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The best cert, is the one gyms in your area want.

by Jamison
(Fort Mill, SC)

I would investigate gyms in your city / town to see if there is a particular certification they are looking for. I am in the Southeast ( Charlotte, NC area). The flavor of the area here seems to be NASM so that's who I did my certification with. I have looked through the materials for other certifications and most seem very similar with a few differences. I have done some training down in the Huntsville, Alabama area and it seemed most trainers I chatted with there were predominately ACE certified. Once again I think it depends on what those doing the trainer hiring have had experience with in that area.
One certification that I haven't run into anywhere is ACTION. I actually took their test and downloaded the text as both were free. Once again similar to what I previously learned, the book is very well written and I will be keeping it for future reference. But they are not NCCA certified yet. I have not run into anyone working based on this certification. I believe this is due to its newness and the fact that most Of those in the position to hire trainers haven't heard of it.
All of this is strictly my opinion based on what I've observed.

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Best Certification
by: Dr. Anthony Abbott, FACSM, FNSCA

The best certification is not one that is locally popular but rather one that reflects a solid knowledge base and skill level. There are questions that need to be asked. To how much comprehensive academic instruction was the candidate exposed? How much actual hands-on practical training did the candidate receive? Was the candidate required to undergo rigorous written testing as well as practical testing? Did written exams have an adequate depth to challenge one's knowledge base? In addition to recall and application questions, were there a sufficient number of analysis questions? During practical testing, were candidates required to demonstrate their ability to do body fat testing, lung function testing, muscular testing, ROM testing, and the ability to conduct a submaximal stress test on a treadmill or ergometer while taking heart rates and blood pressure? Can the candidate evaluate a comprehensive health appraisal and thorough fitness testing profile in order to design a program that meets their client's needs and goals? Do not think that just because a certification is nationally accredited that it reflects a competent trainer. This author, who has taken over thirty certifications and most of all the accredited ones in order to speak knowledgeably about them in court as an expert witness, can attest to the fact that being certified with an accredited body does not mean that the individual is a competent or qualified trainer. Anybody who thinks that they can study written materials and then take a written exam to become a qualified and competent trainer is deceiving himself or herself.

Thats why I took up the NPTI Course....
by: Anonymous

....I attending so I can get tons of practical hands on job skills and to my surprise, the theory portion was very extensive and challenging. A lot more challenging than I expected given the fact Im a community college graduate in exercise science.

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