The Best Massage Schools in AZ: A Comprehensive Guide

If you’re looking to become a licensed massage therapist in Arizona, you’ll need to attend one of the many massage schools in AZ. There are plenty of options available, so how do you choose the best school for your needs? In this guide, we’ll take a deep dive into the top massage schools in AZ and what makes them stand out from the rest.

The Best Massage Schools in AZ: A Comprehensive Guide

What to Consider When Choosing a Massage School

Before we get into our top picks, it’s important to know what factors to consider when choosing a massage school. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Accreditation: Make sure the school is accredited by an organization such as the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA) or the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET).
  • Curriculum: Look at what courses are offered and how they align with your career goals.
  • Instruction methods: Find out if instruction is primarily online or classroom-based and which style works best for you.
  • Location: Consider where the school is located and if that works for your schedule and commute.
  • Admissions requirements: Look at what prerequisites or admission requirements there may be.

With these factors in mind, let’s explore some of the top massage schools in AZ.

1. Cortiva Institute – Phoenix Campus

The Cortiva Institute has locations across the US, including their Phoenix campus. This school offers a comprehensive massage therapy program that can be completed in as little as seven months.

Their curriculum covers everything from anatomy and physiology to pathology and ethics. They also offer hands-on experience through clinical rotations at local organizations. Additionally, Cortiva has an extensive network of alumni who can provide mentorship opportunities after graduation.

2. Southwest Institute of Healing Arts (SWIHA)

Located in Tempe, SWIHA offers both online and on-campus programs for massage therapy students. Their program can be completed in as little as six months and covers topics such as eastern and western bodywork, hydrotherapy, and aromatherapy.

One unique feature of SWIHA is their Integrative Healing Arts Program, which allows students to earn additional certifications in areas such as reflexology, hypnotherapy, and life coaching. This provides graduates with a more diverse set of skills to offer their clients.

3. ASIS Massage Education – Tucson Campus

If you’re located in southern Arizona, ASIS Massage Education’s Tucson campus may be the perfect fit for you. Their massage therapy program covers a wide range of techniques, including Swedish massage, shiatsu, and sports massage.

ASIS also offers continuing education courses and workshops for licensed therapists looking to expand their skill set or fulfill state requirements. Their focus on ongoing education shows a commitment to helping their graduates grow throughout their careers.

4. Arizona School of Integrative Studies (ASIS) – Flagstaff Campus

For those located in northern Arizona or interested in a mountain-town feel, the Flagstaff campus of ASIS may be worth considering. This school aims to provide a holistic approach to massage therapy education by combining traditional techniques with mind-body practices like meditation.

Their curriculum covers not only anatomy and technique but also energy work and Ayurvedic principles. Graduates of ASIS are prepared not only for a career in massage therapy but also for success as wellness practitioners.

5. Providence Institute – Tucson Campus

The Providence Institute’s Tucson campus offers both an entry-level certification program and continuing education courses for licensed therapists. Their program focuses on myofascial release techniques that differentiate it from other schools’ curricula.

Their faculty includes experienced professionals who have worked with athletes at all levels, from amateurs to professionals. Students at the Providence Institute will gain practical knowledge from these experts in addition to traditional classroom instruction.


Each of these massage schools in AZ has its unique strengths, so it’s important to consider which one aligns best with your career goals and learning style. Accredited programs such as those offered by the Cortiva Institute and ASIS Massage Education should be a top priority.

No matter where you decide to attend massage school, it’s important to remember that your education doesn’t end at graduation. Continuing education courses and workshops can help you stay up-to-date on new techniques and expand your skill set throughout your career.


What are some massage schools in AZ that offer a variety of programs?

The Southwest Institute of Healing Arts offers programs for massage therapy, polarity therapy, and even mindful yoga. Arizona School of Integrative Studies also offers programs such as their Integrative Massage Therapy program.

Are there any massage schools in AZ that offer online courses?

Cortiva Institute does offer online courses for their massage therapy program. However, keep in mind that hands-on experience is required for this field, so hybrid or on-campus options may be better suited for some students.

What should I look for when choosing a massage school in AZ?

When selecting a massage school in AZ, it’s important to consider factors such as accreditation, curriculum options, clinical experience opportunities, and instructor qualifications. It’s also recommended to read reviews from current or past students to get an idea of their experiences at the school.

Can I apply for financial aid when attending a massage school in AZ?

Yes! Most accredited massage schools in AZ are eligible to receive federal financial aid from FAFSA. Additionally, some schools may offer scholarships or payment plans to help lessen the burden of tuition costs.

How long do most massage programs take to complete at schools in AZ?

Most massage therapy programs at schools in AZ can be completed within 6-12 months depending on the specific program and if you’re attending full-time or part-time. Polarity Therapy and other specialized programs may take longer to complete.

What kind of certification is needed after attending a massage school in AZ?

In order to practice as a licensed professional therapist after completing your education at an accredited massage school in AZ, you must pass the licensing exam given by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB).

Can I start my own massage therapy practice in AZ after attending a massage school?

Yes, you can! As long as you have passed the required licensing exams and obtain the necessary state and local permits, you’re free to start your own business as a massage therapist in AZ.

Will I be able to gain clinical experience at most massage schools in AZ?

Yes, most accredited massage schools in AZ offer opportunities for hands-on clinical experience. Some programs may even require a specific number of clinical hours before graduation.

Are there any additional certifications or specializations available after attending a massage school in AZ?

Absolutely! Many massage schools in AZ offer specialized certificates or continuing education courses for topics such as sports massage, therapeutic touch, reflexology, and more. These additional credentials can help expand your skillset and marketability as a therapist.

What kind of career options are available after attending a massage school in AZ?

Graduates from accredited massage schools in AZ can go on to work in spas, clinics, chiropractic offices, fitness centers, hospitals or even start their own private practice. Some therapists may also choose to work with athletes or specialize in specific areas such as prenatal or geriatric massage.

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