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  1. #1
    Registered User openpalm's Avatar
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    Exercise Science major looking to become a personal trainer

    So the title is self-explanatory. I really want to hear from other professionals how they started out, where they are now, and get some advice from the pro's.
    I'm not even certified yet, but I've created workout regimes for friends and have watched some people get some pretty impressive results, or atleast get the results they were looking for. Being an exercise science major, I'm getting a feel for proper biomechanics, maximal or submaximal training, conditioning, the works.

    Advice? Encouragement? Constructive criticism? Lay it on me ladies and gents!
    " Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead." Follow your true self, your true path, and you will never be dissatisfied. You will accomplish everything.
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  2. #2
    Registered User BrooklynFit's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by openpalm View Post
    So the title is self-explanatory. I really want to hear from other professionals how they started out, where they are now, and get some advice from the pro's.
    I'm not even certified yet, but I've created workout regimes for friends and have watched some people get some pretty impressive results, or atleast get the results they were looking for. Being an exercise science major, I'm getting a feel for proper biomechanics, maximal or submaximal training, conditioning, the works.

    Advice? Encouragement? Constructive criticism? Lay it on me ladies and gents!
    I have my Associates in Exercise Science and working towards my BS in Physical Education - also ACE certified.

    From my experience, I would say to always remain a step ahead of the competition by reading books, paying attention in class, knowing your stuff in exercise physiology and bio mechanics, DEFINITELY have a good understanding in nutrition. This field has a lot of trainers, and few doors for growth/excellent opportunities, so always work on your craft - it's all about experience, applying what you know, and being all about your BUSINESS. Be sure to take advantage of whatever your exercise science program offers, such as joining the club (if they have one), health fairs, etc...stuff like that will not only look good on your resume, but hold valuable application.

    I'm far from a pro myself, but that's my advice to you. It would help if you told us where exactly would you like to take this, i.e. - opening your own business, being an athletic trainer, etc....
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  3. #3
    Registered User openpalm's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BrooklynFit View Post
    I have my Associates in Exercise Science and working towards my BS in Physical Education - also ACE certified.

    From my experience, I would say to always remain a step ahead of the competition by reading books, paying attention in class, knowing your stuff in exercise physiology and bio mechanics, DEFINITELY have a good understanding in nutrition. This field has a lot of trainers, and few doors for growth/excellent opportunities, so always work on your craft - it's all about experience, applying what you know, and being all about your BUSINESS. Be sure to take advantage of whatever your exercise science program offers, such as joining the club (if they have one), health fairs, etc...stuff like that will not only look good on your resume, but hold valuable application.

    I'm far from a pro myself, but that's my advice to you. It would help if you told us where exactly would you like to take this, i.e. - opening your own business, being an athletic trainer, etc....
    I want to be a fitness instructor/personal trainer. So for me that entails first working for your typical, big-wig gym (LA Fitness for example), and eventually owning my own studio. I have been seriously considering adding a minor in nutrition to my schooling, but it's all about what I can handle.
    " Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead." Follow your true self, your true path, and you will never be dissatisfied. You will accomplish everything.
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  4. #4
    Paler than Chalk GuinnessStrong's Avatar
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    I had started my career at an LA Fitness selling training packages and not doing anything more than "free consultation" training sessions. It allowed me to get around people in the industry, see what works, and learn a lot about the inner workings of training. Since then I've progressed to running my own boot camp program and training regularly at a gym. It's been five years since I first began training and I'm still building up to a good level of income and experience. In my experience, people who think personal training is glamorous or is a get-rich-quick industry are the one's who get discouraged and drop out of it. If you want, get the certification that your potential employer wants. Call around to gyms and find out what they're looking for. Most want ACSM, NSCA, or NASM (not in any particular order) but it depends on your region of the States.

    Employers had never asked me about my undergraduate education other than if I had one. I never got into any conversations about what I learned getting my degree or how it applies to the field. It does get your foot in the door but don't expect that alone to get you the job. Additionally, I'd replace the nutrition minor with participating in a club sport, organization, or getting some internship experience under my belt. I wholeheartedly agree with what BrooklynFit has had to say about that. Experience is what gets people jobs and makes good trainers.

    The nutrition minor won't get you any more than personal knowledge. Make sure your program is supported by the ADA if you do go for it. You can't really (ethically) give out advanced advice unless you have an RD down the road. I don't know if that goes for everywhere but most states require some kind of additional license for that, and I know people who have been fired and/or sued for over-stepping their bounds in that realm.
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    Originally Posted by openpalm View Post
    So the title is self-explanatory. I really want to hear from other professionals how they started out, where they are now, and get some advice from the pro's.
    I'm not even certified yet, but I've created workout regimes for friends and have watched some people get some pretty impressive results, or atleast get the results they were looking for. Being an exercise science major, I'm getting a feel for proper biomechanics, maximal or submaximal training, conditioning, the works.

    Advice? Encouragement? Constructive criticism? Lay it on me ladies and gents!
    My advice would be to get some books on starting a small business. Learn about branding and marketing yourself. Work on selling your knowledge and the results you can deliver. Remember, never do anything for free. Always get something in return for your advice. If you help somebody, ask them to refer clients, or to sign-on. Never feel guilty assigning a cash value to what worked so hard in school to achieve. Keep a positive attitude and do your best.
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  6. #6
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    Let me see if I can help you

    1. there are many cert organizations out there. Most are very good. Think about what niche of fitness you may want to focus on and go for that one. Since your in college you will probably be well prepared to take and pass the ACSM test. its a good cert and most other organizations use their guidelines. the downside is that its very expensive. ACSM is also very medically -based. Another cert to consider is the NSCA.

    2. If your college has a health club see if you can work there. you'll gain valuable insights and youll make some money also - whcih can help lower your tuition cost.


    3. Think beyond getting certified. since you are in college now, you will be writing papers. That is all material that can help get you noticed by others. Before you chose a paper to write for class, think about how you can recycle that 5 years from now. the papers you write today can become magazine articles or reference material for magazine articles you write.

    5. Register your name as a domain (www. your name.com). Eventually you will want a website. my website has a dash between my first/last names because I waited too long

    6. I write a monthly free email newsletters for personal trainers. if you email me via my website (joe-cannon.com) I will be happy to add you to that list.

    7. In college take a nutrition class. your clients will ask you nutrition info and its my experience many trainers dont know much about it. Also see if you can take a marketing class as well.

    I hope this helps!
    Joe Cannon, MS
    Joe-Cannon.com
    SupplementClarity.com
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  7. #7
    Registered User BrooklynFit's Avatar
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    Just to add onto the good advice already given:

    whether you take a minor in nutrition or not, it's up to you - personally, I wouldn't do it. As a trainer, based on our scope of practice, we can only offer so much in nutritional advice to clients (nothing too specific). So unless you plan to apply a nutrition degree to a career as a dietitian or something along those lines, I find it unnecessary. I found everything I wanted/needed taking 1 bio course and 1 nutrition course in college. For me it was more than enough info needed to guide clients and supply them with superior knowledge (way more than your average trainer) that'll fuel their training.

    Plus, be sure to network, network, network!
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