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NASM Tips while they're still fresh in my mind

by Kate
(Hoboken , NJ)

I took the NASM exam this morning for the first time, and passed. So, while they are still fresh in my mind, I'll try to remember in some shape or form several of the questions I had:

- What muscle action are the quads performing as you go down into a squat? Possible answers were eccentric, concentric etc.

- If someone's belt is higher at the back than at the front, what muscle imbalance are they most likely to be suffering from? (I know, weird). Possible answers were anterior pelvic tilt, posterior pelvic tilt, etc.

- What are you likely to hear when listening for diastolic blood pressure? (Again, weird, I know, this is not in the book, or if it is, I didn't see it!) Possible answers were a receding pulse, rapid pulse etc.

- What does rapport stand for?

- What is the first thing to do when faced with a medical emergency? Possible answers were check for hazards, get the AED etc

- What is a female's average heart rate?

- What is an overall average heart rate?

- How many calories in 1 gram of fat, protein, carbohydrate, also their daily percentages.

- What is the percentage of the 1 rep max?

- What is a progression for someone in stabilisation level who can perform a ball dumbbell chest press well? Possible answers were increase the weight, use alternate arms, increase speed etc.

- What is the health and fitness professional's first duty? Possible answers were the club they work in, the public, themselves, etc.

- What is the intensity percentage for someone doing resistance training in phase 3, hypertrophy? Possible answers were 60-70%, 75-85% etc. There are quite a lot of questions like this. KNOW YOUR ACUTE VARIABLES.

- How many exercises for each body part should be performed in stablisation? Possible answers were 1-2, 3-4 etc.

- Of course, there were plenty of questions which referred to muscle imbalances. For instance, if your feet turn out during the overhead squat assessment, what is an overactive muscle? Possible answers were soleus/gastrocnemius, latissimus dorsi, etc. I SUGGEST THAT YOU KNOW THESE LIKE THE BACK OF YOUR HAND. Also, read these questions carefully, as the test may refer to underactive muscles, in which case it is a process of elimination. JUST KNOW THE OVERACTIVE, AND YOU CAN WORK BACKWARDS. I immediately knew that there was someone else in the room taking the same exam when I walked in, because he was assuming the arms fall too far forward position at his seat. Don't be afraid to contort yourself into strange positions if it helps! I did.

- What is the MINIMUM amount of protein that an endurance athlete should consume daily? Possible answers were 0.8g/kg, 1g/kg, 1.4g/kg etc.

- Which of the following is not part of the core stabilisation system? Possible answers were external obliques, erector spinae, etc.

OK, I really hopes that this gives you some idea as to what you can expect. It is only general, though, so bear in mind that you need to know in and around the above too. Also, re-read the book if you have time, it is amazing what you may have forgotten/overlooked. I think this is what helped me pass.

PERHAPS MORE IMPORTANTLY:

I LET SOME OF THE POSTINGS ON THIS SITE REALLY, REALLY FREAK ME OUT. I MEAN, REALLY FREAK ME OUT. I WILL SAY THAT THE QUESTIONS ON THE ACTUAL EXAM ARE WORDIER THAN THE PRACTICE EXAM, AND YOU MUST, MUST, MUST READ THEM VERY CAREFULLY. DO NOT LET CURVE BALLS UPSET YOU, TAKE A DEEP BREATH AND THINK LOGICALLY.

One last thing, those of you taking the test at 1350 Broadway in Manhattan, they have building work going on, so expect drilling all of the way through.

Good luck!

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NASM Tips
by: Joe Bartovic NASM-CPT,PES WITS LVl III

Just a heads up on the NASM-CPT test. It is randomly generatated from 10,000 possible questions so nobody gets the same exact exam. Study hard, its not meant to be easy. There are a lot of questions that will make you stop and think them out fully.

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Good tips
by: Anonymous

Your tips are dead-on! I took the NASM CPT exam yesterday - Aug. 18, 2008. Every question on the exam was exactly the way you described. Thank you!

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Passed!
by: Anonymous

Kate, I'm from NJ too but I live down here in VA now. I took the NASM test this morning and PASSED. Thank goodness. I'm a group fitness instructor but I had to study so hard because this test was ridiculously specific, to the point where I complained about it on the feedback quiz at the end. I'm sorry, knowing the inner to outmost layers of muscle in specific order and terminology will NOT make you a better trainer.

