Are you looking for a way to take your personal training career to a new level?
If so, perhaps you’ve considered becoming a certified strength and conditioning specialist. A career in this field can be challenging and rewarding. Like personal training, it requires commitment, dedication, and hard work. It can also require additional education, certification, and training.
Keep reading for five tips on your path to becoming a certified strength and conditioning specialist.
Tip 1 – Read Up and Attend Seminars
Reading books from respected authors and attending educational seminars are two great ways to learn more about the craft and help you determine that this is definitely a career you want to pursue.
The National Strength and Conditioning Association maintains a helpful event page — keep an eye on their listings.
As for books, opt for material like the Science and Practice of Strength Training, Second Edition by Vladimir Zatsiorsky and William Kraemer or Practical Programming for Strength Training, 3rd Edition by Mark Rippetoe and Andy Baker.
Tip 2 – Volunteer Your Time with a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist
Signing up to volunteer or intern with a strength and conditioning specialist is a smart way to get closer to your career goals. Approach a trainer that you respect and see what types of volunteer assistance they might need. Reach out to local colleges to ask about internship programs.
Sure, you might have to do some “grunt work,” and it’s likely you won’t be paid for your time. However, the experience, networking, and professional references you can gain can be invaluable.
Tip 3 – Hire a Specialist to Train You
All the reading in the world can only do so much to prepare you for a career. Hands-on training is always helpful.
By training under a respected professional, you will learn teaching techniques while broadening your knowledge base. Plus, just like volunteering, this will also give you a great networking opportunity.
Tip 4 – Network, Network, Network
It’s already come up twice, so you know it must be important. After all — they say it’s who you know!
Get your name out there. Train with and volunteer for other conditioning specialists. Attend seminars and shake hands. Treat everyone you meet well — they might be a future client. Get out of your comfort zone; it will pay off!
Tip 5 – Pursue Higher Education and Get Certified
Depending on the type of training you plan to do, you may need to pursue higher education. Many conditioning specialists have a Bachelors — if not a Masters — especially if they plan to work at the high school or college level.
You’ll also need to get certified to gain credibility and start a career as a strength and conditioning specialist. The right certification stands out not only to clients but also to employers. Talk to your coaches, trainers, and teachers about pursuing professional certification.
Learn More About Your Options for Growing Your Personal Training Career
In addition to becoming a certified strength and conditioning specialist, there are other training and certification programs to explore.
The fields of conditioning, strength training, self-defense, and agility are growing. Now is the perfect time to learn more about your options and grow your career as a respected professional in the health and fitness field!