Personal Trainer Careers: National Academy of Sports Medicine
A career as a Personal Trainer should start with a Personal Trainer certification program. Obtaining a Personal Trainer Certification demonstrates a fitness trainer’s commitment to acquiring the professional knowledge needed to safely and effectively work with fitness clients. Many personal trainers elect to obtain their certification through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).
NASM has been providing evidence based certifications to fitness professionals since 1987. They offer a wide range of certifications including Certified Personal Trainer (CPT), Sports Performance and Injury Prevention. NASM also offers courses to help personal trainers meet the continuing education requirements to keep their certifications current.
Fitness trainers pursuing a NASM CPT certification can select from various instructional methods to find one that suits their learning style. Course materials can be obtained in textbook, DVD, online, and iPod or MP3 video formats. Additional instruction is also available via coaching webinars and live workshops. Personal trainers will learn how to design goal-specific programs for clients, conduct an accurate assessment when working with new clients, and develop and modify exercises in a way that is both safe and effective for clients of differing ability levels.
NASM’s Certified Personal Trainer certification is recognized by the Department of Veteran Affairs as an approved education program. This status allows veterans to receive reimbursement from Veteran Affairs for the cost of their participation in the CPT certification program. NASM also partners with academic institutions to offer an online Bachelor of Science degree and three Master of Science degrees for those looking to seek additional health and fitness education beyond the certification programs.
One key measurement of the success of a personal trainer certification program is acceptance in the industry. The more widely accepted a certification is within the fitness industry, the more career opportunities available to a fitness trainer certified under the program. Personal trainer certification candidates should look for programs that are preferred or accepted by the type of company they are interested in working with upon completion. NASM is the preferred certification organization for leading fitness clubs 24 Hour Fitness, Bally Total Fitness, Gold’s Gym, Lifetime Fitness and Town Sports International.