Massage Therapist Training in California

California is unique in that it offers different levels of certification based on your experience.  However, some of these levels are being phased out (Certified massage Practitioner) in favour of Certified Massage Therapists (CMT), which has extensive licensing requirements; this post will focus on what you need to do to become a CMT.

The main requirement is passing a National exam; in California the NCETMB, NCETM, and MBLex, are all accepted.  You are also required to have 500 hours of education; with at least 250 from an approved school (250 can be continuing education), although you should have this anyway if you have taken the NCETMB or NCETM.

The one exception from re-taking examinations if you come from another state is to have had a license that had at least the minimum requirements that California does.


  • NCETM/ NCETMB: $225.00
  • MBLex: $195.00
  • License: $150.00
  • License renewal: $125.00 (every 2 years)