Online Fitness CEUs: The Ultimate Guide

Online Fitness CEUs: The Ultimate Guide

Whether you’re a personal trainer or a strength and conditioning coach, you likely need some form of continuing education unit (CEU) to keep your certification valid.

There are multiple ways to get these CEUs, but undoubtedly the online options are the simplest. 

And with so many education providers in today’s market, online CEUs are not only easy, but they contain great educational content.

Here is our ultimate guide to online fitness CEUs, where we highlight CEU opportunities from the major fitness education providers.

What are Fitness CEUs?

Fitness CEUs, or continuing education units, can also be known as continuing education credits (CECs). 

Some fitness education providers require their coaches to earn a number of these units each year to keep their certification valid. Obtaining these credits demonstrates that you, as a coach, are dedicated to continually learning and honing your skills. 

What Certifications Require CEUs?

Numerous fitness certifications require CEUs. Some of the most popular include:

  • NASM
  • ACSM
  • ISSA
  • CanFitPro
  • NSCA
  • IFAA

The number of CEUs required to keep your certification active depends on your certifying body. On top of that, each provider counts credits in their own unique way. Some require more credits, but also apply more CEUs to a given course. Others might apply fewer CEUs to the same course, but then they require fewer credits, too.

Disclaimer: Check with your certifying body before you take any course. Make sure it is a CEU-approved course and double-check how many CEUs it is worth.

Table of Contents:

  1. American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)
  2. American Council on Exercise (ACE)
  3. Athletics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA)
  4. CanFitPro
  5. CrossFit
  6. EXOS
  7. Human Kinetics 
  8. International Sports Science Association (ISSA)
  9. National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM)
  10. National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)
  11. OPEX Fitness
  12. Poliquin Group
  13. Precision Nutrition
  14. Strong First

Online Fitness CEU Options

American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)

Exercise is Medicine

Developed in association with the American College of Sports Medicine, this course will teach you how to coach those who need the help of a fitness professional to manage their health conditions. 

Course Cost: $100

A Nutritionist's View

This course covers hot nutrition topics pulled directly from ACSM’s Nutritionist's View column in their Health and Fitness Journal. The topics covered include fruit and vegetable intake, gut health, gluten-free diets, and more. 

Course Cost: $180

Autism Exercise Specialist

Here you will learn the instructional strategies and skills needed to coach clients with autism in a classroom, gym, and home setting. This course also covers how to create a positive experience for both the participant and other interested parties. 

Course Cost: $120

Foundational Behaviors - Exercise Professionals

A fitness professional is a social career. This course aims to help you enhance your relationships with clients by showing you how to be fully present and communicate mindfully. 

Course Cost: $20

American Council on Exercise (ACE)

Fitness Business Management

If you’re interested in opening your own gym or training studio, this course is for you. Fitness coaching is a business, and this course will teach you how to view it as such and run your own gym. 

Course Cost: $319

Practical Tools for Cardiorespiratory Training

Learn how to create an individualized cardiovascular training program in this course. As the key marker of heart health, the cardiovascular system is something all fitness professionals should focus on in their training program. 

Course Cost $20

Better Brains, Better Bodies: Building Mental Muscle

Physical fitness is both physical and mental, but often the latter is overlooked. Learn how to create positive thoughts around fitness, how thoughts affect physical performance, and promote brain regeneration through physical activity in this course. 

Course Cost: $60

Fitness Nutrition

The ACE Fitness Nutrition Specialist covers how to inform clients about healthy decisions, catalyze healthy routines, and how to coach special nutritional needs. Once completed, you’ll be able to create long-term nutritional changes for your clients. 

Course Cost: $350

Exercise Programming: Muscular Training and the ACE IFT® Model

In this course, you will learn the phases of ACE’s muscular training model and how to progress functional movement

Course Cost: $20

Athletics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA)

Indoor Cycling Instructor 

Capitalize on the craze that is indoor cycling with AFAA’s Indoor Cycling Instructor certification. In this course, you will learn both how to coach a class as well as the physiology behind cycling. 

