Becoming a Certified Personal Trainer in Nebraska
Certified personal training is a rewarding career for people who not only enjoy exercise but want to help others enjoy it as well. As a certified personal trainer, you’ll need to use your knowledge of nutrition and how the body works to create effective workout and health plans for clients. You’ll also need to clearly explain exercises and provide encouragement when necessary.
Training can be given to small groups or to individuals, depending on where you choose to work. While a certification isn’t necessary, obtaining one can be a smart career decision.
Prerequisites for Trainers in Nebraska
Before beginning work as a certified personal trainer, you should have a high school diploma or GED and be at least 18 years old. Your employer may request that you get a certification in CPR and AED usage as well. These classes can be taken through the Red Cross at various community facilities.
No other formal training or certification is required to work as a personal trainer. To become a certified personal trainer, however, you must pass a national exam. Doing so may qualify you for a wider range of higher-paying jobs as well as more self-employment opportunities.
How to Become Certified
Receiving your certified personal trainer designation helps make you a more competitive applicant when seeking work. It may also qualify you for more desirable jobs. To receive your certification, enroll with a national training program, such as the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and American Council on Exercise (ACE), and take the accompanying exam. Because each of theses programs has its own format and final exam, it’s important to carefully consider which one is best suited to your needs and goals.
Higher Education in Nebraska
It’s not necessary to pursue an associate’s or bachelor’s degree to become a certified personal trainer, but doing so may introduce you to new techniques in the field. The following schools in Nebraska offer degrees in fields relevant to personal training:
- University of Nebraska – Lincoln. At the University of Nebraska’s Lincoln campus, students can select a major in nutrition, exercise and health science. The program gives students access to the university’s Sports and Exercise Nutrition Lab, Wellness Assessment Lab and Human Performance Lab, among other state-of-the-art facilities for research and education.
- University of Nebraska – Omaha. Students interested in a different approach to fitness can consider the kinesiology program at UN Omaha, which focuses on fitness evaluation, supervision of exercise programs and fitness leadership skills.
Ten-Year Career and Salary Outlook
Jobs for certified personal trainers and related fitness professionals will likely grow by an average of 10 percent nationwide in the years from 2016-2026, according to the Projections Managing Partnership. The organization expects growth of 9.6 percent in Nebraska during the same time period.
The average annual salary of a personal trainer in Nebraska is $32,890, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Trainers paid on an hourly basis can expect an average of $15.82 per hour.
Working as a Certified Personal Trainer in Nebraska
Becoming a certified personal trainer might be a good career choice for you if you enjoy working out and helping others achieve their goals, too. Certified personal trainers can find work in rehabilitation centers, gyms, schools, fitness centers and other similar facilities, though many choose to start their own businesses instead and offer in-home training or even open their own gyms. Larger cities like Omaha will typically have the highest concentration of job openings and demand, and many of these roles pay more to compensate for the cost of living in an urban area.