Exercise Safety

Primary Certification Exam Objectives

These objectives, set forth by the Exercise Safety Association founding advisory board in 1978, revised 2007, 2010, 2011, recommend guidelines for the training of SAFE Exercise Leaders; they represent the minimum level of competency and knowledge essential for a group exercise leader to design and teach a safe class and respond to questions and challenges that arise in group exercise situations.

Proficiency in learning these objectives will prepare the instructor candidate to become a group fitness instructor with an appreciation and concern for safety and equip him or her with the necessary information to complete the Exercise Safety Association SAFE Exercise Leader Primary Certification and will provide the basic foundation that is necessary to prepare for the Personal Trainer examination or ESA specialty examinations. The objectives include basic information and general guidelines for working with the average exercising healthy individual who has no major physical, psychological, or health problems; it focuses not only on the guidelines to achieve general fitness, avoid injury, and maintain health for life but also on the rationale for safe exercise.

Since these objectives provide minimum standards of competency, additional information must be learned to teach specialty discipline: Personal Trainer, specific physical disciplines, or teach special populations including but not limited to morbidly obese, pre and post natal females, older adults, physically handicapped, persons with known cardiovascular disease, sport and performance athletes, individuals on medications, individuals with other medical problems, and those recovering from surgery or under medical supervision.

These objectives set a foundation and fundamental standard to understand and appreciate safety, while leading a safe class for average healthy individuals. Further education is strongly recommended through continuing education, advanced, and specialty courses to develop and enhance the basic information and to work with other populations.

Training refers to the process by which one learns information and acquires skills relating to leading a group exercise class. Training includes participation in programs, seminars, workshops, university programs, individual study, teaching, and other forms of learning until the objectives are effectively learned. Certification is the process by which the instructor's knowledge is assessed through testing and maintained through continued education. Continuing education is the process of enhancing the basic level of proficiency by participating in programs, seminars, workshops, university programs, individual study, teaching, and other forms of learning for designed for exercise professionals and health educators.

These primary objectives are in three divisions: leadership and general knowledge of health and safety; core information and skills for designing and leading safe group exercise classes, and related knowledge.

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