations for an encounter with a healthcare professional. There should be adequate space for; reception, waiting area, individual treatment, storage and washroom facilities. The office must be clean, well maintained, well lit, and arranged to allow sufficient privacy for clients and staff. Clients should be offered choices regarding the use, if proposed, of aromatherapy products, oils or lotions and/or background audio sound.

The setting should not contain:

  • Inappropriately placed mirrors
  • Video cameras


Hands-on Massage Therapy treatment is to be provided only by the Massage Therapist. Individuals involved in treatment to clients should be readily identifiable.


Equipment must be cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. A written record of all repair and maintenance activities must be kept.

Sheets and towels must be available in the treatment area to provide adequate draping.

Linens including towels, pillowcases, sheets etc. are to be changed as described in the College’s Standards of Practice document.

Policies and Procedures

A clinic with substantial staffing should have written policies and procedures that document procedures relating to:

  • Staff performance and conduct – job descriptions, performance appraisals, supervision of students / volunteers;
  • Customer service – appointment scheduling, billing, contact with referral sources, funding;
  • Clinic operations – treatment setting, hygiene, equipment maintenance, safety; and
  • Legal requirements – consent for treatment, release of records.


Approved: November 19, 1999