The state of New Mexico clearly spells out their requirements for both massage instructors and massage therapy schools on their massage therapy regulation and licensing website. Massage Instructors at registered massage therapy schools must hold a valid massage license within the state of New Mexico, have practiced massage therapy for at least 2 of the last 3 years, have completed at least 50 hours of instruction in professional teaching and have paid a massage therapy instructors registration fee.
Educational Requirements for Massage Instructors
To obtain a massage therapy license, which is required to teach massage therapy, an applicant must first receive 650 hours of massage instruction, including:
- 165 hours in anatomy, physiology, kinesiology and pathology
- 150 hours in massage therapy technique and application
- 75 hours in business, hydrotherapy, professional ethics and CPR
- The balance of hours can be made up of electives, including: hands on modalities, anatomy, clinic hours, counseling, homeopathy, nutrition, herbology, breathing and stretching techniques.
In addition to the 650 hours required for a massage license, massage therapy instructors must complete 50 additional hours of instruction in professional teaching.
All massage therapy school instructors are required to have a minimum of two years of professional practice experience within the last 3 years. Instructors must document this experience by providing at least 3 forms of proof from the following list:
- Income tax forms documenting income from a massage practice
- Letters from clients documenting receipt of therapy
- Yellow page advertisements for your practice
- Printed fliers or brochures advertising a massage practice
- A lease for a massage practice locations
- Current massage professional association membership
- Current massage liability insurance
- Receipts for massage therapy supplies totaling at least $500
- Letters from massage employers
- A work log with names of clients and appointment dates
Continuing Education Requirements for Teachers
To maintain a professional massage license in the state of New Mexico, therapists must complete 16 hours of continuing education every 2 years. Only 8 of those 16 hours may be completed online, and the other 8 hours must be completed in person. For massage therapy instructors, this biennial requirement is doubled, and instructors are required to complete a total of 32 hours of continuing education every 2 years.
The state of New Mexico 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.
Fees for a massage license and massage therapy instructor license are set out in municipal code 188.8.131.52.
Massage therapists must pay a $75 initial application fee for licensure, and then renew biennial for $125. Late renewal fees are quite steep, at $75. Massage therapy teachers must first pay the licensure fees in New Mexico, and then register as an instructor for $50.
As a school based instructor, the biennial renewal fee is $25, but as an independent instructor the fee is $50. There is also a $50 fee to register as a visiting massage therapy instructor from another state. Late fees are also quite steep for massage therapy instructor registration, and are $75.