Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) is a certification provided by the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP). The CSEP-CPT certification allows one to provide individual physical activity/exercise prescription(s) to apparently healthy individuals. The purpose of this certification is to establish the minimum standard in the Canadian personal fitness training industry.


Candidates must complete the proper pre-requisites, pass a written theory exam, and successfully complete a practical exam. Registration and membership fees must be paid in full to Ontario Society of Health and Fitness (OSHF) and an annual renewal is required.


Academic requirements

Candidates must provide documentation of having completed a minimum of two years of college diploma or university degree coursework that addresses specifically the core competencies of the CSEP-CPT.

Specific course work requirements

Candidates are required to take a series of introductory courses that meet each of the following core competency areas:

  • Basic anatomy and physiology
  • Basic psychological characteristic and motivational strategies
  • Basic theory and methods of health-related physical fitness
  • Physical activity/exercise prescription and design
  • Safety and emergency procedures
  • Documentation, administration and professionalism

Cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certification

Candidates are required to hold a current/valid level 4 CPR certification. Candidates are also required to have completed a course in emergency or standard first aid.


Once the three prerequisites have been completed, candidates must then successfully complete the examinations and registration. All requirements and information are available in the CSEP-CPT Certification Guide.


  • Pass a written exam with a minimum score of 70% or higher
  • Pass a practical exam (pass/fail)


The candidate will register with the Ontario Society of Exercise Physiology office upon successful completion of the examination process.

Personal training documentation

As a Certified Personal Trainer, the candidate must submit a total of 25 hours of documented personal training experience with clients within one year of successful completion of the written and practical exam.