ANYWAY, I wanted to say that your advice was DEAD ON. Every question you mentioned was on there! I wish I had looked up every answer but it was so helpful! THank you!

Meg

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Thanks!
by: Kai

I took my test today and I must have got the same test you because the tips you gave were all I need to top my studyin' off. Thanks!

-Kai
Chicago,Il

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Thank you! Take my test the15th of Sept
by: Marcia

Thank you so much for your help! I will be reviewing what you have told us :) I have so much of this stuff in my head and I hope it sticks.

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did you pass
by: denise

Well how did you do Marcia,
your test was on the 15 of september..

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Do I have enough time?
by: Anonymous

Wow, it really looks like you guys all have a grasp on this thing!! But here is my situation:

I was hired at a gym and they gave me 90 days to complete a certification, specifically recommending NASM. I had some family health issues and also a soldier overseas, and the first month I wasn't able to so much as crack a book on my study materials. Then I got worried I wouldn't be able to do it. Now I have about 5 weeks to study and take the test. My question: is this still possible?? And if so, what should I do?! Thanks for your help :-)

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great
by: Anonymous

thanks great advice... will be taking soon.

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thank you!!!
by: Anonymous

I just passed my NASM and your tips really helped! Thank you so much!

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Thank you
by: Anonymous

I took my test today and passed. You tips were extremely helpful! I read lots of different opinions on the practice exam vs the real exam. In my opinion they were very similar. I did feel that there were some more specific questions on tempo, rep, the more professional and business side of things.

My biggest tips would be to pay attention to anything that is in any of the tables. Be prepared to know them well. Also, if you ever see "research suggests" take note of what there are saying. If there is a statistic after, memorize it!

good luck!

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just passed
by: Guy

I just past the NASM exam yesterday and want to thank everybody who wrote on this site. The test is not to taken lightly, but if you know a little about every subject in the book you should be OK.

Study the chart on 169 and don't just memorize it but understand it. The questions on that section are more conceptual than straight from the chart. A lot more on the heat than I thought.

I don't think the practice includes the research questions because the ones on the test are way out there. Don't let them throw you.

If you have time do the test twice, I caught three of four questions I got wrong the first time.

Phase I seems like the most important to know.

I recommend that during your prep time, you should do the different phase work outs. It will not only make the information stick but it will motivate you.

At first I thought phase one was just something for beginners, but after doing it, i became a believer. Although a little embarrassing using such small weight and a ball instead of the huge iron that I usually throw around. (I know typical knuckle head, but that's me).

Good luck and respond with any questions.

Guy

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True
by: Anonymous

Haha took test in 2011. Same exact questions. They have a CPT version 4 out now so more than likely the questions will be a little different.

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THE TRUTH ABOUT THE NASM

first of all I have to say this website is the main key to passing the NASM. Whoever created this website was a genius. I spent over 1,000 dollars getting the NASM premier,NASM study guide book given on this website. The truth is you don't need any of that. The only thing you need is to know the right material to study.

1.You need to memorize!!!!!!! MEMORIZE the table on page 169.
about a third of the questions on that test is over that table. simple memorization.

2. just know the OPT model. I"m not talking about memorizing every single thing about it but just the basic stuff. What % intensity in the phases and just basic reps and sets of like hypertrophy, max strenght, Power, and Stab, ( mostly dealing with Resistance. I wasted a crap load of time memorizing every single thing about that opt model and i didn't need half of it. It's just basic info that you get from reading the book.

3. ALOT of people on this site said memorize every single def. YOU DONT Need to memorize everyone. Just be familiar with them. AUTOGENIC INHIBITION, INTERMUSCLAR,INTRAMUSCLAR, and probally a few others I forgot of but LET ME TELL YOU i did not sit there and memorize every single def, and they were WORD BY WORD out of your book on the test so you know do what you need to do everyone learns different.

4. just know your basic stuff. WOMENS HEART RATE, REG HEART RATE, WHICH CHAMBER OF THE HEART DOES WHAT AND DO KNOW THE DIFFERENT BETWEEN LEFT AND RIGHT VENT, HWO MUCH WATER YOU NEED IN A DAY, HOW MUCH PROTEIN DOES AN ENDUARANCE ATLHETE NEED % OF CARBS,PROTEIN,FATS.BLOOD PRESSURE ()stystolic & Dylositc, and also CPR questions, hip ext. what involved. INTERMOST LAYER OF MUSCLE.


