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Personal Trainer Certification

So I’m in the YMCA lifting the other day and I tried to tell this guy to stop swinging so much during his EZ Bar Curls. (What possessed me to say anything is beyond me.) He tells me he does it this way to hit the third head of his BICEP. I was stupified! Same night some guy puts on a little leather belt and starts to do dumbbell curls. Oh my Lord! The trainer is the one who gave him the belt! The same trainer who tells the 300lb. ladies to do calf raises 5 times a week. I figure I could do the fitness trainer thing and maybe introduce a little sanity to my corner of the world. My question is, what is the best, most useful…etc. certification. (I would need to do this at home, over the internet type thing.) What does it cost? Any information would be great, and if there is one that specializes in weight training that would be good too. Hell, I get so much good info off this site I could probably test out. Thanks for your help.

ISSA has a good online certification. Stay away from ACE, a drunken monkey could pass their test.

NASM has an online certification. National Academy of Sports Medicine, I think.

Also, NSCA(National Strength and Conditioning Association) offers a CSCS(Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist) and a CPT(I guess Certified Personal Trainer). The difference between these is you need a college degree for the CSCS, and not for the CPT. Back east, these were regarded as some of the best. Out west, everyone seems to be loving NASM.

You could always call around your local gyms and see what they recommend.

Good Luck

I’d say CSCS is the best one out there. You can find out more about it by going to www.nsca-lift.org.
In reality, most certifications are just creditials to put behind your name when lookin’ for a job. I have a few certifications that I used for just that purpose, but I’ve learned 10 times more just by reading the info. here on this site.
BTW, I’d say those stories about the people at your gym are funny, but I think they are sad more than anything. But I’m not surprised.

Good luck,

Danny

The CSCS is the most respected certification and the only one which requires a college degree. Don’t think that you’ll pass the CSCS by reading information from this website though, because you won’t. I have know many people who have undergrad degrees in exercise physiology who have failed the test.

The proper link for the CSCS examination is http://www.nsca-cc.com

If you’re looking for a good certification that doesn’t require a college degree try the NASM or ACE, both will be accepted by most gyms.

NASM, NSCA, and ISSA seem to be the top three based on trainers I have known. Most ACE trainers I have known are a joke. I know that NSCA and ACE are accredited, I’m not sure about the other two.

You don’t need a certification to give advice. Feel free to dispense at will. Hasn’t stopped anyone else.

The lesser certifications (ACE) won’t teach you anything, and will cost a lot of money. Better programs (ISSA) will improve your knowledge base, and will cost even more money.

Ultimately, the goal is to eventually attain a position as a trainer. If it isn’t, you’re wasting your time with credentials.

But would you really want to be one? Surprisingly few clients in commercial gyms have any desire to progress; it’s a positive frame of mind they’re after, and it’s your job as the buff and sexy trainer to give it to them.

Weights and exercise are just incidental. Lifting doesn’t make people happy, but giving them the impression that that you’re helping them toward a greater good certainly will. If that entails pseudo-therapy under the guise of personal training, so be it.

DI

btm62:

It really depends on what you are attempting to accomplish. If you are simply looking for something that will give you credibility then almost any certification will do, as the general public has no idea where your certificate came from.

On the other hand, if you are attempting to actually enhance your own knowledge beyond the point it is currently at, you need to heed the advice of others on this thread!

What are you interested in accomplishing?

btm62-

Even though “all men are created equal”, all trainers definitely are not!!!

I will throw out a group called NFPT (NFPT.com). They are supposedly one the most recognized as far as non-CSCS certifications go. I have completed their study material and now I’m scheduling a time to take an 8 hour, 300 question, closed book exam. They have 3 levels: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd class certs. It’s much more stringent than the on-line or mail-order certs, but it’s really not that hard if you have been around training for a while.

I have been in fitness and training clients for about 10 years without being certified. Getting most of my knowledge from reading books and mags cover to cover - nothing has helped more than T-Nation though. But, the certification helps 1000% with two main areas - marketing and legal. I honestly learned very little new information from the NFPT study material, but they include legal forms that CYA as a professional. And, as far as marketing, it just looks more appealing to Joe and Jane Public when you are certified, no matter how many years you have been training.

We all feel your pain with the laughable ingorance in the gym! My favorite is to see guys hitting their chest day, starting before I get to the gym, still going when I’m done and drinking my PWO shake, and STILL hitting it when I leave! And to think I just hit my entire uppper body more effectively than they are hitting merely one body part!

TopSirloin

the NFPT exam is only about two hours long, 120 questions closed book, costs $400 USD. sorry for the error!

TS

What is the consensus on the NFPT Certifications?

Are the Certs. other than the PT even worth getting to be a Personal Trainer?

What jobs other than Personal Training can you get with a Sports Nutrition Cert. or a Advanced Weight Trainer Specialist?

I see they have many different Certs.:

Personal Trainer Certification
Advanced Personal Trainer Certification
Master Trainer
Advanced Sports Nutrition Specialist
Advanced Endurance Trainer Specialist
Advanced Weight Trainer Specialist
Fitness Screening Specialist
Practical Instruction Clinic

Everyone on here seems to like ISSA! But I am AFPA certified, check them out at www.afpafitness.com

You will never go wrong with a CSCS. Simply the best out there. If you could pass this test you could pass any of them.

[quote]lizard king wrote:
ISSA has a good online certification. Stay away from ACE, a drunken monkey could pass their test.[/quote]

Great advice LK!

I wanted to bump this thread to see if anything has changed.

I would like to get CSCS certified, but my college degree is not in Exercise Physiology or something similar. Do I need an Exercise degree or just any college degree to get the CSCS?

I have the ACE study guide at home, so I am thinking about starting there. I already bought the books, so I would only have to pay for the test.

My thought is in 2 years when the ACE expires I would either get the NSCA-CPT or NASM-CPT, And then move on to the CSCS.

Any thoughts?

I’d say have a look around and see which 1 suits you…

I’ve found that you do not need any college eduction within this field because in school you are taught about the entire area of physicl education…

obviously that would help though…

personally im completing a college degree in sport and exercise science. I have a Level 2 NVQ qulification in Fitness Instructing and am looking to do alot more courses…

but the college work i am doing at the moment is the same as the work i had to do for my course.

If you’ve got a specific job in mind, why don’t you just ask them what they prefer?

My goal is to learn as much as I can and get insurance coverage.

The job I have in my mind involves working for myself.

[quote]lighting_guy wrote:
I wanted to bump this thread to see if anything has changed.

I would like to get CSCS certified, but my college degree is not in Exercise Physiology or something similar. Do I need an Exercise degree or just any college degree to get the CSCS?

I have the ACE study guide at home, so I am thinking about starting there. I already bought the books, so I would only have to pay for the test.

My thought is in 2 years when the ACE expires I would either get the NSCA-CPT or NASM-CPT, And then move on to the CSCS.

Any thoughts?[/quote]

You don’t need a degree in a fitness related field for CSCS, just a 4 yr degree.

Who do you want to work with? Athletes= CSCS ideally,
ACE will get you in the door at near any type of club
NASM should as well.

Hi, what do you guys think about A.C.S.M.?..Drunken Monkey! like it!