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Massage Therapy Research Fund (MTRF)

In partnership with the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO), IN-CAM is the administrator of the Massage Therapy Research Fund (MTRF), through the University of Calgary.

Latest MTRF News and Updates
New – CMTO Invites Proposals from Ontario-Based Organizations Interested in Assuming the Role of Massage Therapy Research Fund Administrator

The College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO) invites proposals from Ontario-based organizations interested in assuming the role of administering the Massage Therapy Research Fund (MTRF) and the annual funding competition.

Download: Request for Proposals – MTRF Administrator

Deadline for proposal submission: November 24, 2015 11:59 pm ET

For more information, contact the MTRF Coordinator - Ania Kania-Richmond at

The MTRF provides grants for massage therapy research through an annual national-level research competition. The competition is open to qualified researchers at Canadian research institutions. Since its inception in 2004, the Massage Therapy Research Fund has disbursed 18 grants from coast to coast, with over $240,000 in funds awarded through MTRF grants. With IN-CAM’s involvement, the goal is for the fund to continue supporting the growing area of massage therapy research in Canada.

Purpose and goals of the MTRF:
The purpose of the MTRF is to fund high quality research in the field of massage therapy to support evidence-based practice of massage therapy.


Research Priorities

Research projects that aim to address at least one of the following research areas are applicable for funding consideration through the Massage Therapy Research Fund (MTRF):

  •     Massage Therapy effectiveness, efficacy and safety
  •     Access to and delivery of Massage Therapy services
  •     Professionalization of Massage Therapy
  •     Massage Therapy competencies and competency assessment
  •     Evaluation of Massage Therapy practices

Annual Funding Competition and Grant Administration:

The MTRF research funding competition is a national level competition, which is run on an annual basis. The competition is announced once per year, at which time the MTRF Guidelines and MTRF Application Form are released. The submission deadline is set at the time of the competition announcement. Applications received by the deadline undergo a rigorous two-phase review process, which takes between three and four months. Grant recipients are announced approximately five months after the competition is closed.

The total funding amount allocated per funding cycle will be determined on an annual basis by CMTO.  The amount allowed per grant shall not exceed $50,000. However, only one grant for $50,000 will be considered per funding cycle. A maximum of five (5) grants per funding cycle can be awarded, provided the total amount of funds allocated for that year does not exceed $100,000.

Eligability Criteria:

To ensure that MTRF funded studies are conducted in a rigorous manner, the following are considered eligible to apply for a MTRF grant:

Established Canadian researchers – Individuals with research credentials (MSc or PhD), who hold faculty positions at a recognized research institution in Canada   

Research trainees in a MSc, PhD or post-doctoral program in Canada
• Confirmed supervisor (e.g. teaching or research faculty) appointed at a recognized Canadian research institution.  
• The supervisor must be indicated on the application.  

Students (undergraduate, graduate) enrolled in a Canadian academic institution or in a MT training program.  
• Confirmed supervisor (e.g. teaching or research faculty) appointed at a recognized research institution.  
• The supervisor must be indicated on the application.  

Massage therapists who are collaborating with an established researcher or a research trainee at a recognized Canadian research institution for the purposes of conducting research.  

Please note:
• Grants cannot be held by an individual. They must be held at a research institution in Canada that administers research grants (university, teaching hospital, college). At least one of the researchers on the application must be based on the institution. 

• Individuals holding a MTRF grant are not eligible to apply for a subsequent grant until the first has been finalized and closed. This is confirmed by receipt of the MTRF Completion Report and a Final Financial Report from the institution where the grant is held.