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Personal Fitness Trainer

Fitness Trainer helping client

Personal Fitness Trainer - Certificate

If you have an interest in the health and fitness industry and would like to prepare for a career as a Personal Fitness Trainer, this program is for you!

This program is designed for people currently employed or seeking employment in the fitness industry, or individuals wanting a better understanding of health & fitness. Completion of the program will prepare students for jobs working in the fitness industry, both in a fitness facility and as a private trainers.

Students will be introduced to the American Council on Exercise (ACE), a certifying agency that offers a career and employment placement program, with a nationwide network to assist successful candidates with job placement in the Fitness industry.

Employment Information

75% BTC graduate placement rate

$37,294 starting annual wage
$51,730 average annual wage
$63,752 potential annual wage
  • Employment and Wage Data Sources

    BTC graduate employment rates:
    The graduate employment rate reflects placement rates of students who graduated from BTC in 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17. The Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges Data Linking for Outcomes Assessment database pulls from Unemployment Insurance (UI) data across Washington and Oregon. UI data do not reflect BTC graduates who (a) are employed in states beyond those listed above or outside of the United States, (b) are self-employed, (c) are active duty members of the armed forces, (d) continued on to another educational institution, and/or (e) did not provide a social security number while enrolled at BTC.

    Washington State Employment Security Department 2018 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates ( reflect 2014-2017 employment

    Starting annual wage = 25th percentile
    Average annual wage = 50th percentile
    Potential annual wage = 75th percentile

Estimated Program Costs

Entry Information

When Can I Start?

This hybrid program starts in the Fall quarter and courses must be taken in sequential order. Program classes meet two evenings per week (Tuesday and Thursdays) and the rest of the time instruction and study is done online.

What are the Minimum Entry Requirements?

  • It is recommended that students have good basic academic skills.
  • Before taking the hybrid courses, students should be confident about computer and study skills. Students will need access to a computer and the internet several days a week, for a total of 3-5 hours a week for each six-credit class.

What are My Next Steps?


Total Program Credits: 18

  • Quarter 1

  • PFT 100Foundations of Health and Fitness6 CR
  • Quarter 2

  • PFT 110Program Development and Training Principles6 CR
  • Quarter 3

  • PFT 120Facility Management and Marketing for a Fitness Trainer6 CR

Program Outcomes

  • Demonstrate proficient methods of developing and leading group exercise programs and complete personal guided training programs.
  • Effectively manage gym operations or a training facility.
  • Provide the tools needed to develop healthy lifestyle habits professionally and personally.
  • Successfully pass the ACE Personal Fitness Trainer Certification test.

Employment Outlook

Job opportunities can be found in fitness centers, as a personal trainer, aerobics instructor, or in the private personal training business, working with people in their homes. Other options for program graduates are recreation worker, corporate staff trainer, or team trainer.

The average annual wage in this field is $51,730, with an earning potential of about $63,752 per year.*

Upon completion of the certificate program students will be prepared to work in the fitness industry both in a fitness facility and as a private trainer. Positions may include: recreation worker, fitness trainer, or aerobics instructor.

Faculty & Support

Photo of Laura Doss
Laura Doss

Laura Doss has been at BTC for 10 years in the roles of Academic & Career Advisor, Student Navigator, Instructor, Completion Coach and now College Navigator for the Allied Health Programs. Laura earned her Bachelor of Science while serving in the US Army and stationed in Germany and her Master of Education while stationed at Fort Sill, OK. Her initial education and training was in the mental health field before moving into education. Outside of work, Laura likes to spend time with her four kids, walking the trails, cuddling with her tiny dog and reading a ton of books!