Become a Personal Trainer in Iowa - IA

How to Become a Personal Trainer in Iowa

While there is no licensing process in Iowa for those aspiring to be personal trainers, there is an established expectation that personal trainers will be trained in fitness and exercise-related areas and will hold national certification as a personal trainer from one of several accredited certification agencies. While there is no requirement for Iowa personal trainer certification, employers do not typically provide on-the-job training, and expect that the trainers they hire will already have education and expertise in the field prior to employment. Personal trainers must understand anatomy and physiology, have a passion for exercise and overall physical fitness, and enjoy working one-on-one or in small groups with people who need their help to get back into shape.

The process for becoming a recognized personal trainer in either an established business or as a self-employed consultant in Iowa is similar to that which is expected in other states, and includes the following:

  • Access a training program through either a nationally-accredited association or online education agency that offers a certification exam, or
  • Complete a degree program in a health-related field that specializes in physical fitness, exercise, or sports science.
  • Study for and take a national certification exam for instructors from a nationally recognized personal training association. There are 2-3 recognized certification agencies at the national level. Certification costs several hundred dollars.
  • Obtain your CPR/First Aid certification and keep it updated at all times.
  • Find a position in a gym or healthcare organization, or market yourself as a personal training consultant to private clients. Either can be lucrative, but consulting requires more initiative and better referrals.
  • Continue to take additional classes and acquire certifications in specialty areas that will enhance your credibility and marketability.
  • Renew your certifications regularly and comply with all continuing education requirements for recertification. Basic recertification costs between $50 and $100 depending on the association.

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