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Old 11-14-2011, 11:53 AM   #1
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Question Becoming a Strength Coach!

I think I want to go to school to become a strength coach and wanted to get some insight from people that may have experience in the field.

Do I want to do it? Why? Why not?

How do I go about it?

What should I do to prepare?

What type of careers could I expect?

Any other/additional information would be awesome! Thanks bros. rockon:
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Old 11-14-2011, 12:14 PM   #2
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When I was still in high school I was very interested in becoming a strength and conditioning coach. I looked into it a little.

How old are you? I ask because basically you need to persue one of only a small number of college degrees, and there are certainly things you can do in high school to prepare you. A big one is to start taking some classes like anatomy, in which you'll be able to start learning about the human body.

The following is from wikipedia, as far as qualifications;

"The National Strength and Conditioning Association offers a Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach qualification that is usually required for positions in the field. In addition to the C.S.C.S. certification needed to become a strength and conditioning coach, a Bachelor's degree in the field of Exercise Science or Kinesiology is also required. Most strength coaches go on to get their Master's degree as well as additional certifications, such as the Health and Fitness Specialist (H.F.S.) certification through the American College of Sports Medicine."

Basically you'll need a degree in either exercise science or kinesiology, both of which are very involved programs with intensive academincs. Like most any specialized field, the more prestigious the school you go to the greater your choices will be once you get out and start looking for work.

Along with your degree you'll also want to get as many certifications as possible, and conitnue to persue ongoing education even after you enter the field if you want to stay up to date on your information and techniques.

Of course, you won't get a job as a head strength coach right out of school, but there are other entry level assistant positions out there. With such a specific field, you'll find that networking is also extremely important. Meet as many people as possible who are in any way related to the training field and keep up with them as you go through school. It just takes one right person to get you in.
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Old 11-14-2011, 12:21 PM   #3
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Cool, thanks for the info. I'm 24 and going to be getting out of the Army after almost 8 years soon and go to school full time. Exercise science and kinesiology degrees... indeed.
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29 MAY 12 at 206 (93) BW - 135/175 (61/79) SN/CJ
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Old 11-14-2011, 12:27 PM   #4
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Cool, thanks for the info. I'm 24 and going to be getting out of the Army after almost 8 years soon and go to school full time. Exercise science and kinesiology degrees... indeed.
Haha, that's awesome. I'm 28 and going INTO the Army. What can I say, I'm a late bloomer.

In your case I'd recomend something very boring; get some used anatomy and kinesiology textbooks and memorize everything. Also do some research and find out which programs are the most prestigious. You should have more options as far as where you can go because you're coming out of the service, and it really does make a difference.
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Old 11-14-2011, 12:29 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tank View Post
I think I want to go to school to become a strength coach and wanted to get some insight from people that may have experience in the field.

Do I want to do it? Why? Why not?

How do I go about it?

What should I do to prepare?

What type of careers could I expect?

Any other/additional information would be awesome! Thanks bros. rockon:
While I personally have not taken this route, I do have a few friends who have. Formal education is important, but not king. You'll pick up a lot of stuff going to school for it, but as with most jobs v. education, a degree opens more doors but doesn't guarantee a job or success in the field. IE: It looks good on a resume. Experience is the most important factor...

Besides formal education, read and listen to everyone who has made a good name for themselves in the business. There will be a lot of opposing ideas so its also important to realize where each idea stands (background of the coach and his/her experience) in relation to specific goals. Also don't rule any idea or method out completely; most have their place in huge variety of training methodologies.

Don't only focus on the cool parts of training/coach (technique, programming, getting strong), also absorb tons of material on recovery, nutrition, rehab/prehab, etc.

In regards to experience: get some! Develop your own training principles. In doing so you have to be honest with yourself and go with what works for yourself and others... not the current fad or something that looks good on paper.

Once you develop your own base of knowledge and personal experience, begin helping out others. Start small, technique, basic programming etc. Seek out people like friends or family who what help and coach them to some extent. This will help develop coaching experience.

Past that... look into coaching certifications (CSCS is among the most popular) and during your time at school, also keep an eye out for internships in the field. An internship will look good on paper but also give you some great experience while working under [hopefully] more experienced coaches.