Course Cost: $314

Group Fitness Instructor Certification

In this course, you will learn how to program group fitness classes for a variety of different methodologies. You will also cover the essentials of exercise and the fundamentals of nutrition. 

Course Cost: Between $300 and $1,000

NASM Nutrition Coach

In partnership with NASM, AFAA’s Nutrition Coach Certification covers how to design and deliver individualized nutrition coaching.

Course Cost: $500


Children’s Fitness Coach

In this course, you will learn how to work with children ages 7-12. Upon completion, you will understand the child development process, the benefits and risks of children's fitness, and how to design an exercise program for this population. 

Course Cost: 160 CAD

Active Aging Certificate

Learn how to work with the fast-growing 50+ population in this certificate. You will learn how to make modifications to clients' programs, assess your clients, and include priorities in a training program. 

Course Cost: 160 CAD

Online Fitness Professionals

This certificate teaches coaches how to adapt to today’s world and offer a mix of in-person and online coaching. You will learn how to coach and present online and how to advance your online business skills. 

Course Cost: 160 CAD


Level 1

Level 1 covers the basics of CrossFit and introduces you to the movements and principles of the sport. This is a requirement to teach CrossFit classes.

Course Cost: $1,000


The CrossFit programming course dives into how to create a workout using the sport’s principles of variance. 

Course Cost: $60

CrossFit Kids

This is an interactive webinar that details how to teach CrossFit to kids ages 3-17. 

Course Cost: $500

CrossFit Dumbbells

If you want to master dumbbells, this course is for you. It highlights the benefits of dumbbells, exercise variations, and how to create a workout using this equipment. 

Course Cost: $50


Performance Specialist Course

The EXOS Performance Specialist Course focuses on integrating mindset, nutrition, movement, and recovery into training. Upon completion, you will understand how to create an individualized strategy for your client in and outside of the gym. 

Course Cost: $1,130

Fitness Specialist Course

This course focuses on how to drive outcomes for any client through fitness. It covers how to communicate effectively, establish goals, create exercise programs, and define nutrition programs.

Course Cost: $570

Integrating Nutrition into Training

In this online presentation, EXOS shares its strategy for developing nutrition programs that encourage clients to integrate their nutrition into their daily lives. 

Course Cost: $70

Human Kinetics

Science and Development of Muscle Hypertrophy

This course focuses solely on hypertrophy, the act of growing muscle. You will learn how to design programs for optimal hypertrophy, how the neuromuscular system is structured, and subtle training nuances. 

Course Cost: $140

BOC Power Athlete

Here you will learn how to develop explosive power in your athletes using training programs, nutrition, and recovery. It also covers how to assess and monitor your clients while they are in your program. 

Course Cost: $420

Powerlifting 2nd Edition

The 2nd edition of this course covers powerlifting in extensive detail. It includes how to periodize programs, the best exercises to include, nutrition ideas, and a look at the mental side of the sport. 

Course Cost: $140

Professional's Guide to Small-Group Personal Training

In the Professional’s Guide to Small-Group Personal Training, you will learn how to apply your knowledge of personal training to a group environment to create a new service offering. 

Course Cost: $80

International Sports Science Association

Online Coach Certification

This certification builds on your current knowledge of fitness coaching and demonstrates how to pivot it to an online service. Here you will learn how to transition your business to online coaching, the best coaching platforms, and how to market your business. 

Course Cost: $480

Hormones and Exercise Pt. 1

Here you can dive deep into the relationship between hormones and exercise. Specifically, you will learn about testosterone, the endocrine system, and hormones’ effect on exercise. 

Course Cost: $120

Eating Disorders 101

This course focuses on the relationship between exercise and eating disorders, specifically, anorexia athletica, anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorders. It also highlights which populations are at risk of developing eating disorders. 

Course Cost: $160

Lifespan Coach Certification

In this offering, you will learn how to keep both old and young clients moving. Both of these demographics have specific needs, and this course highlights the movements, programs, and complexities you need to be aware of. 

Course Cost: $400

National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM)

Virtual Coaching Specialization

This specialization details how to transition and launch your coaching business fully online. It includes how to assess, cue, and market your services online. 

