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  1. #1
    Anti muffin-top bull.dogz's Avatar
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    Smile Personal Trainer Certification NSCA or NASM

    I've been looking into both cert programs and I'm wondering what really is the difference between the two. Is the training the same or do they each train for a specific type of personal training? Maybe one is more geared toward athelets or more towards just body building? Do they both teach you how to work with people with injuries, things like that. Thanks.
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  2. #2
    Registered User mumsie's Avatar
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    Wink I did all the research too.,.,

    I looked into all of them and asked instructors I knew,etc. I went with ACE because they are on more high demand, and it covers everything from exercise physiology, contracts,,,,,way to much to mention. It is one of the hardest tests to take, I am still studying because I am terrified to take the test. But they also cover I think more of you when you are certified, insurance wise,etc. I would definately go with them than the others. I know people in my area, gyms I mean, when they hear your ACE certified, they jump at you faster. Hope that helps!!
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  3. #3
    Misc. Legend Procta's Avatar
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  4. #4
    Registered User Amanda76's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bull.dogz View Post
    I've been looking into both cert programs and I'm wondering what really is the difference between the two. Is the training the same or do they each train for a specific type of personal training? Maybe one is more geared toward athelets or more towards just body building? Do they both teach you how to work with people with injuries, things like that. Thanks.
    From what I understand, both NSCA and NASM cover about the same things. I think where your confusion is coming from is that there are different certifications each organization offers that cover different things--when it comes to NSCA it's the the CPT (Certified Personal Trainer--you'd need to at least have this if you wanted to work in "a gym" as a personal trainer) and the CSCS (Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist--you'd want this if you wanted to do something more sport specific). NASM has something that's the equivilant of the CSCS but I think it's called something else. They offer certs beyond those as well, those are just the ones I think you're thinking of.

    I'm not sure how it works for NASM (as I've only looked into NSCA and ACSM), but to get your CSCS you need to have your bachelors (or at least be really close to getting it). To get your CPT you just need to study for and take the test.

    If you kind of have an idea of where you want to work, you should ask them what THEY look for. ACSM seems to be the most popular around here, but I think that's what the university refers all their kinesiolgy students to. It might be that we have a testing site nearby for that (you have to drive to another town to test for NSCA, last I checked), not necessarily that ACSM is a ton better than any other. I hear more about the reputation of NSCA online (broader scope than "in town") than the others, but I don't suppose that means much either. I know that NSCA, ACSM and NASM all have fantastic reputations.
    Last edited by Amanda76; 04-04-2008 at 08:55 AM.
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  5. #5
    Team Aggressive dvsness's Avatar
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    There are too many friigin' acronyms in the business.

    I'm looking into ISSA, AFAA and NFPT currently.
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  6. #6
    O_o \m/ Keltron's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bull.dogz View Post
    I've been looking into both cert programs and I'm wondering what really is the difference between the two. Is the training the same or do they each train for a specific type of personal training? Maybe one is more geared toward athelets or more towards just body building? Do they both teach you how to work with people with injuries, things like that. Thanks.
    Sorry, I know men aren't really supposed to post here but I felt like making a recomendation. While you're studying for NSCA or NASM, I highly suggest getting a NESTA cert just to get you "certed" for the time being. It's a quickly and easily attainable certification. It's a weekend workshop with an exam at the end of the second day.

    All you really have to do is pay attention and maybe take a few notes here and there and you'll do fine on the test. But don't let it's easy attainability fool you, it's an awesome cert. I learned a lot. Not only were the hands on portions fun and exciting but the instructors made the lecture portions fun and interesting.

    I believe the website is nestacertified.com but just google it. I don't know where in california you're located but there's one in northern california coming up in a few days so I'd hurry and sign up because they tend to fill up fast.
    I do snatch pulls in the gym so I can do snatch pulls in the bars. And I ALWAYS use a hook grip.


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  7. #7
    O_o \m/ Keltron's Avatar
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    Oh, one more thing. If you do go w/NASM, I think going for the cert that specializes in corrective exercises would be great if you anticipate your clientele to be your "average american" as opposed to athletes or bodybuilders.

