Which type of Fitness Trainer certification is right for me?
ACE's four certifications offer fitness professionals a broad range of
career choices. Read each of the descriptions to help you decide which one best
suits your background, professional interests and career plans.
ACE currently offers four fitness certifications:
- The Personal Trainer Certification is designed for trainers
providing any form of one-on-one exercise instruction.
- The Group Fitness Instructor Certification is for those providing
any form of group exercise instruction.
- The Lifestyle & Weight Management Consultant Certification
demonstrates the requisite knowledge and skills to develop sound, balanced
weight-management programs that bring together the three critical components
of nutrition, exercise programming and behavior modification.
- The Clinical Exercise Specialist Certification is an advanced
certification that demonstrates the ability to work with individuals who
have special needs and have been cleared by their physician to participate
in exercise programs.
*Certification prerequisites; see the eligibility requirements below.
- Specialty Certification: Peer Fitness Trainer Certification Program
— This certification is designed specifically for firefighters and
emergency medical technicians, and is administered exclusively through the
International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF).
Am I eligible for certification?
The following eligibility requirements have been adopted for our
- You must be at least 18 years of age.
- You must hold current adult CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation)
certification and it must be current at the time of the exam. (Attend the
Heartsaver First Aid with CPR and AED Training Course or view a list of
accepted CPR certifications.)
- Although it is not required, candidates for the Personal Trainer and Group
Fitness Instructor certifications are strongly encouraged to have a minimum
level (approximately 100 hours) of practical experience in the health and
- In order to take the Lifestyle & Weight Management Consultant
Certification exam, you must hold a current ACE Personal Trainer, Group
Fitness Instructor or Clinical Exercise Specialist Certification, or
- In order to take the Clinical Exercise Specialist Certification Exam, you
must have 300 hours of work experience designing and implementing exercise
programs for apparently healthy individuals and/or high-risk individuals, as
documented by a qualified professional. You must also have a four-year
(bachelor's) degree in an exercise science or related field OR a current ACE
Personal Trainer Certification or other approved certification (ACSM, NSCA,