Best courses for Personal trainer

15 posts in this topic

Hi All,

 

I realise this has been asked heaps in the past, but I would like some up to date thoughts on the best personal trainer courses. I would really like to specialise in powerlifting/strength coaching. I work full time with a family so would have to do night classes or distance learning.

Am in Christchurch.

Thanks all

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In Christchurch you're not exactly spoilt for choice by small qualification outfits that will do Personal Training but this is a good thing in my opinion.

 

I studied at SIT and it was adequate for a basic broad knowledge, it runs from March-November just doing basically school hours with a few early finishes, and goes much more in depth than any Online 8 week course would obviously. There was a lot of hands on experience as well, plus the zero fees makes it awesome, you only pay for the trips away and your course books etc which when I did it was around $1100-$1200 at the beginning of the year.

I have some friends who went through CPIT which also sounded okay, it's just a 6 month course but still better than an online one, bit more expensive but can be worthwile.

NZIS sounds okay as well, and there is also another couple places but their names allude me at the moment.

 

To study primarily Strength & Conditioning there is a course called ASCA Strength and Condition Coaching, from Australia and they run every so often in Chch, it's only a couple days work plus some work experience signed off by an already qualified coach, I got Level One but didn't take it further, there's three levels. Otherwise to specialise in S&C you'll need to just learn yourself, read everything you can, and have experience in that field eg your own training background.

 

Bit of background, I studied Personal Training in Christchurch and now am working as a Personal Trainer in London and running an Online Powerlifting Coaching system.

RandySavage and Bee100 like this

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Actually sorry totally disregard my post if you want, I only skim read your post and just clicked that you work full time etc.

 

Will likely have to go with online course in that case, or else I believe CPIT and SIT do offer part time study for this kind of thing.

You should still be able to do the ASCA course though as it's only a weekend that you have to commit to and then can do the practical hours outside of that.

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If you're just gonna do a cert then IMO there is no best one.. just do the fastest and/or whatever suits your schedule. A pt cert is a cereal box qualification these days unless you do a degree so a lot of what you'll need will be self taught anyway. Just my 2c...

Realtalk, gazza and RandySavage like this

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Thanks all for your input. 

Trainlikeafreak - I agree with your point of view. Feel I would do better being an apprentice and learning in the job. Just getting a pt cert for insurance and reps.

now...to find someone to help me with that ?

Beastbuilder - thanks for your feedback also. I have already looked into the ASCA course 

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There are a few answers to this, alot will depend on what you want to achieve and who you want to work with/which market you wish to service.

 

For example a top body builder working in a body building gym can make a good living working with Bodybuilder and Fat Loss Clients whilst not having to learn the latest ACL recovery techniques. Whilst the "Industry" might frown at their lack of qualifications, they are just hitting their market and using their knowledge base to make an income.

 

If you are looking to get into rehab and sports specific training or working with special populations then a qualification is more essential so you prescribe the correct programming and dont harm your client!

 

PT wise, Personality also comes into play, if you are an outgoing person and can easily converse with people, getting clients is alot easier. If you are the strong silent type, even if you know training and programming inside out, getting clients and imparting your knowledge onto them will be more difficult.

 

Qualification wise, if you have years of practical lifting experiences perhaps in Power Lifting, Oly Lifting or just have tight technique and have been taught well as a Body builder, some of the short or block courses will help with the theory and basic principles of exercise and touch on periodisation, small business management, marketing etc.

 

Richard Dryden (Former NZ Olympic Lifting Coach) was like this, he was a great observer of human movement and was coaching the NZ team without a paper qualification behind his name, he went and got these later on in his career.

 

Another thing to consider is whether you want to be part or full time. If you want PT'ing to be your sole source of income it is bloody hard work and takes a massive amount of effort in marketing, retaining and councilling clients and following up payments , diets etc. It can really suck the life out of you if you dont qualify your clients carefully!

Also, People tend to forget, you can be the best exercise coach in the business and still be broke unless you put equal effort into the business side of things, an old quote: Your pile of Books on Small Running a small business should be as high or higher than your pile on exercise.

