STRiVE – the Quality Assurance Program for Registered Massage Therapists (RMTs) in Ontario that offers flexibility, opportunity and choice!

What is STRiVE?

Designed to fit the individual needs of all RMTs, STRiVE is made up of two parts:

  • ensuring compliance with minimum standards, including the Standards of Practice, and
  • supporting each RMT to be the best they can be!

STRiVE recognizes that an RMT’s abilities evolve over time with focused engagement in continuing professional development that supports lifelong learning and performance improvement.

Driven by growing experience, learning from peers and colleagues, and engaging in further education and training opportunities, the career path of each RMT may differ significantly, with knowledge, skill and judgement making abilities evolving throughout their professional career.

As a result, RMTs that possess diverse, and sometimes focused abilities, are very much in the interest of clients, who may require advanced client care.

Career-Span Competencies

Understanding that each RMT's career path is unique, STRiVE's personalized approach is built on 15 Career-Span Competencies which provide a framework for RMTs to manage their practice throughout their entire career-span.

Intentionally broad in nature, the Career-Span Competencies apply to RMTs working in all practice settings including clinics, hospitals, home-based practices, spas, educational institutions, research facilities and administration.

As a regulated healthcare professional, it is the responsibility of all RMTs to implement each Career-Span Competency in a manner that is consistent with their personal practice situation.

By this we mean that RMTs are honest and trustworthy in all professional dealings, and share information openly (within the bounds of others' rights to privacy and confidentiality); RMTs respond to situations consistently and in accordance with ethical principles; RMTs maintain appropriate professional boundaries with clients and colleagues; RMTs avoid behaviours which may damage the reputation of the profession.

By this we mean that RMTs provide others with information in a way they can understand, adapting language and communication approaches as appropriate. RMTs communicate clearly and as concisely as possible, and take steps to ensure that they are understood. RMTs listen carefully to what others have to say; RMTs are alert to non-verbal signals that suggest discomfort, lack of understanding or unspoken concerns, and attempt to address this.

By this we mean that RMTs comply with laws, rules, regulations and other requirements established by those with authority to govern practice of the profession and the professional workplace. This includes federal, provincial / territorial, municipal and local governments, regulatory bodies, and professional authorities.

By this we mean that RMTs ensure that clients and client wellbeing are at the centre of decisions they make; RMTs give each client their complete attention and allow sufficient time to fully address their needs; RMTs respect client uniqueness and take into account their views, preferences and concerns; RMTs actively involve clients in decision making, and ensure that they are fully informed about and consent to the services they provide.

By this we mean that RMTs ensure appropriate therapeutic boundaries (both physical and emotional) are always maintained with clients. This includes that they appropriately manage power differentials; RMTs recognize and address transference and counter-transference; RMTs apply all modalities with a therapeutic intent; RMTs effectively address accidental or incidental physical contact; and, RMTs appropriately respond to a client’s emotional reaction before, during and after a treatment. RMTs obtain written consent prior to assessment or treatment of sensitive body areas. RMTs are aware of what constitutes sexual abuse, and how to prevent it.

By this we mean that RMTs clearly identify the parameters of their work, based upon a realistic understanding of the extent of their knowledge, skills and experience; RMTs work independently only within these parameters; RMTs address client needs that transcend their personal limits by referral or collaboration.

By this we mean that RMTs take action to ensure the physical safety of all who enter their practice environment; RMTs optimize the physical and emotional safety of clients throughout service provision; RMTs are aware of and comply with their legal and moral obligations to safeguard young persons and vulnerable adults.

By this we mean that RMTs ensure that complete, accurate, clear, legible and contemporaneous records are kept of all your professional activities, using appropriate terminology; that records are secure, and maintained for any period of time that may be required by statute; that client records are available to clients themselves and to others with a legitimate right to access.

By this we mean that RMTs maintain their own health, wellbeing and personal care such that they are able to provide optimal client services; this includes maintaining their physical, mental and emotional health; addressing work-life balance; and ensuring that their personal deportment is consistent with the needs of their workplace.

By this we mean that RMTs treat their own time and that of their clients as valuable resources that must be managed to optimize client services; that RMTs take steps to efficiently utilize all the resources of their practice to best serve client needs; that RMTs recognize and where appropriate contribute to the efficient use of public resources in the broader public interest.

By this we mean that RMTs recognize and value the uniqueness of others as individuals, treat them with respect and fairness, and avoid acting in a discriminatory fashion; it includes ensuring that their own beliefs and values do not prejudice the services they provide to clients.

By this we mean that RMTs take regular, active steps to keep their knowledge and skills up to date; this includes reading professional literature, attending conferences, participating in courses and workshops, and consulting with colleagues.

By this we mean that RMTs make practice decisions by integrating the best available evidence source(s) for the situation at hand, including research based information, their own professional knowledge, the client perspective, and the practice context.

By this we mean that RMTs maintain good working relationships with other professionals; RMTs regularly interact with colleagues inside the profession; RMTs work in active collaboration with such colleagues and with other health / social service professionals when doing so is in the best interest of clients; in team-based work RMTs clearly articulate their role, effectively resolve conflicts and participate fully.

By this we mean that RMTs regularly take time to consciously think about their practice, analyse their decisions and their effectiveness, and draw on external information, to achieve continuous learning and quality improvement.

STRiVE has three key components

E-Learning Module

The E-Learning Module supports RMTs with maintaining currency and provides education on a topic that is relevant to the entire profession.

Learn more

Self-Assessment

The Self-Assessment is the starting point of continuing professional development and performance improvement.

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Learning Plan

The Learning Plan defines an RMT's goals and objectives for continuing professional development.

Learn more

In coming years, STRiVE may expand based on feedback, to include additional components.

Frequently Asked Questions

More questions? Click below to find answers to frequently asked questions about STRiVE.

Is STRiVE – the Quality Assurance Program mandatory?

Yes. All RMTs are obligated to complete and submit specified STRiVE components on an annual basis between September 1 and November 30.

How do RMTs complete and submit STRiVE requirements?

STRiVE requirements must be completed and submitted online using the STRiVE Platform which is accessed through the Registrant Login at www.cmto.com.

Does STRiVE replace the continuing education program that required RMTs to report completion of continuing education units (CEUs) every three years?

Yes. STRiVE replaces the previous continuing education program that concluded in July 2018 which was based on a three-year cycle. Instead, beginning in 2019, all registrants must comply with STRiVE requirements each year.

Do professional learning activities have to be approved by the College of Massage Therapists of Ontario (CMTO)?

No. Professional learning activities do not have to be approved by CMTO. STRiVE is designed to offer flexibility, opportunity and choice. The RMT is responsible for selecting quality learning activities that meet their professional development goals.

Are course providers required to have training programs approved by CMTO?

No. CMTO does not approve training programs offered by continuing professional development providers.

What is the deadline for completion of STRiVE requirements?

All STRiVE requirements must be completed and submitted online, using the STRiVE Platform by November 30.

How does CMTO know if an RMT completes all STRiVE requirements?

Each year all RMTs are required to complete and submit completion of all STRiVE components. CMTO is notified of an RMT's participation through the STRiVE Platform.

What happens if an RMT does not comply with STRiVE requirements?

While cooperation is considered compliance, blatant refusal(s) to comply will be considered professional misconduct and appropriate actions will be taken to address the matter.

Are there suitable accountability measures in place to ensure RMTs comply with prescribed STRiVE requirements?

Yes. As STRiVE continues to evolve, CMTO will remain committed to developing regulatory framework that addresses emerging issues and ensures RMTs are held accountable for complying with mandated requirements.