Why Certify Or Continue Education?
A lot of certification is a racket, a money making scheme to line the pockets of organizations. When you start looking into the $500 to $5000 you’ll spend per cert or workshop, you get cynical. So practitioners find the first specialty which wows them and stick with that for the rest of their careers. Dollars to recertify alone discourage people from going broad in their training.
And there are good reasons to avoid certain licensures: some nutritional standards/ therapy standards are at odds with contemporary science. You have to wade through a bunch of incorrect BS, answer questions on an exam you know aren’t true, in order to obtain titles.
AND on-the-job experience is mostly superior. Realities in clients, mentees, and students turn conventional wisdom in textbooks on its head.
BUT, there is a problem with staying inside your own echo chamber. I can’t even find most of my workshop certificates, awards, endorsements, and accreditation. I have hundreds, filed away in old gym bags and folders and some are in a trash heap somewhere. Did I agree with every presenter? Did I agree with every “correct” answer on a test? Absolutely not. But there’s still value. There’s still the expansion of my worldview.
IN FACT, I learn a lot by seeing how undereducated certain voices of authority in health and fitness are. The NASM-CES misses facets of generalized pain syndrome. At a major kettlebell organization, their master educators don’t understand anthropometry. Looking to see if I could sit for the Dietitian exam, I learned the NDA has archaic guidelines. I just aced the CSCS, but found they don’t know sprint physics, their dietary recommendations are wild, and the NSCA and NASM insist on using disparate language for program design, stages of change, even tactic and reasoning behind a deload, taper, unload.
I am sympathetic to the coaches with zero credentials or just one or two. When you have protocols which work well, why fix what ain’t broke? Why spend money on people who are wrong? Just keep in mind that you can build a lot of mental horsepower ESPECIALLY when going through training with which you disagree.
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