Delivery Methods:

Weekday workshops ran every 16 weeks


Workshop Length:

6 workshop day attendance (09:30 to 16:30)


Expected Course Length:

This qualification can be achieved within 4 – 8 weeks. CMS has a maximum expected completion timeframe of 4 months.


Accredited Achievement:

Active IQ Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage (601/4930/9)



Workshop attendance in Batley, West Yorkshire.


Payment Methods:

Advanced Learner Loans

0% Interest Free Monthly Payments Over 4,7 or 10 Months

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The Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage is for those individuals that wish to learn and develop the knowledge and skills to be able to provide sports massage therapy to a range of clients who have no underlying pathological conditions and are looking to develop the skills that will help them register with the Sports Therapy Organisation (STO).

The Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage is awarded by Active IQ and is recognised by the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA)

To book - choose your preferred course dates below



Practical assessments will take place on Tuesday 20th and Wed 21st September 2022.

Day 1: Mon 12th September
Day 2: Tue 13th September
Day 3: Wed 14th September
Day 4: Mon 19th September
Day 5: Tues 20th September
Day 6: Wed 21st September



Practical assessments will take place on Tuesday 17th and Wed 18th January 2023.

Day 1: Mon 8th May
Day 2: Tue 9th May
Day 3: Wed 10th May
Day 4: Mon 15th May
Day 5: Tues 16th May
Day 6: Wed 17th May



Practical assessments will take place on Tuesday 15th and Wed 16th August 2023.

Day 1: Mon 6th November
Day 2: Tue 7th November
Day 3: Wed 8th November
Day 4: Mon 13th November
Day 5: Tues 14th November
Day 6: Wed 15th November



Practical assessments will take place on Tuesday 17th and Wed 18th January 2023.

Day 1: Mon 9th January
Day 2: Tue 10th January
Day 3: Wed 11th January
Day 4: Mon 16th January
Day 5: Tues 17th January
Day 6: Wed 18th January



Practical assessments will take place on Tuesday 15th and Wed 16th August 2023.

Day 1: Mon 7th August
Day 2: Tue 8th August
Day 3: Wed 9th August
Day 4: Mon 14th August
Day 5: Tues 15th August
Day 6: Wed 16th August

Course Details

This Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage is for those individuals that wish to learn and develop the knowledge and skills to be able to provide sports massage therapy to a range of clients who have no underlying pathological conditions and are looking to develop the skills that will help them register with the Sports Therapy Organisation (STO).

Workshop Attendance

Can you please attend wearing appropriate leisure clothing that will give access to most parts of your body, so that your peers can practice their sports massage treatments on you. The workshops will include physical activity and we cannot guarantee access to changing rooms and showers. In addition, you are expected to provide your own refreshments. For the respect of other users of our venues, please bring a gym towel.

Throughout the workshop days, our experienced tutors will support you to ensure your full participation and give guidance on what work needs to be completed and by when, to ensure that you can successfully complete the workshop.

Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Workshop Day Overview

Workshop DaySession 1Session 2Session 3Session 4
1Effects, benefits and considerations of sport massageDiagnosis and treatment of injuriesDiagnosis and treatment of injuriesMassage techniques
2Bony landmarks of the lower and upper legSoft tissue of the lower and upper legDiagnosis and treatment of the lower and upper legDiagnosis and treatment of the lower and upper leg
3Bony landmarks of the hip and spineBony landmarks of the hip and spineDiagnosis and treatment of the hip and spineDiagnosis and treatment of the hip and spine
4Bony landmarks of the shoulder girdle and armSoft tissue of the shoulder girdle and armDiagnosis and treatment of the shoulder girdle and armDiagnosis and treatment of the shoulder girdle and arm
5Pre/post event massage TapotementAt home advice/exercise prescriptionAssessment paperworkSummative assessment
6Summative assessmentSummative assessmentSummative assessmentSummative assessment

When you enrol on the Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy you will receive your joining instructions via email giving you access to your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy learning resources.

