Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy

This course has been designed to provide the knowledge, understanding and skills to work in an unsupervised capacity as a sports massage practitioner, with non-pathological (non-injured) tissue.

Academic Year: 2023/24
Course Code: 10448
Campus: Bangor, Lisburn
Study Type: Part-Time
Education Level Further Education
Department: Beauty & Holistic Therapies

Alternative Years

You are viewing the 2023/24 version of this course, it is also available in the following years:

View 2024/25 Course
Course Overview

The VTCT Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy (QCF) is focused towards those seeking to gain employment as a Sports Massage Therapist working with the general public and athletes.


Through this qualification you will develop the skills, knowledge and understanding needed to competently apply sport massage methods to dysfunctional tissue and in a pre, post, intra/inter and maintenance massage context.


This includes professional practice, expected standards and related legislation and legal requirements.


You will develop knowledge and understanding of anatomy and physiology related to sports massage and the principles of health and fitness which combined will equip you to better understand the athlete, the problems they may be incurring and how sports massage can help. In addition you will develop an understanding of the differences between soft tissue dysfunction and injury and the role that sports massage plays. South Eastern Regional College provides a professional, enjoyable, clinical environment and access to Sporting events including The Belfast City Marathon.


For further information please contact Fiona Quinn at fquinn@serc.ac.uk  

You wish to gain employment working alongside Osteopaths, Physiotherapists or Sports Therapists.

Modules may include:

  • Anatomy and physiology for sports massage
  • Principles of health and fitness
  • Professional practice in sports massage
  • Understand the principles of soft tissue dysfunction
  • Sports massage treatments

Learners must successfully undertake and record at least 50 hours of massage. This is restricted to working on dysfunctional tissue and excludes working on recent acute injuries.

Completing a course can lead to a job as a Sports Massage Practitioner working in a Sports Club or with a Sports Team.

VTCT Level 4 Certificate in Sports Massage Therapy

Be eligible to join the SMA (Sports Massage Association) at Level 3  

Additional information:

There are a number of professional associations (PA’s) that offer membership to qualified (postgraduate) sports massage therapists.

Individual PA’s often have their own membership entry requirements that can include:

  • A minimum period of time over which a course/qualification is completed 
  • The method of course delivery
  • A logbook to evidence learner practice hours
  • A First Aid qualification
  • An annual log of continuing professional development (CPD)   

This list is not exhaustive and learners are advised to check the requirements of the specific professional association they may like to join post qualification.

Entry requirements:

You must be 18 years old

Candidates must have one of the following:

A VTCT Level 2 or higher in any health and/or fitness discipline.

A VTCT level 2 or higher that includes a reasonable amount of anatomy and physiology or equivalent qualification.

Other equivalent qualifications to those identified in prerequisites 1-2.

Candidates are required to have Professional indemnity and Public liability to practice. This can be achieved after enrolment.

There is an interview for this course.

 Additional Costs:

  • Uniform: T-shirt £20
  • Equipment: Massage Oils £8 (500ml)
  • Portable massage plinth £100-£200 for use at home.


Alternative Years

You are viewing the 2023/24 version of this course, it is also available in the following years:

View 2024/25 Course

Enquiries Information

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Alternative Years

You are viewing the 2023/24 version of this course, it is also available in the following years:

View 2024/25 Course

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Terms & Conditions

Students will be required to comply with SERC's Terms & Conditions of study.

We strive to ensure the description of courses on SERC's website and in publications is accurate. However, for various reasons there may be occasions when the College may need to change arrangements or be unable to deliver classes due to circumstances such as reduced funding. If there are insufficient numbers applying for a course it may not be viable to deliver the class.

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