I PROMISE YOU that i freaked out about how hard this test was going to be, people on this website are either nuts or took a different test because it was not that bad i PROMISE YOU. Just reasd your book make some notecards and make a sheet of what everyone on this website says about it and what to study. IT took me four weeks to do it and i felt great after taking it and i knew i passed. IT CAN BE DONE just dont waste all your time buying all the extra crap people try to sell to you. USE YOUR BOOK AND YOUR BRAIN and of coruse make your own notecards.

PS: look they give you scratch paper to use on the test be smart and memorize every damn thing you have to and write down everyting you know when you frist walk in there HINT PG 169 table and opt model basics. YOU"LL BE FINE jsut reads the ?'s carefully and take your time and dont' let the people who fail this test freak you out. I SWEAr its alot eaiser then alot of people say it is.

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NASM
by: Edie

Great insite.

thanx so much

I was really freaked out about memorizing definitions.


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hi
by: Susy

Your awesome!

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Excellent Post - thank you!
by: Anonymous

I was looking for some specifics about the content of the NASM exam and you gave them to me. Thank you!

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Really good tips
by: Jane

I sure appreciate your insight. I am among those freaking out and trying to memorize silly details. I have gotten 99%-100% on my last few attempts on the practice exam, and I did not just memorize the answers but asked myself each time why the answer was correct and why the other answers were either wrong or not as good. I have P. 169 down so off I go to my test on Saturday. Thanks to you and all the people who took the time to post positive comments here.

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Page 169, 3rd ed book
by: Anonymous

Yes, page 169 is important to study. I just took and passed the exam the first time, and spent about 30 days studying-- AND I have a 16 month old at home, so it's definitely attainable. But yes, the best advice is to get that table on 169 "down." The questions that it deals with are some of the only on the test that aren't "obvious" or relatively intuitive. BUT there sure are a lot of questions dealing with the subject matter on that table!


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cost of test
by: Anonymous

how much does JUST the test cost?

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My NASM journey. Tips and advice I can offer

by Art
(Texas)

Well i began my journey in march and just completed it. The first time, I studied early on but got burned out and didn't study for a whole month until my exam date. i crammed the night before and stayed up all night studying. i got a 67 on the test and to be honest, i dont remember a thing about that morning.

then i took it sept. 5 again. i paced myself better and felt good going into the test and throughout the test. when i got the results, i had failed with a 69. i was very disappointed. at this time i wanted to give up on NASM. well i didn't, and thankfully it paid off.

my best advice is don't give up on NASM. Odds are, you might fail the first time if you stay up all night. It's a hard cert and rough test but know that if you pass it, you will be able to accomplish any cert you want.

Material that should be noted is:

Overhead squat/pushing assessment/fitness assessment. a lot of questions are based around this. study chapter 5. know it like the back of your hand

nutrition (macronutrients and their daily amounts and cals they yield. fat soluble vitamins, etc)

basic professional development

program design (progressions, regressions, foam roll, alternating arms, dynadisc, 2 legs stable, one leg stable, 2 legs, 1 leg. a lot of quesitons like this to. know the difference in stabilization exercies, strength exercises, and power exercises. know the difference in the types of core and flexibility training

Know the heart. which chamber does what.

know what an example of a monnosaccharide is (fructose)

know the innermost layer of the heart

ACUTE VARIBALES. know EVERY one of these. sets, reps, intensity, etc.

know the muscles of the movement and stabilization system

know the basics of special population

main chapters to master:
3,5,12,13,6,8,15,16. also know the nutrition and professional development chapters, sorry forgot their number.

keep your head up if you fail, i did 3 times. dont let the test beat you, but beat the test!

this site helped me out a lot, and those 500 questions did help out a bit and they only cost 25 bucks, nothing to lose there!

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thanks!
by: Anonymous

Thanks for the advice! I'm about to study for my NASM cert. And am a little nervous, I'm a HORRIBLE test taker. But this helps, thanks!
Stephanie JOhnson

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Thank you
by: Art

Thanks Stephanie, Im a very iffy test taker myself. just focus, relax, and take your time. dont rush the test. read very carefully.

You'll do fine if you master the need to know material and be familiar with the other small stuff.

Art

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Same or different??
by: Anonymous

Thanks for the tips!

I, too, failed my first time and I am just wondering if the test is very similar the second time or if it is completely different questions? Any information you could give would be very much appreciated!

