Florida Gulf Coast University Course Registration

NCCA Accreditation seal for Certified Personal Trainer course

(Test Vouchers Included)


Location: Fort Myers

Gold CPT: Starts 9/22/2020
Group Fitness: Starts 9/26/20
Lifestyle: Starts 10/17/2020

Gold Certified Personal Trainer Certification

Turn Your Passion for Fitness Into a Rewarding Career

Earn your Personal Trainer Certificate of Completion online and Get your national NCCA Accredited Certified Personal Trainer credential as a bonus. This will position you for success in the world of personal health and wellness.

Gold Certified Personal Trainer Course

The W.I.T.S. online personal tNCCA Accredited Program - Seal of Accreditationrainer course is a SELF-PACED program with short, impactful online videos to be a successful personal trainer in the fitness industry. The lessons will help you with key core topics to learn how the body functions under the stresses of exercise. Learn exercise physiology, kinesiology, nutrition and more. The essential practical skills are packed with insightful drills that you can duplicate to master the skill set. This course is loaded with practice quizzes, discussion boards and much more. We have included incredible veteran fitness mentors to help your successful outcome. Our supplemental internship programs walks you into some great job opportunities. Your test vouchers for the NCCA Accreditation national exams are included and a must for employers. Turn your passion into a career. (Bonus Practical In-Person Gym Review)

Course Length and Structure

Upon registering for the course, you will be sent a course invite from CANVAS a learning management system. Just add your own password and join the class. In the five-week online course, there will be four teachers mentoring you throughout the program. Upon completion of the online class, you will meet online OR in-person if gyms are open for a big review lab during the weekend to role play and master what you have learned online. You will complete your national certification exam in-person on the seventh weekend. The course is comprised of video clips followed by quizzes along with discussion board learning activities. Please note: If social distancing rules are lifted and the college is open for face-to-face classes, the labs will be conducted in person on Sundays.

Course Material

The tuition does not include the course manual. You will need to purchase the manual through W.I.T.S. Upon receiving your material you will be able to begin your course.Textbook: Howley, Edward T. and Thompson, Dixie L. 2017. Fitness Professional’s Handbook. 7th Edition with web resources (ISBN-13: 9781492523376). Publisher: Human Kinetics, Champaign, IL. Cost is $89.00 + $9.95 shipping, for a total cost of $98.95 and must be purchased by the student. Students may buy the textbook from the W.I.T.S. Store. Rent or own the 7th edition while supplies last with FREE shipping: Visit Amazon.


  Add to cart

Gold Group Fitness Certification

Group Fitness Instructor Course Syllabus

Course Textbooks: Methods of Group Exercise Instruction, Second Edition, Carol Kennedy Armbruster & Mary M. Yoke & Group Exercise Cardiovascular Fitness: Supplement Reading from Concepts of Physical Fitness: Active Lifestyles for Wellness, 16th ed.

Course Description: Experience a group fitness course like no other! Optional formats based on the college preference of 5, 8 or 12 weeks of intensive training will help you to develop skills for leading a group to the best of your ability. The program will include lecture materials, practical lab demonstrations and interactive participation. Lecture materials will cover the essentials of group exercise history, music, choreography, safety techniques, as well as basic applied science specifically relating to group fitness cardiovascular, muscular, and flexibility health. Practical labs will expand into skill development for functional training, sports conditioning, circuit, boot camp, dance, step, kickboxing, hi-low, aqua, indoor cycling, and equipment-based class techniques. A mind body overview in Yoga & Pilates will cap it off so you can incorporate this knowledge into sections of your traditional class formats. Passing this group fitness course will provide students with a certification and skill set for private & public fitness centers. It is perfect for those passionate about starting a part-time or full-time career in fitness or improving their own exercise experience!

Special Note: The written and practical test voucher / exams are included in this course on the 6th week.

Level 1 Certification: Current CPR/AED certification and pass both written and practical certification exams.

