Massage Therapy – Texas Requirements for Continued Education Courses
Working as a licensed massage therapist in Houston, Texas can be a rewarding and sustaining career. However, there are requirements involved in the process of becoming a massage therapist and maintaining your license to practice massage therapy.
Find out which continuing education credits you need to keep your license active by calling our experienced massage education professionals at 713-681-5275 at the Houston School of Massage. Our friendly support staff will be glad to assist you with any questions you may have and will take a personalized approach in evaluating your specific massage training needs.
Is it really a requirement that I take a continuing education class in massage?
In order to maintain your status as a licensed massage therapist, you must follow the TDSDS (Texas Department of State Health Services requirements to attend and complete at least 6-clock hours of acceptable continuing education during your annual renewal period. (One clock hour is defined as 50 minutes.) You need to attend the massage continuing education class by the last day of your birth month.
Below please find the information quoted specifically from the official Texas Department of State Health Services website as of February, 2013:
“Acceptable Continuing Education includes attendance at and completion of department approved or recognized programs (other than the minimum 500 hour course of instruction required for licensure), institutes, seminars, workshops, state or national conferences, advanced course work, or college and university academic courses that are:
(1) directly related to the theory or clinical application of theory pertaining to the practice of massage therapy and the manipulation of soft tissue, massage therapy laws and rules, business practices, professional ethics, anatomy, physiology, hydrotherapy, kinesiology, pathology, or health and hygiene; or
(2) first aid and/or CPR, not to exceed six hours total each renewal period; or
(3) advanced massage therapy or bodywork techniques acceptable to the department; and
(4) designed to increase and enhance professional knowledge, skills, or competence in the practice of massage therapy.
Continuing education approved or recognized by the department must be developed and presented by qualified persons.
(1) Massage therapy techniques and courses involving the manipulation of soft tissue must be taught or presented by a licensed massage therapy instructor. Advanced massage therapy or bodywork techniques must be taught or presented by persons with licensure, registration, or education in the technique being presented.
(2) Courses, other than techniques, may be taught or presented by persons with licensure, registration, education or practical experience in the subject being presented. Instructors teaching CPR must be certified as CPR instructors by the American Heart Association, the American Red Cross, or the National Safety Council, or another provider with curriculum that is in compliance with nationally accepted guidelines established by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, or the National Safety Council. Instructors teaching First Aid must be certified as First Aid instructors by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the National Safety Council, or another provider with curriculum that is in compliance with nationally accepted guidelines established by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, or the National Safety Council.
(3) Out-of-state instructors or presenters offering continuing education in Texas on massage therapy techniques or involving the manipulation of soft tissue must be in compliance with any licensure, registration or certification requirements for massage therapists and massage therapy instructors in the instructor or presenter’s home state or be licensed to practice medicine, occupational therapy, chiropractic, athletic training, physical therapy, or nursing. If the instructor or presenter’s home state does not have licensure, registration or certification requirements for massage therapists and massage therapy instructors, the instructor or presenter must provide documentation of education or practical experience specific to the continuing education being offered.
Continuing education which otherwise meets the standards of this section but is offered or presented online or by correspondence is acceptable only if the subject matter is not massage therapy techniques or manipulation of soft tissue.
Continuing education completed out-of-state may be accepted by the department if it is approved by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. Additional information regarding the continuing education may be required for departmental review.
The department shall not give continuing education credit for:
(1) education incidental to the regular professional activities of a massage therapist, such as learning occurring from experience or research;
(2) professional organizational activity, such as serving on committees or councils or as an officer in a professional organization;
(3) college academic courses which are audited or not taken for credit;
(4) independent study except online or correspondence courses in accordance with §140.321(c) of this title (relating to Acceptable Continuing Education for Massage Therapists); or
(5) any experience which does not fit the types of acceptable continuing education in this section.
Continuing education providers should apply for provider pre-approval on DSHS forms, along with a $200 (2 Year Term) fee. Approval of provider applications will be determined by review of the application and determination of applicants’ ability to comply with department rules. Pre-approvals are effective for twenty four months from the date of approval. New applications must be submitted to the department every two years accompanied by the required fee.
Massage therapy educational programs and pre-approved providers of continuing education must ensure that continuing education activities meet the department requirements set out in 25 TAC, Sec. 140, Division 4. Pre-approved providers shall issue a certificate of attendance to each participant in a program. The certificate of attendance shall contain:
(1) the name of the pre-approved provider and approval number;
(2) the name of the participant;
(3) the title of the program;
(4) the number of credit hours given;
(5) the subject(s) included in the program;
(6) the date and place of the program; and
(7) the signature of the pre-approved provider.
Massage therapy educational programs may issue a certificate or a transcript as proof of attendance.
One hour of credit will be awarded for each clock hour of attendance at acceptable activities, except that one semester hour of college or university credit constitutes fifteen (15) clock hours of continuing education; one quarter hour of college or university credit constitutes ten (10) clock hours of continuing education credit; and 0.1 continuing education unit (CEU) constitutes one clock hour of continuing education credit (therefore, 1.0 CEU equals 10 clock hours). DSHS credit will not be awarded using CEUs. This reference is only used here to show the conversion method for persons who attend programs that designate the continuing education as CEUs.
DSHS will monitor a licensee’s compliance with continuing education requirements by the use of a random audit system. Licensees selected for audit will receive notification along with the renewal notice. Supporting documentation of participation in continuing education activities are not to be submitted unless a written audit notice is received informing the licensee that he or she has been randomly selected for a document audit. Continuing education supporting documentation includes certificates of attendance or completion; transcripts of academic work; or any other documentation acceptable to DSHS. Licensees who receive an audit form with the renewal notice shall submit all appropriate documentation to substantiate compliance with the continuing education requirements. Individual massage therapists are responsible for maintaining continuing education documentation for a period of two years.”
The information above was as noted quoted/pulled directly from the official Texas Department of State Health Services website (dshs.state.tx.u) as of February, 2013 to help ensure you can quickly and easily find this information that you need to maintain your education according to state requirements for massage therapy in Texas. If you are reading this article at a date that is much later than February 2013, please review to ensure the requirement information is the most current, or please feel free to call the experienced Houston School of Massage professionals at 713-681-5275 to ask us any questions about your continuing education needs so we can help you find what you are looking for.
At the Houston School of Massage we work hard to ensure you receive the top quality education you need to succeed in life as you pursue the career of massage therapy. We look forward to assisting you in meeting your goals!
A Career in Massage Therapy, Employment Opportunities
A career in massage therapy opens a variety of employment opportunities, including at:
- massage therapy clinics
- corporate wellness centers
- chiropractor’s and doctor’s offices
- health clubs
- pain and rehabilitation clinics
- cruise ships
- shopping malls
- convention centers
- professional sport team clubhouses
- salons and spas
- retreat centers
- alternative medicine centers
- psychotherapist offices
- nursing homes