The resources are divided into unit order providing you with the relevant manuals, worksheets, case study documents, mock exams and knowledge checkers required to help you complete your learning and prepare for your workshop/assessment days.

Learning Portal

Our ‘Netflix’ style learning portal contains a wide range of learning resources. Each one plays its part in maximising your learning journey. Learning resources make up lessons which are issued by your tutor as you progress and reach the required stage of your sports massage qualification.

  • Manuals – high quality colour PDF manuals
  • E-Learning Content – comprehensive high quality e-learning content for each sports massage qualification unit.
  • Knowledge Checkers – Evaluate your understanding of a topic area by completing a range of questions selected from a bank of hundreds of questions. Question types include – multiple choice, true and false drag and drop, fill in the blanks and mark the words to name a few.

Tutor Support

All our sports massage qualification learning resources play an important part in your development but none more than your tutor.  You can expect your tutor to guide you seamlessly through your sports massage qualification, explaining what needs to be done, how, by when and why.

You can expect your sports massage qualification to start with a comprehensive induction.  This normally lasts 60-90 minutes in which we learn more about you, your career ambitions, your academic and employment background, your interests, lifestyle, barriers to achievement and learning needs. You will then be introduced to our ‘Netflix’ inspired learning portal and be provided with an explanation of the programme structure, as well as an overview of our different types of resources and how you can progress with your sports massage qualification.

We have been delivering sports massage qualifications since 2008 and we know how to make your learning journey as pleasant and stress free as possible. 1-2 weeks after your induction you will receive a support visit via webinar.  This is an opportunity to hold a face-to-face conversation with your tutor about your experience to date and clarify any questions you have about your sports massage qualification. After your support visit the natural order is then to participate in a tutor webinar every calendar month with your tutor where you will review your sports massage qualification progress since your last tutor webinar, clarify and develop further your understanding of the sports massage qualification topic areas studied and agree your targets. This is the standard offering and tutor support webinars will happen whenever they are needed. Of course, your sports massage course tutor is also available via telephone and email.

Workshop Days

Our sports massage qualification workshop days are structured to deliver two sessions in the morning and two sessions in the afternoon. All sessions contain a knowledge review and then an application of that knowledge. Led by expert sports massage therapists, it is an opportunity to have open discussions in a friendly and supportive environment. Our sports massage qualification workshop days and tutors get rave reviews (check out our google reviews). Our sports massage workshops are either delivered at our premises in Batley, West Yorkshire or at one of our employer partners.

Recorded Webinars and Workshops

Our sports massage course tutors can record all or parts of your webinar and provide them to you on a weblink accessible for 35 days.  Ideal for those learners who like to re-visit learning content.

In addition, our sports massage course workshop delivery has been pre-recorded so you can watch all sessions experienced on the workshop days again. This ensures you take the most you can from the sports massage course sessions, and you are able to develop and progress at your own pace.  This also allows you to watch the sessions before attending your sports massage qualification workshops, enabling you to best prepare and engage with tutor conversations on the day.

Tutor Demonstrations

Not only will you benefit from seeing tutor demonstrations on your workshop days you will also benefit from being able to view tutor demonstrations as many times as you want online.

Recorded Submissions

We work hard to make your online and distance learning as beneficial as your sports massage qualification workshop days. To support this approach, you can submit recordings of your technique, delivery and consultation style via a link for your tutor to review and feedback on. This is a great way to give you confidence before, after or in between your sports massage course workshop days, that you are developing and applying your new skills as required.

Equally, where appropriate you can expect your sports massage qualification tutor to provide additional demonstrations and explanation via screen recordings and recording of themselves carrying out the appropriate demonstrations to aid your development.

Example Pro-forma’s

Throughout your Level 3 Sports Massage qualification you will be required to submit pro-forma documents such as worksheets, assignments, and case studies. Unfamiliar documents can be confusing, so we minimise this risk by providing you with example completed pro-forma to aid your understanding and speed of achievement.

The Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage (Soft Tissue Therapy) is delivered over six days. The workshop days are typically delivered 3 days in a row, such as Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, over 2 weeks.

Prior, during, and after the course, you will be supported by a highly qualified and experienced CMS tutor to induct you onto the course, provide any required support, and review and revise your learning. As a minimum, all learners are supported via mandatory live 1:1 webinars, ensuring actions are agreed upon and you know what work needs to be completed in what time frame.

Before attending your level 3 sports massage course you will be required to complete online learning to achieve the more theoretical units and content of the course. Typically, you will have submitted and passed all your assessments for Units 1, 2, 3, and 4, as well as submitted and passed some of your Unit 5 assessments.

Unit 1 Anatomy and Physiology for Sports Massage

In unit 1 you will learn about the structural organisation of the human body, including the structure and function of the lymphatic and the endocrine system, which is key to supporting the body’s immune system, as well as the structure and function of the skin. A key component of the course considering we will be massaging this surface.

You will develop an in-depth understanding of the neuromusculoskeletal system, including the characteristics and types of bones, joints, and muscle tissue. You will learn the names of the major anterior and posterior skeletal muscles and be able to identify and locate the muscles and their attachment sites. You will be able to understand and describe the actions, roles, and contraction types of these muscles during movement and how they can contribute to injury prevention and or cause.

Unit 1 is assessed via an online remote open-book multiple-choice exam as well as the submission of a knowledge-based worksheet.

Unit 2 Principles of Health and Fitness

This unit helps you understand the importance and underpinning principles of living a healthy, active lifestyle and how they can impact your client’s status. You will learn the benefits of an active, healthy lifestyle, understand the effects of exercise on the body, be able to describe the different components of fitness and how they impact the principles of training and be able to link this with the importance of healthy eating in the treatment and prevention of injuries.

Unit 2 is assessed via the submission of a knowledge-based worksheet.

Unit 3 Understand the Principles of Soft Tissue Dysfunction

In unit 3 you will learn the difference between acute and chronic injuries, the causes of muscular dysfunction, and how the body recovers from an injury short, medium, and long term.

You will learn how to differentiate between soft tissue injury and muscular dysfunction and be able to explain the types of soft tissue injuries. You will learn common causes of soft tissue injury, be able to differentiate between the severity of injuries, and be able to describe common causes of soft tissue dysfunction and their sign of symptoms. You will be able to describe the process of soft tissue repair, understand the factors that may influence soft tissue repair, and be able to explain the importance of the inflammatory process during healing.

The assessment for unit 3 is via the submission of a knowledge-based worksheet however, this learning is applied heavily on your workshop days and is a key component of being a high-quality sports massage therapist and will also link to unit 5.

Unit 4 Professional practice in sports massage

The professional practice in sports massage unit covers the key areas of legislation and professional practice you need to be aware of to operate as a sports massage therapist in general, as well as an independent, self-employed therapist.

You will learn the key legislation and standards relevant to the sports massage profession and understand the importance and scope of professional practice and self-development expected within the sports massage role. You will learn how to manage yourself within a client-based setting and how to produce, maintain and store client records

The assessments for unit 4 include the submission of a knowledge-based worksheet and a professional practice assignment that is provided by CMS.

By completing these units before your attendance, you will have completed the majority of the theoretical content of your level 3 sports massage qualification and attained four out of five of your units.

Attend the workshop days and Unit 5 Sports massage treatments

When you attend the Level 3 Sports Massage workshop, you will predominantly focus on Unit 5 Sports massage treatments. The workshop days cover the practical aspects of your qualification, as well as provide opportunities to embed some of the theoretical content that you have previously learned from units 1, 2 3, and 4.

From day one onwards you will work systematically up the body, covering all key areas such as the ankle, knee, hip, pelvis, spine, shoulder, arm, and wrist, ensuring you understand the names, causes, and treatment plans for common sporting injuries, and be able to devise an appropriate treatment strategy.

