Program Goal and Outcomes
Program Goal: This certificate is designed to teach students the fundamentals of the fitness and nutrition field — from healthy menu planning and weight-loss strategies to targeted fitness routines and flexibility training.
Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:
- Understand how fitness affects physical and mental well-being, assess current fitness, plan goals, and recognize opportunities in the fitness field
- Understand how medical terms build meaning by combining word parts, with a focus on exercise science terminology
- Identify major organs and their functions within each system
- Understand how nutrients fit into a healthy eating plan, and distinguish the ingredients needed to prepare healthy and specialized menus
- Identify muscle structures and their roles in movement, and understand the physiology of muscle contraction and the importance of attaining good posture
- Recognize the structures of the pulmonary circuit and understand the design of cardiorespiratory exercise programs
- Understand the benefits and safety concerns of resistance training, and identify exercise routines for functional training
- Identify the structures of the upper and lower body, and identify programs and exercises to enhance upper- and lower-body fitness
- Recognize the benefits of increased flexibility, ascertain the components of safe training, and know how to minimize stress
- Understand how to determine short- and long-term fitness goals, design programs, track progress, and promote lifetime fitness
- Identify common risks and signs of disease, know how to obtain and use screening data, and understand how to supply exercise information for people with health conditions
- Recognize how to keep clients motivated and avoid liability issues
Instruction Set 1
Starting Your Program
Succeed by learning how to use your Penn Foster program. Understand how to use your Student Portal, including your My Homepage and My Courses pages; access the Penn Foster Community and use it to find answers; and connect with Penn Foster on various social media sites.
Introduction to Managing Personal Health
Taking charge of your health and lifestyle; assessing your present lifestyle and its effects on your well-being; the benefits of managing your health; the importance of a weight maintenance program; job opportunities for fitness leaders; the personal qualities needed to become a fitness leader.
Instruction Set 2
Understanding common suffixes, roots, and prefixes used to form medical terms; determining the meaning of medical terms; identifying the basic structures and functions of the human body; understanding anatomical position, directional terms, planes of section, quadrants, and regions.
Exercise Science Terminology
Major muscle groups and the work they perform; anatomy of a muscle; aerobic versus anaerobic exercise; training thresholds and recovery periods; tests for overall fitness, muscle strength, and flexibility; typical components of a fitness workout; training methods for different fitness levels.
Fitness Anatomy and Physiology 1
The overall function of the digestive, urinary, musculoskeletal, and nervous systems; the major structures within each system; the functions of the structures within each system; related terminology.
Fitness Anatomy and Physiology 2
The overall function of the endocrine, circulatory, and respiratory systems; the major structures within each system; the functions of the structures within each system; related terminology.
Instruction Set 3
The relationship between calories and energy; balancing carbohydrates, fats, and proteins in a healthy eating plan; suggesting foods for individuals with allergies; selecting healthy ingredients and preparation methods; the importance of vitamins and minerals; daily water and fluid intake; nutritional needs for men and women; taking herbal supplements; selecting healthy foods using nutritional tools.
Developing Healthy Eating Habits
Creating low-fat menus and recipes for clients; identifying ingredients needed to prepare healthy meals; analyzing recipes and menus for caloric, fat, protein, carbohydrate, sodium, and fiber content; interpreting nutrition labels; demonstrating healthy techniques for energy balance and weight loss.
Muscles in Motion
Different types of muscles and their structures; voluntary and involuntary muscle movement; mechanism and chemistry of muscle contraction; bones and joints and their function in movement; performance factors and fatigue; muscular fitness and its relationship to health; muscle soreness and injury.
Posture, Balance, and Proper Alignment
Health benefits of good posture; poor posture and its effects on breathing, digestion, and other bodily functions; proper posture techniques; assisting clients in attaining good posture and developing good posture habits; exercises that improve strength and flexibility for the spine and core; techniques to alleviate tension and anxiety.