-Diane

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Just finished the NASM exam

by Hello World
(CA)

I just finished taking the NASM exam this morning.

The sample questions were helpful such as protein for endurance athlete, diastolic blood pressure, female heart rate, etc., so I thank the other posters to this site.

Other questions/concepts I remember.

-what concept defines how your body stores fat in terms of energy balance. possible answers: law of thermodynamics, davies test, etc.

-there were a couple questions on essential amino acids. how many essential amino acids are there? You don't need to memorize them, but know what the difference between essential and non-essential amino acids.

-which one of the following is a monosaccharide? know your monosaccharides and dissacharides.

-what is the agonist during hip extension? hamstrings, glutues maximus, etc.

-what muscles are part of the core movement system? internal obliques, external obliques, etc.

-know what autogenic inhibition and altered reciprocal inhibition is.

-there was a question on % of communication using words? 15%, 4%, 9%, etc. i think this was a research question.

-there were two questions on beta blockers.

-what happens when you are dehydrated? increased blood volume, increased heart rate, etc.

-how much water does a person need a day? the answers are in quarts, so know that 1 quart=32 ounces.

-minimum protein for endurance athlete

-minimum amount of rest internal in maximal strength training.

-what does READ stand for?

-what part of the heart pumps blood to the rest of the body?

-the overhead squat is done in what plane?

-there was also a question on defining assessment that i thought was a bit confusing. know your definition of assessment.

-also know the difference between directive and non-directive questions.

-there was also a question on heart rate, stroke volume and cardiac output.

-i would memorize the fitness assessment parameters like the back of your hand, both overactive and underactive muscles. they ask 8-10 questions on this.

-acute parameters are also very important. how many repetitions for single leg balance reach is recommended? during the pulling assessment, what rep. tempo is necessary. etc.

-for a senior level client, what type of starting position is recommended? standing, sitting, lying down, etc.

-for youth level client, what is the most important aspect? postural control, etc.

-what % of max HR is zone 3.

-what % of 1 rep max for power training.

Overall, I thought the test was a fair assessment of the knowledge that I have gained. Know your stuff, and you will be fine. I studied for the past 4 months, and don't have much background in personal fitness.

Many of the questions, you can eliminate down to 2 choices, and then take an educated guess.

I thought I would need to know more information on what the muscles actually do (concentrically accelerates dorsiflexion, etc.) since questions were like that on the practice exam, but there weren't any questions like that.

Also, I would recommend memorizing all the exercises in the different categories (flexibility, balance, core, etc.). It will also help you be a better fitness professional.

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unethical behavior
by: Anonymous

By listing the specific questions on the test, you're violating NASM's Code of Professional Conduct. The purpose of the exam is to protect the public by ensuring that certifed profesionals have demonstrated entry-level competence.

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unethical
by: Anonymous

I think that the post by "hello world" was probably not thought completely through before posting. It seems that she/he was just excited about just passing the exam and trying to be helpful to everyone else...you could have told her/him in a not-so accusing sort of way that its unethical and left it at that.

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I took the test this morning
by: Anonymous

I just took the test this morning and i think maybe 1 of the questions you posted was on there. Everything else was much much harder than those simple questions, but thanks for trying to help other people i guess?

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NASM Study Tips

by Anonymous
(USA)

Hey, NASM is cool!
I'm going to give ya'll study tips since the nasm test is
"THAT HARDEST TEST YOU HAVE EVER TAKEN IN YOUR LIFE! OMg!!"
...nO, It really isnt hard....
Im not going to tell you whats on the NASM Exam because thats cheating. I dont believe in cheating. Matter of fact, believing is different from knowing and i KNOW that if you CHEAT at ANYTHING your chances of failing in the future are pretty high.
So im not going to cheat you, but I will HELP you. After all, thats why I became a Trainer, I personally absolutely love helping people. I hope these tips help you in studying not only the nasm text, but any text you ever read in your lifetime. You can always connect anything to anything! I hope these concepts also help you become a better trainer. We're not here to fail, we're here to succeed and get healthy, thats why where trainers! After all!

