The Personal Training Attitude
Becoming a personal trainer is something that only a select few are suited for. For one thing, it’s not enough to simply enjoy physical fitness yourself, although that is certainly a prerequisite if you want a career you love. You will need to exhibit specific strengths (pardon the pun) in order to excel in such a field.
You’ll definitely have to be committed to keeping yourself in shape; after all, who wants to listen to a personal trainer that isn’t fit? That’s like trusting a driving instructor that’s never been behind the wheel of a car. However, you also need to have the right disposition. If people want to be barked at and ordered around, they’ll join a boot camp class.
It’s the job of a personal trainer to motivate, not command. You need to be patient and nurturing and employ excellent communication skills. And above all, you have to be passionate about helping others become the best version of themselves. But you also need a fair amount of training under your own belt before you can train others if you don’t want to push them too far or cause undue physical harm. As a result, it may take you a little time to become a personal trainer.
In truth, it doesn’t take much to attain certification. There are many organizations that offer such courses, and online instruction is probably the quickest way to achieve certification. Of course, it may not provide the most comprehensive education, and there will be no hands-on training, which could hold you back when it comes to finding a job.
For the above reasons, your best bet is probably to select a program at a training school. You could complete your coursework in as little as about 6-9 weeks of combined classroom learning and supervised, hands-on training. And you may have to complete an internship as part of your program.
In addition, you will almost certainly be required to obtain certification in CPR and first aid separately. After this you can take your certification exam and, if you pass, begin looking for a job. But you’ll want to find a school that is nationally recognized in order to maximize employment opportunities.
You could also opt for a degree program that ensures you are prepared to provide clients with the best possible service. A degree in sports medicine or kinesiology, for example, could give you a better understanding of the human body, how it is meant to work, and the role physical fitness plays in overall health, wellness, strength, healing, and more.
If you’re serious about helping people or you have aspirations of one day becoming a physical therapist, for example, having a college degree under your belt is a great idea, and it couldn’t hurt in the job market, either. Of course, it will take you four (or more) years to obtain.
Take a Practice Test
But if you want to get started sooner rather than later, and picking up a free CS CS practice test or taking the OCS is a distant thought, then simply seek out a certification program that can get you into the field post haste, gaining experience and helping people to reach their physical fitness goals.
Over time you will have to obtain continuing education, and you may at some point decide to go for that college degree. But in the meantime you can do what you love and get paid for it. And it may only take you a few weeks of training to get started down your career path.