The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

Earn certifications with new fitness elective

Advanced fitness classes allow students to explore different career paths after high school

Personal Fitness and other advanced PE electives have often been looked down upon as a free period for those who don’t want to work hard, but the truth is far from that assumption.

Starting next year, AHS will join select other high schools in the county who offer Personal Fitness Instructor as a course for seniors. The course allows students to earn a certification in personal training at the end of the course, and also comes with an honors credit (+0.5 boost to your GPA).

“You can take a test and when you graduate, you could already have a job lined up and ready to go because you’re a certified personal trainer,” said the Director of Student Activities, Brandon Sutphin.

The course allows students to come out of high school with career opportunities opened up for them, apart from the college path.

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“The moment you take and pass the test, you are eligible to start earning income if you go out and get a job with that,” said health and physical education teacher, Hannah Ekanem.

Apart from the opportunity to earn career certifications through Personal Fitness courses, the classes offer other non-career related benefits.

“Personal Fitness is a free workout, every other day when you have class,” Sutphin said. “For those who are athletes especially, they have practice after school and then go home and do homework. When you take Personal Fitness, you have an opportunity to workout during the day.”

The Personal Fitness Instructor course already has students excited and signed up to participate.

“I’ve always been more fascinated with the human body so I feel like this is a good class to learn about it,” said junior Isaac Redinger. “Also some of my friends are taking it, so I would get to hangout with them. I want to go into STEM, so I feel like it’s a good [way to combine] the human body and STEM.”

In order to be eligible for the fitness instructor course, students must meet some requirements.

“Personal Fitness 1, 2, or a sports medicine class are all upper level PE electives,” Ekanem said. “One out of those three needs to be a prerequisite for you to take the Fitness Instructor course, which we will start offering next year.”

The process for certification at the end of the course is simple.

“From that, you take the course and you are eligible to take the National Association of Sports Medicine test which can certify you to be a personal trainer,” Ekanem said. “When you graduate high school you will have taken the test that FCPS pays for, and then you are a fully certified personal trainer.”

In addition to taking a prerequisite, the course is only available to seniors. Sophomores who are interested are still able to take other advanced PE classes before the required prerequisites, but only one is required.

“Next year [I’ll] take Personal Fitness 2,” said sophomore Thomas Nields. Nields plans to take the Personal Fitness Instructor class when he is a senior.

“I would like to be a personal trainer because I like fitness in general. I like working out and helping others.”

Advanced PE electives can be useful in many ways, and pairing a certification right out of school can be helpful when looking for a job.

“If you want to go into something health related, physical fitness of any kind, it can help with providing that [open door] to get there,” Sutphin said. “With the Personal Fitness Instructor [course], you could be a certified personal trainer and go out and start training individuals to be a better person, to better themselves.”

If you are interested, contact any of the advanced PE electives teachers or our DSA Brandon Sutphin for more information about the course and what it entails.

College does not have to be the only path after high school, and classes like Personal Fitness Instructor, as well as other CTE classes help students explore other options.

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About the Contributor
Morgan Milman
Morgan Milman, Academics Editor
Senior Morgan Milman is in her first year of journalism as the Academics Editor. She plays for the varsity volleyball team and dives for the swim & dive team. In her free time she likes to paint, read, hangout with friends; she plans to study environmental policy in college.

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