Studying for the CSPS Exam
I felt the CSPS exam had more emphasis on the tables and charts listed in all the Special Populations chapters. Know them well.
Definitely know the cardiovascular risk factors and risk factor categories to the point of being ridiculous.
Know your heart anatomy and physiology. I don't feel the Clinical Cardiovascular book is necessary, but a comprehensive review of heart A&P is. That may change for the future.
Many people are saying that the Essentials of PT was key to the exam, and I would agree with that.
The CSPS CD-Rom was a key factor for me. As dumb as it sounds, read what you believe is necessary, but be sure to be thorough. There were a lot of questions that I thought "they never touched on this in the literature," but going back and trying to find it...sure enough, it was there.
After taking the CPT and CSCS exams, I felt I was well prepared for this exam. The NSCA provides the information you need to know to take the test, however it is up to you to determine what it is you know and need to know. There is a lot of information, so take your time and be thorough.
The NSCA tells you to use common sense and don't read too much into the questions while answering them. While this is true, DO NOT let educated guesses be the majority of your answers. KNOW YOUR STUFF!
Aerobic Training and Resistance Training are good to know, but don't skimp on the flexibility and balance aspects of the Special Populations.
Know your contraindications. Know them so well you'll come to hate the word "contraindication"