    Most average americans have muscle imbalances up the ying and out the yang and from my experience, pointing out their problems and offering to fix them is a great selling tool. When you show them that you know where 90% of their discomfort and pain comes form and that you know how to correct it, they have a new found respect for you. They look at you like a professional and not just some gym rat who's been in shape all his/her life.
    I do snatch pulls in the gym so I can do snatch pulls in the bars. And I ALWAYS use a hook grip.


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  8. #8
    Anti muffin-top bull.dogz's Avatar
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    Smile

    Thanks for the info everyone!
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  9. #9
    Yesterday Don't Mean Shit knarf1's Avatar
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    Hi..

    Can someone post a list of all the actual certification options out there? I'm a system admin, certifications are my selling point.. I'm jumping out of this and into something health related. I figured get all my Personal Training certs just make sure the are specialized and compliment each other. In a few years go to school for a degree in physical therapy or whatever..

    I just wanted to know what all the credited/credible options are? Does it matter by region? I'm in the south east (Miami, FL)..
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  10. #10
    Anti muffin-top bull.dogz's Avatar
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    I think some of the top one's (or most popular) are:

    NASM
    ACSM
    NSCA
    ISSA
    ACE

    A quick google will bring them all up.
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  11. #11
    Yesterday Don't Mean Shit knarf1's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bull.dogz View Post
    I think some of the top one's (or most popular) are:

    NASM
    ACSM
    NSCA
    ISSA
    ACE

    A quick google will bring them all up.
    But Google has a corrupt ranking system..and every one of those websites is trying to lure me in to their program.. In fact ACE has the nicest site, but seems to be the Honda of these types of certs..

    That's a beautiful Frenchie you got, he or she? I love em in all black.. I have a bull terrier and a presa canario..

    thanks!
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  12. #12
    Misc Nihilist forcefedfreak's Avatar
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    I have NESTA and I am happy with it. It's not the end all be all but it is definitely enough to get your feat wet. I think I am going to do the ISSA as well.
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  13. #13
    Anti muffin-top bull.dogz's Avatar
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    My frenchie's a she.

    Your best bet is to call around to your local gyms and find out what they accept. They'll tell you their top picks.
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  14. #14
    Registered User ef_165's Avatar
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    NASM vs. NSCA

    One trainer I spoke with is a NASM-CPT but has also studied NSCA materials. Her opinion was that NASM-CPT was strong in giving you the skills to set up training programs. She felt it was more applicable and also liked that there were some opportunities for further training. NSCA she felt went into more detail on physiology and underlying science and less on pragmatic issues like program design. She felt both were excellent but chose NASM for certification and studied NSCA independently for extra knowledge. It's hard to see going wrong with either!
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  15. #15
    Anti muffin-top bull.dogz's Avatar
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    The NSCA and ASCM are both definately one's I want to go for after the NASM. Thanks for the input.
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  16. #16
    Misc. Legend Procta's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bull.dogz View Post
    The NSCA and ASCM are both definately one's I want to go for after the NASM. Thanks for the input.
    Are you signed up for any classes yet ?
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  17. #17
    Anti muffin-top bull.dogz's Avatar
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    I just received my textbook and study guide this week.
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  18. #18
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    NSCA!!! I find NASM great if you plan on training novices but I think NSCA is better for sports-specific type training. I am biased since my school's human performance program models the NSCA protocol. Can't go wrong with NASM though.
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    Nasm

    bull.dogz- i just signed up for NASM too...Looking forward to digging in. I'm going to do CSCS too, but since they're releasing a new text in June, it seemed doing NASM first would be smart. I think NASM for CPT and NSCA for CSCS will complement each other and cover a lot of ground.
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    Anti muffin-top bull.dogz's Avatar
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    Red face

    Originally Posted by ef_165 View Post
    bull.dogz- i just signed up for NASM too...Looking forward to digging in. I'm going to do CSCS too, but since they're releasing a new text in June, it seemed doing NASM first would be smart. I think NASM for CPT and NSCA for CSCS will complement each other and cover a lot of ground.
    Too cool! I would love to go for the CSCS but I don't have a degree.
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    How goes?

