The state of Pennsylvania does not have specific regulation for massage teachers, other than they be licensed practitioners within the state, and complete all continuing education requirements to renew their licenses every 2 years.
Licensing requires 600 hours of formal post secondary education as well as passing the national MBLEX massage examination.
Educational Requirements for Massage Instructors
There are no additional requirements to teach massage in the state of Pennsylvania, beyond a massage therapists license if the instructor will be teaching hands on massage related material.
A massage license in Pennsylvania requires 600 hours of education, including:
- 250 hours of Massage Theory including assessment, safety and hygiene
- 175 hours of anatomy, physiology, kinesiology including specific training in precautions related to the AIDS virus
- 25 hours in ethics and business law in the state of Pennsylvania
- 150 hours in massage related electives designed to educate a therapist who can meet or exceed the minimum requirements of knowledge set forth in Pennsylvania code 20.13 which outlines in detail the additional massage related skills a therapist should learn before graduation.
Additionally, a massage therapist must be trained in CPR.
There is no state requirement for experience to teach massage therapy within the state of Pennsylvania, but current job postings prefer at least 1 year of experience, with most requiring 2-3 years, and preferring at least 2 years of actual teaching experience.
Continuing Education Requirements for Teachers
Continuing education requirements are not specifically spelled out for instructors, but massage licensure requires a minimum of 24 continuing education hours every 2 years, with at least 4 of those hours in professional ethics. Additionally, 16 of those hours must be completed in person rather than through online electronic media.
The state of Pennsylvania does not explicitly require its practitioners or teachers to carry professional liability insurance. Given that insurance costs are relatively low, and risk can be potentially high, it is a good idea to carry insurance even though it is not required. Liability insurance is available through a massage professional organization, such as AMTA (American Massage Therapy Association) or ABMP (Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals). AMTA’s professional membership explicitly includes insurance for massage professionals working as classroom teachers.
There are no specific fees associated with becoming an massage therapy school instructor, other than the license fee to practice massage in Pennsylvania if a teacher is teaching massage theory. An initial 2 year license costs $80, with a renewal fee of $75 every 2 years.