Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Guest Post: Certification and the Fitness Industry, Part 2: Canada

In the first part of the series, I shared some of my general thoughts on the topic of certification in the industry.  

For Part 2, I have enlisted a friend of mine, Diana @ FITness Training, to give you the rundown on some of the most popular Canadian certifications.

Take it away, Diana...

Which organization offers the best certification for the best price and what do the courses involve? 

It seems like there is no standard across the board. Each of these organizations has different requirements and very different prices.

  • Courses available in person and/or online
  • Over the age of 18
  • Current CPR
  • 20 hours of practical experience or a degree in Kinesiology
  • 5 hours of mentor/observation time
  • Submit a personal training log
  • Achieve 75% or higher to pass both the theory and practical exam. 
  • Costs:
    •  $64.14 for membership
    • $497.20 for preparation course (includes manual)
    • $204.75 for theory and practical exam 

      • Courses available in person and/or online
      • Over the age of 16
      • Current CPR
      • Complete 25 hours of training
      • Achieve 80% or higher to pass both the theory and practical exam
      • Costs:
        • $50 for membership
        • $434 ($399 for early bird) includes online course, in class course, course manual, study guide and exam

      • Courses available in person and/or online
      • Complete 24-32 hours of training
      • Current Emergency First Aid with Heartsaver CPR
      • Achieve 80% or higher on exam
      • Costs:
        • $225-239 for fitness theory and exam
        • $65-90 for NFLA exam
        • Need to contact for rates of PT course
        • $45-65/hour for practical examination

      So, which is the best course for you? 

      At one time I held many certifications with various organizations. It looked great on my resume however; it started to get very costly to keep them current. I decided to choose one organization to continue with my certifications.   

      I went with the one that would help me continue my education credits (CEC's), online or in class, and worked around my schedule. 

      No matter which one you choose, make sure you thoroughly research your options and consider the following:
      • What is the time commitment?
      • How much money are you able to invest?
      • What are the requirements for re-certification?  Will you be able to meet them?
      • What kind of support does the association offer?

      I have met trainers who are extremely knowledgeable and hold many certifications. I have learned from them, but they have no passion and lack personality. How do you teach “personality”?

      Having personality is just one aspect, I believe being a great trainer is a combination of many things. For me this includes passion, love, education, expertise, experience and personality.

      A few years back, I was personal training in a well known gym in Brantford. I had been working there for less than 6 month and had already 20 clients.   

      One woman came up to me and said, “I’ve been watching you for a while now, and you’re the trainer I want. You’re fun, know what you’re doing and are able to push me when I need a push”.

      I am the first one to say that I don’t know everything when it comes to fitness. However, I continue to learn and educate myself.  Most importantly I build relationships with my clients; I care about my clients and have fun with them. 

      That is my secret…don’t tell anyone :) 

      Keep Moving, 

      Some questions to ponder:

      Do you think requirements and standards should be the same across the board?
      Can anyone call themselves a personal trainer?  
      Does having a passion for fitness make you knowledgeable in the fitness industry? 
      Do years of experience take presidency over education? 

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