 

I agree with Jordan in that A Sports Science Degree (if time isnt a barrier) is the gold standard is you want to coach athletes at a high level and/or get into sports research etc however there are always exceptions as their are some excellent course providers out there who can give you all the tools to do this as a profession as they focus mainly on Personal Training and small business management.

 

Some of the most successful (Financially successful) PT's aren't the most knowledgable PT's but they know marketing, time management and running a business and can spot opportunity at a glance. Whether purists agree with this approach or not these trainers are business people first and trainers second.

 

I think what Jordan was referring about PT certificates being devalued these days is that their are too many PT course providers in the market now and many have questionable content with some requiring no hands on practical assessments which I disagree with. These leads to a poor product and brings the industry standard down.

 

Personally I went through NETFIT whihc I found excellent, this was run by Tina Ball (NZ Oly Lifter) and with PT coaching from Tamara Middlenton-Eschave who I found to have a very in depth knowledge of the industry, At the time I believe she was the only PT to be on a direct Government Referral basis with ACC.

 

NETFIT also bring in Tony Boutagy from Aus for their Strength and Conditioning Module.

 

Motivation plays a big key as well, Those who arent motivated but think doing a course will be the magic bullet will invariably fail in the industry, personally I was really motivated to do the course and pass well as it was an industry change for me ( I HAD TO SUCCEED) and I studied very hard, enjoyed every minute of it and got everything I could out of it, The tools I gained from NETFIT plus heaps of my own study and research allowed me to become the busiest PT they had ever had in the 2 Gyms I worked at.

 

One thing I almost forgot to mention, Just as you mentioned about viewing yourself as an apprentice, thats a good analogy as no matter how hard you study or how much you know going into your qualificiation, there is always more to learn so reading a massive amount of the latest research, going to conventions with like minded people, PAYING for some sessions with other trainers from differnent backgrounds who you would like to learn from, these aspects are all very important to your growth and development. That said not every latest trend or study works out to be correct and many are discounted almost as soon as they are published so my philoposphy was to take on board and assimilate what you agree with and disgard what you dont agree with.

 

Just my 2 Cents.

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Agree with TLAF that most qualifications are very basic. It depends on why you are wanting to study lifting/powerlifting. If you just want access to work as a trainer then do any qualification and start working with (being coached by) a powerlifting or oly lifting or strongman (idk) coach who is known to be a great coach. Learn by being coached by them, experience many different programs, and pick their brains about coaching too. You'll need to do heaps of your own learning and reading around the subject too. But (potentially not for you, but for others who are reading), If you are feeling at a stage in your life where you really want to learn and understand the science behind all things moving and lifting, then I would recommend doing a BSc and taking papers in anatomy, sports science, physiology, kinetics/kinesiology etc, or if you start and really like learning, then something like physiotherapy (and ofc concurrently do strength training yourself, pay a coach to train you to PL/strength train and get experience in it yourself - if you haven't already, read into the subject whilst you learn). Some people might say that's a bit extreme, but I wish I understood just how limited PT qualifications were and how unscientific most PTs and coaches were when I was younger and I would have gone to uni a lot earlier - a solid grounding in science and how to read and understand research is so important to figure out what is bs or possible bs (or not worth bothering with) and what is legit and helpful (and not dangerous/harmful). 

[Edit: Not saying that you have to go to uni to be a great coach, many great lifting coaches with great advice that didn't go to uni, but it's hard to establish who those coaches are, or which parts of what some coaches say is valuable if you have no grounding, especially as the best advice is usually the most unglamourous lol]

 

[Edit Edit... wow shit didnt realise this post was so old]

 

Pseudonym, PETN and tomleegolf like this

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On 2017-6-17 at 9:01 PM, Dinahlady said:

[Edit Edit... wow shit didnt realise this post was so old]

Meh. Someone will benefit from it, even if it's not the OP. :-p

 

Good to see you again, Dinah! How've you been?

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I thought PTs are now called Transformation Specialists :blink:

Pseudonym likes this

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Did you find a online course Bee100???

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No. I decided to go to NZIHF evening course in Christchurch. Am loving it!

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