Become an SPI Provider

New for 2023 and beyond!

The process of becoming an SPI Provider has been fully revised. Please check out this revamped page to learn about the path to becoming an SPI Provider.


What is an SPI Provider?

Single Pitch Instructor (SPI) Providers are a vital component of the AMGA. Based throughout the country, SPI Providers teach AMGA SPI Courses and facilitate SPI Assessments.

As representatives of the AMGA and providers of the SPI curriculum – we look for dedicated educators with comprehensive teaching and/or mentoring experience that are committed to helping students succeed. In addition to climbing and technical expertise, being able to articulate written and verbal feedback is an essential skill for those interested in becoming a Provider. We are also seeking individuals who are committed to creating inclusive and supportive learning environments for all aspiring climbing instructors.

The process of becoming a Provider is a partnership between the applicant and the AMGA—the training program is taught and facilitated by the AMGA.


How do I become an SPI Provider?


Start by applying to the 5 day Provider Training Course! Please see prerequisites and “how to apply” information below.

  1. Participate in the 5 day Provider Training Course: those candidates who successfully pass are approved to teach SPI Courses independently as a Provisional Provider, at the 6:1 student to Provider ratio. 
  2. Teach programs: once the Provisional Provider has taught, or co-taught a minimum of 4 SPI Courses within a 2 year timeframe, they will meet the teaching requirement for applying to the 3 day Provider Assessment. This, combined with performance that meets the standards expected of an AMGA SPI Provider, will make them eligible to apply to the Provider Assessment. 
  3. Apply to the 3 day Provider Assessment: If they pass the Provider Assessment, they will then be approved as a Provider and approved to facilitate SPI Assessments in addition to teaching SPI Courses, both at the 6:1 student to Provider ratio.

Please visit the FAQ for more information.

If you are a current Assistant Provider:

Check out the Assistant Provider Bridge Program for more information and options for your advancement toward Provider status.


Program Information

  • Prerequisites:

    SPI Provider Prerequisites:

    • Minimum training level required: 
      • AMGA Rock Guide, AMGA Multi-Pitch Instructor, or AMGA Rock Instructor
    • Minimum instructing experience:
      • 150 days instructing rock climbing
        • document at least 50 of these days in the resume template
        • Experience in group management, experiential education, and staff training is preferred
    • Able to onsight lead 5.9 traditional climbs at the time of the training course 
    • Current AMGA Member
    • Current CPR Certification and Wilderness First Responder (WFR) Certification or higher
    • SPI Providers are required to be in compliance with AMGA Scope of Practice.


  • How to Apply:

    Application Instructions:

    In order for your application to be considered complete, please submit the following items prior to the application deadline.

    Email all items in .pdf format, in a google drive folder, to the Climbing Instructor Program Manager, Andrew Megas-Russell [email protected] and pay the application fee prior to the application deadline.

    1. Essay Questions:
    Answer 5 out of the 6, limit 250-500 words per question

    • What will make you an effective provider and what elevates you above other candidates?
    • What would you bring that would be valuable to the Climbing Instructor Program?
    • How do you provide an atmosphere that makes you approachable for instructors both professionally and personally?
    • Share a time when you received tough feedback from a supervisor or boss?
    • Describe key elements related to facilitating effective one-on-one feedback, and debriefs on a program.
    • Provide a written example of feedback telling a student they did not pass their movement.

    2. Professional Resume:

    • Candidate MUST include the number of days instructing at each job and number of days guiding at each job.

    3. Climbing instruction and teaching resume:

    • Applicants must use the resume-template provided by the AMGA
    • Document 10 - 5.9 (or harder) traditional climbs within the past year
    • Document minimum 50 days of rock climbing instruction
    • Optional - Applicants may document more than 50 days if they exceed the minimum documentation requirements

    4. Example Lesson Plan:

    • Choose an SPI Course curriculum session from the SPI Program Handbook
    • Refer to the lesson plan section and use the template on pages 20-21 in the Falcon Guide Rock Climbing: The AMGA Single Pitch Manual
    • You may be expected to teach this session during the program
    • If accepted to the program, you will be expected to create lesson plans for all 19 SPI curriculum sessions outlined in the SPI Program Handbook prior to the program start.

    5. Ensure your myAMGA account information is up to date:

    • Upload current certification forms for WFR and CPR
    • Fill out or update your AMGA Health Statement including emergency contact
    • Update your Basic Information including apparel sizes and Public Profile information including current contact information

    6. $75 non-refundable application fee:

    • Email your application to [email protected] and you will receive an online payment link in return.


    Please do not submit AMGA course evaluations or certifications with the application. These may be reviewed during the application process. You do not need to include these.

  • Application Review:

    Application Review:

    Enrollment decisions are based on a number of factors including the following:

    • Application is complete and received by the application deadline
    • Essay Questions, lesson plan, and resume completeness and strength
    • Teaching and instructing experience
    • Previous wait list status

    Best Qualified applicants considerably exceed the minimum prerequisites

    Well Qualified applicants exceed the minimum prerequisites

    Qualified applicants meet the minimum prerequisites

  • Tuition Information:

    Tuition Information:

    • Participants are responsible for other costs associated with the training including but not limited to food, travel and lodging.
    • To accept and hold your space on a program, a deposit of $500.00 is due within two weeks of acceptance.
    • Failure to pay your deposit will result in being dropped from the program
      • $150.00 of your program deposit is always non-refundable
    • Your full tuition is due within ten weeks of the program’s start date. Failure to pay your full tuition will result in being dropped from the program.

