Associate's Degrees for Personal Trainers

Personal trainers are fitness professionals who develop and lead clients through exercise routines to help them meet fitness and weight loss goals. Learn about associate's degree programs that may help prepare for a career as a personal trainer. Schools offering Fitness Trainer degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Degrees Do Personal Trainers Obtain?

If you'd like to become a personal trainer, earning an associate's degree could help you achieve your goal. While no specific degrees are available in personal training, you can earn a degree in either kinesiology or exercise science. In a kinesiology program, you'll study the science of movement, while in an exercise science program you'll study methods of fitness training and proper nutrition. Both programs will provide you with knowledge and skills that will benefit you in a career as a personal trainer.

An associate's degree generally takes two years to complete. While kinesiology and exercise science degrees are usually completed in an on-campus setting, distance learning options are available. You'll complete the same coursework in a distance learning program as you would in an on-campus program, but the times that you complete the coursework may be more flexible, and you won't be required to travel to campus for each class. Whether your associate's degree is earned through an on-campus or distance learning program, you may be able to transfer your credits to a 4-year program if you choose to earn a bachelor's degree at a later time.

Program Fields Kinesiology, exercise science
Common Courses Motor development, diet planning, exercise psychology, sports injury management, conditioning
Continuing Education Bachelor's degrees are available and may allow you to transfer your credits
Median Salary (2018) $39,820 (for all fitness trainers & instructors)  
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 10% growth (for all fitness trainers & instructors

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 

What Classes Will I Take?

In an associate's degree program, you'll be required to complete both general education classes and classes that are specific to your area of emphasis. The main focus of the classes you take will be on the relationship between the human body and exercise. Examples of those classes include these:

  • Kinesiology
  • Conditioning
  • Motor development
  • Anatomy and physiology

You'll also take classes in a variety of other subjects that will be important to your development as a personal trainer. These include classes that train you on how to deal with sports injuries and how to plan a nutritious diet, along with classes in exercise psychology. In addition to coursework, some programs may require that you display a personal level of physical fitness.

How Will My Degree Help Me?

Earning an associate's degree will help you in multiple ways. An associate's degree will prepare you to enter a 4-year degree program, which will lead to a bachelor's degree. Earning a higher degree will provide you with more career options. If you don't choose to move on to a 4-year program, having an associate's degree still puts you at an advantage over those with no degree. With an associate's degree, you'll be able to get into a career as a personal trainer at a gym or exercise facility, with the ability to advance as you gain more experience.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Herzing University

    Herzing University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Herzing University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Independence University

    Independence University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Independence University:

    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Western Nebraska Community College

    Campus Locations:

    • Nebraska: Scottsbluff
  • University of Akron Wayne College

    Campus Locations:

    • Ohio: Orrville
  • Tyler Junior College

    Campus Locations:

    • Texas: Tyler
  • Saint Paul College

    Campus Locations:

    • Minnesota: Saint Paul
  • Riverside City College

    Campus Locations:

    • California: Riverside
  • Ohlone College

    Campus Locations:

    • California: Fremont
  • Western Texas College

    Campus Locations:

    • Texas: Snyder
  • Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College

    Campus Locations:

    • Oklahoma: Miami