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Setting up your own holistic training school

We have had several enquiries regarding the process and requirements for starting your own school and about accreditation of your courses. So here is a condensed version of the essential steps of the process.

Obviously this list is not necessarily exhaustive. You will probably do things in a different order or have several of these steps going on at the same time.

Do contact us if you would like more information about a specific step.

It seems to be a lengthy list but we have tried to be comprehensive in our advice and highlight things you may not have thought of.

Our editable manuals take a lot of the work out of step 11 - producing manuals or teaching materials. Having pre-written manuals which you can can get accredited without altering or adding to enables you to hit the ground running. You can browse manuals here

So, onto the steps to get you teaching...

  1. Get your teaching certification if you haven't done so already - this is absolutely necessary in order to get your teaching insurance. The minimum requirement is the Level 3 Award in Education and Training (AET, formerly PTLLS). This can be done over 12 weeks at your local FE college or you can take it as an online course. We recommend this online course by CTC Training

  2. Where will you teach? - will you teach in your salon/treatment room or hire a room for larger groups? We recommend that this type of fast track training is delivered to groups no larger than 4/6 so that you can give all students the required attention during the time they are with you.

  3. Decide on your curriculum - what will you teach? - will you offer a few courses and concentrate on those or offer everything you are trained in? Will you teach just holistic treatments or beauty as well?

  4. What are the pre-requisites for your courses? Any massage course will need Anatomy & Physiology (we have a manual for this too) and others such as Hot Stone Therapy or Balinese Massage will need Swedish or Body Massage as a prerequisite.

  5. How to teach - by this we mean in person/face to face and/or distance learning via video link such as Zoom, Teams, Google Meet. We found that the video link was useful during the Covid pandemic but most students prefer face to face training for holistic and beauty therapies. Some people are also moving to online platforms such as Thinkific and Teachable.

  6. How many days/hours will your courses be? This is entirely up to you and possibly your accrediting body but our 15 years of teaching holistic and beauty therapies were based on the following:

    1. Swedish and body Massage - 2 days

    2. Aromatherapy and Reflexology - 4 days

    3. Indian Head Massage, Hot Stone Therapy and other advanced massage courses - one day.

    4. Some beauty therapy courses eg Manicure - 1 day. Others eg Lash & Brow Treatments - 1/2 day.

  7. Assessment - your accrediting body will want to know how you are going to assess your students. Usually, for the fast track courses, assessment will be mainly by observation during or after training. You may wish to schedule some written questions and our manuals include a written assessment. Case studies might also be part of your assessment process as they were in our Aromatherapy and Reflexology courses.

  8. Create session plans - your accrediting body may require these as part of the accreditation process. You will need to write them as part of your planning, so it's good procedure to do this early on.

  9. Pricing - how much will you charge for courses? Take a look at other training schools in your area but don't be tempted to undersell yourself if you feel your experience and expertise is worth more.

  10. Products and equipment needed for each course - what will you need to actually deliver your course? Aside from the treatment bed and bedding, you will also need products for the treatments in question and depending on how many students you plan to cater for, you may need several treatment beds and multiple sets of equipment.

  11. Write or buy manuals/ teaching materials - obviously we would love you to buy our editable training manuals They are fully editable to allow you to add your own name and logo before sending off for accreditation. You can also add your personalised treatment procedure, any extra information or images as you wish. However, you may have your own manuals already written or plan to write your own.

  12. Buy images for your manuals or website - there are several sites where you can download royalty free images eg Pixabay and Unsplash. Or you can buy images from the stock image sites such as Shutterstock or IStockPhoto. What you CANNOT do is copy and paste from other sites; you need a licence to use the images and this is what you are paying for when you buy them. Some website platforms eg Wix, give you access to stock images to use on your site.

  13. Create your confirmation email or welcome pack, consultation forms, data protection & privacy policy, other forms and paperwork - this is not just for clarity and advising your students, some aspects are required by law; for example, your privacy policy. Click here to see ours.

  14. Health & Safety in the salon and in your teaching room - check all Health & Safety requirements with the government website at

  15. School name - don't agonise about this, use your current therapy business name and tweak it slightly eg Amethyst Holistics became Amethyst Holistic Training.

  16. Mission statement - there are 3 steps to writing a mission statement:

    1. What your company does

    2. The purpose of your company and what you want to achieve

    3. How you will achieve the above

    4. See our home page to check out our mission statement

  17. Accreditation - I will write another blog post about this but in the meantime, these are the companies Amethyst has used in the past or is still currently using for accreditation:

    1. IGCT - International Guild of Complementary therapists

    2. IPHM - International Practitioners of Holistic Medicine

    3. Beauty Guild

    4. ABT - Associated Beauty Therapists

  18. Teaching Insurance - you will need to add an extension to your therapy insurance for teaching. It is often a requirement of accreditation that you have your insurance with the same company but not always - shop around.

  19. Student insurance - ask your accrediting body about this to check for their requirements as it varies. They will usually upgrade student insurance to full therapist insurance following completion of training.

  20. Design certificates - decide on whether to offer pdf or printed versions? We moved to PDF certificates a couple of years ago with the option for students to buy a printed version if they wish.

  21. Planning your year - as requested or calendar of courses? - Will you plan a year of training or book in courses as requested by students? Both have their pros and cons, we have used a mix of both over the years.

  22. Set up your website. If you already have website for your therapy practice you can add to your existing site. Setting up a website from scratch can be very daunting and not everyone will want to do this. Your local small business advice centre will probably have advisers or courses about setting up your online presence. There are several user friendly platforms - Wix, Ionos, Wordpress, Site123, Squarespace, GoDaddy. If you don't want to create your own site, Health Hosts are a popular platform for therapists who will create and manage your website for you.  You don't need a massive site with 100's of pages but the minimum you need would be:

    1. Home/Welcome/Contact page

    2. Payment and booking page

    3. T&C’s, refund policies

    4. Need to know ie prerequisites, length of courses, student no’s etc

    5. Accreditation info

    6. Facebook, Instagram and other socials

  23. Launch!!

You can view our editable manuals here

And do contact us if you would like more information about a specific step.

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