Level 2 Certification: Level 1 plus completion of a 30-hour internship.

Course Overall Objectives: At the conclusion of this course, students will be able to do the following:

  1. Discuss the evolution of group fitness.
  2. Conduct health-screening assessments appropriate for a group fitness environment.
  3. Determine appropriate and safe exercise movements & intensities.
  4. Apply principles of group cohesion to group fitness.
  5. Safely, incorporate music and sound into a group fitness program.
  6. Describe the basic anatomy as it applies to each class format.
  7. Discuss balancing body mechanics & musculature.
  8. Correctly cue, perform, monitor and design exercises for a group setting.
  9. Demonstrate warm up and cool down movements and stretches.
  10. Apply principles and methods of group exercise to alternative formats such as sport conditioning, functional training, indoor cycling, kickboxing, step aerobics, equipment-based classes, and lifestyle type classes.
  11. Demonstrate motivational strategies to encourage group exercise participation.
  12. Create, demonstrate, and lead a group exercise class with personality, safety, technique, & an expansive knowledge base.

W.I.T.S. is a member of the International Association of Continuing Education and Training (IACET). The American Council on Education has recommended 3 undergraduate academic credits for students who complete the full program including the 30-hour internship.


Reading Assignments

Group Fitness Instructor

Assignments & Learning Objectives - Lecture session:

Session 1

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to:

  1. Describe the evolution of group exercise (GX) since the
  2. Explain the shift in focus of GX from aesthetics to
  3. Describe research trends in GX and how they relate to industry
  4. Explain how cultural trends influence consumer demand for group
  5. Explainthe difference between physical activity and
  6. Explainthe difference between a student-based versus a teacher-based
  7. List the six skill-related components of
  8. List four health-related components of fitness and explain how GX addresses
  9. Discuss how the baby boomer generation has influenced group
  10. Define the principles of overload, specificity and
  11. Explainthe FITT principle and how it applies to exercise
  12. Describe the components and benefits of
  13. Explainhow to foster a healthy emotional class
  14. Discussthe image of a fitness instructor as a role model.
  15. Define aerobic
  16. Explaincardiovascular fitness
  17. Define different methods for measuring cardio


Session 2:

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to:

  1. List and define the fitness class
  2. Describe pre-class preparation and creating a positive
  3. Define and explain terminology associated with resistance
  4. Identifythe health and fitness benefits of resistance
  5. Locateand identify major muscle groups of the human
  6. List exercises for each major area of the
  7. Define the fundamental components of good body
  8. Describe the elements of good body
  9. List the guidelines for resistance training safety and


Session 3:

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to

  1. Explain the causes of muscle imbalances and identify strategies for
  2. Identify primary opposing muscle groups and their role in good postural
  3. Explain the importance of balancing muscle strength and
  4. Describe the importance of specialty
  5. List key practice guidelines for formulating class
  6. Learn the GX scope of practice in regard to Nutrition
  7. Provide a class with referral and additional resources for nutrition
  8. Define a healthy plate in terms of nutrients and
  9. Define a calorie, and describe how it affects
  10. Define how many calories are in 1 gram of fat, carbohydrate, and
  11. Know what an empty calorie is and be able to discuss with clientele why it is desirable to reduce empty calories in their
  12. Define which nutrients should be reduced in the
  13. Be able to identify the appropriate caloric intake for sedentary and active individuals of varying ages and
  14. Utilizetools for tracking food and

Session 4:

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to:

  1. Explain the role music plays in enhancing exercise
  2. Apply music skills in a group exercise
  3. Define the elements of music in terms of beat, measure and
  4. Create smooth transitions.
  5. Define desirable music tempo for various class
  6. Explain howvarious musical styles can be adapted to diverse populations and class
  7. Discuss legal responsibilities as they pertain to music
  8. List the various options for sound
  9. Explain OSHA
  10. Discuss instructor voice care and
  11. Explain the evaluation criteria for the cardiovascular segment of a
  12. Describe safe technique for choreography patterns and foot
  13. Explain the basic building block techniques for creating choreography
  14. List seven different types of cues used to teach
  15. Explain how instructors can communicate corrections to students in a non-offensive and constructive


