This month, I posted about how to prepare for the Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist written exam and Tips about the Canfitpro – PTS exam. I already got my certification from Canfitpro as a Personal Training Specialist but it took me a while to post this blog because I got caught up editing my resume and searching for jobs as a Personal Trainer. In any case, here’s the third part of my blog on how to prepare, study, and pass your Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist certification.
Click the links below for my previous posts about the Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist written exam:
I finally was able to take my Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist practical evaluation exam a couple of weeks ago, a day before Black Friday. It wasn’t as maundy that day because after the long wait and preparation, I passed my Canfitpro – PTS practical evaluation! My wife also passed her G driving license exam, and it was just her first take. If you have passed your Canfitpro – PTS theory exam, then your Canfitpro instructor-trainer will set a schedule with you on when to have your practical evaluation, which is the last part in Canfitpro Personal Training Specialist certification.
I passed my theory exam with a score of 83% – the passing score is 80% for the Canfitpro Personal Training Specialist theory exam. The written exam is a combination of multiple choice questions and short answer portions worth 100 points each. I did not take the Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist course and just studied by myself since I have a degree in Sports Science. I alloted almost a month to study the book and DVD, and answered the Study Guide thrice. Some people I know who did take the Canfitpro – PTS course got scores around 85%, so getting away with 83% without taking the course is considerably good.
The instructor-trainer sent me a congratulatory email indicating that I passed the written part of the certification and instructions on what to expect on the practical part of the certification. I set a schedule to have my practical evaluation after two weeks which I thought was enough time for me to prepare, and also because my instructor-trainer’s schedule limitations. The day finally came and after an hour of the Canfitpro – PTS practical evaluation exam, the instructor-trainer discussed with me my scores, my strengths and weaknesses, my points for improvement, and then congratulated me for passing my practical evaluation and finally being certified as a Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist. I got a total score of 157 over 160 points which is equivalent to a 98% grade.
I have been teaching Pilates since 2010 and have had an experience in Personal Training in the Philippines, so I am used to the practical part of being a Personal Trainer. The most important thing to do to prepare and pass your Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist practical evaluation is to practice, practice, and practice.
When you’re done practicing, practice a little more! You’re through with the written part of your exam. That is supposed to test your ‘theory‘ – how much you know about fitness and exercise science. The practical evaluation is to test how good you apply your knowledge to actual situations as a Personal Trainer.
Here are my tips for passing the Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist practical evaluation:
– Read the instructions carefully. The email that your instructor-trainer will send you after passing your theory exam will contain ALL of the information you need for your practical evaluation. It includes a case study client, and the evaluation form that your instructor-trainer will use on the day of your practical evaluation. Read through your client case, understand each part of the evaluation form and if possible, practice by yourself using the evaluation form.
– Take your time. No matter how badly you want to start your career as a Personal Trainer and get a job, finishing your certification is a crucial step. Someone who took the written exam on the same day I did already scheduled for a job interview, and after the written exam, she was worried because she might not pass the theory part and not get certified in time for her job interview. Take one step at a time, but take each step carefully and excellently! After getting your congratulatory email, think about how long you might need to study and prepare for your practical evaluation – yes, you still need to study and review. You can read from the email which sections of the book Foundations of Personal Training you will need to review.
– Practice makes perfect, really. If you haven’t done Personal Training before, practice with a pseudo-client for at least three sessions. Ask a friend or a relative to be your client and ask him/her to observe your teaching techniques and even evaluate you after every session. Use the client card format from Canfitpro to make a real exercise program for your practice. Compute for the HRR and BMI, and use these values to make your program. You will need to bring with you your own client to your practical evaluation, so practicing with a pseudo-client is good because that person will already know what to expect from a training session on the day of your evaluation.
– Bring a client who is familiar with the gym. You are supposed to bring one client with you on your Canfitpro – PTS practical evaluation. You will use the case-study data given through your email to make a program for your client. Having someone who is familiar with the gym will save you from awkward moments during the practical evaluation and save you time because he or she already knows what to do. For me, I had someone who is taking Kinesiology as my pseudo-client, and she is also a certified personal trainer, so she already knew what to do and what to expect. She even comments hints and clues during my practical evaluation! You don’t need to befriend a Kinesiology student or personal trainer tomorrow to have a pseudo-client. As I’ve said, pracitise with a friend or relative so that your pseudo-client will already have an idea of what you will make him/her do during the practical evaluation.
– Translate and communicate. As I have said, the Canfitpro – PTS practical evaluation part is to test how good you are in applying your knowledge to actual situations. Practice talking your pseudo-client through the program: goals, FITT principle for muscular capacity and cardiovascular capacity, muscles used, and flexibility. You can read from the instructions from your email about this – take note of the points you will be graded for and practice. The point of the practical evaluation is to see how you translate exercise science into a language that is understandable to your client.
– Practice the physical assessments. My instructor-trainer told me that most people who fail the Canfitpro – PTS practical evaluation flunks the physical assessment part. Don’t be one of them. Study how to do the sit-and-reach test and the 1-minute push up test, and how to interpret the results. Again, translate the data from the physical assessments and communicate well to your client why it is relevant for them. For me, I did a modified sit-and-reach test by doing a V-sit test and using a tape measure that I personally brought. I confidently showed my instructor-trainer that I knew what I was doing, and I interpreted the results to my client. Basically, the table from the book shows a percentile comparison for appropriate age and values. You just have to relate how the fitness results of your client is close to the average, which is the 50th percentile. Match the result with your client’s age and if she’s on a lower percentile (below average, less than 50%) then tell your client that you would want to improve on it. If your client’s result is on the higher percentile (above average, more than 50%) then affirm your client and tell your client the implications of the fitness result.
– Talk the talk. The Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist practical evaluation will not only test you on how much you know, but on how you communicate to your client. Do you affirm the correct things your client does during the exercise? Do you know how to motivate well? Do you use the right words and cues for each exercise? Practice motivating your pseudo-client and teaching him/her how each exercise should be done, which muscles are targeted or worked on, and the practical uses of each exercise.
– Train as if you meant it. Your Canfitpro instructor-trainer will also look for qualities like enthusiasm, confidence, and sincerity in you as a potential Personal Trainer. Internalize the program that you wrote on the client card. Even if you are only helping a pseudo-client, train as if you meant it.
– Dress up. Dress like you meant it! Wear comfortable but appropriate clothes. You can wear training shoes, track pants, and a collared shirt on your practical evaluation.
– Be yourself. If you have really studied, planned, and prepared for your practical evaluation and you feel that you did everything to be ready, then that’s it! Be confident and just be yourself. It’s important to bring your personality to the table as you go through your session. On a job interview the other day, I was asked by the Fitness Manager to describe what type of a trainer I am, or what is my approach in Personal Training. Develop your own approach and style that fits your personality and characteristics. This will help you be more comfortable as a personal trainer and ace your Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist practical exam!
Do you think you’re ready to be a Canfitpro Certified Personal Trainer?
You can read my posts about the Canfitpro – Personal Training Specialist written exam from the links here:
I hope you found these helpful! Let me know in the comments if you have any questions or how your exam goes!
All the best!