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  1. #1
    Registered User kickyoasschick's Avatar
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    Best Colleges for Exercise Science

    Hey you fitness buffs! I am currently a 17 yr old student looking to attend college to get a degree in Exercise Science to be a personal trainer. Any suggestions for which colleges have the best program?? Which colleges have you attended and been successful with? Also, which personal training certification is the most useful when looking for a decent gym job right out of college? Thank you for your feedback : )
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    I would not say there is any single best Exercise Science program. Whether you are going to enjoy going to the school is dependent on whether you like the facilities, the surrounding area, and the overall atmosphere.

    When considering the best fit program for you, take a look at the faculty biographies. If you have any idea of what type of research you might be interested in or what part of the field you are interested in, you can try to find faculty that match these interests. For example, if you are interested in cardiac rehabilitation, you might apply to programs where the faculty members have had a great deal of experience in the cardiac rehabilitation and emphasize this in their program. Alternatively, if you are interested in strength and conditioning, you might look for faculty members who have been S&C coaches and do research in athletics.

    Even though you might not even do research as an undergraduate, you will likely learn more and be more involved if your professors have similar interests. The only argument to this is you might not gain as much exposure to topics that you might have been interested in if they are not emphasized. However, I can say I could have done without my program having an overemphasis on cardiac rehabilitation and aerobic performance.
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    Originally Posted by kickyoasschick View Post
    Hey you fitness buffs! I am currently a 17 yr old student looking to attend college to get a degree in Exercise Science to be a personal trainer. Any suggestions for which colleges have the best program?? Which colleges have you attended and been successful with? Also, which personal training certification is the most useful when looking for a decent gym job right out of college? Thank you for your feedback : )
    I interview trainers from many different backgrounds, educations and specialties to create this resource for people like you.

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    As far as the "best schools" exercise science is probably never going to be something a school is known for.... what you get out of school is more about what you put in.
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  4. #4
    Registered User kickyoasschick's Avatar
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    Thank you! Great suggestions from both of you and the link was fantastic! I will look into this..
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    ideally a good physiology degree may serve you better. While taking some main Ex science classes for gen ed reqs and all that.

    This will allow the same options in a fitness career as well as opening nursing, physical therapy, dietetics, and other similar medical professions offered by many schools as post bachelor work.

    Exercise science is great, I learned tons of info getting mine. BUT if your not going to use it for research, fitness career, or getting a masters, it leaves you semi limited in the end really.
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    My old university was known for its Exercise Biology major and basically anything science related. It's ALL THE WAY ACROSS THE COUNTRY FOR YOU THOUGH LOL And out-of-state fees are extremely expensive >.< But if you want, check out www.ucdavis.edu
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  7. #7
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    An exercise science degree is basically an exercise physiolgoy/biology or even a physical education degree. Its left to the school to come up with a name but overall there all generally the same.

    Im currently at Texas State for exercise science and absolutely love it. As long as the school has a good persona then it will most likely have a good program so find one that is affordable and you like. Also they might have more specialized degrees. Our exercise science program has multiple different possible paths such as specializing in coaching, general exercise science, health and fitness managment, cardiac rehab, etc.

    As for certifications look into NSCA, ACSM, and NASM for personal training as they are the "golden standards."

    Good luck and you'll really love it!
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  8. #8
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    I too went to UC Davis and agree the Ex. Bio major is one of the good ones.
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  9. #9
    Registered User BSCSCS's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ericzimmerman34 View Post
    An exercise science degree is basically an exercise physiolgoy/biology or even a physical education degree. Its left to the school to come up with a name but overall there all generally the same.

    Im currently at Texas State for exercise science and absolutely love it. As long as the school has a good persona then it will most likely have a good program so find one that is affordable and you like. Also they might have more specialized degrees. Our exercise science program has multiple different possible paths such as specializing in coaching, general exercise science, health and fitness managment, cardiac rehab, etc.

    As for certifications look into NSCA, ACSM, and NASM for personal training as they are the "golden standards."

    Good luck and you'll really love it!
    I think you mean Southwest Texas State bro. And I agree it is the best school in Texas.
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  10. #10
    Strength Coach tovlakas's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BSCSCS View Post
    I think you mean Southwest Texas State bro. And I agree it is the best school in Texas.
    you seriously think he got the name of his own school wrong?
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  11. #11
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    Originally Posted by kickyoasschick View Post
    Hey you fitness buffs! I am currently a 17 yr old student looking to attend college to get a degree in Exercise Science to be a personal trainer. Any suggestions for which colleges have the best program?? Which colleges have you attended and been successful with? Also, which personal training certification is the most useful when looking for a decent gym job right out of college? Thank you for your feedback : )

    In the Northeast Ithaca(NY) and Northeastern (MA) both have good reputations
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  12. #12
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  13. #13
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    Originally Posted by tovlakas View Post
    you seriously think he got the name of his own school wrong?
    It was SWT when I graduated in 02 and went through a name change the next year. To me it will always be Southwest Texas State University.
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  14. #14
    Registered User SFT's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by BigBstrongman View Post
    ideally a good physiology degree may serve you better. While taking some main Ex science classes for gen ed reqs and all that.

