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CPTN-CPT Certification Getting Started Guide

Requirements to earn and maintain the CPTN-CPT distinction:

Candidates Must:

  • Be age 18 or older.
  • Order the Art & Science Manual or attend the Workshop if it is available (Optional with degree/diploma in the field)
  • Achieve a passing grade of 75% or higher on the CPTN-CPT Theory Exam
  • Achieve a passing grade of 75% or higher on the CPTN-CPT Practical Assessment
  • Obtain current First Aid (STANDARD or EMERGENCY) certification.
  • Obtain current Adult-Child-Infant CPR C/AED certification.
  • Complete a Personal Trainer Log (PDF, 95KB) of 20 hours practice training or have a Degree/Diploma in the field.
  • Renew Certification prior to the maximum allowable expiration limit of 6 months to maintain designation.

Note: Candidates will have up to 6 months to submit the requirements listed above (First Aid, CPR, Training Log or Degree/Diploma) after passing the online exam or complete retesting would be required.

1. Determine level of experience

A) I am a beginner and have no related education or training in the field

Begin with The Art and Science of Personal Training workshop. This workshop is a preparation course geared towards preparing participants to complete the CPTN Personal Trainer certification process. The workshop is for adults who have no formal education or post high school education in fitness. An online version of this course is planned.

Note: National or international candidates unable to attend a workshop are recommended to order the CPTN The Art & Science of Personal Training: The Essentials (4th Edition) Manual to begin their certification process.

B) I am current student or alumni with a degree or diploma in the field

Students who possess or who are in the process of completing a 2-Year degree or diploma in the Health Sciences field (e.g. BKin, BPHE, BPhE, etc…) can skip The Art and Science of Personal Training workshop. We do recommend ordering the CPTN The Art & Science of Personal Training: The Essentials (4th Edition) Manual.

C) I am a veteran professional transferring from, or into the personal training field

Veteran health and fitness professionals and those certified as a personal trainer through other organizations are encouraged to challenge the CPTN-CPT Theory Exam on the Examinations page. We do recommend reviewing CPTN The Art & Science of Personal Training: The Essentials (4th Edition) Manual.

Note: Veteran fitness professionals might be eligible to transfer CPT status from another organization and skip to Practical Examination to become a CPTN-CPT. You must complete the Transfer Application Form (PDF, 90KB).

2. Review the manual and practice for the examination

Students enrolled in their last semester and Veterans are welcome to challenge the CPTN-CPT Theory Exam. We do recommend reviewing the CPTN The Art & Science of Personal Training: The Essentials (4th Edition) Manual.

Tip: We offer candidates who want a review challenge with one-time Practice Examinations similar to the actual exam.

Note: Candidates with learning or language barrier difficulties are encouraged to contact Education Services.

3. Complete the Theory Exam and achieve a passing grade of 75% or higher

We recommend reviewing the sections which will be tested from the CPTN-CPT certification page. Candidates who are confident in their current knowledge can begin the CPTN-CPT Theory Exam from the Examinations page.

Note: The exam will begin right after completion of registration and payment. Your score will be shown at the end. If a passing mark was achieved, we will then e-mail instructions for the practical exam within 5 BUSINESS DAYS.

Tip: Candidates who attempted the exam and failed are advised to review the topics in which a poor grade was achieved before rewriting. Please allow up to 24 hours before attempting to complete the exam a second time.

4. Complete the Practical Exam and achieve a passing grade of 75% or higher

You will be given access to training videos, program design templates and instructions for scheduling with a Practical Assessor. Candidates whom are not with range of a Practical Assessor will be given the distant practical option.

Note: Candidates who require better clarification with the program design component of the practical examination, we recommend ordering the CPTN-CPT Online Program Design Tutorial from the Tutorials page.

Note: Please ensure that the requirements for current First Aid and CPR C/AED are completed or is in the process of being completed. CPTN will not be able to issue the certificate until we receive a certificate proof of completion.

5. Planning ahead for Certification Renewal

Congratulations! You’re now certified. Your status is valid for one year from date of issue at the end of the month. All CPTN certifications can be renewed for 1-Year (with CPTN-7 CECs) or 2-Years (with CPTN-14 CECs) at once.

Trainers expired for more than 6 months would require practical reassessment. Trainers expired for more than one year would require complete recertification. CPTN recommends that all trainers Renew Certification prior to their expiration date to obtain membership rates. After the expiration date, non-member and late renewal rates applies.

To keep up with relevant education and the needs of clients trainers are encouraged to take Online Courses, attend Workshops or annual Conferences (with a multitude of topics) to earn Continuing Education Credits (CECs). All CEC courses issue a certificate of completion. It is the required for proof which CPTN requires for Certification Renewal including current First Aid and CPR. For non-CPTN approved courses, a Petition is required for approval before renewal.

Due to the varied skill sets our trainers will have insurance is not included or required for renewal but can be obtained from our affiliated Insurance Providers. We recommend considering insurance if planning to work with clients whom have never performed rigorous exercise prior to beginning a training session.