Functional Exercise Therapy
vs. Personal Training

Functional Exercise Therapy, formerly known as “Fitness Therapy”, occasionally gets confused with traditional Personal Training. It’s very important for Functional Exercise Therapy to distinguish itself from Personal Training for a few reasons:

  • Personal trainers are fitness professionals who work to create exercise programs to reach personal health and wellness goals, however, their work is predominantly with the healthy, abled-body population.
  • Few have the experience and/or skills to develop and provide the needed programming for disabled individuals.
  • Functional Exercise Therapy are also fitness professionals, however, they focus strictly on working with disabled populations.

To make the transition from being a fitness professional to a Functional Exercise Therapist that works with disabled individuals, prospective Therapists must:

    • Have at least a Bachelor’s degree in an exercise science-related field
    • Obtain specialized certifications geared towards working directly with the disabled community, such as the CBIS and ATRI certifications (learn more about these by clicking here.)
    • Have no less than 250 hours of classroom and hands-on training with disabled individuals.

More Resources

Read more articles from Functional Therapy Unlimited on the topic of Functional Exercise Therapy vs. Personal Training.
Who’s Teaching the Physical Therapists & Personal Trainers How to Educate Patients/Clients Correctly, 2013
Fitness Therapy Vs. Personal Training, 2014

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