To complete an acupuncture course, you need to be fully dedicated to the training at hand. It’s not just the energy and hours that you need to be committed to, but also an absolute readiness to immerse yourself in seeing health and disease from an entirely different angle. This means having no fear of personal challenges and seeing the potential they give for strong personal growth.
For many acupuncturists, it is this different viewpoint towards health and disease, coupled with the satisfaction of helping patients to heal through this method of treatment, which makes their career choice truly fulfilling.
Acupuncture Courses and Training – What’s Involved?
A full understanding of the modern approach to healthcare taken by the western world, combined with the traditional eastern approach can be reached through various accredited acupuncture courses which specialise in providing a stable grounding in Chinese medicine theory. The training consists of intensive training in, anatomy, physiology, Western and Chinese pathology, Chinese philosophy, traditional Chinese medical studies, point location and practical clinic sessions.
Many students find the practical clinic sessions especially rewarding as this is where they get to apply what they are learning to real patients under the supervision of an acupuncturist and teacher.
Acupuncture training typically involves at least 400 hours within a clinical setting, and a minimum of 200 hours holding responsibility for the full treatment of patients.
Students are also trained in the set-up and running of an acupuncture practice, with the aim of providing them with the best possible chance of succeeding as an acupuncturist.
For people who are interested in becoming an acupuncturist, it is a good step to visit the BAAB (British Acupuncture Accreditation Board) to find out which colleges are accredited.
The British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) is the leading governing body for acupuncture in the UK, and any graduate of a BAAB accredited course is immediately able to join the council. Members of the BAcC are entitled to a variety of benefits once they have graduated and become qualified acupuncturists.
For individuals both in the UK and throughout the world, acupuncture is a fulfilling career path to take. Seeing the positive effects of the treatment within a patient’s life can significantly contribute to job satisfaction, and being your own boss gives you the flexibility to decide when you work.
What are the training requirements to become an acupuncturist? What things may hinder acupuncture from being effective?
A three-year degree course or a course which is degree-equivalent is necessary for someone to become a member of the British Acupuncture Council.
The majority of new members have received their training at a college or university with courses accredited by the British Acupuncture Accreditation Board, in fact, the website (www.baab.org) gives visitors a choice of links to such courses and colleges and also provides an overview of each of the courses.
The International College of Oriental Medicine (ICOM) for example is one such college, offering professional acupuncture training at degree level.
Becoming a professional acupuncturist can also be reached by a number of other means. When we use the term, ‘acupuncturist’, we usually mean a person who is involved in the practice full time, however, some physiotherapists, doctors and other practitioners may use acupuncture simply as one of their many methods for treating patients, in such cases their training requirements are shorter. However, the kind of training they receive approaches acupuncture and its practice from a different viewpoint.
As well as the BAcC, a few other professional organisations also exist. The Acupuncture Society is also a governing body of acupuncture, much like the BAcC and graduates of particular acupuncture schools are permitted to join once they qualify.
Generally speaking, to become an acupuncturist, training is at a diploma level for two years or three-years for degree courses.
While all practitioners may be competent and safe to practice, it is generally understood that the hallmark of a good acupuncturist is one that has trained at an accredited course. Therefore, it is recommended to find out which courses they are by visiting the BAAB website.