Physical training classes prepare students for personal trainer exams offered by leading fitness organizations. Classes and programs in this field are typically offered at community colleges, and some non-credit courses may be available for personal enrichment as well. Lab work and practical experience treating real clients are common in these courses. Specific topics may include the following:
- Heart rate monitoring
- Spinal trauma
- Skin fold testing
List of Courses
Fitness Evaluation for Physical Training Course
This core course provides a foundation for building an effective physical training program. Students acquire concepts and techniques for assessing health factors, such as blood pressure, heart rate, body mass, strength, flexibility and endurance. Assessment techniques include skin fold and circumference measurements, heart rate monitoring, bioelectric impedance and bike tests. The results of the fitness evaluation help define the goals of physical training programs and provide a basis from which the trainer and client can communicate about the best strategies for meeting the client's goals.
Exercise Science Course
Whether working with clients with serious health problems or athletes training for performance enhancement, personal fitness trainers need a basic understanding of the body's responses to exercise in order to be effective. This course provides a theoretical understanding of why a variety of exercises help or hinder clients in reaching their fitness goals. Students learn to adapt exercises to alter the body's physiological responses. Additional topics include biomechanics, kinesiology and motor learning. Coursework in basic anatomy and physiology are a prerequisite for understanding the concepts of exercise science.
Sports Medicine and Injury Prevention Course
This course provides an overview of the responsibilities of the physical trainer in terms of the care and treatment of athletic injuries. Emphasis is on prevention and recognition of injuries as well as rehabilitation. Students learn the protocol for emergency treatment and early injury management of trauma to the cervical spine, head, lower leg, knee, hip and thigh. The class includes a laboratory unit where students learn to treat injuries.
Therapeutic Exercise Course
Students study the way in which the body heals in response to therapeutic movement. Coursework includes instruction in the techniques and principles of exercises commonly used in the rehabilitation of individuals who have been injured. Students learn a systemic approach to development of a physical training program. Curriculum includes a laboratory and hands-on experience working with clients.