Fitness Leadership Associate in Applied Science (Associate in Applied Science, 2020-2021)

Program Info

Year Established
Program Code
Degree Type
Associate in Applied Science

Program Description


Provides knowledge necessary for careers as group exercise instructors, personal trainers, and exercise leaders in national fitness clubs, corporate wellness centers, recreation facilities, and hospitals. Explores areas relative to exercise science such as nutrition, exercise physiology, methods of teaching exercise, and first aid. Many student graduating from this program transfer to university programs in physical therapy, exercise science, athletic training, nursing, nutrition, and health.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this program, students should be able to:

  1. Devise the appropriate exercise prescription for a variety of populations (e.g., obese, athlete, diabetic) following the American College of Sports Medicine guidelines.
  2. Demonstrate communication skills necessary to lead one-on-one and group exercise.
  3. Demonstrate procedures for assessing skill and health-related components of physical fitness based on guidelines from the American College of Sports Medicine.
  4. Diagram the facility requirements for a wellness center as defined by the American College of Sports Medicine.
  5. Describe the physiological changes that occur to the systems of the body as a result of exercise.
  6. Perform the appropriate response to the injury situations that are likely to happen in an exercise setting.
Career Opportunities

A third party independent study funded by the American Council on Exercise completed a study of salaries on people working as personal trainers and group exercise leaders in 2013. The study reported a 12% increase in salaries since 2010, the time of the last study. Currently, the average national salary for personal trainers and group exercise leaders working full-time is $52,537 and for those working part-time in north central United States, exercise instructors are averaging an hourly rate of $26. The survey can be accessed at

A future exercise leader who can work one-on-one with people wanting to improve their health as well as teach classes in aerobics, yoga, or water exercise can find an exciting career path with the Fitness Leadership program. This program provides the student with the credentials and experience to become a leader in the fitness industry.

Registry / Certification / Licensure Exam Information

Students interested in taking industry certification exams such as the American Council on Exercise (ACE) or American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) may elect to do so at the completion of the program. Two courses in the program, HPE 270-Exercise Physiology and 
HPE 151-Methods for Teaching Exercise, are designed to help students be successful with certification.

Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements and Eligibility

There are no special admission requirements to the program, but early in the program students should contact the director of the program to understand the sequence of classes in the program.

General Education

Category 1: English Composition
Complete any one.
Credit Hours

See General Education Requirements for details.

Program Requirements

Required Support Courses
Course name Credit Hours
AH-105: Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers 0.50
BBA-131: Introduction to Business 4.00
SPC-131: Fundamentals of Speaking 3.00
Credit Hours: 18.5
Elective Hours
Minimum Total Credit Hours
Requirements are subject to change. The information represented here is effective starting Fall 2020 and applies to the current catalog year. If you were admitted prior to this year, please check your requirements under the My Progress section of HFC Self Service.