Health and Fitness has become a multi-billion dollar industry. This lucrative field has led to rapid growth in the total number of personal trainers and other fitness professionals. As a result, clients often times are not aware of the steps they should take to find a well qualified personal trainer. I have been personal training for over 10 years and have worked alongside numerous trainers. This post will focus on the importance of credentials, nationally accepted certifications, and sorting through who remains.

Anyone can walk around and claim to be a Personal Trainer. As of now a license is not required and most potential clients never take the time to do homework on their perspective trainer. In addition, there is no shortage of agencies who are quick to declare someone as a personal trainer in exchange for money. Credentials are not everything. Yes, I get it. I have trained with many experts in the field who rely on their years of experience to guide others. These same individuals typically have a reputation which precedes them as well. If you are looking to begin training with someone new, the credentials they carry can often times help.

As previously mentioned there is no shortage of certifying agencies for personal trainers. A quick way to sort through the plethora of options is to do an online search for the top five NATIONALLY ACCEPTED personal training certifications. Don’t just rely on one website either, take a look through a few. Different certifying agencies place greater emphasis on different areas of fitness. For example, an ACSM certified trainer will typically carry a thorough knowledge base from a clinical standpoint. An NSCA certified trainer will typically have an extensive background in program design for an athlete. ACE tends to focus heavily on biomechanics as they relate to the human body. The more research you do the better off you will be. Many trainers carry additional credentials that can help determine the depth of their understanding of the human body. Look for CSCS, USAW, a degree in Exercise Science/Kinesiology, or other credentials that identify specific areas of expertise.

ALL CERTIFICATIONS ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL. Don’t be fooled by the extremely low price trainer who may often be under qualified. Sometimes you get for what you pay for. Try not to fall prey to the high priced trainer either, they are not always the most qualified. Confusing enough? Don’t worry. Feel free to email me if you want more specific information about how to find a trainer who is right for you!