Session 5:

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to:

  1. Describe the benefits of aerobic
  2. Explainthe Cardiorespiratory training
  3. Describe the physiological difference between anaerobic and aerobic
  4. List three modes of monitoring exercise
  5. Name the exercise intensity levels recommended for participants of varying fitness classifications, expressed as a percent of maximal heart
  6. Explainthe premise behind monitoring participant exercise
  7. Calculate appropriate exercise intensity for class
  8. Instruct participants on how to self-monitor exercise
  9. Modulateexercise intensity to appropriate levels for varying class
  10. Describe the fundamental principles of step
  11. Describe the fundamental principles of cardio
  12. Explainthe importance of cool-down after the cardiorespiratory

Session 6:

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to:

  1. Describe bone
  2. Describe how GX promotes bone
  3. Identify the risk factors for
  4. Discuss the key elements of exercise prescription for bone
  5. Identify the recommendations for muscle conditioning, benefits, equipment and the safety and technique for each
  6. Describe the difference between neuromotor training, functional training and sports
  7. List equipment for functional
  8. List equipment for sports
  9. Define balance-training
  10. Conceptualize when it is appropriate to add balance training to a GX

Session 7:

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to:

  1. Define the five governing principles of
  2. List the organizations and certifications associated with yoga
  3. Be able to incorporate basic yoga poses in the flexibility segment of a
  4. Be able to discuss the Pilates
  5. List the organizations and certifications associate with
  6. Identify safe yoga and Pilates
  7. Describe safety and technique for indoor
  8. List the certifying organizations for
  9. Demonstrate proper cueing for cycling class and how to “set a tone” for
  10. Define terms associated with water
  11. Describe the importance of water
  12. List the benefits of water exercise in terms of interval

Session 8:

Objectives: After completing this section, students will be able to:

  1. Create client-centered GX
  2. Describe why it is important to incorporate and encourage lifestyle- based physical
  3. List lifestyle-based physical
  4. Define the components of a dance based class
  5. Describe when equipment-based cardiorespiratory training is
  6. List potential complications with equipment-based
  7. List benefits to equipment based
  8. Discuss fusion classes
  9. Describe guidelines for GX ethical
  10. Successfully participate in test review questions and

Assignments & Learning Objectives - Practical Skills Lab

* Labs will cover hands on activities in these chapters.

Session 1:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students will be able to:

  1. Enjoy a general group exercise (GX) class format.
  2. Conduct a HSQ, informed consent, and PAR-Q.
  3. Assess risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
  4. Describe group cohesion tactics and creating a healthy environment for the participant.
  5. List examples of student-centered and teacher-centered instruction.
  6. Explain the importance of monitoring exercise intensity
  7. Demonstrate and calculate resting heart rate (RHR), HR max, and HR reserve for various scenarios at both the carotid and radial pulse.
  8. Administer accurate fitness assessments (YMCA 3-minute step test and 12-minute run or walk test).
  9. Participate in a YMCA 3-minute step test.


Session 2:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students will be able to:

  1. Define the five components of a class and have the tools to develop a well-rounded warm-up.
  2. Analyze the traditional GX warm-up and participate in a sports conditioning warm-up.
  3. Describe the differences between the traditional and sports warm-up.
  4. Define terminology for muscular conditioning, roles of muscles and muscle actions.
  5. Define terminology and demonstrate examples for joint actions.
  6. List the five categories of exercise class evaluation.
  7. Calculating musical beats per minute (bpm)
  8. Develop a warm-up routine that includes dynamic and static stretches, rehearsal moves, and gradually increases the HR.

