Become a StrongWomen Program Leader

To be eligible for a workshop in the StrongWomen Strength Training Program, YOU MUST:

  1. Be an employee/staff with a nonprofit organization; independent personal trainers, consultants, and for-profit individuals/groups are not eligible to attend the training or to implement the StrongWomen Strength Training Program. If you are not an employee/staff of a nonprofit BUT are working in partnership with a nonprofit organization to implement the program, you must submit a letter from the nonprofit organization as your sponsor. In addition, all leaders are required to sign a scope of use agreement regarding nonprofit use of the program only as well as an understanding that this is not a train-the-trainer program (you are being trained to implement programs and are not permitted to train new trainers).
  2. Be actively strength training. Being physically active in general is, of course, important. But, the expectation is that you are very familiar with lifting weights and are personally committed to and regularly practicing the behavior. This is a mandatory criteria for eligibility.
  3. Have a firm commitment to starting a program in your community. This training is to teach you how to lead a StrongWomen Strength Training class, and should not be attended simply for informational/personal purposes.

 

Sites Appropriate to Run a StrongWomen Strength Training Program Include:

Senior centers, hospital outpatient centers, cooperative extension services, offices on aging, assisted living facilities, independent retirement communities, community fitness centers with a large older population, places of worship, and other places where older adults convene.

 

Experience and Credentials

Below are the experience and qualifications that are optimal for becoming a Program Leader and running the program safely and effectively.

  • Experience in providing exercise instruction in a fitness center, community setting, outpatient hospital setting, or as a personal trainer.
  • Educational background in exercise or some aspect of public health. The appropriate educational background might include medicine, nursing, nutrition, exercise physiology, occupational/physical therapy, massage therapy, or community/public health.
  • Certification by reputable health and fitness organization. Organizations include the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the American Council on Exercise (ACE), the American Senior Fitness Association, the International Association of Fitness Professionals (IDEA), and the Cooper Institute for Aerobics Research. We realize that this is not a complete list of organizations that certify individuals; the Program Leader may have a certification from another organization, and along with his/her education and experience, would be qualified to become a Program Leader.

Note for Potential Sites: Identifying a Program Leader with the above three attributes will contribute greatly to the safety and efficacy of the StrongWomen Strength Training Program. We recognize that some people who want to become Program Leaders may not have any formal education regarding health and fitness, and they may not possess a fitness-related certification. The decision of who becomes a Program Leader is up to you as a site manager, and the StrongWomen Ambassador of the workshop that your interested leader attends.

Space & Equipment

We recommended that the site have a room that is at least 200 square feet (ideally, 400 square feet) to run the program. The room should be well lit and be free of clutter. In addition, there should be sturdy, armless chairs available in the room. Preferably there should be a locked closet either in the room or nearby where the exercise equipment (dumbbells and ankles weights) can be stored between classes. Finally, the entire building should be safe for women of all ages to access. The parking lot (if applicable) should be well lit; there should be proper security of the facility; and the corridors and rest rooms should be safe and well lit.

 

The StrongWomen Workshop (Program Leader Training)

At the StrongWomen Strength Training workshop, program leaders will be trained on the exercise program itself as well as how to effectively instruct and assist participants in learning the exercises. Additionally, the workshop will cover all topics found in the Toolkit such as screening, safety, and effective leadership. Program leaders will be given guidance on how to schedule their programs, discuss space and equipment needs, and strategize about issues such as transportation and gaining local support and funding. Following the workshop, sites/program leaders will then be required to initiate at least one program in their community.

 

Base Training

The StrongWomen, Strong Bones and StrongWomen Stay Young programs are taught together as the base level training. If you are interested in becoming certified as a StrongWomen leader, please click here.

Advanced StrongWomen

The Advanced StrongWomen program is an online training. Leaders must have been teaching StrongWomen for 6 months to complete this training. If you are interested in learning more about the Advanced training or being certified as an Advanced StrongWomen leader, please click here.

Healthy Hearts

StrongWomen Healthy Hearts is a cardiovascular disease prevention curriculum. It is an hour class; 30 mins of leader-directed discussion around eating for heart health and hands-on cooking activities followed by 30 minutes of walking. For more information on becoming a StrongWomen Healthy Hearts leader, click here.

Questions about trainingAngela Flickinger at angela.flickinger@ces.uwex.edu (608) 757-5689

Questions about registration: Sheila JaDoul at sheila.jadoul@ces.uwex.edu (608) 757-5694