Thursday, November 1, 2012

Personal Training Certification

     If you are wondering if it is necessary to become certified in personal training then look no further. If two people were in the running for a personal training job and one was certified and one wasn’t, who would you hire? Did you know that physicians are checking the experience and qualifications of personal trainers before making patient referrals? Communication skills, leadership traits, and a good personality are important but on paper (the resume) it’s all about certifications.
     Choosing the organization that provides the best certification can be frustrating because there are many things to consider. You need to determine how the certification will be used, whether it’s for working with a special population, in a particular environment, or to demonstrate marketability. You also need to determine what is expected from the certifying organization, such as networking, continuing education, and requirement regarding liability insurance. Ask your potential employers what certifications they prefer or require. Survey other professionals in positions related to yours and ask what certifications they have obtained. Finally, contact the actual professional organization and ask about their certifications and what they can do for you. The benefits of having a certification include:  verifies your level of knowledge, skills, and abilities; recognizes your commitment to being a professional; aids employers in hiring the best person; assures participants that they will receive safe and effective guidance; facilitates marketing; and requires a continuing education system which requires a commitment to maintaining knowledge and skills.
     Each fitness director will have different certification preferences. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) is universally recognized as a leader in the fitness industry; however, the American Council on Exercise (ACE) is also among the top providers of certifications. The ACE Personal Trainer Certification is now being recommended for college credit by the College Credit Recommendation Service and it is currently the first and only organization to have this academic recognition for fitness certification exams. ACE has lobbied against any licensure of fitness professionals because the majority of their certifications are held by people who do not have college degrees. There are four minimum requirements to sit for the ACE certification exam:
1. You have to be at least 18 years of age.
2. Have current adult CPR.
3. Have 300 hours of work experience designing and implementing exercise programs for apparently healthy individuals and/or high risk individuals, to be documented by a qualified professional (e.g., allied health professional, fitness director, club manager, professor, etc.)
4. (a) You must have a Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education (courses in: exercise physiology, programming, and leadership), Exercise Science, Kinesiology, Exercise Physiology, Adapted Physical Education, Athletic Training, or Physical Therapy. OR (b) have current certification as an ACE-certified Personal Trainer, ACSM Exercise Test Technologist, ACSM Exercise Specialist, ACSM Health/Fitness Director, ACSM Program Director, or NSCA Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist.
     Becoming certified can be very beneficial to your clients, employers, and to yourself.  If personal training is the job for you, then becoming certified is your next step.

1 comment:

  1. Amazing post! Choosing the right personal training certification can be the difference between financial success, and failure. Discover the best way to get certified, and thrive.

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