Iowa Bill would alter massage licensing education requirements

House Bill 2126, sponsored by Representative Matt W. Windschitl (R-District 56), is described as “an act relating to the education requirements of massage therapists.” The bill as currently drafted eliminates the education requirements for Iowa massage licensing; however, ABMP has learned that the current form of the bill is a draft and that the intent is to replace the education hours requirement (currently at 600) with language that would identify credits or competencies as the educational requirements. ABMP has been in contact with the bill sponsor; he is receptive to working with ABMP on the bill. The rationale behind replacing hours with credits or competencies is to maintain United States Department of Education (USDE) Title IV funding eligibility for massage therapy programs. The federal Program Integrity regulations adopted in 2011 change the funding calculations for programs, and in particular stipulate that any profession whose licensing education requirements are measured in clock hours (v. credit hours) will receive funding based on a clock hour formula. This has the potential to reduce the amount of Pell Grant money available for a 600-hour massage program. While not entirely clear at this point, it appears that this bill is seeking to change the requirements in order for programs to maintain maximum funding eligibility. ABMP has not taken a position on the bill, since it has been acknowledged as incomplete as written. However, in general ABMP does not support altering practice qualifications simply to meet economic concerns, and will not support legislation that would result in increasing the cost of massage therapy training. Updates on the bill can be found at by searching for HF 2126.  Representative Windschitl can be reached by visiting