This certificate program prepares students to develop individualized exercise programs and provide knowledgeable information on weight loss, weight gain, muscle strengthening, and flexibility. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, Personal Training is the third fastest growing occupation in the nation. The certificate program is designed to assist students in developing skills to be successful in the areas of the fitness industry, business, sports, and coaching. Areas of study include: health and fitness, kinesiology, and concepts of personal training. Included in the program is an internship on campus which would allow practical application of concepts learned in the areas of exercise prescription and implementation of individualized programs for fellow students or employees.

Included in the program are on campus opportunities which would allow practical application of concepts learned in the areas of exercise prescription and implementation of individualized programs.



2021 - 2022

  • Curriculum

    Program Courses
    CoursesTitlesCourse OutlinesGoal AreasCredits
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:1050
    Course Title:Weight Training      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:1

    Course Description:This course will introduce students to strength training for the development of lifelong physical fitness. Students will develop the basic principles of designing and participating in a safe and effective resistance training program.
    Weight TrainingView-EXSC 1050n/a1
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:1060
    Course Title:Advanced Weight Training      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:2

    Course Description:Advanced Weight Training is a course designed to further the students knowledge, techniques, and comprehension of advanced principles of weight training. Application of these techniques and principles to promote and maintain fitness for is the primary goal for this course. This course can be repeated for credit. Prerequisites: EXSC 1050 or Instructor Approval
    Advanced Weight TrainingView-EXSC 1060n/a2
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:1900
    Course Title:Worldwide Fitness and Wellness Trends      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:1

    Course Description:This course is designed to explore the constantly evolving field of Exercise Science. In the rise and fall of fitness trends, students must be equipped with basic scientific understanding in exercise theories to discern between trends, fads, safe, and harmful methods for physical training. This course seeks to empower students with the knowledge in exercise science and wellness to improve their lives and of those around them.
    Worldwide Fitness and Wellness TrendsView-EXSC 1900n/a1
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:2010
    Course Title:Essentials of Exercise Science      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:3

    Course Description:This course provides an in-depth look into topics such as the acute and chronic physiological and psychological responses to exercise, exercise anatomy, exercise metabolism, and how the nervous, skeletal, muscular and endocrine systems respond during exercise. (3 hours lecture)Prerequisite: Placement into Engl 1201It is strongly recommended that students in the Personal Training Certificate program take EXSC 2010 and EXSC 2100 at the same time in order to sit for the NASM-CPT exam.
    Essentials of Exercise ScienceView-EXSC 2010n/a3
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:2100
    Course Title:Concepts of Training      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:3

    Course Description:This course will allow students to research, explore, discuss, and compare different training strategies based on empirical research that are designed to improve health, wellness, and performance, and to modify lifestyle behaviors. Students will comprehend how and when to apply each training method upon distinguishing individual needs and wants of different persons while adhering to current training guidelines, principles of training, and current accepted Exercise Science training theories.In order to sit for the NASM-CPT exam, it is strongly recommended that students register for both 2010 and 2100 at the same time.
    Concepts of TrainingView-EXSC 2100n/a3
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:2110
    Course Title:Advanced Fitness Assessment & Exercise Prescription      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:3

    Course Description:This course is designed to expand the theoretical knowledge of fitness assessment and exercise prescription into practical application of personal training and exercise science. This course will assist students in bridging the gap of research and practical application. (2 hours lecture, 2 hours lab) Prerequisite: EXSC 2100 and EXSC 2010 with a grade of C or better
    Advanced Fitness Assessment & Exercise PrescriptionView-EXSC 2110n/a3
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:2200
    Course Title:Applications of Training      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:2

    Course Description:This course will allow students to devise, apply, analyze, and practice different training strategies based on empirical research that are designed to improve health, wellness, and performance, and to modify lifestyle behaviors. Students will apply specific training methods to individuals based on the results of initial fitness testing and interview while adhering to current training guidelines, principles of training, and current accepted Exercise Science training theories. (1 hour lecture, 2 hours lab)Prerequisite: EXSC 2100 with a grade of C or better
    Applications of TrainingView-EXSC 2200n/a2
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:2490
    Course Title:Kinesiology      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:4

    Course Description:Course Content includes study of human movement and the muscular system. Skeletal and major muscular systems will be studied in detail in order to better understand how human movement is produced. Students will anatomically analyze movements and be introduced to the concepts of biomechanics. (3 hours lecture, 3 hours lab) Prerequisites: EXSC 2010 - Essentials of Exercise Science (Minimum grade: 1.67 GPA Equivalent)
    KinesiologyView-EXSC 2490n/a4
    Course Subject: EXSC         Course Number:2600
    Course Title:Coaching Lifestyle and Behavior Change      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:2

