Professional Trainer capstone Externship

Program Overview

Life Time Academy has created the Professional Trainer Capstone course to provide a unique hands-on educational experience for students who currently hold a Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) certification. Students will gain the necessary real-world practical experience to succeed as one of the industry's top personal trainers.

The focus of this course is on applying the previously learned sciences to functional anatomy, assessments and program design in a practical hands-on training environment to prepare graduates to succeed as Personal Training Professionals. A determination is made after reviewing the student's application and health and fitness industry certifications. Only applicants with current CPT certifications will be considered for acceptance to this program.

The Professional Fitness Trainer Capstone course Certificate of Completion can only be obtained through Life Time Academy and it is the result of a partnership between Life Time Academy and the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).

Program Description

The Professional Trainer Capstone course offers an 8-week externship, with the exception of any declared student holidays, totaling 120 contact hours.

Career Support

Life Time Academy includes career support including an interview with Life Time Human Resources (approximately 70% of graduates are hired by Life Time Fitness).

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Contact our Admissions Team to Learn more about our Personal Training Programs.

"LT Academy is an exciting opportunity because it makes learning the information necessary to be a competent trainer easy & enjoyable."

LTA Student, 2013

"I knew that going through LTA, I would be educated in a method and philosophy I really believed in and had experienced firsthand."

LTA Studnet, 2013


Check for dates and instructions on the school calendar.  Applications being accepted now!


Course offerings vary by location. Select your location to view the available Programs & Classes:

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Personal Training Administration

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Why choose Life Time Academy?

  • Life Time Academy students have a 100% pass rate on their NASM exams (CPT, CES, PES)
  • 99% of Life Time Academy graduates are now working in the health fitness field.
  • 70% are now working for Life Time as a full time Personal Trainer.
  • All courses are instructor led at one of our state of the art training facilities.

Why hands-on, in-person training versus an online training course?

Online certification can get you certified and educated but that's where it stops. Currently, the personal training industry experiences high turnover rates because many trainers aren't prepared for the real-world of personal training. At Life Time Academy we prepare you not only for certification but the business and human interaction side of the personal training industry. You learn:

  • Running your personal training business
  • Building and growing your client base
  • Communicating and coaching a wide range of customers
  • Real-life experience and mentorship in a health club setting
  • Equipment, nutrition, and lifestyle

I would like to see the facilities and visit the school, what are my options?

Our campus locations and addresses can be found on the website, in addition to upcoming Open House dates that allow you to visit the campus, meet instructors and learn a bit more about the school and the curriculum.

How do the classes work? What are the time requirements?

Life Time Academy's programs consist of three components - Instructor-led online courses, in-class labs, and an externship.

  1. Online courses — students take two online courses every eight weeks. Most students dedicate 10 to 12 hours per week to their online studies. Prior to starting classes, students are required to attend an online orientation so they know how to utilize all the resources on our website.
  2. In-class labs — students are required to attend one 2 to 3 hour lab per week. The options for labs include: Tuesday nights (5:30-8:00pm) or Saturday's from 1-5pm.
  3. Externship — students are required to complete an externship during the last eight weeks of the program. The schedule consists of 3 required lecture hours per week and generally 3 hour work blocks in accordance with the following schedule.

    Externship dates and times include: Monday-Friday (9am-noon) or Monday-Thursday (6-9pm) and Saturday (9-noon).

Why Life Time Academy?

Our goal is to prepare individuals for a successful career in personal training. Life Time Fitness is the single largest employer of personal trainers in the country and we have learned a lot during that time. Life Time Academy separates itself from other industry certifications by providing you:

  • Practical experiences
  • Instruction from industry professionals
  • State-of-the-art equipment and faciltiies

What is the tuition? Do you offer scholarships?

Certification courses start as low as $1,500 and go up to $6,000 if you want to go all-the-way to the master level certification program. Contact Us to discuss your level of interest with one of our certification specialists so we can design the perfect program and answer any questions you might have.

Life Time Academy offers scholarships. Please inquire for details.

What are my options for paying tuition?

  1. Option 1: Tuition financing. The total tuition minus application fee, scholarships, and down payment divided by how many months the program takes. Payments range from $300 to $650 per month. Contact us for more information.
  2. Option 2: Some students have had success applying for a private loan through their bank, credit union, or family member. Admissions is happy to answer questions and offer suggestions for students who have specific questions.
  3. Option 3: You can also pay in full, payment due two weeks prior to start date.

Do you offer job placement?

If your desired outcome is to work for Life Time Fitness, top performing students have a great opportunity to be employed and the majority of our students do receive job offers. 100% of the graduating students receive an interview with Life Time Fitness. Life Time Academy does not guarantee employment.