Diploma in Exercise and Wellness


The purpose of the Hope College Exercise & Wellness Diploma is to help operationalize the mission and objectives of Hope College by providing students with an educational experience that will position them to be qualified for entry level personal trainer or fitness instructor positions or for further education toward a baccalaureate degree.


The Hope College Exercise & Wellness Diploma will offer students a number of unique pedagogical experienced including:

  • small student:instructor ratios offering close mentoring throughout the program;
  • immediate access to local practicum placements at the Drumheller Badlands Community Facility Fitness Centre;
  • delivery in a rural context with an acute sensitivity of issues related to living and working in rural communities;
  • instructional practitioners – individuals not only qualified to teach but proven exercise & wellness service professionals;
  • student practicum placements in both the first and second year of the program;
  • a flexible curriculum that allows instructors to ensure that students are exposed to leading edge ideas and needs in personal training.

Course Title: The Physiology of Exercise – PT 101

This course will cover the basics of human physiology at rest, as well as during acute and chronic exercise. Control mechanisms and the main adaptations occurring within the body during exercise will also be examined.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Describe the physiology of the human body at rest, during acute and chronic exercise;
  • Explain the control mechanisms of the human body at rest and during acute exercise; and
  • Explain how the human body adapts during exercise

Course Title: Biomechanical Movement – PT 102

The basic biomechanics of human movement will be covered with an emphysis on the interrelationship between posture, movement and various exercises. The goal from this course is to analyse posture, movement and exercise.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Analyze and assess posture during standing, simple movement and exercise;
  • Understand and explain ideal posture and postural deviations; and
  • Explain how myofascial and skeletal systems in the body affect posture and movement.

Course Title: Endurance Training and Assessment – PT 103

This course covers how aerobic/endurance training improves health, performance, and body composition. Students will learn how to assess a clients aerobic fitness level, and how to develop endurance training programs specific to the needs of their clients.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Understand and explain the importance of aerobic training;
  • Individualize aerobic training programs for clients;
  • Assess clients aerobic training before and during a given program; and
  • Organize and perform aerobic training sessions.

Course Title: Resistance Training and Assessment – PT 104

This course will teach students the importance of resistance training and how to properly guide clients through a resistance training program. Course content will include the value of resistance training, physiological adaptations, equipment and training modalities, program design, and exercise prescription specific to muscular development. Students will learn how to perform assessments, demonstrate training methods, and support clients though specific to resistance training programs.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Administer assessment protocols and interpret results;
  • Demonstrate and explain safe resistance training techniques;
  • Perform cueing and spotting techniques for clients; and
  • Prepare resistance training programs which address a variety of training goals.

Course Title: Functional Training and Assessment – PT 201

Functional training builds the foundation necessary to enhance performance in strength, power and speed in either daily living activities or sport. This course explores training methods to refine stability, balance, movement and overall strength. Learn to assess movement quality, interpret results and design functional programs specific to movement efficiency, quality and functional strength.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Explain to clients what functional training is and why it is important;
  • Outline the relationship between the fasciae, muscular, skeletal and nervous systems in relation to human movement; and
  • Perform assessments and create functional protocols focused on optimizing movement and strength;

Course Title: Corrective Exercise – PT 202

This course teaches students how to assess for, and correct, movement impairments and injuries.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

Assess for injuries;

Assess for movement impairments;

Take a thorough client history specific to injuries; and

Offer corrective techniques to optimize healing.

Course Title: Program Design – PT 203

This course utilizes the knowledge gained from all other courses in the Personal Training diploma program, and takes students through the whole program design process. From assessment through program design and administration, students will learn how to plan, counsel, motivate, demonstration, prescribe, and modify.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

Recommend a course of action based on pre-appraisal screening;

Conduct and interpret a complete fitness appraisal;

Design a client centered physical activity/exercise prescription for achieving and maintaining health- related fitness; and

Monitor clients during their exercise program and make adjustments as needed.

Course Title: Personal Training Practicum I and II – PT 204A and PT 204B

As a mandatory requirement for the Personal Training Diploma program, students will spend 50 hours applying their educational training in a professional setting. Settings include, but are not limited to, fitness centers, chiropractic offices, spas & other fitness organizations, physiotherapist clinics, multidisciplinary clinics, and senior facilities involving individual and group therapy. The Co-operative placement allows students to build confidence and become familiar with a clinical/practice setting in the Personal Training field.

Upon completion of the course a student should be able to:

  • Obtain a working understanding of the roles a Personal Trainer can play within a healthcare setting;
  • Obtain on the job experience working with people as a Personal Trainer;
  • Prepare and administer personalized exercise programs; and
  • Develop an in-depth understanding of the day to day routine and occupational environment of a Personal Trainer.