    Course Description:The course will provide students with key tools for promoting behavior change and creating a foundation for a healthy lifestyle. Concepts essential to understanding the psychological and behavioral aspects of wellbeing will be explored. Applications are made to future exercise science professionals in aiding oneself and others in the movement towards wellness. Students will learn strategies, such as motivational interviewing, decisional balance, operant conditioning, and appreciative inquiry, in order to aide oneself and clients through the stages of change and healthier habits.
    Coaching Lifestyle and Behavior ChangeView-EXSC 2600n/a2
    Course Subject: HLTH         Course Number:1070
    Course Title:Nutrition      Goal Areas:n/a      Credits:3

    Course Description:This course is designed to introduce the student to the fundamental truths of nutrition principles, health promotion and disease prevention throughout life.   Topics include, in part, the study of carbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins, and minerals and their function and role in healthy living.  It will provide introductory nutritional information for career paths in nursing and other similar fields of study.
    NutritionView-HLTH 1070n/a3
    NHCC Residency and GPA
    CoursesTitlesCourse OutlinesGoal AreasCredits
    9 Credits must be earned at NHCC
                                   Total Credits Required25
    Notes: Upon completion of EXSC 2100, the student will have the opportunity to complete the NASM certification exam for Personal Training. Students who complete the Personal Trainer Certificate Program may choose to continue their education by completing their A.S. Degree at NHCC. In addition, after completing their A.S. Degree, they may further their education by transferring to St. Cloud State University or Augsburg College, to which the current degree allows a seamless transfer.

  • Program Outcomes

    Knowledge of Human Cultures and the Physical and Natural World


    • Apply principles, skills, and methods related to biomechanics, exercise physiology, health promotion, exercise prescription and sport psychology..

    Intellectual and Practical Skills

    • Inquiry and analysis: Apply the clinical and epidemiological evidence linking physical activity and exercise to mental and physical health..
    • Critical and creative thinking: Apply the scientific method to solve problems related to physical activity and health..
    • Written and oral communication: Utilize oral and written communication that meets appropriate professional and scientific standards in the field of Kinesiology/Exercise Science..
    • Quantitative literacy: Evaluate the effectiveness of human movement using mechanical principles.
    • Information literacy: Associate the organic, skeletal, and neuromuscular structures of the human body to psychological factors associated with diverse physical activities..

    Teamwork and problem solving: Work effectively in teams by valuing collaboration, providing service to others, and developing relational techniques for lifelong learning and problem solving.

    Personal and Social Responsibility and Engagement

    • Civic knowledge and involvement andndash; campus, local and global: Apply Fitness/Kinesiology related skills to realworld problems through empirical research, internships, field experience, and/or service learning.
    • Intercultural knowledge and competence: Demonstrate leadership and social responsibility to improve quality of life for others and ensure equitable access for diverse groups by creating appropriate environments to initiate and maintain a physically active, healthy lifestyle.
    • Ethical reasoning and action: Model behavior consistent with that of a Kinesiology professional, including 1) advocacy for a healthy, active lifestyle, 2) adherence to professional ethics, 3) service to others, 4) shared responsibility and successful collaboration with peers, and 5) pursuit of learning beyond NHCC.
    • Foundations and skills for lifelong learning: Safely Develop an individualized exercise prescription based on scientific principles and appropriate evaluation techniques designed to reduce the risk of chronic disease and avoid injuries.

    Integrative and Applied Learning:

    • Synthesis and advanced accomplishment across general education, liberal studies, specialized studies and activities in the broader campus community.
    • Assimilate, analyze, synthesize and integrate concepts related to the exercise science field.
    • Students will also be able to sit for professional certifications related to personal training, including but not limited to those offered by the National Academy of Sports Medicine, the American Council on Exercise, and select others.

  • Career Opportunities

    Information on careers, including salary and employment outlook data, is available on the iseek and Bureau of Labor Statistics websites: and


  • Transfer Information

    ‚ÄčIf you are planning on transferring to another institution, follow the guidelines available on our transfer resources web page to help you plan the process: Transfer Information

  • Degree Information

    Certificates may be earned for successful completion of courses in a specialized program of study with a minimum grade point average of 2.00 (C). A certificate shall include 9 to 30 semester credits. At least onethird of the total credits required for each certificate must be completed at North Hennepin Community College.


    Developmental Courses Some students may need preparatory course(s) in Math and/or English. Courses numbered below 1000 will not apply toward a degree.

    Equal Opportunity Employer and Disability Access Information North Hennepin Community College is a member of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system and an equal opportunity employer and educator. This document is available in alternative formats to individuals with disabilities by calling 7634930555 or through the Minnesota Relay Service at 18006273529.

  • Accreditation

    North Hennepin Community College is accredited by the:
    Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
    30 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 2400
    Chicago, IL 60602-2504