Session 3:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students should be able to:

  1. Identify the beginning and end of an 8-count and 32-count musical phrase.
  2. Identify musical phrases of 8-count and 32-count patterns in various pieces of exercise music.
  3. Explain how to identify a downbeat and upbeat.
  4. Feel comfortable leading a group through a warm-up.
  5. Explain how muscles work in pairs to produce movement and stabilize joints.
  6. Describe common muscle imbalances and their causes.
  7. Identify the names and locations of major muscles and joints, and their actions.
  8. Identify exercises associated with each muscle group.


Session 4:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate simple 2-count and 4-count choreography segments, using a variety of movement options, as well as arm and foot patterns.
  2. Construct a simple combination of four 8-count phrases, transitioning smoothly from one phase to the next.
  3. Demonstrate fluid transitions between choreography segments.
  4. Demonstrate verbal and visual cueing skills.
  5. Match upper and lower body movement patterns.
  6. Define the appropriate selection of GX music based on beats per minute (bpm).
  7. Participate in a step and kickboxing demonstration.
  8. Develop an appreciation for developing choreography for step and kickboxing.

Session 5:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students will be able to:

  1. Participate in an instructor led warm-up.
  2. Practice monitoring exercise intensity during the cardiovascular component.
  3. Demonstrate simple choreography variations for general format cardiorespiratory training
  4. Demonstrate stretches for major muscle-joint complexes.
  5. Differentiate between dynamic and static stretching.
  6. Identify appropriate scenarios for dynamic versus static stretching.
  7. Develop an understanding of an appropriate cool-down routine.
  8. Develop choreography for an appropriate cool-down including dynamic and static stretches.

Session 6:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate a simple 32-count, 4-phrase combination with correct cueing and musical interpretation for a cardiovascular cool-down.
  2. Participate in a muscle conditioning demonstration.
  3. Participate in a sports conditioning and functional training demonstrations.
  4. Be able to demonstrate movements from each area of the functional training continuum
  5. Describe proper safety and technique for muscle, sports conditioning, and functional training.

Session 7:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students should be able to:

  1. Identify markers associated with proper body alignment.
  2. Analyze exercise body mechanics.
  3. Describe the safety and technique for Pilates, yoga, cycling, and aqua.
  4. Identify common errors in exercise execution for Pilates, yoga, cycling, and water aerobics.
  5. Demonstrate the basic skill set for Pilates and yoga to incorporate mind and body techniques as a portion of GX class when needed (on occasion).
  6. Understand that additional certifications are necessary to teach Pilates, yoga, cycling, and water aerobics on a regular basis.
  7. Continue building confidence in front of a group.


Session 8:

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, students should be able to:

  1. Explain the practical testing format.
  2. Participate in a dance or equipment based demo
  3. Create a group exercise class, using all five components of a traditional GX class.
  4. Utilize music to establish the tone, tempo and pace of a GX class.
  5. Design simple choreography patterns that conform to eight- and 32-count phrasing typical of GX music.
  6. Transition smoothly from one movement pattern to the next.
  7. Design a balanced and productive muscle-conditioning segment.
  8. Lead a class through all five components of a traditional class, including warm-up, cardiorespiratory conditioning, post-cardio cool-down, muscle conditioning and flexibility/cool-down.
  9. Satisfy the evaluation criteria as outlined in Group Exercise Class Evaluation Form, Methods, Appendix A.

Group Fitness Instructor Certification – 2 Levels

Approved for 3 College Credits towards a degree!

62 W.I.T.S. CECs/ 6.2 IACET CEUs

ACE_logoThis online 9 module hybrid certification is like no other in the fitness industry. This self paced mentored course will help you to develop skills for leading any group in an exciting safe routine. Lectures will cover the essentials of group exercise history, music, choreography, safety techniques, as well as basic applied science specifically relating to group strength, cardiovascular, muscular, and flexibility. Practical labs will expand into skill development for functional training, sports conditioning, circuit, boot camp, dance, step, kickboxing and equipment-based class techniques. A mind body class overview in Yoga & Pilates will cap it off so you can incorporate this knowledge into sections of your classes. A valid CPR/AED card must be presented to test. The test vouchers ($350 value) are included with this program.