>----------------STUDY TIPS----------------<
I read a chapter a day (this is my own pace, if your pace is a chapter in two days or a chapter in 3 days, thats fine. Go at your OWN pace. If it takes you 120 days to master the material, Thats Fine! Thats you! Dont worry about being superman, thats not what its about. We're here to help people. Slow and steady wins the race remember.
While you're reading the chapter, work in the workbook at the exact same time.
Challenge your BRAIN. Read a few pages, see if what you read has a question to it in the workbook. If it does, answer the question. If there is no question in the workbook, remember it anyway. This is your job. You want to be good at what you do. After all, its only the human body, everybody has one, and nobody can get rid of it until they die.So get used to it. You will have one for the next 100 or so years depending on how healthy you are. If you cannot remember what you just read, reread it. If you cant remember it after you reread it, choose a different profession. LOL Just kidding... YOU NEED TO REREAD IT! READ IT AGAIN if you have to and again!..If you have to read it 5 times or 10 times, do it. Eventually your brain will get sick of looking at it and just remember it. Your brain will have thought about it so many times it will become a simple brain movement. It will become first second and third nature to you! And then Wha-La, your knowledge-Able. You'll kill just about any test in your life if you learn in layers.

THINKING is a real process, and just like when you perform an exercise with good or bad form(which is also a real process), its going to continue to be worked in that same particular form every time you go to workout. Same with your brain. Its just a habit of processing something over and over again. Habit. Technique. Path.
Say any word 100 or more times in a row for example. You'll get sick of saying it, wont you? Example: back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back, back...see....annoying.. Now you know. BACK.


Write things down in the actual text book. Think about and focus on what you're writing while your writing it. Also since its in your own handwriting it may help you to feel more comfortable when studying from it, therefore you might remember it quicker. If you have to say stuff outloud to yourself, then do it. You hear it in real time when you do that. Also your mouth muscles gets used to the movement of saying that word. Giving you confidence in that word or definition or paragraph, or BOOK. Then...Look away from the book and say it. Then look in another direction if you havent remembered it by now...You'll get used to saying and thinking about the information while looking at life and not the book. Thats the most important thing, pulling information from your brain as you go through life, not relying on A book.

do this stuff for every chapter. Even if you know the basic anatomy in the chapter, know the information upsidedownbackwards.
ALSO, ALWAYS practice EVERY SINGLE EXERCISE!!! EVERY SINGLE ONE.
you cannot give what you do not have!!!!!
How can you tell somebody how to use perfect form if you dont TRULY know? EXPERIENCE IT in REAL TIME. dont be a hippocrit. A lot of trainers are. YOU want to make a good reputation. Also, if youre in shape people will listen to you. People dont want science words. They just want you to get them in shape. So its good to know what the actual movement is in your OWN body too.
Do the exericse a few times so you remember the movement. Do it again the next day if you forget. Your going to be doing these exercise the rest of your life anyway. KNOW them. This goes for all trainers. Any trainer. Own the knowlede and experience. Own it. its all yours baby! Just for you!


----------------WHAT TO STUDY----------------
Study every chapter. Honestly. You want to be well rounded as a trainer. Your training HUMAN BODIES. the most complex organism that ever walked the earth!! (that we know of)
The human body will make any car, or space ship, or boat look like a piece of garbage. KNOW THE BODY. SERIOUSLY. know it.
I don't want to tell you what the test is about, because then you wouldn't learn anything. Not to mention thats just plain cheating ;) But what I will say is that arguably the most important concepts in personal training/exercise are the following...

FLEXIBILITY--- if the body isnt flexible you will create imbalance. Things will get tight, you wont be very agile...FLEXIBILITY IS IMPORTANT AS HELL! Do the stretches, and be corrective!

EXERCISE PRESCRIPTION---If you dont give your clients the right exercises they wont see the results they want. Or they will see slow results and get a false perception of you as an exercise professional. So really youll be tricking both of you. We dont want that. If your client is a football player, think about the MOVEMENTS that football players do when theyre on the field. Use exercises that match their movements. Really think about what your client does. DONT SKIP EXERCISE PROGRESSIONS!!
A BABY cant just all of a sudden start jumping around first. He has to crawl, 4 legs, squat himself up, learn how to walk, and then so on and so forth. Im not saying start your clients on their belly 100% of the time because you just cant or either wont need to. BUT, progress. you cant skip algebra and hope to learn the bigger math subjects. you need foundational basics of anything in the universe! Thats just plain how it works! Build that foundation before that house! PROGRESS.KNOW HOW TO PROGRAM DESIGN! HEAD TO TOE. inside-out ;)

EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN---Just know the book. Know your stuff. Do these tips and I am willing to bet you will pass and be a successful trainer. Dont stress because its not hard. Its not. Its your body. Its you. It will always apply. Even when your retired, this stuff will apply. Just plain know it. Know everything. Dont be a cheater, you'll just have bad karma and wont get much done. Know your stuff.