You will learn and practice how to assess and screen clients for sports massage treatments and carry out client assessments so you can best assess their needs and the objective of your treatment. You will then learn how to devise sports massage treatment plans, including face-to-face and at-home treatment plans.

You will learn how to apply sports massage treatments including a range of techniques such as effleurage, petrissage, and tapotement, as well as prescribe advanced flexibility techniques such as MET (muscular energy technique stretching) and PNF (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitative stretching) and advise your client on muscular strength and balance exercises.

By following the curriculum and learning pathway set out by CMS, you should have completed all assessments for all five units of your level 3 sports massage qualification by the end of the final workshop day, allowing you to progress onto your next qualification, and/or gain a job as a sports massage therapist.

The career options available following your level 3 sports massage course don’t just stop there. With CMS, there are options to progress onto other qualifications that may help develop your knowledge, understanding, and career, such as the Level 3 Diploma in Gym Instructing and Personal Training, the Level 3 Diploma in Long Term conditions, which allows you to work with clients with medical conditions and eventually become a Level 4 Specialist in either Lower Back Pain Management or Obesity and Diabetes.

Whichever pathway you choose, CMS will provide unbiased support and guidance to ensure you make the right steps towards your career in health and fitness and provide you with the most up-to-date scientifically proven health and fitness qualifications that are internationally recognised.

The Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage is priced at £999

CMS wants to make paying for your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage qualification as accessible as possible.

Therefore, we offer three routes to purchasing your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage qualification:

Please note CMS will not ask you for any bank details over the phone or email and you should not provide any payment details in this way.

Advanced Learner Loan

Advanced Learner Loans are a great way to pay for your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage qualification.

Pay for your referral course qualification via a government-backed loan and repay the balance after you complete your course and are earning over £27,295 a year.

More information on Advanced Learner Loans

If you would like to apply for an Advanced Learner Loan to pay for your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage qualification please call us on 01924 470 477.

Pay in 0% Interest Monthly Installments

CMS offers the ability to pay for your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage qualification in 4, 7 or 10 0% interest monthly installments.

If you would prefer to pay for your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage qualification via 0% interest monthly installments, you can do this in one of two ways:

  1. Purchase via this webpage by selecting a sports massage course date above and clicking ‘self-fund’, select the ‘Direct Debit’ payment option. You will pay an immediate deposit with the option to make a further 3, 6 or 9 installments.
  2. Alternatively, call CMS on 01924 470 477 and we can send you a direct debit payment link via email.
InstallmentsDepositMonthly InstallmentTotal Cost
4£1503 x £283£999
7£1506 x £141.50£999
10£1509 x £94.33£999

Pay in Full

If you would prefer to pay for your Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage qualification in a one-time upfront installment, you can do this in one of two ways:

  1. Make payment via our payments URL making sure to include notes on the sports massage course you wish to enroll on and a CMS representative will call you back to confirm the details, issue your joining instruction, learning portal access and arrange your induction.
  2. Alternatively purchase via this webpage by selecting a course date above and clicking ‘self-fund’, select the PayPal or ePDQ payment option to pay in full.


All Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage learners must:

Be aged 16 years old or above

There are no specific entry requirements for this qualification.

Performing sports massage is a physical activity and learners will need to be fit enough to carry this out.

Frequently Asked Questions

A Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy is required to work as a Sports Massage Therapist. This course will educate you how to provide injury prevention support as well as the benefits of massage in assisting with injury. This is the most widely recognised certificate in the UK, and it is required if you wish to work as a Sports Massage Therapist.

The Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy is the entry-level qualification for working as a massage therapist. By taking the course, you will be able to acquire a job as a trainee or apprentice in a professional setting.

The practise of sports massage is not yet regulated. So you can still volunteer to become a sports massage therapist by taking an online course and meeting the minimum requirements. To work like a pro, you won’t need to be accredited by any awarding organisations. However, achieving the Active IQ Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy shows a level of credibility and professionalism to your clients and potential employers while giving you confidence in your own knowledge and skills. It would aid your ability to gain suitable professional indemnity insurance and decrease the risk of libal claims.

