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Welcome to the ISSA Evaluation Kit!

This guide will help you decide if becoming a personal trainer is right for you and give you the tools you need to get started.

What Can I Do With a Personal Training Certification?

Becoming a certified personal trainer gives you the power to take control of your life and your schedule. Personal trainers can work in a variety of different settings depending on what feels right for you. For example, you can choose to work from your home, your clients' homes, a gym, or even outside.

ISSA also offers several specializations that you can add to your training certificate and an associate's degree to help you reach your goals. You might choose to specialize in a certain training type, training philosophy, performance type, exercise modality, or client population. ISSA personal trainers design programs that utilize strength training, cardio, flexibility, and nutrition strategies to optimize results.

The ISSA Specializations

Will I Be Able to Find a Job?

If you've ever considered a career in fitness, now is the perfect time! Obesity rates are skyrocketing and more and more people are suffering from preventable illnesses related to poor diet and exercise. Doctors and HMOs are starting to realize that personal training is the future of health care. Health clubs, diet centers, resorts, even hospital-based fitness facilities need your help! Whether you want to work for yourself or for an existing business, certified fitness professionals are in greater demand than ever before.

The Los Angeles Times published a survey indicating that Personal Trainers have the highest level of job satisfaction of any occupation in the US.

What is ISSA?

The ISSA was founded by a team of leading fitness experts and exercise scientists under the leadership of leading fitness researchers, PhDs and elite practitioners. Since then, the ISSA has taught over 400,000 students and trainers in 174 countries and is now recognized as the world leader in fitness education and certification.

ISSA acts as a teaching institution for personal trainers, athletic trainers, coaches, physicians, chiropractors, physical therapists, and professionals in every field of health and wellness. We set new standards in exercise assessment, nutritional planning, fitness instruction, sports medicine practice, and post-rehabilitation training. Our mission is to Inspire our students to positively impact the quality of life of each individual with whom they come in contact.

Bodybuilding Specialist holding dumbbells
Types of ISSA Certifications
What Have Others Done with an ISSA Certification?

What Does a Personal Trainer Actually Do?

As a personal trainer, you'll work with clients to assess their strengths and weaknesses and then design an exercise program to improve their physical fitness. You'll motivate clients by setting goals and providing feedback and accountability. You'll instruct them in the proper technique for exercises, and educate clients in other aspects of wellness besides exercise, including general health and nutrition.

ISSA trainers conversing while working out
What Qualities Do I Need to Be Successful?

Personal trainers come in all shapes and sizes, but there are certain characteristics that many share. Which of these traits do you identify with most?

  1. Passion for fitness

    Do you look forward to the gym or spend hours researching the best techniques? Do you live to squat, press, lift or swim, bike, run? You're in excellent company. The strength of the ISSA community is deeply rooted in the love of fitness.

  2. Desire to Help Others

    There is no denying that wellness can change the world. You know it. You want to pass it on. Simple.

  3. Personal Transformation

    Countless graduates have personally experienced the transformative power of fitness and they want others to know the same triumph. Nothing is more effective than a trainer who has been there.

  4. Sociable

    There are no two ways about it, you'll be working closely with people. You'll need to form good relationships with your clients to get the most out of them and make sure they keep working with you.

  5. Motivating

    You know that changing your body or meeting a challenge takes commitment. A trainer who brings needed enthusiasm and support when the going gets tough is key to permanent gains.

What Do I Do Next?
  1. Contact our friendly support staff if you have specific questions you need answered.

    Our support staff is made up of certified Personal Trainers who have gone through the program and know what to expect. They will be able to answer any questions you have about the course material, exam, business support, or anything else you're curious about.

  2. Envision your future as a personal trainer. What do you want to accomplish?

    What do want to do with your certification? Do you want to work for an organization or gym, or work for yourself? Do you just want to know what trainers know? You can change your mind at any time, but you'll feel more secure with a goal in mind. ISSA gives you exclusive information to help direct you in your career path or get your business up and running with paying clients fast.

  3. Enroll in the Personal Trainer certification program

    Choose a certification program and get started. We recommend starting with the personal trainer certification and then selecting from our specializations to continue building your education.

  4. Get ready for the field

    You know that changing your body or meeting a challenge takes commitment. A trainer who brings needed enthusiasm and support when the going gets tough is key to permanent gains.

  5. Study, take the test and get started!

    Once you're signed up, start studying, complete the practice quizzes and take the online final exam.