Evidence-informed foundations

Get the in-depth knowledge in exercise science and physiology that you need to be a competent, successful personal trainer. 


Fitness Alberta has partnered with the National Council on Strength and Fitness to offer a post-secondary level, evidence-based online course in personal training. The course will prepare you to write your Fitness Alberta CPFT theory and practical exams. 

About the online course and certification process

Online Course and Process

1. How does the online course work?

  • When you purchase the online course you will receive two emails within 24 to 48 hours. 
  1. One will be from Fitness Alberta. It will contain a link to the online CPFT resource manual. The resource manual includes learning outcomes and supplementary information for Canadian personal training practitioners.  
  2. The second email will be from the National Council for Strength and Fitness. It will include log in information for you to access the online e-Learning platform. This is where the course is hosted. 

The personal trainer online course is recognized across North America. It provides required readings, applied scenarios and activities, and quizzes to ensure that you have a firm grasp of the knowledge base that is needed to complete the training activities. The course material is divided into 8 learning units with 17 chapters of information. Upon completion the course requirements (readings, practical activities and quizzes) you will be prepared to write the CPFT exam.

2. Do I have to complete the chapter quizzes and final practice exam?

  • Yes, you are required to pass each quiz and final practice exam to complete the course. Quizzes and exams can be taken as many time as you like to aid in your learning.

3. Do my chapter quiz scores count toward my final score/grade?

  • No. The quiz marks are a good gauge of your comprehension of the material, however they do not count towards a final mark.

4. Can I take a chapter quiz more than once?

  • Yes. We recommend that you take the chapter quizzes as many times as you feel necessary to understand the content.

5. Do I have to take the CPFT skills mentorship?

  • No, but it is highly recommended. The skills mentorship covers key practical skills in client health assessment profile protocols (CHAP); counselling and program design, and demonstration. You receive one-one-one tips and advice from a qualified CPFT examiner who is knowledgeable in the practical assessment requirements, and the art and science of personal training. The mentorship has been shown to increase success rates for candidates taking their practical assessment.

6. How long do I have to complete the course and requirements to become certified?

  • You have one year to complete all of the requirements and pay your fees. We suggest that you complete the course within the first six months, so that you will have ample time to write and pass the exam, practical assessment and CPR requirements. Missing the deadline for certification registration can result in additional fees for extension, and an exam rewrite fee. If you are unable to meet your deadlines, please contact us immediately at info@aflca.ca. 

7. How will you know if I have completed the online course?

  • Once all of your quizzes have been completed, we know you have completed the course. Once you've completed the quizzes please send an email to info@aflca.ca indicating that you have completed the course and are ready to book your theory and practical exams . You'll book your exam online at a time that's convenient for you. Practical exams are booked with an examiner (in person and virtual options may be available).

8. How long does it take to get my exam results?

  • Certification exams are completed online and results are immediate.

9. What happens if I don’t pass the theory or practical exams?

  • You can retake supplemental theory and/or practical exams. Each exam can be retaken twice.

10. How do performance standards differ from learning objectives?

  • Performance standards are based on standards for practice and provide the demonstrable competencies that you will be evaluated on in your examinations and practical assessments. Learning objectives are topics within each chapter that, upon completion of the chapter, you will understand and be comfortable with to inform your work. There is overlap between Performance Standards and chapter learning objectives.

11. What is included in the course fees?

  • Course fees include the full online course, quizzes and practice exams, digital textbook, learning videos, and resource manual. It does not include certification fees, written exam and practical examination fees.