To pursue a career as a sports massage therapist it usually takes three years to complete the academic requirements to become a sports massage therapist. It is usually obtained through an undergraduate degree.

A sports massage therapist degree is designed to place a greater emphasis on sports science and injury healing. Rather than becoming a common practitioner, a candidate who pursues such courses will have a considerably larger field of practise. They will have the option of working in a clinical setting or joining professional sports teams.

A profession as a sports massage therapist can readily be described as gratifying. It’s a vocation that revolves around assisting individuals and athletes in improving their performance. It is your obligation to keep your clients in top physical shape.

Every time you treat someone, you get to learn something new. As a result, you get vital experience and strengthen your relationship. As you earn more experience and expertise, you will be able to move up the food chain. As a sports massage therapist, one of the most prestigious positions is working with elite athletes. When you start working with clubs and sporting events, your service will gain a lot of attention from the general public.

The following skills will be especially beneficial to you on your path to become a sports massage therapist:

Outstanding interpersonal skills

One of the most crucial components of becoming a massage therapist is connecting with your customers. You must comprehend the client’s issues. You’ll also need to inform your clients about the steps you’re taking to alleviate their agony.

Ability to operate effectively with one’s hands

You’ll be doing a lot of one-on-one work with each of your clients. Because you’ll be using your hands in sensitive regions that may have been injured, you’ll need to be very adept with your hands.

Empathy and comprehension

Many of your clients will be disappointed as a result of their ailments. It is your professional responsibility to handle such clients with a positive attitude on their future recovery.

Your commitment to your work

You’ll be working closely with your clients as a massage therapist. As a result, in order to succeed in this field, you must be sincerely interested.

Sports massage therapists offer advise and help on how to avoid injuries while participating in sports and fitness. A Sports Massage Therapist will employ a variety of techniques to help a patient return to full fitness through a rehabilitation programmes if they suffer an injury. If they believe the injury is outside of their professional remit, a Sports Massage Therapist must consider whether the patient need assistance from a healthcare expert as part of their examination.

As a Sports Massage Therapist, you will be dealing with a wide range of people, from professional athletes to total beginners. They may compete professionally or recreationally in a particular sport or workout routine.

Also, the environment in which you work provides a lot of variety. There are several options to work at sports clinics, gyms, and sports clubs, or as a freelancer directly with a sportsperson.

Responsibilities of a Sports Massage Therapist

As a sportts massage therapist you would be expetced to:

  • perform fitness assessments on those participating in sports/exercise and provide advice on workouts they can do before their event.
  • assess a patient’s range of motion in their joints, test for ease, and determine if they are experiencing any pain or dysfunction
  • prepare athletes mentally and physically for a competition,
  • apply strapping and taping or massage techniques as needed provide emergency aid in a sport or exercise environment examine injuries to determine if an injurious condition exists help treat injuries,
  • use a variety of therapies such as massage
  • give referrals to other healthcare specialists for additional treatments
  • build rehabilitation programmes specifically for a sport or injury
  • create and implement preventative programmes for individuals and teams.

An indivudals ailments and injuries are approached by applying pressure to the appropiate muscles. As a result, blood flow channels are opened and the muscle is toned and lactic acid buildup is elleaviated through increased blood circulation. As a sports massage therapist, you must be able to recognise your client’s special needs based on their body type and sport specifications.

Sports massage therapists provide a variety of treatments:


This is the type of massage that is performed before any event that involves strenuous physical activity. It prepares the athlete’s body for top performance.


After a period of strong physical exertion, this form of massage is administered. This aids in the mending and recovery of the body from the strenuous workloads.


Restorative massage is used during training to allow athletes to train more intensely while reducing the chance of injury. This massage is used to help people recover from past aches and pains.


This sort of massage can be used at any time to help athletes recover from injury-related pain and inflammation. Its purpose is to improve circulation and speed up the healing process.

