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Welcome to the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)

Welcome to the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) Exam Candidates

NSCA is strength and conditioning. That’s who we are; that’s what we do. As the worldwide authority on strength and conditioning, we support and disseminate research-based knowledge and its practical application to improve athletic performance and fitness. NSCA was founded in 1978 by a group of strength coaches who shared a desire to network, collaborate, and unify the profession. Today, the NSCA has a membership of 28,000 exercise professionals and approximately 40,000 individuals actively certified through one of four certification programs. Together we are bridging the gap between science and application.

Industry Leading Certifications for Exercise Professionals


Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists® (CSCSs) coach athletes of all ages and at all levels, from amateur to professional, to achieve maximum performance potential while minimizing the risk of injury. Athletes—from novice to elite—can reach higher levels of performance with the coaching from CSCS-certified professionals.


The Certified Performance and Sport Scientist™ (CPSS™), specializes in the application of scientific processes to improve individual and team athletic performance and decrease injury risk. The CPSS may be either a generalist, working across the breadth of scientific disciplines, or a specialist practitioner, with training or applied experiences predominantly within one or more scientific disciplines relevant to sport science and sports performance.


Certified Special Populations Specialists® (CSPSs) create safe and effective exercise programs for individuals with chronic and temporary health challenges. CSPSs work collaboratively with other healthcare professionals to improve the quality of life for individuals through sustained gains in physical fitness.


NSCA-Certified Personal Trainers® (NSCA-CPTs) empower clients to achieve and maintain healthy lifestyle behaviors. NSCA-CPTs educate clients about health, fitness, nutrition, and customize exercise programs to meet individual needs and goals.


Tactical Strength and Conditioning Facilitators® (TSAC-Fs) train the tactical athletes that defend and protect us on a daily basis. Tactical personnel like those in the military, law enforcement and firefighters have a unique set of strength and conditioning needs to optimize their job-specific fitness and decrease risk of injury.


The CSCS, NSCA-CPT, and TSAC-F credentials are the first of their kind to gain accreditation by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). NSCA upholds the highest education, training, and testing criteria to ensure those who earn NSCA certifications have the highest level of knowledge and expertise. Professionals with NSCA certification are highly regarded and the most sought-after in their respective fields.

Education and Career Support

The NSCA is committed to delivering superior education opportunities and career support to enhance the professional development of NSCA members and certificants. NSCA publishes leading academic and practitioner publications and holds educational events year-round at the national, regional, and state levels. Whether you’re a student defining your career path, a coach looking for additional resources, or a seasoned professional, NSCA has the tools to help you succeed in your career. Unlock outstanding educational content and receive preferred pricing on NSCA certifications by becoming a member of NSCA.

Last updated 2022-04-20