I would NOT use AFAA for a personal training certification
(San Diego, CA)
I spent the almost $500 for the 3 day workshop and passed the written exam on the first try but not the practical. The workshop instructor said she could not tell us what would be on the practical but that we could only miss one point to pass it. I failed it the first time.
I am not new to exercise and have taught step aerobic classes and was certified to do so. I've gone to the gym for over 20 years now. I paid the $75 and went back to take the practical at AFAA and failed it again. They don't tell you exactly what you did wrong but send a form that tells you what areas you missed points in. AFAA gets $75 for every re-take of the practical, so once someone has invested $500 on the exam/workshop its an easy way for them to keep making more money.
The practical is really impractical....there are certain buzz words you need to use and an exact format to follow or you will be failed. As if training someone in the real world works that way...
I am going with NASM..it has better recognition in the working world and doesn't have a practical that really is just a gimmick to make lots of money! And it takes a month to get the results from the tests or if you want to pay an additional $35 they will tell you after one week...seem weird to you? Its a Scantron...a month...really...less time if you pay more money.