The United States Sports Academy is taking strides to provide a training program to prepare strength and conditioning professionals for the preeminent certification exam in their field.

The Academy is working to develop a National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) approved preparation program to help strength and conditioning professionals as they take their Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) exam – the preeminent certification of its kind, but the average pass rate for it is 56 percent, with international candidates passing at significantly lower rates.

Academy chair of sports exercise science Dr. Brian Wallace has been working to develop the 10-module program – a combination of lectures, quizzes, guided discussions, practice exams, reviews and practical, hands-on experience. The program will culminate with the student’s ability to pass the Academy’s Sport Strength and Conditioning Certification (SSCC) exam, which would prepare them for the NSCA’s CSCS exam.

Continuing education units (CEUs) will also be available for those who need annual recertification credentials so they can stay at the forefront of their field.

The Academy has already completed a pilot program for the Sports Authority in Thailand in 2019 and will offer the program domestically as well. The Academy plans to roll out the program internationally in Thailand, Malaysia, Finland, South America and Singapore.

Further, the Academy will soon add a Master of Sports Science degree in Advanced Strength and Conditioning which will culminate in a Master’s level SSCC*M certification. This will be a certification entailing written (four hour exam), oral questions/responses and practical demonstrations of the candidate’s knowledge, skills and abilities. It will be the highest certification level in Strength and Conditioning currently available.

“These are extremely exciting and needed initiatives with which to be involved,” Wallace said. “There is significant potential to make a meaningful impact at the international, national and regional levels for strength and conditioning education – one of the fastest growing disciplines in the health, fitness and life sciences. The Academy will be working very closely with the NSCA in all aspects of this and other academic programs as we move forward.”