Sort of tricky to answer your question.
I hold the ACE AHFS credential. Earning this credential was natural professional progression for me.
At the time, I was employed by a company that is vendor for corporate wellness. Some of the employees there presented with various clinical conditions. I took advantage of that opportunity to accumulate the necessary hours working with these populations so that I might earn the clinical credentials in our industry. In order to qualify for the AHFS you must have documented evidence that you have a minimum of 300 hours “developing and implementing fitness programs for individuals with special needs or who are at risk or have received medical treatment for a disease or medical condition and have been cleared by their physician for participation in exercise and physical activity.”
Have said the above, if you are already doing that this makes you already very marketable and earning the credential only enhances it.
Hope this helps.
Hi Robin. As I’m sure you have probably found out by now, the usefulness or utility of any certification in getting a job is really dependent on the particular employer involved. It never ceases to amaze me at just how many certifications are out there, how many specialty and sub-specialty certifications exists, and which ones a particular employer recognizes or not. I think that it’s great that we have these specialty certs, but as you correctly recognize here, with so many to choose from, and with limited amounts of money and time to spend of them, we as trainers have some difficult decisions to make.
In my opinion, obtaining solid credentials, tons of experience in your chosen field, doing a lot of reading and research in your area, and becoming the best trainer that you can be will ultimately trump someone who may have the “best” certification, but very little to offer in the way of skill, knowledge and ability. Getting a certification – no matter what certification – is only the beginning of our journey as trainers!
Good luck with your decision and career choices!
Thank you for your input. I agree. I recently decided to expand my ACE certification from training “Apparently Healthy Adults” to those who are at risk for or currently suffer from various chronic health conditions (e.g, Type II Diabetes, Hypertension, Cardiovascular Disease, Dyslipidemia, Pulmonary, and Musculoskeletal Conditions-Post-Rehab.) The AH&FS course has given me the opportunity to understand more about the Central Nervous System, Chemical and Hormonal Responses, Body mechanics and their relationship to exercise. It has been a great learning experience. I will be taking my AH&FS Exam this month.
Thanks again for your response.
There is no doubt that it will help in your interview questions. Employers are always impressed when you are really specific on details when it comes to why you are training someone a certain way. I know my clients over the years were always grateful that I was not another meathead trainer. Certifications and increasing your knowledge really helps our industry to the average person.