    This will allow the same options in a fitness career as well as opening nursing, physical therapy, dietetics, and other similar medical professions offered by many schools as post bachelor work.

    Exercise science is great, I learned tons of info getting mine. BUT if your not going to use it for research, fitness career, or getting a masters, it leaves you semi limited in the end really.
    My current thoughts lead me to agree with this. If I could start college fresh tomorrow, I would have majored in a science such as physiology, biology, biochemistry, etc. and taken Exercise Science electives necessary for enrollment into graduate programs. Quite a few of the classes that I took could have easily been discarded. There were a few very valuable courses though, especially those regarding exercise lab techniques and learning about writing research papers and such.

    Just something to think about.
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  15. #15
    I didn't hear no bell! Rap_Rocky's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by kickyoasschick View Post
    Hey you fitness buffs! I am currently a 17 yr old student looking to attend college to get a degree in Exercise Science to be a personal trainer. Any suggestions for which colleges have the best program?? Which colleges have you attended and been successful with? Also, which personal training certification is the most useful when looking for a decent gym job right out of college? Thank you for your feedback : )
    I graduated from the Exercise Science/personal training (A.S.) degree program at Kingsborough Community College. It's tough, and it definitely has it's cons, but at the same time, I'm glad I did it and it was a great experience - one thing I cannot deny is that you learn a lot from it in virtually every aspect of Exercise Science and personal training. Unfortunately, I cannot say which one is "the best", simply because I don't know of any others aside from the one I came from. As for which cert - ACE, ISSA, ACSM, NASM, NESTA, or NSCA - pick any one, and pretty much any gym will take you.

    Right now, I'm in the process of chasing my B.S. in Exercise & Physical Education at Brooklyn College. I haven't applied yet, I set up an appointment to speak with an adviser for the moment.
    Last edited by Rap_Rocky; 01-17-2010 at 07:44 PM.
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  16. #16
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    Originally Posted by Fabs23 View Post
    In the Northeast Ithaca(NY) and Northeastern (MA) both have good reputations
    UConn had the #1 ranked Kinesiology dept in 2008 and Dr. Kraemer in the dept is one of the most recognized strength researchers in the world. Much, much cheaper then Northeastern too. Only good thing is Northeastern is in Boston and UConn is in Storrs.
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    Originally Posted by CM82682 View Post
    UConn had the #1 ranked Kinesiology dept in 2008 and Dr. Kraemer in the dept is one of the most recognized strength researchers in the world. Much, much cheaper then Northeastern too. Only good thing is Northeastern is in Boston and UConn is in Storrs.
    Yes, I heard the same thing about UConn @ Storrs. I've heard that Penn State also has a great program if your on the East Coast. Ball State and Nebraska (I think) have really respected programs as well.
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    The study material shouldn't really change from College to College for the simple facts that you're studying sciences. The major difference will be teacher/sports team caliber/cash flow / internationnal opportunities.
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    Originally Posted by TheManofSteel View Post
    Yes, I heard the same thing about UConn @ Storrs. I've heard that Penn State also has a great program if your on the East Coast. Ball State and Nebraska (I think) have really respected programs as well.
    You are correct. The three top kinesiology programs were UConn, Penn State and Arizona State. I'd throw more names out there but I dont remember the rest of the list. At the end of the day though most schools will give you about the same education. The reason these schools are considered as highly as they are is because of their masters and PhD programs, not their undergrad programs.
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    Registered User stevo11's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by TheManofSteel View Post
    Yes, I heard the same thing about UConn @ Storrs. I've heard that Penn State also has a great program if your on the East Coast. Ball State and Nebraska (I think) have really respected programs as well.
    I went to Penn State and can vouch for this (a lot of friends in the major). The athletics department being so well respected helps a lot since the Kines majors get to work with the athletes quite a bit (training, etc).
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    Originally Posted by Fabs23 View Post
    In the Northeast Ithaca(NY) and Northeastern (MA) both have good reputations
    Booya Ithaca
    Meet PRs 430/285/525, Gym 440/295/550

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    **** Son of Asgard **** TheManofSteel's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by IronAbrams View Post
    Booya Ithaca
    Almost went there, they didn't give me any $$$ so I opted to go elsewhere. It was only one of two undergrads I applied to.
    B.S. in Health & Exercise Science
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    "There's US & there's THEM; always has been & always will be" - B.F., My Mentor
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    Guess I'll go for 30k;I ROI 5k+
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    I graduated from Virginia Tech in May of '09 with a B.S. in Human Nutrition, Foods and Exercise (hnfe.vt.edu). I can speak from experience that VT is a great place to go if you are looking for such a program.

    There are the four options HNFE provides. What you are looking for would be Exercise and Health Promotion, which is what my concentration was as well.

    VT is a research institution, so all of the professors on staff must log research hours during their time there. All of them have published papers on their specific areas of research. One is on the advisory board for Nike's Sports Science Institute. EHP options also have a class taught by the Athletic Trainers for all the schools teams. There is a 2 section Exercise Physiology class that would fit your goals perfectly. As a gradute, I obviously very highly recommend checking out VT. But if money is of any concern, it is likely you'd find cheaper options in state, and closer to home.
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