Professional athletes aren’t the only ones who benefit from sports massage. Sports massage is now being used by athletes as well as others who want to maintain an active lifestyle. Since its application to living a healthy life has become more popular, an increasing number of individuals are taking advantage of its services.

The following are some of the most common sports massage therapist jobs:

Fitness centres and gyms

Sport massage therapists can be employed by gyms on a freelance or full-time basis. This is a role that is mostly seen in larger, more prominent health club chains that strive to provide their members with greater value than what is available at typical gyms. Gyms frequently have space or rooms available for rent where you may start a freelance business, with monthly rents ranging from £400 to £600.

Huge numbers of people are turning to exercise. People are going to the gym in greater numbers to re-energize themselves. They are also experiencing knots in their  soft tissues as a result of this lifestyle. As a result, people are seeking the services of sports massage therapists in greater numbers than ever before in order to avoid injury. As a result, associating yourself with any fitness club makes it easier to gain access to more clientele.

Sporting organisations

Professional and amateur sporting clubs, such as football teams, cricket clubs, rugby clubs, and others, all require high-quality sports massage therapists for post-match rubdowns and for athletes recovering from injuries. Sports massage therapist salary (UK) is usually paid on a full-time basis and can range up to £40,000 per year depending on the club.

In the United Kingdom, participation in sports such as cricket, football, hockey, tennis, and others is at an all-time high. In competitive sports like these, injuries can happen at any time. As a result, there is a growing demand for sports massage therapists, both experienced and trainees, to assist clubs with their events.

Sports competitions

Have you ever participated in a Total Warrior or Tough Mudder? Finish the race, and some events provide athletes with post-race sports massages. These are usually contract work, although they can pay between £30 and £40 per hour for sports massage.

Marathons, half-marathons, triathlons, bicycle races, and Iron Man contests attract a large number of contestants. This is a fantastic opportunity for sports massage therapists to network and meet new clients. This enables therapists to provide on-demand pre- and post-event massage to participants.

Working as an independent contractor

Many sports massage therapists work independently as freelancers. People are developing postural difficulties as a result of their desk occupations, in addition to a variety of sports ailments. As a result, people from all walks of life are now seeking massage services. Sports massage therapists’ scope of practise has also expanded as a result of this.

Spas & Wellness Centers

Spas are expanding their services beyond aesthetic, relaxation, and Swedish massages to include sports massage, creating a demand for certified therapists all across the UK.

Companies that provide insurance and private medical care

Insurance firms engage personal trainers and sports massage therapists to assist with client recovery as part of their insurance policy. Insurance firms typically hire on a contract basis for a specific number of hours, with sports massage remuneration ranging from £25 to £35 per hour.

Injury Rehabilitation & Sports Therapy Clinics

Clinics that specialise in rehabilitation or sports therapy are one of the most common employers on full-time, part-time, and contracted hours. Most clinics, as opposed to national chains, are independent organisations that hire therapists on a full-time, part-time, contract, and freelance basis. On a full-time basis, a sports medicine massage therapist pay ranges between £25k and £35k per year.

Your earnings will be determined by a number of criteria, including your location, experience, and who you work for, such as a national sports team or a private clinic, as well as whether you are employed or self-employed.

If you choose to work in a clinic, you will most likely be given an annual wage that will improve as you gain experience. We recommend that you look into the employment options offered by your local clinics. There are also more and more opportunities to work as a Sports Massage Therapist for the NHS; check with your local NHS trust to see what positions are available. Employed roles may offer a lower wage but provide additional benefits such as vacation and sick pay.

Working as a private Sports Massage Therapist allows you to charge by the hour or per session, depending on a specific programme you provide.

After gaining more experience, you might consider working with pros, such as a football team, which pay a higher income.

Whether you work for a company or as a freelancer, you will be able to create a secure income. In the United Kingdom, the average salary for a sports massage therapist is roughly £17,000 per year. Once you earn additional experience and degrees in related fields, this can rise to as much as £35,000 or even more.

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