I really hope this helps you guys in your journey not only as a trainer, but through life! =]

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BRAVO!!
by: Doug

I'm absolutely shocked that there are no comments to this post! I have been on the fence about making the jump to this profession for fear of failure for a long time and your words are inspiring and what's pushed me off the fence and on the road to doing what I've always wanted to do!

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GREAT ADVICE
by: Anonymous

My contract with the Air Force is fast approaching and I'm looking into the personal trainer industry, not only to better my knowledge but to assist others in living a healther life. I definelty appreciate your honestly about cheating and test compermising. Kudo's to you.

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Just passed about an hour ago... March 2011
by: Joey

Ok well I used this site to help me prep for the exam so I will contribute back and share my knowledge. First and foremost, relax. You have to be confident that all the studying you've done up to this point is enough to get you through the test. Be confident. You know if you are prepared, and if you think this test is easy and don't want to put in the effort to memorize the fine details then probably have a rough time.

I went through question by question, 1 at a time until I was finished... thinking about the question at hand, not how I was doing overall. This is a very useful strategy that will help keep you focused. When I was finished it told me to go to the proctor and get my results. It took him about a minute and he told me I passed and gave me a confirmation piece of paper. Here's some details about the actual exam:

The questions are very similar to the practice exams, just worded differently. I found that the wrong answers were much more clear on the actual exam. I had about 7-8 questions on overactive/underactive muscles which were wordy but somewhere in the sentence it will say the muscle that is overactive or underactive and that all you need to know, the rest of the verbage is just to make it sound better or more difficult, it wont confuse you if you just read it. The exercise selection was pretty tough and none of those question were on the practice exam, just think about phase they are in and usually there is only one exercise that can be categorized in that phase. The nutrition part was easy, I had water amounts, fat soluble vitamins, carbs, and protein, a generally question about ammino acids but no specifics. The professional development was a joke, clearly only one right answer per question so don't worry about that at all. I couldn't identify all 20 research questions so just answer every question as if it is a real test question.

There are a few posts on this site that go into pretty good detail about what you should know so I suggest reading those as well. Remember to be able to duplicate the chart of 169 so you can do that when you get there and stay calm, if you studied hard you will pass for sure. Good luck to everyone reading this and I hope it helps calm some nerves. You will pass.

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amazing testimonial
by: Anonymous

I think you did an excellent job with your approach on studying. I think your tips are great method to passing this test.. It is extremely difficult. Kudos, you sound like a great people person. This is the right job for you!!

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Difficulty: 6/7 on a scale of 1 to 10

by chris
(santa barbara, ca, usa)

Ok, I took the test this morning for the first time and passed. I have been reading the comments on this site and a lot of them are correct. On the NASM page of this website is the breakdown of the test and how many questions come from what areas/categories; use this to outline and distribute your study time.

I finished reading the entire book word for word in 14 days (about a chapter per day) highlighting, and watching the chapter video before and after I read each chapter, then answered each chapters book and study book questions after I finished each chapter...so my studying went: video, chapter, video, text and study guide questions, repeat.

I then went over all of my highlighted info throughout the whole book again, really focusing on the previously mentioned test outline, then took the practice exam online a handful of times and scored around 85-95%.

I will say that I was afraid I was going to fail. I kept a tally of the ones that I may have gotten wrong, which ended up being 30 out of the 120, but I ended up passing, however I did not get my percentage. Relative to the practice exam, its a few notches harder Id say, with about 1 out of every 4 or 5 questions being as easy as the practice exam.

So here are my recommendations:
-Skim over the CPR section, although you should be CPR certified already.
-Know the Program Design chapter in and out (lots of acute variables)
-Know the Nutrition chapter in and out
-Know the Assessment chapter in and out
-Know as many exercises that you can and make sure you know what phase of training they belong in and what category (reactive, etc.); sounds easy but there is a million exercises in the text
-Know your cardio phases and stages
-There weren't as many muscle identifications as I thought, but if you have the study guide, study the charts that they provide as answers

That's about all I have for advice. If you study for it, you will pass. Its nothing to freak out about, but not a test to take lightly either. I studied harder than I would have had it not been for this website, and I'm glad I did.