Instruction Set 4
Understanding the Heart and Lungs
The pulmonary circuit; comparing and contrasting arteries, arterioles, veins, venules, and capillaries; determining your target heart rate and your heart rate range; physical advantages of regular cardiorespiratory exercise; the relationship between lifestyle and blood pressure; factors that contribute to heart and lung disease; information resources for developing and maintaining a healthy heart and lungs.
Exercise mode, duration, frequency, and intensity; advantages of cardiorespiratory fitness; comparing and contrasting cardiorespiratory exercise regimens; calculating resting heart rate, maximum heart rate, heart rate reserve, and training intensity; exercise plan progression; designing cardiorespiratory exercise programs.
Principles of Muscular Strength and Endurance
Advantages of resistance training; traditional resistance training routines; practicing safe training methods; the role of genetics, gender, and age in resistance training; determining appropriate weight loads; effects of muscle overload and hypertrophy.
Strengthening the Core
Core muscle groups and their relationship to overall fitness; exercise routines for core fitness; practical applications for core fitness; basics of functional training; comparing and contrasting posture and stretching exercise routines.
Instruction Set 5
Strengthening the Upper Body
Advantages of upper-body fitness; assessing your level of upper body fitness; practical applications for achieving and maintaining upper body fitness; fitness routines and exercise techniques for the neck, shoulders, arms, chest, and upper back.
Strengthening the Lower Body
Major structures of the lower body; advantages of achieving and maintaining a fit lower body; exercises that enhance lower body fitness; designing and implementing lower body fitness programs.
Defining flexibility and range of motion; benefits of increases flexibility; relationship between poor flexibility and increased injury; identifying individual flexibility needs; structural limits to flexibility; stretching techniques; major components of a flexibility training program.
The importance of safety in exercise; the five commandments of injury prevention; lifelong impact of sports injuries; responding to serious injuries and emergency situations; recognizing symptoms of common injuries; safety requirements for physical activities; designing plans to prevent or decrease injury.
Stress Management Techniques
Distinguishing between eustress and distress; the impact of stress on physical health; physical and psychological symptoms of stress; common stressors in daily life; the three stages of stress; the importance of fun and relaxation in relieving stress; reducing stress through exercise and adequate sleep; visualization, meditation, and breathing techniques.
DVD : Yoga for Every Body
Instruction Set 6
Personal Fitness Programs
The need for self-assessment; determining appropriate long- and short-term fitness goals; methods for measuring and tracking progress; setting flexibility, endurance, strength, nutrition, and stress-reduction goals; promoting lifetime fitness; proposing a rationale for starting a fitness program; fitness prescriptions for individuals at various stages of fitness.
Fitness Programs for the General Population
Planning health assessments, setting goals, and designing fitness programs for clients; creating fitness programs based on aerobic and strength-training components; evaluating fitness workout formats; the six basic body positions; safety considerations for designing new fitness programs; interacting with clients during and following workouts.
Health Screening, Testing, and Evaluation
General and specialized health assessments; the importance of informed consent; roles of fitness assessment team members; appropriate tests for measuring strength, endurance, and flexibility; active and passive fitness testing.
Preparing for Special Situations
Partnering with healthcare professionals to provide fitness instruction; exercise guidelines for clients with diabetes and asthma; designing exercise programs for pregnant women; exercise parameters for children and the elderly; typical exercise limitations for individuals with lower back pain; medical conditions that restrict or prevent exercise.
Instruction Set 7
Leadership characteristics of fitness professionals; responsibilities of being a role model; methods for capturing and keeping clients’ attention; selecting appropriate props for exercises classes; creating an environment that reflects the varying pace of workouts; establishing a rapport with clients; communicating with clients at different fitness levels.
Legal and Ethical Issues
Common liability issues facing fitness professionals; forms and contracts required for fitness professionals, facilities, and clients; sources of legal information; identifying situations with potential for injury and/or litigation; minimizing risk within a fitness facility; ethical issues related to the fitness profession.