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Fitness Schools

Fitness isn't just a fad. It's a movement toward a healthier way of living that Americans are embracing more every year. According to the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association (IHRSA), more than 58 million Americans used a health club in 2012.

If you are a career-seeker for whom fitness is a way of life, a career in fitness training might be right for you. A fitness training school could prepare you to become a personal fitness trainer working one on one with clients to help them achieve their fitness goals. If you enjoy working with groups, you could become trained as a specialized fitness instructor, who teaches popular conditioning classes such as Zumba or spinning.

Fitness training specializations

Everywhere there is a gym or other health club, there is at least one fitness trainer working inside (and probably many more). Fitness trainers work with groups, individuals, and sometimes other fitness trainers to ensure that exercises are done safely and properly.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS.gov), fitness trainers tend to specialize in a few areas. A fitness training school might provide you with the skills to become one of the following:

  • Group fitness instructors organize group exercises, selecting the music and choreographing exercise sequences.
  • Specialized fitness instructors teach classes for which there is already a style and sequence of moves, such as yoga and CrossFit.
  • Fitness directors oversee the fitness components of gyms and other health clubs, sometimes performing administrative tasks, such as scheduling classes and training sessions.

Fitness training certification and degrees

Most fitness trainers have a high-school degree before they enter the field, according to the BLS. Beyond that, educational requirements vary depending on the facility, but a certification in fitness training is most common.

Certification programs are offered through a variety of schools and accrediting agencies, such as the American Council on Exercise and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America. Programs are available both online and onsite. Fitness trainers typically first obtain a general certification -- personal trainer or group fitness instructor, for example. Once certified, many fitness trainers pursue additional specialty certifications. These certifications include areas of expertise such as youth fitness, weight management and sports conditioning.

To become certified, students take courses relevant to their areas of study and complete a certification exam. General courses might include nutrition, exercise techniques, fitness training theory and exercise for seniors.

For personal trainers, there is also usually an apprenticeship component. Aspiring personal trainers often work side-by-side with an experienced trainer before taking clients alone.

Fitness training salary and career outlook

The BLS projects that employment opportunities for fitness trainers and instructors will grow 13 percent from 2012 to 2022. Most of these jobs will be in gyms and other health clubs, but businesses may increasingly open onsite facilities.

According to government data, job growth for fitness trainers and aerobics instructors is expected to be highest in the following states:

  • Massachusetts: 29.5 percent
  • Idaho: 26.1 percent
  • Utah: 25.5 percent
  • Florida: 24.7 percent
  • Montana: 23.5 percent

The median national wage for fitness trainers and aerobics instructors in May 2013 was $33,020, while the bottom 10 percent earned up to $21,110, and the top 10 percent earned at least $66,950.

With solid projected job growth, fitness training could be a smart career choice. And given the nature of the profession, there's a good chance that your own personal fitness won't take a backseat to your day job.

Sources:

"58.5 Million Americans Utilize Health Clubs," International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, May 8, 2013, http://www.ihrsa.org/media-center/2013/5/8/585-million-americans-utilize-health-clubs.html

Fitness Trainers and Instructors, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2013, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes399031.htm

Fitness Trainers and Instructors, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, January 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/personal-care-and-service/fitness-trainers-and-instructors.htm

Long-Term Projections, Fitness Trainers and Aerobics Instructors, Projections Central, State Occupational Projections, 2014, https://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm

Fitness Schools
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Get hands-on training with Remington College.

Programs : Diploma in Personal Fitness Trainer, and more..

Campus Locations :

Tampa: 2410 E. Busch Boulevard Tampa, FL 33612

Keiser University offers degrees in fields that are in demand and provides job placement assistance to all its students and alumni.

Programs : Bachelor of Science in Exercise Science, Sport Management with concentrations in Golf, Psychology, and Sports Medicine and Fitness Technology, BS (Online Only), Sports Medicine & Fitness Technology, AS, and more..

