Massage Certification Curriculum

“Santa Fe School of Massage emphasizes how to touch with presence and grace. This quality of touch has continued to allow for transformation
in my work as well as in my everyday life.”

Jenna Docekal, Graduate 2010

Our full-time massage therapy certification programs offer 700 hours of well-crafted massage training. The curriculum conveys a coherent, congruent sense of the body and the massage process. By gradually building on the skills gained in each core bodywork course, with anatomy and physiology paralleling the entire process, students build a strong experiential core of massage approaches integrated with a working knowledge of the body’s systems. An over-arching emphasis is placed on students learning to bring a deeper presence into their hands, helping them to develop sensitivity in their work. Energetic modalities are offered to integrate the subtle aspects of human anatomy, while adjunct bodywork courses and supplemental elective courses add helpful tools and techniques designed for more specific applications, such as basic Medical Massage and Reflexology.

Since it is natural to develop self-knowledge through this educational process, we also provide courses that help translate that knowledge into professional skills for the massage practitioner. Such courses are woven throughout the program and include Communication Skills, Professional Development and Self-Care, Ethics, and Business Skills.

By the time students pass the core Nurturing Therapeutic Massage course, they are ready to offer full-body massages for the public in student clinic. This low-cost clinic gives students valuable professional experience in a safe and supervised environment. It is here that we see students blossoming into competent massage therapists. From the subtle energetic to the deepest musculoskeletal tissues, students are able to demonstrate a “full-spectrum” approach to bodywork in their own unique, creative style.

Additional Diploma Hours
All students may also take additional courses in subjects they are specifically interested in to increase their diploma hours. Subjects may include aromatherapy, pregnancy massage, and many other continuing education offerings.

Core Curriculum

  • Healing Quality of Touch
  • Nurturing Therapeutic Massage
  • Integrative Deep Tissue Bodywork
  • Energy Modalities:Introduction to Cranio-Sacral; Introduction to Polarity; The Subtle Body; Shiatsu & Oriental Medicine Theory
  • Anatomy, Kinesiology, and Pathophysiology

Professional Development and Ethics

  • Ethics, Self-Care, Communication Skills and Group Building
  • Business Skills

Additional Courses

  • Medical Massage
    In this course, students continue to explore specific approaches and procedures for working with clients who have acute or chronic injuries or conditions. Therapeutic massage and Trigger Point are utilized to address the physiology of trauma, injury and physical ailments.
  • Chair Massage and Outreach Prep
    Chair massage provides an opportunity for clients to experience touch while clothed in a public or professional office setting. It is also an effective marketing tool to acquire new clients and bring them to a table practice. This seated massage emphasizes applied Nurturing Therapeutic Massage approaches, Connective Tissue and acupressure, and body mobilization and stretches.
  • Foot Reflexology
    Foot Reflexology identifies “reflex” points in the feet, which correspond to other areas in the body in order to help with increased circulation, relaxation, and release of tensions.
  • The Biological Model of Trauma
    This course explores the emerging biological model of trauma and its implications for massage therapy. Topics covered include the impact of trauma on the nervous system, and basic principles and ethics of practicing massage with clients who have experienced trauma.
  • Hydrotherapy
    Naturopathic remedies such as hot and cold compresses, herbal wraps, and foot baths are gentle yet powerful water therapies that can be incorporated into a massage.
  • CPR and First Aid

Hands-On Practicum

  • Clinical Hands-on Practicum
  • Community Outreach