FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do I need to be certified to be a fitness professional?
- The primary answer is no, there is no legal definition of a fitness professional. However, VERY few clients and no gyms or studios will hire you, nor work with you if you don't have a valid, and current international fitness certification.
Then of course if something was to happen to your client, and you are not certified you will not have an leg to stand on should legal action be taken (see point 2 below). Ask yourself this; would I want to go to a surgeon who didn't go to medical school? Or a dentist who didn't go to dentistry school? The answer is probably a "no".
Why do I require liability insurance?
- All fitness individuals and businesses in Canada, and the USA, as well as many other westnerized, forward thinking countries around the world will NOT hire you if you do not have your OWN liability insurance. The reason is simple, this insurance, just like home insurance or car insurance, covers you in the chance someone gets injured under your training care.
Am I eligible for liability insurance with NAFC?
- 100% Yes! We are an approved certification body with both Sport & Fitness Insurance Canada, and Sport & Fitness Insurance USA. Also, the great thing with insurance is if you decide to run say a 1-3 week retreat nearly anywhere on the planet, you will be 100% covered. This is often required by any resort, facility or property you may work within.
What does liability insurance cover?
- Liability insurance covers a wide range of issues including injuries, non-negligent equipment failures, and locations, such as if you want to use the local community pool, another persons gym, a community center rec. room, etc.
What happens if I don't have liability insurance?
- First off, not many gyms will hire you, limiting the jobs you can have. Next, if someone you are training gets injured and you don't have insurance you risk losing your fitness license, business, personal income and even property, you also risk NEVER being able to work within the fitness industry again in a professional and legal manner. Finally you can also not run legitimate short term exotic retreats or rent space at another gym, or use things like community or private pools to run classes, etc.
What the difference between a Personal Trainer and a Group Fitness Instructor? And why should I care?
- This is a good question and is really 2 fold.
First off, as a certified Personal Trainer, you are educated to work with clients on a 1-to-1, and up to about a 3-to-1 basis, meaning you can train up to 3 clients during a single session. A group fitness instructor is the opposite, they are certified to deal with groups and classes of 4 or more people.
So why does this matter? Again, it comes back to insurance. If you are a Personal Trainer, and decide to operate a group larger than 3 people (say a Bootcamp class, or group fat loss retreat) and a member of that class/group gets injured your liability insurance will likely NOT cover you unless you are also a certified Group Fitness Instructor as well. Therefore, if you want to operate groups or classes (and you probably should), you will definitely want to become an NAFC GFI as well as an NAFC PT.
*A note on Zumba: Zumba is a global fitness program, but did you know that if you want to be a Zumba Jammer (level 2 instructor) you must have a recognized GF Instructor certification? Good news; our NAFC GF Instructor certification is 100% recognized by Zumba International.
Why does tIFA offer so many skills segments and speciality courses?
- This is again a 2 point question.
First, modern fitness clients are looking for trainers and fitness professionals with a wide array of talents and skills. They no longer want a trainer who only understands weight training, or who understands only cardio, or who only understands flexibility. By offering you a wide range of topics and training philosophies, we can PROMISE you will be the best and one of the most knowledgeable trainers in your gym, and city.
Secondly, we again come back to insurance and liability. Many tools in the modern gym are novel and require special training before you use with clients. Strongman Atlas Stones are a great example of this concept. Atlas Stones are a great functional fitness tool, BUT they require a special kind of lifting technique. If you just decided to use Atlas Stones with no understanding of how to lift them with a client and that client got hurt, again, you could face legal issues under "professional negligence" as you were not properly trained in the foundations of using the stones by a qualified & experienced coach or master trainer.
Is the NAFC recognised EVERYWHERE on earth?
- It is a common misconception by people who are entering the fitness industry to believe that there is some kind of global, and mandatory recognized fitness certification. To be 100% clear, there is NO such thing as a globally recognized fitness certification. Each gym, or owner of a gym may or may not allow ANY certification they choose. However, NAFC certified fitness professionals operate in Canada, USA, Latin America, Mexico, and throughout all of Asia, including Hong Kong, China, Singapore, Taiwan, and SE Asia. We also have countless graduates working in gyms and studios all over the world, From Sydney to Hamburg to Rio Dejanero. The most IMPORTANT thing gyms look for is "do you have a proper and international certification that is applicable for professional liability insurance?". And yes you will with NAFC!
How long does it take to get certified with the NAFC?
- That really comes down to 2 things, which course? And how hard will you study? However we say that the NAFC Personal Trainer courses will take you 2 - 3 months, the NAFC Group Fitness Instructor course 1 - 2 months.
Why do I want an international certification like the NAFC versus a local, provincial, or "in-gym" certification?
- Many gyms and studios around the world look for certifications with very high levels of credibility and educational affiliations. Quite often, obscure
provincial, and community developed courses are no more recognized than say the local bodybuilders gym who offers his own personal "in-house" certification that is for the most part typically meaningless outside their walls or local geographies.
The real questions you should be asking are:
Why would I want to limit myself to a certification that:
A - No one has heard of, and elite level fitness professional around the world will scratch their heads about when you tell them? and
B - That is not recognized outside of your local community, province or gym or even just in your own country?
With NAFC you don't have to worry about this! Travel anywhere on earth and you know you are travelling with credibility, authority, respect and professionalism.
To quote our founder Ror Alexander, "When I developed thrive International Fitness Academy I wanted to create the worlds most modern and relevant health and fitness professional educational school. Todays trainers are not just gym coaches, trained to work in some globo gym as all the others seem to only focus on, but they have to be MUCH more. They have to be lifestyle coaches, they have to know about many kinds of training, psychology,
environment, socializing, and building their own businesses, regardless of whether you want to work in a gym or on your own. With thrive, that's our mandate. Give only the best to create the best.
What's the deal with on-line courses? Are those really legit?
- Yes, without a doubt! Here are a few facts.
1. We are in a modern era. And technology now allows us to have MUCH better control of distance education and much better tools like PDF's, ebooks, HD video, clear audio, real time and monitored testing, and face to face encounters. As long as the education delivery & testing have been developed well, and with proper quality controls in place. And NAFC delivers ALL this.
2. While someone like you or I may live in a big city, and have easy access to in-person courses and education, there are A LOT more people who do not have this luxury. We receive weekly messages from people living in valley villages of Nepal, remote islands in the Philippines, or small towns in the Yukon who cannot possibly fly in for a 1 and 2 week or even longer in-class course(s). Do we deny them education? Do we tell them that their passion to help their friends, family and community is moot if they don't fly in, rent a hotel room for a week, and pay for 2 - 3 meals at day at restaurants? Do we tell the single parent of two young kids who can't take time off work to come to a live course and leave their children behind that we can't help them learn? Of course not! Distance education is making the world a better and smarter place! Now, we will say this; IF you can attend a live course then by all means yes you 100% should come, but if you can't, we will not tell you to go away!
3. Along the same lines as point two, there are more people than not who cannot afford a live course. Live, in-person courses require more money to pay the master trainer salaries. Online can save you money if you otherwise cannot afford the full live course. Again, education is a right of all peoples!
What forms of payment do you take?
- We often accept PayPal, Eventbrite, cash, and credit card payments.
Are there any payment plans?
- thrive has purposely kept our prices extremely reasonable, and at this time there are no payment plans. For example, our NAFC international certification is one of the lowest price points for an accredited PT cert on earth, we beat ACE, ISSA, ACSM, NASM and canfitpro's in pricing.