Prerequisite: GED or High School Diploma

2 - Group Fitness Instructor Certifications

Level 1 – Pass both Written Exam & Practical Skills Exam
Level 2 – Be a Level 1 Group Fitness Instructor Certified & Complete the 30 Hour Internship

Unique options (Gold Packages) to guide your success in the W.I.T.S. online hybrid/blended program:

Course Options

Option 1: GOLD Package – Level 1 Group Fitness Instructor Certification

  • Get the entire online review program for the Group Fitness Instructor Certified course all in one place.
  • Veteran subject matter experts / instructors to mentor you.
  • Get the entire program AT YOUR OWN PACE in the convenience of your home or at work.
  • Includes video lectures.
  • Includes video practical lab demonstrations to learn the essential skills.
  • Includes quizzes to assure your knowledge is solid.
  • Includes discussion boards to share with your mentor’s input & other students.
  • Engage your fellow international community of students worldwide.
  • Includes exam review
  • Includes study tools with beating heart video links and more!
  • Includes the BONUS test vouchers ($350 savings)

group fitness instructor certification textbooks combo pack Group Exercise 2-book Combo


What is Hybrid/Blended Learning?
W.I.T.S. combined special video enhanced core knowledge online lectures with the optional extras of “LIVE “hands on practical skills”. Complete your goals at home or from anywhere!!

View Exam Dates and Locations

Lifestyle Wellness Coaching Certification

Lifestyle Wellness StretchingThis unique Lifestyle Wellness Coaching Certification course will show your client that providing specific insights into their individual wellness is just as vital to their long term success as creating an exercise program. Our Lifestyle Wellness Coaching course will enable you, as a trainer, to communicate, motivate, and support your client IN NEW INNOVATIVE WAYS towards reaching their goals. This self-paced online-mentored class will help you develop the personal skills you need to lead your clients, while opening new revenue streams outside of just exercise training sessions! Your clients will achieve long-term fitness and lifestyle wellness goals for likely the first time ever. You will provide your clients with personal awareness techniques that will create new possibilities and help them overcome previous limitations.

Lifestyle Wellness Coaching Certification includes 9 hours of video instruction, drills and testing. The W.I.T.S. video lessons will teach you the skills of successful coaching and allow you to practice and build confidence in your coaching relationships as a lifestyle wellness coach. This is the next level in your professional growth to build your personal business and increase your billable hours.

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  1. Identify the core ingredients in Lifestyle Wellness Coaching
  2. Apply principles of goals and goal setting to assist clients in their lifestyle fitness pursuits
  3. Discuss the evolution of coaching and the emergence of the Lifestyle Wellness Coach
  4. Determine the essential steps for co-creating the coaching relationship
  5. Explain the importance of coaching agreements and identify the essential components

Lifestyle Wellness Coaching CertificationRecommended Textbook:
Lifestyle Wellness Coaching
J. Gavin and M. Mcbrearty
© 2018
Paper Book 267 pages
ISBN-13: 9781492559634


What You Need to Know About Working as an Independent Fitness Contractor

COVID-19 Notice: Understand that due to the COVID-19 pandemic that there is a risk. We care about our student trainers, teachers, and testers. Therefore, we are requiring masks to enter the gym or college location at the assigned time/s. You must agree to wear a mask at all times and you will be asked to leave the facility if you do not have one or wear it on site at all times.

Refunds: All courses have a $25 processing fee on refunds.

Online Course Access Statement
All of our online courses have 6 month full 24/7 access to complete your online program.  The experience is awesome, simple and very digestible for the novice fitness enthusiast.