ACSM Certification | Specialized Programs

In This Section:

ACSM Specialty Certifications and Certificates

ACSM specialty certifications and certificates credential those who already have a NCAA accredited certification to work with special needs clients. Specialty certification ranges from the ability to work with clients of different fitness levels, individuals affected by cancer and those with disabilities, and to promote physical activity in public health at national, state and local levels.

All specialty certifications/ certificates/ credentials require that the applicant currently hold an NCCA or ANSI/ISO 17024-accredited fitness certification. 

ACSM Exercise is Medicine Credential®

Exercise professionals who earn the Exercise is Medicine® (EIM) Credential demonstrate their ability to help individuals with common chronic diseases lead healthier, more active lives. They are also more likely to be seen as a trusted referral resource by health care providers.

Anyone can take the EIM Credential online course (worth 15 CECs), which includes practical modules about health care, exercise prescription for common medical conditions, behavioral coaching and more. However, participants must meet additional educational and certification requirements to be eligible to earn the credential itself. 

Discounted member price: $189
Standard price: $379

 EIM Credential and Online Course

  • EIM Credential Requirements

  • What’s in the EIM Course?

  • The EIM-credentialed professional receives:

Autism Exercise Specialist

Developed in partnership with Exercise Connection, the Autism Exercise Specialist certificate is available to exercise professionals, physical or adapted physical education teachers, physical therapists, recreational therapists, or special education professionals. The successful certificate holder is a professional who understands the needs and strategies used with autism when implementing an individual or group exercise program in a gym, home or classroom setting.

The Autism Exercise Specialist online course is the first step in earning the certificate. After completing the online course the applicant must then complete a workshop either in-person or virtually. The online course can also be taken as a standalone course for continuing education credits (6 CECs). 

Discounted member price: $90
Standard price: $120
Online workshop: $350

autism exercise specialist certificate

Two Steps to Earning the Certificate:

Step 1 | Complete the Online Course

Step 2 | Take the Workshop

 ACSM/ACS Certified Cancer Exercise TrainerSM

ACSM has collaborated with the American Cancer Society to develop a specialty certification empowering fitness professionals to work with clients who have been cleared by their physician for independent exercise and physical activity.

Are You Eligible? 

  • ACSM or NCCA-accredited health/fitness certification
  • Adult CPR/AED certified (important COVID-19 update)
  • Bachelor's Degree (in any field) with 500 hours of experience training older adults or individuals with chronic conditions OR
  • 10,000 hours of experience training older adults or individuals with chronic conditions

Price: $195

Steps to Earning the Certification:

Step 1 | Download Exam Content Outline

Step 2 | Study from the Textbook

Step 3 | Register for the Exam

ACSM/NCHPAD Certified Inclusive Fitness Trainer 

In collaboration with the National Center on Health, Physical Activity and Disability (NCHPAD), ACSM has developed a specialty certification for fitness professionals to empower those who are challenged by physical, sensory or cognitive disabilities. ACSM/NCHPAD Certified Inclusive Fitness Trainers (CIFT) give clients the knowledge and support to lead a healthy and comfortable lifestyle.

Discounted member exam price: $150
Standard exam price: $195
Retest: $125

Certified inclusive fitness trainer

Steps to Earning the Certification:

Step 1 | Down the Exam Content Outline

Step 2 | Study from the Textbook

Step 3 | Take the Online Prep Course

Step 4 | Register for the Exam

ACSM/NPAS Certified Physical Activity in Public Health Specialist 

ACSM, in collaboration with the National Physical Activity Society (NPAS), has developed a certification for professionals who want to promote physical activity with focus on the public health setting. The ACSM/NPAS Physical Activity in Public Health Specialist (PAPHS) develops key partnerships to establish legislation, policies and programs that promote physical activity for people all over the country.

Are You Eligible?

  • Bachelor's degree in a health-related field from a regionally accredited college or university, or
  • Bachelor's degree in any subject with 1,200 hours of experience in settings promoting physical activity, healthy lifestyle management or other health promotion.
Exam Price: $195

Steps to Earning the Certification:

Step 1 | Download Exam Content Outline

Step 2 | Study from the Textbook

Step 3 | Register for the Exam