Personal Trainer School Program Options

Being physically fit and healthy is a high priority for many individuals in today’s society. The work needed to obtain physical fitness can become more efficient with the aid of a personal fitness trainer. Students can step into this role after completing an accredited program from a vocational school. Schooling options are offered by personal trainer schools and other higher learning facilities.

The Schooling Options

Becoming a personal trainer can be sought out through several different avenues. Vocational schools allow students to complete a certificate or an associate’s degree program. Many professionals use certificate programs as a starting point for a career.

This is the case because schooling only takes five weeks to two semesters to complete. The gap in length is due to the information being covered. The more extended programs give students a more comprehensive look at the field. Pursuing an associate’s degree in exercise science is another popular starting point.

Schools provide information on more subjects like how exercising affects individuals with heart problems. Students that want to pursue a higher level of education can complete a bachelor’s and master’s degree in a traditional college. The schooling option chosen determines career flexibility and the overall knowledge base of students.

Top 5 Personal Trainer School Programs

  • American Council on Exercise¬†(ACE)
  • National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM)
  • International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA)
  • American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)
  • National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)


No matter what educational path is taken, all students will learn to work one-on-one with a person or be in charge of a small group. A standard curriculum covers the basics of physical fitness by preparing students to teach clients how to exercise correctly. Other foundational areas studied include making nutrition and lifestyle suggestions when appropriate.

These focal points make up the bulk of beginning courses inside all schooling options. Inside a program, students can expect to take classes in CPR, exercise techniques, anatomy, kinesiology, injury prevention, and cardiovascular training. Depending on the program track selected, students may complete all of the above courses or opt to study only a few.

Certificate programs train students to generate a strength and conditioning plan based on the wants and needs of their clients. Completing four main curriculum areas, which include:

  • Strength Training
  • Conditioning
  • Diet
  • and Communication

Associate’s degree programs explore ways to train individuals. Different techniques are learned based on the fitness level and cardiovascular health of a particular client. Programs also present the option for students to educate fellow students inside the recreational center of their college. Students learn more information while gaining real-world experience.

Career Outlook

With a personal trainer certificate or an exercise science associate’s degree, students can work in many career positions. Some of the most common choices outside of personal training include yoga teacher training, aerobics instructor, coach, physical education teacher, and corporate fitness consultant.

Understanding what the schooling options help students to decide on a program. Becoming a personal trainer is a reachable goal inside a vocational school. Students can pursue careers by first enrolling in accredited personal trainer schools that are approved by the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET), to offer quality training.