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Be About It

CPC's Blog About Health and Wellness

There’s More Behind the Word “Trainer”

Tuesday, 2 / 26 / 19

In this field of health and fitness, there are many different types of professionals all of which carry a specific title. These include “athletic trainer”, “personal trainer”, and “strength and conditioning coach” all of which are very different from each other. It is so common for the individuals that work in this profession to be called “trainers”. There is more behind the word and it’s important for you to know, at for us that work in this field.

Athletic Trainers

These professionals are experts in recognizing, treating, and preventing injuries. They prevent, diagnose, treat and rehabilitate injuries whether they are acute or chronic injuries. In order to be an “AT”, you must have your bachelor’s degree in athletic training, meet all qualifications that are set by the Board of Certification as well as follow the requirements for the state licensing board. You would see an “AT” in schools, colleges, professional sports, clinics, and hospitals.

Personal Trainers

These are professionals that develop and monitor changes in an individual’s specific exercise programs. They asses fitness needs, design an appropriate exercise regimen, and work with these clients to achieve fitness goals. In order to become a personal trainer, you may or may not have a higher education in health sciences. You may obtain certifications through several different organizations and can work as a fitness trainer without having formal practice or experience. You may find personal trainers at health clubs, wellness centers, and other locations where fitness activities take place.

Strength Coaches

These professionals are more advanced. They are tasked with improving not only just health and fitness, but with improving human performance and athleticism. They have the knowledge and understand the science behind human movement. These professionals may also assist with the rehabilitation of injuries. When it comes to athletics, strength coaches analyze the sport, positions, and players to be able to design a program that will increase strength, power, speed, stamina, and agility.

Injury prevention is also a major part of these program designs. In order to be a strength and conditioning coach, you need to have at least a bachelor’s degree as well as pass specific certification exams. You would find these coaches at schools, colleges, professional sports settings, performance facilities and fitness facilities.

We coach you through your journey as a team, we support you, we educate you, we go above and beyond than just telling you what to do in a workout.

Obviously there is more detail that goes into these job descriptions. These are just brief explanations. It’s important to know what you are describing and labeling someone as such in this career. It is very common in the college setting for an athlete to call me their “trainer”, when I am not their “trainer”, I am their strength and conditioning coach. The college athletes have their “athletic trainers” and they have their “strength coach”. In the setting here at CPC, we are your coaches. We are all highly educated in our field and we hold specific certifications and standards that surpass one of just a “trainer”. We coach you through your journey as a team, we support you, we educate you, we go above and beyond than just telling you what to do in a workout.

I know it may sound silly, but it’s important for us to have our labels to be as legit as possible in what we give and offer. When you’ve done those extra credentials to earn the title that you want, you would want your title to be as accurately described as possible. An example in the world outside of the health and fitness industry would be that you wouldn’t call your dentist a dental hygienist, or even call your nurse your doctor.

This is not to say that one of these are better than the other, or more important than the other, or to degrade any of these titles. If one was an athletic trainer, they would prefer to be called your Athletic Trainer or “AT”, same as personal trainer, and strength coach.

You can’t accurately describe these professionals simply by using the word “trainer”.

Madison Schiltz