2018-2020 Recertification
  • 2018-2020 Recertification
    The NSCA requires that all certificants fulfill their continuing education obligations on a three-year cycle. We are currently in the 2018-2020 recertification period, and the deadline for CEU reporting for all certified individuals is December 31, 2020, regardless of certification date. Read on for more information on how to ensure that you fulfill all the recertification criteria.
  • Recert FAQs CTA

    In order to remain certified, the NSCA requires that all certificants maintain current CPR and AED certification and complete a certain number of Continuing Education Units (CEUs) every three years. A two or three year certification period is common practice among certification organizations in the fitness industry.

    A standard three-year recertification period was chosen for NSCA certification programs to ensure that certificants keep their knowledge of industry trends, technology, and laws/regulations up-to-date. This means everyone recertifies at the same time, regardless of certification date.  

    There are two options for becoming recertified:  

    1. Retake and pass the appropriate certification exam (please contact the NSCA if you are choosing this option - recertify@nsca.com
    2. Complete and report the specified number of CEUs, (per the chart below) and pay the recertification fee.

    Original Certification Date (Shown on Certificate)  Total CEUs Required Category A
    CEU Maximum
    Category B
    CEU Maximum
    Category C
    CEU Maximum
    Category D
    CEU Maximum
    Member Fee
     (per credential held)
    Non-Member Fee
    (per credential held)
    Before 2018* 6.0 5.5 4.0 5.5 3.5 $65 $90
    During 2018* 4.0 3.5 2.5 3.5 1.5 $55 $80
    During 2019* 2.0 1.5 1.0 1.5 1.0 $45 $70
    1/1/20 to 6/30/20 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 $35 $60
    7/1/20 to 12/31/20 0.0 - - - - - -

    *CEUs must be earned from at least two categories. †Only CEUs earned after 1/1/18 qualify. ‡Only CEUs earned after the date of certification qualify.

    Learn more about how to report CEUs >> 


    Individuals with expired certifications may petition NSCA for reinstatement of their certifications at any time. Please access the reinstatement forms here. Reinstatement will be granted upon fulfillment of the following conditions.


    • All CEUs must have been earned during missed reporting period(s).

    • Presentation of documentation that all required CEUs were earned since the last successful recertification and earned in accordance with the requirements of the recertification policy in effect at that time.   

    • Payment of reinstatement and all related recertification fees of previous recertification period(s). If reinstatement is granted, certificants will maintain their initial certification date. Certificants who are denied reinstatement may appeal to the Certification Committee. The Certification Committee will review appeals at the Committee’s next scheduled meeting and render a final decision. 


    What if I have more than one certification?


    If you hold multiple certifications, the same policies and procedures apply. You do not, however, need to submit 6.0 CEUs separately for each certification. For example, if you became CSCS and NSCA-CPT certified before January 1, 2018, you are only required to submit a total of 6.0 CEUs for the 2018-2020 reporting period. A more complex scenario exists if you became CSCS and NSCA-CPT certified at different times during the 2018-2020 reporting period. Special attention must be paid to the dates on your certificates to assure that the required CEUs are completed after those dates. Certificants are encouraged to contact NSCA if there is confusion regarding recertification requirements.


    What CEU documentation do I need, and where do I send it?


    At this time you do not need to send in any supporting documentation. If you are audited at the end of the reporting period we will provide instructions on how to submit supporting documentation.


    When will I get my new certificate?


    Recertification packets will start being mailed out February 2018.


    How much does recertification cost?


    Recertification fees are per credential and depend on your certification date and membership status. Please refer to the recertification chart that includes the category maximums and fees based on certification date.


    Is there a grace period or late fee option?


    Late reporting was available through January 31, 2018. You may qualify for reinstatement, if CEUs were earned before 12/31/2017). Please see Reinstatement process.


    Why does NSCA have a three-year recertification period?


    A two- to three-year recertification period is common practice among certification organizations in the fitness industry. A three-year recertification period was chosen by the NSCA Certification Committee to ensure that certificants keep their knowledge of industry trends, technology, and laws/regulations up-to-date.


    How do I Recertify with Distinction (*D)?


    Certificants who complete more than the required number of CEUs in a recertification period may be eligible to earn the added distinction of the “*D” (referred to as “star-D”). To qualify for recertification with distinction, certificants must earn a total of 10 CEUs from NSCA-sponsored activities in a recertification period. Holders of multiple NSCA certification must earn additional CEUs in order for the “*D” to count toward all certifications held (12 CEU for two certifications, 14 CEUs for three or more). The “*D” must be displayed following the appropriate NSCA certification credential(s), separated by a comma, with no space in between, example: “CSCS,*D”.


    Does the NSCA Perform CEU Audits?


    NSCA will conduct a random audit of all certified individuals submitting their CEU Reporting Form and recertification fee. Those individuals selected for the audit will be required to submit their CEU documentation to NSCA. Those chosen randomly for the audit will be notified by mail no later than March following the reporting deadline. Once contacted, certified individuals have 45 days to submit the documentation that supports the information on the previously submitted CEU Reporting Form. If supporting documentation is not provided, or does not substantiate the activities listed on the CEU Reporting Form, the conditions for recertification will have not been met and those individuals will not be recertified.


    Can I use my Physical Therapy Education for recertification CEUs with the NSCA?


    Read "Maintaining CSCS Status as a Healthcare Professional” by John McCarthy for insight on how to determine what will and won't be accepted as CEUs for your NSCA credential(s).

    How do I test in lieu of reporting CEUs?


    Register through the NSCA website for the exam, and contact recertify@nsca.com once you have registered to ensure that you will receive the appropriate credit for recertification.