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Personal Fitness Training

Occupational Description

Personal Fitness Trainers are skilled practitioners who work with a wide variety of client demographics in one-to-one and small group environments. They are familiar with multiple forms of exercise used to improve and maintain health-related components of physical fitness and performance. They are knowledgeable in basic assessment and development of exercise recommendations. In addition, they are proficient in leading and demonstrating safe and effective methods of exercise, and motivating individuals to begin and to continue with healthy behaviors. They consult with and refer to other appropriate allied health professionals when client conditions exceed the personal trainer’s education, training, and experiences.

Employment Characteristics

As an integral part of the health and wellness team, Personal Fitness Trainers can work with Exercise Science Professionals and Exercise Physiologists in a number of different settings, such as corporate, clinical, community, and commercial fitness and wellness centers. Personal Fitness Training involves working with the apparently healthy population, leading and demonstrating these clients in safe and effective methods of exercise.

Educational Programs

Length: Personal Fitness Training programs can be completed in a one year certificate program or in a two year Associate’s degree level program. 

Prerequisites: Applicants should have a high school diploma or equivalent and meet the specific institutional entrance requirements. 

Curriculum: Personal Fitness Training programs will include a comprehensive academic curriculum and at least one culminating internship experience. 


ACSM – American College of Sports Medicine
401 W. Michigan St. 
Indianapolis, IN 46202
Phone: 317-637-9200

ACE - American Council on Exercise
4851 Paramount Drive
San Diego, CA  92123
Phone:  858-576-6554

NASM – National Academy of Sports Medicine
26632 Agoura Road 
Calabasas, CA 91302
Phone: 800-460-6276

NCSF-National Council on Strength and Fitness
5915 Ponce de Leon Blvd., Site 60
Coral Gables, FL 33146
Phone: 800-772-6273
Website: www.csf.org


AAHPERD - American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance
1900 Association Dr
Reston, VA 20191-1598
Phone: 800-213-7193

AACVPR - American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation
401 North Michigan Ave. Suite 2200
Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 312-321-5146

MFA – Medical Fitness Association
P.O. Box 73103 
Richmond, VA 23235-8026
Phone: 804-327-0330

AKTA – American Kinesiotherapy Association
P.O.Box 1390
Hines, IL 60141-1390 
Phone: 800-296-2582