I am starting a business teaching group fitness (specifically, but not limited to, teens), but I can’t decide what certification I should get. Does group fitness certifications teach you as much about proper fitness as Personal Training Certs? I want to learn as much as possible about fitness without going back to college!
Hello Jessica Bowman,
To answer your question if GFI teaches as much as PT…the personal trainer course will teach you more about kinesiology. The GFI will teach you more about instruction styles for the group setting.
I am glad I studied for personal trainer first, then the health coach and group fitness instructor third. They all complement each other, but the personal trainer lays down the foundation.
Good luck to you.
NAPS 2 B Fit
I hold both a personal trainer and a group fitness certification. I started teaching classes over 20 years ago when I was in college (my degrees are not in the health field). I learned so much more when I became a personal trainer, and it helped me in both areas.
If you are going to start out with one certification, I agree with Harris and my suggestion would be a personal training certification. This would lay the foundation for you with regard to understanding the movement of the body and how it functions during exercise. Then, you are are better able to transfer that knowledge to a group setting. Teaching group fitness is more about the dynamics of a group setting and while you will get some basic knowledge of physiology and anatomy, it is not as detailed.
Ideally, I think having both certifications is a plus. Teaching group fitness has gotten me new clients–and while training clients I have also introduced many to group fitness. Many pluses. It will also depend on where you want to work–you will need the specific type of certification for the job you wish to have. Good luck to you.
Good answers. I agree that since your immediate focus is on group instruction, that is perhaps the initial certification you should acquire. But, as Karin suggests, that’s not the end of your continuing education. Age-group related certificates, perhaps personal training certification if you want to expand your opportunities, continuing education throughout your career is what will set you apart as a fitness professional.