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NASM Exam No Worries

by Rob
(CT)

I used this site to get ready for the NASM, so I thought I would pay it forward so to speak. I just took the NASM today and passed. It really isn't that much different than the practice test. The questions are different, of course, but the style is similar.

I over prepared, but then again, I've always been a good test taker. If you're not, why don't you try something novel and um....learn the material. I read the book, watched the DVD's and was fine.

Questions that appeared on my test:

1. Questions about the squat/pulling assessments. Memorize the assessment charts and know how to relate to real life situations. For example, if someones shoulders elevate during pulling, which muscle should be stretched?

2. Specific numbers. I made a sheet with all the percentages on it to study and it helped. Here are a few:
How many quarts of water does a person need in a day?
How much protein does an endurance athlete need a day?
What % of communication is physiological? words?
I had a bunch of rep questions (how many for hypertrophy, maximal strength, stabilization, one leg stabilization)
Also a bunch of questions on intensity (30-45% of 1 RM for power level, etc)
How much carbs, fat, protein should be part of your diet?

3. Definitions. Although my test may be different, they really were similar to the practice test(autogenic inhibition, altered reciprocal inhibition, inter/intramuscular, functional efficiency, and assessment were all definitions that popped up)

4. Know the regressions and progressions....this is mostly common sense

5. Know what exercises go with what level, there are a bunch of these like "What's a core strength exercise?" and you're given four choices.

6. The muscles. While they get specific with certain numbers, they are far from it when it comes to the muscles. I took the time to learn every muscle, but I guarantee you they will not ask you if the adductor brevis concentrically accelerates hip flexion. I had one that asked, "In the lowering of a squat, what movement does the quadriceps perform? Concentric, Eccentric, Isometric, or Plyometric" If you don't know the answer to questions like that, maybe you should consider another profession.

7. My favorite question: "What's an acceptable thing for a fitness professional to do with a client? Talk to them about their goals, criticize them, offer them a diet, give them a massage" MASSAGE?

If you take your time and read carefully, there are really only a few tricky questions and a few hard ones (the one that comes to mind for me is "What is the innermost layer of muscle? Fascia, Endo/Peri/or Epimysium?" There are very few questions like that, however, and you only need a 70, right? It IS a shame they don't give you your score....GOOD LUCK. BE CONFIDANT AND YOU WILL PASS. I have faith in you :)

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Excellent
by: Anonymous

Thank you--this was an excellent post to read and very honest. I agree that if someone isn't really passionate about being in this profession and thus really knows the material--maybe its not the best career move! ;)

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Thank you sooooo much for this post!
by: Anonymous

Your post is awesome!! I am very excited to be finally getting my certificate and your post has made me feel soooooooo much better about taking the test!

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finally someone who isn't an idiot
by: Anonymous

Reading over your post and honestly, I think you'd have a decent shot if you are a relatively intelligent person and didn't read the book. I took an anatomy class a few years back. I felt it helped when reading the book a bit. anyway totally cool article. great job in passing and hope you have fun. im taking it next week. i think ill watch the dvds as well. just finished the book and forgot most of it. read it in 3 days, what do you expect? peace.

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seeking another profession
by: Anonymous

Rob you are just to smart for me! You must have been born knowing what the quad is and what it does. Remember being better at tests than others does not a good trainer make, as yoda says. I can imagine how you would react when a client. That doesnt respond as well as you like to your instruction. Maybe he will find a trainer who is not so "smart"

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passed NASM
by: Anonymous

I read a lot of these posts before studying for and taking the exam. Here are my tips.

*Buy the book. You don't need the other stuff.
*Read the book one time through, taking notes you think are important to help you digest the information.
*Print off the NASM study tips found on their website. Go back through the book and make new notes with just these things.
*Now study the info you wrote from the study tips. Definitely pay special attention to the chart on Page 169. You don't have to have it memorized, but make sure you could pick out the answers or figure them out. It helps to look at the anatomy pictures to know where each over/underactive muscle is. Also know a lot about the stabilization endurance phase.
*Take the NASM practice test. I found the questions to be quite similiar in at least wording.

When you take the test, don't worry. Answer the questions to your best ability. I didn't think it was easy, but I only studied what I wrote down from the study tips and the chart from page 169 for a week. I thought I would fail for sure. But a lot of the answers were easy to pick out. But maybe I just have a good memory or know how to study.

Good luck!

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