The CSCS certification is a challenging certification with a lot of information packed in.

This Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist Certification offered through NSCA is revered in the fitness industry.

Trainer Academy has put together this page to help explain the test and offer insight into the phrasing and formation of the questions you will run into when taking the test.

This article looks at the CSCS practice test and covers the following:

Insight into actual questions on the CSCS
Basic information on NSCA and their Strength and Conditioning Specialist Exam
A roundup of Frequently Asked Questions regarding the CSCS

Whether you are already deep into studying for your CSCS practice exam or looking at where to start your studying for the first time, this page of practice questions should assist you in the process.

So, let’s dive right in with basic CSCS exam information.

NCSA CSCS Exam Information

The National Strength and Conditioning Association, or the NSCA, is one of the most well-respected companies in the industry. And their certified strength and conditioning coach program is at the top of the list when looking at Strength and Conditioning Certifications.

For a review of the CSCS course, you can check out our study system.

The certification exam is challenging, and we are going to explain why in this section.

The actual exam is broken into two sections, the scientific foundation, and the practical/applied questions.

The cscs book, The Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, is packed full of 25 chapters, and the information within can get very specific and hit on things that are not found in personal training and other training certifications.

The entire cscs certification exam has a pass rate of only 56%, so this should tell you just how tough it is.

The Practice test we have here is broken down into sections, and then those sections are broken down into the Domains within.

When you are going through these questions, you should try to answer them on your own, and you can look to the page or chapter we have as a reference point in the book to help with the answering.

The drop-down box will then contain the answer and the reasoning below the answer.

Once you have completed this, and even before starting, you should test your knowledge with our practice quiz containing all of these questions to see where your knowledge currently stands.

Section 1: Scientific Foundations

This section is the first of two, and it covers the fundamental principles used to govern exercise science. 

The material here is basic and needed to know for how you actually apply information in client scenarios. This whole section is 1.5 hours total of the test. 

Section one has 3 domains of the 7 total ones.

Domain 1: Exercise Science

This domain will represent 55% of the first section and around 44 questions in total.

The subjects covered here are anatomy, biomechanics, biochemical activity, and psychology.

Domain 2: Sport Psychology

This section represents 24% of the whole section and around 19 total questions.

The topics covered here are psychological techniques and knowledge used for enhancing training with psychology

Domain 3: Nutrition

This represents 21% of the whole section and around 17 total questions.

The topics covered in this section are focused on nutrition as it affects the general health and performance of people.

The other nutrition topics revolve around nutritional choices, macro monitoring diet-related psychology, and disorders. 

Section 2: Practical/Applied

This section is 2.5 hours of testing and it contains a total of 125 questions.

Here we will be applying the principles throughout section 1 and putting them into action for use in programs for your clients.

There is also a focus on the administration portion of operation as a Personal Trainer. This includes the image and video resources for testing your competence across the domains. 

Section two is made up of the remaining 4 domains out of 7. 

Domain 4: Exercise Technique

This domain is 36% of the whole section 2 and around 40 questions.

This domain is going to test you on the training styles of resistance, agility, sprint, and plyometrics.

We also will have information on the energy systems, ATP cycle, and conditioning of the metabolic systems. Flexibility conditioning and spotting techniques are also touched on throughout these questions. 

Domain 5: Program Design

This domain represents 35% of the whole section and around 38 total questions.

This domain looks at the proficiency in crafting plans and programs tailored for clients.

The focus is on the methods and modes of training, the selection of exercises, the order, and intensity of exercise, finding the proper volume, progressive overload, unloading, and reconditioning of clients.

We also need to know the functional ranges and the one rep limits as well as the protocols for recovery. 

Domain 6: Organization and Administration

This is the smallest percentage of the entire exam at around 11% and 12 questions.

This domain looks to test your knowledge of the things needed to run a business.

The test will cover organizational structures, administrative layouts, legal and ethical standards, and insurance and bookkeeping.

Domain 7: Testing and Evaluation

This is the final domain covered and it represents 18% of section 2 and has 20 total questions. This domain will test you on the selections of tests and the administration of them. It will also cover how to read, interpret, evaluate, and apply results. 

Randomized 70 Question CSCS Practice Exam

Click the "Next" button to begin the practice exam

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

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