    Cancellation & Refund:

    • If you cancel your enrollment for any reason outside of ten weeks prior to the program’s start date, you’ll be refunded all but $150.00 of your tuition.
    • If you cancel your enrollment within ten weeks of the program’s start date, the AMGA will retain 100% of your tuition. Please note:
    • If AMGA is able to fill your space on the program with another qualified participant, we will refund your tuition less the $500.00 deposit.
    • You will receive a full tuition refund if the AMGA cancels the program prior to the program’s start date. The AMGA is not responsible for costs associated in these cases, outside of tuition.
    • Although rare, the AMGA reserves the right to change a program location at any time due to unforeseen circumstances (for example, local snow or ice conditions that make the venue unsuitable). The AMGA is not responsible for costs associated in these cases.
    • If the AMGA cancels your program after the program has begun, you will receive a prorated refund or tuition credit.*
    • If you have to leave your program after the program has begun, for any reason, the AMGA will retain 100% of your tuition. There is no refund or tuition credit option.
    • We strongly recommend that you purchase Trip Insurance to protect your tuition investment and other associated costs with your program.
    • There is no transfer option. If you drop from your training course you will need to reapply. The AMGA will waive your application fee one time.
  • COVID-19 Information:

    Does AMGA require Provider Program or Mountain Guide Program participants to be vaccinated & boosted against COVID-19?
    Effective January 1, 2023 AMGA will no longer require Provider Program or Mountain Guide Program students, participants, or employees to be vaccinated for COVID-19.

    • AMGA’s vaccination policy may continue to change over time as the disease changes and recommendations from public health professionals evolve. If a change impacts your program, we will update you directly.
    • AMGA will continue to adhere to any government requirements for vaccination.
    • Vaccination and booster upkeep remain strongly encouraged.


    What is AMGA’s COVID-19 Operating Plan?
    The federal COVID-19 public health emergency declaration ended on May 11, 2023. With the public health emergency now over, the AMGA's COVID-19 Operating Plan, Policies, and Procedures are being suspended indefinitely. If it becomes necessary to reinstitute the COVID-19 Operating Plan, the AMGA will notify the membership. Otherwise, please remember COVID-19 remains present and may still affect AMGA programming. Common public health practices such as good hygiene, vaccination, and booster upkeep can prevent the spread of COVID-19. Please consider avoiding public interactions in large group settings, particularly indoors, before your program. If you become sick before or during a program, notify the office immediately for assistance.


    What happens if I get COVID-19 before my program start date?
    If you have tested positive for COVID-19, or are having symptoms of COVID-19 before your program, please call the AMGA office. Specific answers can not be given here for every individual scenario, as individual cases will be different based on timelines and program start dates. While we will do our best to work with you and get you onto your program, solutions will be based on individual situations and illness and program timelines. COVID-19 illness is NOT exempt from AMGA’s cancellation policy. Please purchase Trip Insurance.

  • Format:

    The 5 day Provider Training Course program block is a combination of instruction, coaching, debriefing, and assessment.
    The program is 5 days in length. There will be an ongoing format of coaching, education, and assessment while giving candidates strategies for framing and creating a positive learning environment, organizing effective program itineraries, and managing the administrative tasks for the program.

    Critical review of course curriculum session delivery as would be taught on an SPI Course is core to this program block.

    As a pilot program we make radical changes from the itinerary to best prepare candidates for becoming a Provider.

    The 3 day Provider Assessment program block includes:
    This program block includes a combination of instructional components and assessment scenarios.
    Assessment and debriefing strategies are reviewed and practiced by the Provisional Providers through SPI Assessment scenarios and or real client interactions where candidates will need to evaluate and deliver written or verbal feedback.


SPI Provider Training Schedule

Programs March-April 2024 
  • Application Deadline is November 8th, 2023
  • Acceptance Notification is December 8th, 2023
Programs October-November 2024
  • Application Deadline is April 1st, 2024
  • Acceptance Notification is May 3rd, 2024

*Applicants may apply to multiple programs at the same time and list first choice / second choice


SPI Provider Training Courses:

PT-SPI-C-2024-1 | March 16-20, 2024 | Red Rock Canyon, Nevada | $2,000 tuition | $75 application fee | Instructors for this program are Elaina Arenz and Andrew Megas-Russell 

PT-SPI-C-2024-8 | October 1-5, 2024 | Boulder, Colorado | $2,000 tuition | $75 application fee | Instructors for this program are Jason Martin and Andrew Megas-Russell


SPI Provider Training Assessment:

PT-SPI-A-2024-10 | October 20-22, 2024 | Red Rock Canyon, Nevada | $1,350 tuition | $75 application fee | Instructors for this program are Elaina Arenz and Andrew Megas-Russell 

* Please stand by for an update on the application requirements for the Provider Assessment – these have not been posted yet and will be different from the standard application process. Application deadline for this program is April 1, 2024 so we have some time.


SPI Assistant Provider Bridge Programs:

PT-SPI-B-2024-3 | March 24-27, 2024 | Red Rock Canyon, Nevada | $1,600 tuition | $75 application fee | Instructors for this program are Jason Martin and Andrew Megas-Russell

PT-SPI-B-2024-9 | October 7-10, 2024 | Boulder, Colorado | $1,600 tuition | $75 application fee | Instructors for this program are Jason Martin and Andrew Megas-Russell


* Program tuition does not include food, lodging, transportation, or other course expenses unless otherwise noted

* Staffing is subject to change throughout the year based on AMGA programming needs and instructor availability