Having a passion for fitness and exercise is only the first step to becoming a fitness trainer. Now that you?ve decided on your career path, your next step is to attend a fitness trainer school in order to obtain the necessary certification. There are a number of organizations that certify fitness trainers and to narrow down the search, you need to look at certain factors when choosing your fitness trainer school.
A fitness trainer certificate is no use if it comes from an unaccredited organization. Accreditation is the number one thing you should look at because this guarantees that the fitness trainer school provides the appropriate learning materials, protocols, and certification procedures. Fitness trainer schools are usually accredited by a third party organization like the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCAA). All accredited fitness trainer schools are required to display the NCCA's seal prominently on their website and building, so if you don't seal the seal anywhere, start walking away.
Aside from accreditation, there are a number of other considerations you should look at before signing up at a fitness trainer school. Here are some questions that will guide you.
Is the certification universally recognized? There are two kinds of certification you can obtain ? a national certificate and international certificate. If you're interested in getting a job abroad or are planning to move out of the country, it is important that you receive an international certification.
What topics are covered by the fitness trainer school? Your fitness trainer school should cover basic and advanced concepts and techniques of fitness training using workbooks and manuals. If you are interested in becoming a specialized fitness instructor (e.g. pre/post-natal specialist, sports nutrition consultant), look for a school that can offer the course and certification you are looking for.
What kinds of classes are being offered? Most fitness trainer schools have seminars you need to physically attend, but there are also schools that offer distance learning and home study programs if they are located somewhere else.
What are the prerequisites? Fitness trainer schools usually require you to be at least 18 years old with a high school diploma. You may need to have a CPR certification as well.
How much does it cost? Depending on what classes you sign up for, fitness training could cost anywhere between hundreds to thousands of dollars.
How do you maintain the certification? Most fitness trainer schools will require you to take continuing education in order for you to maintain your certification. Although it's an added expense, it will keep you abreast of the latest practices, studies, skills, and other relevant matters in your field. Continuing education will also enable you to expand your range of skills and knowledge to serve your clients better.
Are you interested in working for a specific gym or club? If you are, ask what certifications they recognize before choosing your fitness trainer school.
Finding Your Fitness Trainer School
The easiest way to start the search is by looking online. All fitness trainer schools have websites with detailed information about their course offerings and requirements. If you already have friends who are certified fitness instructors, ask them for recommendations and suggestions.
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