FHT members win 6 trophies at The NMC 2021

The FHT was proud to once again sponsor the National Massage Championship (NMC) held at Olympia Beauty in October 2021, where four of our members came away with no less than six trophies! 

Now in its third year, the NMC saw over 50 qualified massage therapists and bodyworkers form around the world showcase their practical massage skills across six different categories. 

A huge congratulations to the following FHT members for gaining recognition for their excellent work and professionalism: 

Slav Marinov 
Winner: Judges Excellence Award
1st place: Freestyle Massage category

Csenge Kerekes 
2nd place: Freestyle Massage category  
3rd place: Swedish/ Deep Tissue category 

Tara Lee Oakley 
2nd place: Swedish/Deep Tissue category (joint winner with Gabriel Ionut Lihoaca) 

Ionela Eugenia Dogaru  
3rd place: Freestyle Massage category

It is fantastic to see your dedication and passion for what you do get such a great recognition, and we are incredibly proud of your achievements.


FHT member, Slav Marinov, won not one, but two awards at the NMC 2021, including the Judges Excellence Award and first place in the Freestyle Massage category! Slav gives us some insight into what inspired him to enter the NMC 2021 and what the future might hold for him after this success.

Why did you enter the NMC?

The NMC is much more than just a competition, it is a great place for networking.

I was able to meet a lot of new people and learn from them, whether it was fellow competitors or leading experts giving talks.

I think this two day “workshop” is a great opportunity if you want to grow as a massage therapist.

What it was like taking part?

I get really exited when I take part in events, conferences and competitions across the globe. The whole buzz, energy and ongoing learning is what drives me forward. This year there was even more anticipation due to the restrictions we’ve all been under these past two years. I was very impressed by the organisers who managed to create another successful event and attract a great number of participants in such a challenging time for the industry.

The UK championship is one of the toughest, not only because of the fantastic level of contestants but in addition you are judged under the watchful eye of the most skillful and experienced panel in the field. The UK judging team is like a “who’s who” of the most amazing experts from the world of massage. That makes me even more grateful and proud of my achievement. However, taking part in a competition gives you a super boost even if you don’t get a place on the podium. The process of preparation is a learning curve and seeing what the other therapists are demonstrating is like a free workshop! Everyone had talent and showed interesting moves and skills. That’s why I like participating, seeing old friends and making new ones was a big part of the event for me! The atmosphere was very friendly and relaxed, but you can’t help but get butterflies when it’s your turn to show your skills. It’s worth it and I encourage all my colleagues to sign in for the NMC 2022 next year.

What does winning mean to you?

As a massage therapist with many years of experience, I have already built a long list of loyal clients who I know trust me and support me. Winning brought the added layer of recognition by the judges and the public, which truly means a lot to me.

I hope new opportunities arise from my win too. Teaching is something I was asked and encouraged to do and I may choose to explore that as the natural next step. In addition, I am looking forward to collaborating with selected companies and suppliers in the massage world to help them spread the word about their fantastic and unique products. Watch this space!   


Congratulations once again to Slav and our other FHT members, Csenge, Tara and Ionela, and well done to everyone who took part in this year’s competition!

To find out more about becoming an FHT member, visit fht.org.uk/join-us

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