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Foundational Fitness

Certificate Program


Over the past decade, the percentage of American youth, adults and older adults who are under fit and overweight has increased significantly, with related escalation in degenerative diseases and health care costs. One potential solution to these problems is competent, academically trained fitness professionals who can help our inactive population develop desirable levels of muscular strength, cardiovascular endurance, joint flexibility, and body composition. This certificate program is designed for students who want to work as exercise instructors in YMCAs, fitness centers, or retirement communities, and also provides the framework for progressing to a national personal trainer certification.

Program Outcomes

At the completion of the program, the student should be able to:

  • Develop a philosophy of wellness/fitness that enhances quality of life for themselves and their clients.
  • Apply research-based principles of exercise physiology for designing safe and effective exercise programs for improved muscular strength, cardiovascular. endurance, joint flexibility, and body composition
  • Apply research-based principles of biomechanics for making appropriate exercise selection and teaching proper exercise performance.
  • Develop individualized fitness programs to accommodate the training objectives and exercise abilities of youth, adults, and older adults.


Please note that the Foundational Fitness certificate program is not eligible for financial aid.

Academic Division of Natural & Health Sciences

Foundational Fitness Courses
    • Code
    • Course
    • Credits
    • EXS 102
    • Muscular and Cardiovascular Fitness
    • 3
    This course addresses the principles for improving muscular fitness and cardiovascular fitness in youth, adult and senior populations. The emphasis is on practical application of the training guidelines and the expected physiological adaptations resulting from various exercise programs. Students will demonstrate a thorough understanding of exercise theory, training effects and program design for enhancing muscular strength and cardiovascular endurance in apparently healthy individuals.
    • EXS 119
    • Bioenergetics and Biomechanics
    • 3
    This course explores the energy sources for aerobic exercise (such as running), and anaerobic exercise (such as strength training). Students will demonstrate a thorough knowledge and understanding of aerobic and anaerobic energy production and utilization. This course also addresses the biomechanics of exercise, including movement patterns, movement planes, leverage factors, musculoskeletal interactions, and force development. Students will demonstrate a thorough understanding of biomechanical principles and practical application to proper exercise performance.
    • EXS 201
    • Youth and Senior Fitness
    • 3
    EXS 201 examines fitness across the lifespan and is presented in two sections. The first section of this course presents the physiological growth, development, and maturation of children/adolescents, along with research recommendations and training guidelines for providing safe and effective youth exercise programs. The second section of this course presents the physiological changes that occur in aging adults, along with research-based physical activity guidelines and training recommendations for safe and effective older adult exercise programs

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