How long does it take to become a Reiki Master?

Q: How long does it take to become a Reiki Master?

A: First, please know that “Reiki Master” doesn’t mean you are a “Master of Reiki” or a guru. It is a level designation like “Master’s Degree” that indicates that you’ve received attunement to a high enough level of Reiki to be able to attune others. Mastering Reiki is not really the goal here as much as becoming a role model and gaining your own personal understanding of your relationship with Reiki energy.

As far as timing, that’s up to you, and also a factor of the Reiki method you choose to learn. It would be advisable to get familiar with the sensations of the energy before you move forward, but that is also a subjective choice. For instance, for me, when I started learning Reiki, at level one of Usui Reiki, I did not feel very much energy flow at all. In fact, I doubted that it was working. I tried using Reiki for a year and a half thinking that I wasn’t very good at this because I didn’t feel much. Then, when I learned Usui Reiki level two, things changed and immediately after the attunement (which I also did not feel), I started feeling tingles and heat in response to “turning on” the Reiki energy and giving Reiki to another person. I was stunned. I was surprised because I had been thinking that I just wasn’t very good at Reiki, or the right person to do Reiki, before this. The realization that Reiki was working for me was a great – and very welcome – surprise.  I was so enamored with Reiki, and made it a daily part of my life from that moment forward, that I went on to receive Master Teacher training three months later. I was committed to learning as much as I could, once I knew that I was able to feel and direct the Reiki energy.

Not everyone has the experience that I did when they start learning Reiki. But now, as a Reiki teacher, I am committed to making sure that my students do not spend a year and a half wondering if this works for them. When I teach Usui Reiki, I recommend that they learn levels one and two together in the same weekend, or a week apart. I also find that my students do feel and experience their attunements – something that didn’t happen for me with Usui Reiki.

I also recommend that before going on to the Master level, that the students are very familiar with the way that they feel and work with Reiki energy. I want them to have experience with the basics of Reiki level two, which includes hands-on and distance healing, a regular self-healing practice, and insights gained while working with Reiki. I want them to know how to do scanning, how to feel for blockages and areas where the Reiki is being received, and to have a basic personal way of working with the energy that’s consistent for them.

With Kundalini Reiki, it’s different. This is a simple and practical Reiki method that does not involve learning a lot of structure. The healing practices for each level take 5-7 minutes per day, and they give a lot of experience with many of the main ways to incorporate Reiki into one’s life. Kundalini Reiki is set up to be able to be learned through Master level in three weeks. All of the tools are presented, simply and easily practiced, and the practitioner then has a lifetime to grow with his or her practice. Often, those who start with Kundalini Reiki will go on to learn other Reiki modalities, such as Usui Reiki, and will be able to use the Usui Reiki methods in a more advanced way than the novice because of their experience with Kundalini Reiki. Also, those who have learned Usui Reiki and then go on to add Kundalini Reiki to their practice find that the Kundalini Reiki strengthens their experience of the energy flow, and makes them aware of the practicality of a less-structured method of energy healing.

As a teacher, I’ve learned from my own experience, and try to give each of my students the things that I feel were lacking in my own initial training. I make sure that my students feel their attunements and understand how they respond to the experience of the energy flow. I also give my students the benefit of my understanding of energy work that developed through using two methods – one very structured (Usui Reiki uses hand positions and symbols), and one unstructured (Kundalini Reiki allows you to put your hands anywhere you want, and uses plain English words). I also guide my students with their practice, to help them learn to become aware of their intuition’s messages as they work with the energy, and become confident in their Reiki practice.

So back to the question – how long does it take to become a Reiki Master? The answer is when you feel ready to learn all you can about Reiki, incorporate Reiki into your daily life and open yourself to sharing this beautiful energy with others, and when you are committed to living in a way that represents this relationship with Reiki, you may be ready. You’ll know.

P.S. These are the Reiki Precepts, some very beautiful and powerfully simple and yet complex ideals for a Reiki practitioner (or anyone) to have as goals for ethical living. They were created by Mikao Usui, the founder of Usui Reiki.

Just for Today:
I will avoid anger.
I will avoid worry.
I will do my work honestly.
I will be grateful for my many blessings.
I will be kind to all living things.

If you’d like to learn more about Kundalini or Usui Reiki, I invite you to visit

Please post comments or suggestions for the Reiki Question and Answer of the Day below!


About Reiki Awakening

Alice Langholt is a parent, author and teacher with Master level training in several Reiki modalities. She is the Founder and Executive Director of Reiki Awakening Academy School of Intuitive Development ( Alice is the author of the new Reiki resource, Practical Reiki TM: for balance, well-being, and vibrant health. A guide to a simple, revolutionary energy healing method, which won second place for Best Reiki Book in the 2012 Reader’s Choice Awards. Alice maintains a local Reiki practice as an Associate at Insight Learning and Wellness Center in the Cleveland, Ohio area. In addition, she has authored eBooks in Distance Healing and Energetic Protection, as well as specific curricula in Reiki for Parents, Reiki for Nurses and Caregivers (approved by the Ohio Board of Nurses for continuing education units), and more. Alice spent a year volunteering at The Cleveland Clinic offering Reiki to patients and staff, and is a Group Leader with The Distance Healing Network ( She will teach Practical Reiki in Lily Dale, NY (August 2013), and gives workshops at holistic expos around the US. Alice is rated the #1 most influential person on Twitter under the category Reiki by Her husband, Evan, and their four kids know and use Reiki. As a teacher, Alice believes that close guidance and mentoring are essential elements for learning energy healing. She provides this support to each student, getting to know each and assist him or her in growing intuition and becoming confident practitioners. Receive Reiki, order pendulums, energy charged stones, and more by visiting Alice at
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