Buyer Beware: Online Personal Training ‘Certificates’

Buyer Beware: Online Personal Training ‘Certificates’

The Personal Training industry continues to grow, with personal trainers increasing by 44% between 2001 and 2011.  As more and more fitness fanatics opt to make a career out of their passion, businesses providing Personal Training Qualifications are also on the rise.

Unfortunately, the quest for success has come at a price for many students who have opted for the ‘cost-effective online qualifications’ provided by companies looking to cash in on the fitness professional boom.

One woman decided to become a fitness professional and after searching online, became a ‘certified trainer’ after taking an online test costing £240.  The organisation however was not accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies, meaning her so-called qualification meant little more than a piece of paper.  She is now working as a freelancer, as major gyms and leisure centres won’t recognise these cowboy credentials. In order to achieve her career as a fitness professional, she is now studying with a reputable course provider, however will have spent 25% more than she should by the time she qualifies.

Reputable certifying agencies are now pushing for more regulation due to the worry that personal trainers with little experience will dilute the reputation of trainers on the whole.

We say buyer beware. All personal trainers are not created equal.

There is no way that someone can aquire the proper training and experience without working with a qualified teacher in a setting with real clients. A bachelor’s degree and intensive study should be, we think, minimum requirements. Unsupervised online tests for certification are not only money down the drain, but could prove to be dangerous when it comes to working with real clients. Would you hire someone to work with your body if all that qualifies them is a 50 minute knowledge test?

With the increase in bogus businesses looking to make a quick buck, clients and prospects have in turn become smarter shoppers.  Clients are now spending time researching the personal trainers they are considering, and having the savvy to ask about their level of education and certification before parting with their cash. Working with a Personal Trainer is an investment, so it’s only sensible to enquire about the certification board, the number of hours of study, the numbers of hours working with real people, and successful client histories.

In the end, it’s a matter of personal safety. As much as the right, properly trained professional can improve your condition, an inexperienced and unqualified trainer is at best no help, and at worst can cause injury.

If you’re considering a career in the world of fitness, do your homework.  A professional Personal Training course provider will be industry recongised and qualify you for REPS accreditation (Register of Exercise Professionals). Course tutors will cover not only fitness knowledge, but practical study, and will hold professional qualifications of their own.

If something looks too good to be true, you can bet your dumbells it will be.  Don’t fall for the cheap and cheerful fast-track options.  As you’ll tell your clients, getting where you want to be takes time, and the help of real expertise.

There’s a sucker born every minute; don’t let it be you.

Speak to the Focus Team about getting started on your professional fitness qualification with an industry leading, recognised course provider!

Focus Training
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