Testing Sections and Objectives: 

Section 1: Program Design
1.1. Design and implement an exercise program for an individual's specific situations and goals (e.g., obesity, hypertension, muscle gain, sedentary, etc.), based on currently accepted protocols.

Section 2 Safety Issues
2.1. Know the fundamentals of injury prevention.
2.2. Determine the appropriate response to emergency situations.
2.3. Demonstrate ability to address/manage pre-existing conditions.
2.4. Apply currently accepted industry standards for exercise safety (e.g., ACSM guidelines, etc.).

Section 3 Exercise Science
3.1. Describe primary functions of muscles and joints during specific exercises.
3.2. Describe primary concepts of human physiology at rest and during exercise (e.g., body systems, pathology, etc.).
3.3. Describe basic principles of nutrition and how they relate to general health and exercise programs.

Section 4 Initial and Ongoing Fitness Assessment
4.1 Determine the appropriate test (test protocol), and interpret the results.
4.2 Determine an individual's level of participation in an exercise program based on physician recommendation and/or the presence of risk factors (hypertension, high cholesterol, family history, etc.).
4.3 Determine and establish appropriate health and fitness goals.

Section 5 Special Populations
5.1 Know program modifications for special populations (e.g., older adults, hypertension, diabetes, asthma, obesity, basic orthopedics, youth, and pregnancy, etc.).

Section 6 Communications Skills
6.1 Utilize appropriate communication skills to motivate and coach individuals in their exercise programs (verbal / non-verbal, open ended vs. close ended questioning, cueing, etc.).

Section 7 Professionalism
7.1 Differentiate actions within the Personal Fitness Trainer (PFT) scope of practice.
7.2 Know the Personal Fitness Trainer (PFT) Code of Ethics and how to apply it to your practice.
7.3 Recognize legal issues and ramifications as they apply to the personal fitness training profession.


All candidates for the NBFE PFTE, Part I or Part II must register through the NBFE web site or by telephone at 1-800-211-2754.


Once the candidate receives a validation of educational requirements from the NBFE, he or she may schedule the Examination Part I with LaserGrade. The exam may be scheduled by phone at 1-800-211-2754.

All candidates MUST provide LaserGrade with information provided on their NBFE Validation document including: (1) Test Name, (2) 5-digit Identification Number, and (3) preferred Test date when scheduling their exam. This validation is good for three months. You must complete the PFTE, Part 1 within 6 months of receiving the validation.

The Test must be paid for at the time of scheduling.


Candidates who need to reschedule their test must reschedule with LaserGrade at least 48 hours in advance of their scheduled date and time. The cancellation and or reschedule must be made AND CONFIRMED by LaserGrade.

Taking the NBFE PFTE, Part I

All Test Candidates MUST arrive at the testing center at least 15 minutes before the test begins. Candidates who arrive later than this risk not being admitted for the test.

All Test Candidates MUST present a valid, current photo ID. A driver's license is a strong option. Identification that is expired will NOT be accepted. If you have questions about the acceptability of your ID, please contact LaserGrade at 1-800-211-2754.

After checking in, you will be led to a test workstation consisting of a computer, monitor, mouse and keyboard. Prior to the start of the NBFE PFTE, Part I you will have an opportunity to complete a short tutorial that describes how to answer questions using the keyboard and/or mouse.


The NBFE reserves the right to disqualify candidates from completing the examination or receiving the results of the examination based on unfair, dishonest or disruptive behavior from a testing candidate. This includes, but is not limited to, use of unauthorized actions or activities during the examination that are detrimental to other candidates.

Disqualified candidates forfeit all fees associated with the examination and may be subject to further penalties including bans for participating in subsequent NBFE examinations.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

The NBFE and LaserGrade will make the necessary arrangements for test candidates with disabilities qualifying under the ADA. Candidates seeking these arrangements should contact LaserGrade at 1-800-211-2754 and provide written request as directed. Candidates taking the examination under the ADA will be required to provide the proper documents for proof of disability from the appropriate health professional.

Report of Scores and Status

All candidates will receive a pass/fail status immediately following the examination at the testing center. Additional information about the number of questions they answered incorrectly in each of the testing objectives will be mailed to each candidate 2 to 4 weeks following the examination. Candidates who successfully complete the examination will receive a certificate within 6 to 8 weeks.

  • Basic Nutrition
  • General Business
  • Human Anatomy
  • Biomechanics
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Kinesiology
NBFE Registered Personal Fitness Trainer Exam

National Board Exams - Part I and Part II

General Test Information

Length: 180 scored questions (up to 20 additional non-scored questions may be included)
Maximum Time: 3.5 Hours
Minimum Passing Score: 129 questions correct

Examination Fees

$195 (limited time discount) for the Personal Fitness Trainer Exams, Part I or Part II
$195 for retaking the PFTE after failing to receive a passing score

Eligibility Requirements — Introducing the NBFE "Open Enrollment"

Candidates for the National Board of Fitness Examiner (NBFE) Personal Fitness Trainer Examination (PFTE), Part 1 must be at least 18 years of age.

Candidates for the first time this October will have the opportunity to participate in the NBFE PFTE, Part I through "Open Enrollment". Open enrollment means that candidates certified through national organizations that have not become NBFE affiliates will be able to register. Candidates must demonstrate proof of a current certification in order to participate (i.e., ACSM, ACE, NASM, YMCA, and more).

Current candidates of affiliate organizations registering for the NBFE PFTE, Part I or Part II must meet a minimum education requirement in one of two ways:

Hold a current Personal Fitness Trainer Certification from at least one nationally recognized fitness certification organization

Complete the following courses and submit official transcripts from an NBFE accepted United States Institution of Higher Learning (College or University):

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