Not to dissuade you, but realize its a tough field to get into and even harder to become successful in it. The days start early and end late, expect to be working most weekends too. Its not just tough to get into, but its an exhausting job...

-Joe Defranco and Zach Even-esh have a few youtube videos up on how they got started in the business which may be of some interest to you.

Last edited by Pull14; 11-14-2011 at 12:36 PM.
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Old 11-14-2011, 01:16 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Soldier View Post
Haha, that's awesome. I'm 28 and going INTO the Army. What can I say, I'm a late bloomer.

In your case I'd recomend something very boring; get some used anatomy and kinesiology textbooks and memorize everything. Also do some research and find out which programs are the most prestigious. You should have more options as far as where you can go because you're coming out of the service, and it really does make a difference.
cool bro, thanks for the info and good luck in the service.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pull14 View Post
While I personally have not taken this route, I do have a few friends who have. Formal education is important, but not king. You'll pick up a lot of stuff going to school for it, but as with most jobs v. education, a degree opens more doors but doesn't guarantee a job or success in the field. IE: It looks good on a resume. Experience is the most important factor...

Besides formal education, read and listen to everyone who has made a good name for themselves in the business. There will be a lot of opposing ideas so its also important to realize where each idea stands (background of the coach and his/her experience) in relation to specific goals. Also don't rule any idea or method out completely; most have their place in huge variety of training methodologies.

Don't only focus on the cool parts of training/coach (technique, programming, getting strong), also absorb tons of material on recovery, nutrition, rehab/prehab, etc.

In regards to experience: get some! Develop your own training principles. In doing so you have to be honest with yourself and go with what works for yourself and others... not the current fad or something that looks good on paper.

Once you develop your own base of knowledge and personal experience, begin helping out others. Start small, technique, basic programming etc. Seek out people like friends or family who what help and coach them to some extent. This will help develop coaching experience.

Past that... look into coaching certifications (CSCS is among the most popular) and during your time at school, also keep an eye out for internships in the field. An internship will look good on paper but also give you some great experience while working under [hopefully] more experienced coaches.

Not to dissuade you, but realize its a tough field to get into and even harder to become successful in it. The days start early and end late, expect to be working most weekends too. Its not just tough to get into, but its an exhausting job...

-Joe Defranco and Zach Even-esh have a few youtube videos up on how they got started in the business which may be of some interest to you.

thanks for the info bro. a little discouraging, but it's definitely what i want to do, so the odds aren't a factor for me. i will either do it, or live trying.
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My Training Journal 5' 8" Current BW 207 (94) lbs (kg)

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29 MAY 12 at 206 (93) BW - 135/175 (61/79) SN/CJ
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Old 11-14-2011, 01:26 PM   #7
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thanks for the info bro. a little discouraging, but it's definitely what i want to do, so the odds aren't a factor for me. i will either do it, or live trying.
Don't be discouraged. Once you are into the training you'll find that there are a number of different paths you can take in the training field. There are lots of ways to make a living with these degrees. It's like anything else, get the training, get your foot in the door any way you can, then work up from there. You may find yourself in a place you never planned for, but that's not always a bad thing!
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Old 11-14-2011, 01:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Soldier View Post
Don't be discouraged. Once you are into the training you'll find that there are a number of different paths you can take in the training field. There are lots of ways to make a living with these degrees. It's like anything else, get the training, get your foot in the door any way you can, then work up from there. You may find yourself in a place you never planned for, but that's not always a bad thing!
absolutely. as long as i'm training and working in the field, the journey will be as rewarding as the "destination". destination is synonymous with stagnation to me; achieving a goal is just the dawn of a new goal.
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29 MAY 12 at 206 (93) BW - 135/175 (61/79) SN/CJ
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Old 11-14-2011, 01:58 PM   #9
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absolutely. as long as i'm training and working in the field, the journey will be as rewarding as the "destination". destination is synonymous with stagnation to me; achieving a goal is just the dawn of a new goal.
I hear that. There's only one true destination, and I don't want to get there any faster than I have to. What MOS and rank are you, if you don't mind me asking?
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Old 11-14-2011, 02:04 PM   #10
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29 MAY 12 at 206 (93) BW - 135/175 (61/79) SN/CJ
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