    Originally Posted by bull.dogz View Post
    Too cool! I would love to go for the CSCS but I don't have a degree.
    That can be fixed! The cool thing is that the NASM training is really very good and I suspect you can do a lot with it. If at some point you decide you want to know more, you'll be motivated to go after the degree! Or, you can add the NASM PES or the CES (is that the name). The more I learn, the more I think NASM's approach is generally good- whether for a sedentary person or for an athlete.

    How's your studying going?
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    Originally Posted by bull.dogz View Post
    I've been looking into both cert programs and I'm wondering what really is the difference between the two. Is the training the same or do they each train for a specific type of personal training? Maybe one is more geared toward athelets or more towards just body building? Do they both teach you how to work with people with injuries, things like that. Thanks.
    My husband has NASM and im going to get mine pretty soon. It really was for both. He now works with athletes and everyday people.
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    Studying is going pretty good. I got through the first 5 chapters than went back and reread them. They made more sense the second time around.
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    Originally Posted by bull.dogz View Post
    Studying is going pretty good. I got through the first 5 chapters than went back and reread them. They made more sense the second time around.
    ACE is a joke. Not well respected at all. Its the easiest exam as well. A decent college degree is enough to pass ACE. NCSA is the real deal. Many Physical Therapists say its even more rigorous than their programs. NASM and ACSM are also highly respected.
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    Originally Posted by djinnx View Post
    ACE is a joke. Not well respected at all. Its the easiest exam as well. A decent college degree is enough to pass ACE. NCSA is the real deal. Many Physical Therapists say its even more rigorous than their programs. NASM and ACSM are also highly respected.
    ACE... lol how true, Im studying to get certified currently, however I am looking into NCSA's CSCS or NASM's PES. I have not looked into the PES yet, but I assume its something similar to the CSCS.
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    In a personal training fitness certification program, we can learn important skills like startup, maintenance and expansion of a personal training business, various exercise programming and exercise science, healthy eating habits and diet maintenance, common health condition management, pathology, etc. Also can earn the opportunity to work in various healthcare facilities.
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    Originally Posted by mumsie View Post
    I looked into all of them and asked instructors I knew,etc. I went with ACE because they are on more high demand, and it covers everything from exercise physiology, contracts,,,,,way to much to mention. It is one of the hardest tests to take, I am still studying because I am terrified to take the test. But they also cover I think more of you when you are certified, insurance wise,etc. I would definately go with them than the others. I know people in my area, gyms I mean, when they hear your ACE certified, they jump at you faster. Hope that helps!!
    shah ACE on of the hardest exams!? what a ****ing joke.. ACE is on eof the lowest and worst cert. there is!!!!!
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    [QUOTE=bull.dogz;153996781]I think some of the top one's (or most popular) are:

    NASM
    ACSM
    NSCA
    ISSA
    ACE

    ^^those are in the top 9 in the country...i work at 24hr fitness and we only hire people that have the top 9 certifications in the country....and NASM is in the top 3, i personally just purchased there training materials (the personal training one) and i love it. I also am working on ACE and will be going for NCSF after.....my major is kinesiology and nutrition...the more certifications one has the better (depending on your goals in getting them though in the first place), helps you be well rounded as well
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    Smile Smart

    Originally Posted by keltron View Post
    oh, one more thing. If you do go w/nasm, i think going for the cert that specializes in corrective exercises would be great if you anticipate your clientele to be your "average american" as opposed to athletes or bodybuilders.

    Most average americans have muscle imbalances up the ying and out the yang and from my experience, pointing out their problems and offering to fix them is a great selling tool. When you show them that you know where 90% of their discomfort and pain comes form and that you know how to correct it, they have a new found respect for you. They look at you like a professional and not just some gym rat who's been in shape all his/her life.
    i think you hit the nail right on the head!
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    I know that this post is quite old but if anybody else is following it I have a great resource on NASM vs NSCA on my website. I compare multiple other certifications as well. Hope this helps somebody out!
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