Course Cost: $350

Performance Enhancement Specialist

This course will teach you how to build your client’s strength and power through NASM’s cutting-edge strength and conditioning program. 

Course Cost: $490

Behavior Change Specialist

The key to your clients achieving their fitness goals is consistent behaviors. Here you will learn how to create these behaviors through goal setting, behavior change techniques, effective imagery, and much more. 

Course Cost: $350

Business Accelerator

Fitness coaching is a business. This accelerator program will help you improve your business skills and teach you the best ways to market your services to grow your client base. 

Course Cost: $350

National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)

Developing Athletic Motor Skill Competencies in Youth

This article focuses on how to develop motor skills (control) and then muscular strength in youth, and also details the proper progression. 

Course Cost: $30

Leadership Skills in the Weight Room

Pulled from the 2019 NSCA National Conference, this article highlights evidence-based motivational strategies and leadership behaviors. 

Course Cost: $30

OPEX Fitness

The OPEX Coaching Certificate Program (CCP)

In this course, you will learn the proven OPEX methodology to deliver personalized fitness, behavior, and nutrition programs and how to set yourself apart as a professional coach. You will also learn how to acquire more clients, make more money, and change more lives through health and fitness coaching. Thanks to mentorship and hands-on case studies, you’ll develop confidence as a true fitness professional. (This course provides CEUs for CanFitPro, ACSM, ISSA, NASM, and NSCA)

Programming: Mixed Modal Athletes

Programming: Mixed Modal Athletes is the most comprehensive course on coaching competitive functional fitness. James FitzGerald, inaugural CrossFit Games champion with 25+ years of elite coaching experience, is the first to bring principles, logic, and order to the chaos of the sport. Most importantly, you’ll learn how to win at it. (This course provides CEUs for CanFitPro, ISSA, NASM, and NSCA)

Course Cost: $995

Programming: Movement

As coaches, we tend to make movement more complex than we need to. In this course, you will learn to understand the “why” behind movement deficiencies, how to apply anatomy to real-world coaching, and how to create the right program based on assessment data. (This course provides CEUs for CanFit Pro, ISSA, NASM, and NSCA)

Course Cost: $695

Poliquin Group

Performance Specialist Certification

The Performance Specialist Certification is designed for those who want to become better coaches. This course focuses specifically on strength training and how to write progressive training programs to help your clients hit their goals. 

Course Cost: $950

Program Design

This course dives deep into the science of program design. Students will learn how to develop training splits, the best reps and sets, and how to create more time under tension in their programs. 

Course Cost: $130

Precision Nutrition

Precision Nutrition Level 1 

Precision Nutrition’s Level 1 helps you master the science of nutrition and the art of behavior change coaching. 

Course Cost: $999 during pre-sale or $1,428

Precision Nutrition Level 2

PN’s Level 2 course builds on the foundation set in the previous course and offers a year-long practice-based mentorship. 

Course Cost: $2,625

Change Psychology Course

This digital course is designed to give you insight into why your clients struggle and succeed. In this course, you will learn how to develop habits, change psychology, and identify common client pitfalls. 

Course Cost: $350

Strong First

Kettlebell Certification

Created by Pavel Tsatsouline, this certification will teach you the six kettlebell movements, the swing, get-up, clean, press, snatch, and squat. Further, you will learn how to incorporate these movements into your workout. 

Course Cost: $1,700

Barbell Certification

This certification focuses specifically on the barbell and its power and accessory lifts. 

Course Cost: $1,600

Bodyweight Certification

This two-day event details principle-based bodyweight training. It focuses specifically on the push, pull, and squat patterns. 

Course Cost: $1,300

More Free Education

Whether you’re a personal trainer or a strength and conditioning coach, the above list covers multiple CEU options to help you keep your certification active.

But if you’re tight on funds and still want some education, there’s another opportunity.

We offer a free coaching course that will teach you how to build a successful career in the fitness industry and our individual design coaching methodology. 

Sign up and learn coaching skills you can use with your clients today.


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