Campus Locations :

Port Saint Lucie: 10330 South U.S. 1 Port Saint Lucie, FL 34952

Lakeland: 2400 Interstate Drive Lakeland, FL 33805

Miami: 2101 NW 117th Avenue Miami, FL 33172

Fort Myers: 9100 Forum Corporate Parkway Fort Myers, FL 33905

Melbourne: 900 S. Babcock St. Melbourne, FL 32901

Pembroke Pines: 1640 SW 145 Avenue Pembroke Pines, FL 33028

With more than 300 online and residential areas of study, Liberty offers programs from the certificate to doctoral level.

Programs : MS in Sport Management - Tourism :Thesis, MS in Sport Management - Tourism : Non-Thesis, and more..

Campus Locations :

Lynchburg: 1971 University Boulevard Lynchburg, VA 24502

Earn Your Diploma from Home!

Programs : Fitness & Nutrition, and more..

Campus Locations :

: , PA 94404

Take a new step in your education with Brandman University.

Programs : Certificate: Nutrition and Wellness, and more..

Campus Locations :

Culver City: 9000 Overland Ave BLDG B-1, 2ND FLR Culver City, CA 90230

Salida: 5222 Pirrone Court Salida, CA 95368

Kettleman City: 325 Mall Drive Kettleman City, CA 93239

Palmdale: 40015 Sierra Highway Suite B-160 Palmdale, CA 93550

Fairfield: 4820 Business Center Drive Suite 100 Fairfield, CA 94534

Temecula: 27447 Enterprise Circle West Temecula, CA 92590

Ontario: 3990 Concours Suite 100 Ontario, CA 91764

San Diego: 7460 Mission Valley Rd. San Diego, CA 92108

Olympia: 1445 Galaxy Drive NE Suite 201 Olympia, WA 98516

Valencia: 26455 Rockwell Canyon Road Room UCEN 204C Valencia, CA 91355

Palm Desert: 42600 Cook St. Suite 134 Palm Desert, CA 92211

Monterey: 99 Pacific Street Suite 375-B Monterey, CA 93940

Irvine: 16355 Laguna Canyon Road Irvine, CA 92618

Victorville: 13911 Park Ave Suite 100 Victorville, CA 92392

Roseville: 3001 Lava Ridge Court Suite 250 Roseville, CA 95661

Walnut Creek: 2950 Buskirk Avenue Suite 200 Walnut Creek, CA 94597

Riverside: 3550 Vine Street Suite 200 Riverside, CA 92507

Visalia: 649 South County Center Drive Visalia, CA 93277

Since 1996, Southern California Health Institute has been dedicated and committed to helping students achieve their dreams by providing an exceptional education that enables them to become skilled and successful manual therapists.

Programs : Personal Fitness Trainer/Health and Wellness Professional Program, and more..

Campus Locations :

North Hollywood: 5200 Lankershim Blvd. Suite #150 North Hollywood, CA 91601

Advance your career with an education from Provo College.

Programs : Diploma in Personal Fitness Training, and more..

Campus Locations :

Provo: 1450 W 820 N Provo, UT 84601

Get the career you want at Branford Hall Career Institute.

Programs : Professional Fitness Trainer, and more..

Campus Locations :

Branford: One Summit Place Branford, CT 06405

Southington: 35 North Main Street Southington, CT 06489

Windsor: 995 Day Hill Road Windsor, CT 06095

Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education.

Programs : BS in Nutrition Science, AAS in Business Administration - Health Club Operations, and more..

Campus Locations :

Fort Lauderdale: 6301 Kaplan University Avenue Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309

Get your career started with Intercoast Colleges.

Programs : Fitness Specialist, and more..

Campus Locations :

Burbank: 175 E. Olive Avenue 3rd Floor Burbank, CA 91502

Riverside: 1989 Atlanta Avenue Riverside, CA 92507

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