Personal Trainers: Stay Up-to-Date With Online CECs
When it’s time to renew your personal training and/or group fitness certification, I think we can all admit that it could be somewhat simpler. But that just isn’t the case, and unless you have a lot of time to spend on sifting through all the ins and outs, the re-certification process can be time-consuming and confusing. So let’s break it down and try to simplify.
Online “continuing education units” (CEU) can be obtained through several bodies, such as the National Association of Sports Medicine (NASM) and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA).
One CEU is ten hours of participation in an education program.
Several years ago, we had to attend conferences and classes to as well to accomplish the same goal. I still believe that is a great way to keep up with industry innovations and news, however, online CEUs are becoming the norm now, for maintaining certifications. Pretty much all the major certifying agencies have online CEU courses, so you really don’t have to leave the comfort of your laptop to stay current.
How Much Does it Cost?
Based on a summary review of the available course sites shown below, the price for one CEU ranges from $150 to $250. NASM and ACE require 2.0 CEUs every two years, which will set you back between $300 and $500.
NASM claims to have a re-certification for life option, but you still have to pay for the 2.0 CEUs every two years, as well as your CPR certificate which is around $12-17.
NASM does waive the application fee for life and provides some discounts for courses.
All CEU Requirements Are Not Equal
CEU requirements and values are not the same.
NASM’s 2.0 CEUs or 20 hour requirement is more than AFAA’s 15 hours of education or 1.5 CEUs.
Consequently, a course that offers .10 CEU’s for NASM will offer 1 CEU for AFAA.
It’s confusing in that 15 of these courses will satisfy the AFAA requirement, while 20 will satisfy the NASM requirement. So, you have to calculate how many CEUs you’re really getting for the intended re-certification and that can often be tricky.
Check That Your CEU is Accepted
Be sure that the online CEU you purchase is accepted by your agency. According to their website, NASM does not accept CEUs from Continuing Education although they can be petitioned, which involves a fee.
Even if your agency accepts a course from any of the below sites, they may not accept all the course offerings. So be very careful when reviewing which courses will count for your agency’s re-certification and how many credits it offers.
Some agencies also place more value on specific courses than others.
Sites Offering Online CEU Courses
Continuing Education ACE, ACSM, NSCA
ACE Fitness ACE, ACSM, NASM, NSCA, NFPT
Health & Fitness Continuing Education ACSM, NSCA, NASM, ISSA, AFAA
NESTA NESTA, NASM, NSCA
In addition to online courses, Exercise ETC., Inc. offers webinars for CEU credit and is accepted by almost all agencies.
So there you have it, a brief synopsis to help you continue with your education. It’s time to open the pocketbook to stay current, but your clients will thank you in the end!
About the Author
Benita Perkins is a widely acclaimed health and wellness branding expert focusing on the fitness needs of women and the special demands they must overcome to step into a lifetime of healthy living through fun, interactive lifestyle events. Her company, Bennie Girl Health & Wellness Branding & Events, works with businesses and organizations to associate their brands and products with a healthy lifestyle, by identifying opportune events to participate in and activities that will best define and communicate the organization’s mission.