I want to be taken seriously as a Personal Trainer. I’ve obtained my certification, but I want to continue my education so I can be a better trainer especially for those clients that are just starting their fitness journey and those that have had injuries or trying to lose a lot of weight. I am wondering what experienced trainers consider the best education a four year degree or numerous certifications.
If it was down to only those two options, I would say the Bachelor’s degree. However, experience is the greatest education a trainer can obtain. I’m not saying you have to “give it time”; you can learn from those who already have. Ever had an experienced trainer train you? The 1st time I did, it was quite a humbling few weeks for me. It can really enhance your education quickly and give you some insight as to how an experienced trainer got that way. Still, if a degree is within your grasp, go for it. Its all just additional ways to gain experience, and you can never learn TOO much.
Years ago I would say a bachelor’s degree, but given this economic high unemployment rate environment…I know many degree holders out of work. Along with that…most health clubs will require a CPT certification to gain employment regardless of a bachelor’s degree.
Any chance/opportunity of higher education is key to any successful career.
Wishing You Great Success!
I agree that a degree can be a real asset but would encourage you to look at the curriculum of the specific program you may be considering to make sure you are getting the courses that will be most beneficial to you as each degree program can be different. I have a degree in Exercise Science and got certified thru ACSM as those were the standards my program taught from so I had the manuals etc. Although you are already certified, some schools include the certification exam (for various certifications like NSCA – CSCS or ACSM-HFS) as part of their curriculum. Overall a degree will provide a wide scope of career and educational options which you don’t necessarily get from a single certification.
With the above said, I also think a variety of certifications (as time goes on) is helpful just because trends change, research changes and we have to keep learning to meet the needs of clients and the industry.
The bottom line is we are in a field in which we have to be life long learners to be effective and taken seriously! Best of luck! Great question to be considering!
A college degree will give you a more in-depth and broader knowledge than just any certification. It costs more and it takes longer to earn than just a certification, but you will have a better understanding of the material you will be asked to take a test on during a certification. On the other hand, a certification is more or less specific to the area and the type of training style you are looking to work in. But to become a better trainer, you will need to expose yourself to as many clients and scenarios as you can. This is something that happens with time and persistence in learning the ropes around personal training and other fitness instruction.
Good luck on your journey!