Certified Sports Nutrition Coach (NASM-CSNC) Curriculum
A fitness credential is recommended but is not required for the Sports Nutrition Certification. We always recommend getting your feet wet with one of NASM's many nutrition courses.
Section 1: Performance Nutrition Profession
Chapter 1: Introduction to Performance Nutrition
Learn to differentiate performance nutrition from general nutrition strategies, and understand the profession of a Sports Nutrition Coach, the skills needed, and the populations they work with.
Chapter 2: Scope of Practice
Understand a Sports Nutrition Coach's scope of practice and professional expectations, and be able to determine when to refer athletes to another professional.
Chapter 3: Evidence-Informed Practice
Differentiate evidence-informed practice from evidence-based practice and determine high-quality sources of information.
Chapter 4: Understanding the Spectrum of Athletes and Performance
Learn to identify where athletes exist within the spectrum of athlete types, and understand needs based on physiological, sociological, cultural, and ethical factors.
Section 2: Metabolism and Energetics
Chapter 5: Essentials of Metabolism
Explain aerobic and anaerobic metabolism, and be able to describe energy balance and related concepts.
Chapter 6: Energetics of Performance
Understand the difference between energy balance and energy availability, and determine fueling requirements for optimal performance.
Section 3: Nutrients and Hydration
Learn about the function of protein and establish protein requirements in a dietary program.
Chapter 8: Carbohydrates
Explain the role of carbohydrates for athletes and describe methods for establishing requirements in a dietary program.
Chapter 9: Fat
Understand the role of fats in sports nutrition and how different sports may rely on fats to a greater extent than others.
Chapter 10: Micronutrients
Describe recommendations for incorporating micronutrients into an athlete's diet and identify common food sources for essential vitamins and minerals.
Chapter 11: Hydration
Communicate appropriate hydration strategies for during and between training bouts to athletes.
Section 4: Performance Nutrition Strategies
Describe appropriate periodization and nutrient-timing strategies to optimize adaptations to training, enhance recovery, and to ensure optimal performance.
Chapter 13: Body Composition
Explain the relationship between body composition, athlete type, and performance, and describe methods for assessing body composition.
Chapter 14: Recovery
Identify the three R’s of recovery and their relevance to performance nutrition, and explain the importance of recuperation for athletes.
Chapter 15: Supporting the Ill/Injured Athlete
Explain the various levels of appropriate support for illness and injury based on severity and determine when client referral is necessary.
Chapter 16: Supplementation
Assess the athlete’s need for supplementation using a thorough decision-making process.
Section 5: Putting Science into Practice
Chapter 17: Performance Nutrition Assessment and Evaluation
Identify pre-appointment data gathering methods to determine athlete’s baseline status and select appropriate nutritional assessment methods specific to an athlete based on pre-appointment data.
Chapter 18: Fueling for the Work Required
Determine appropriate dietary and supplement strategies to optimize fuel supply, fuel stores, and fuel utilization.
Chapter 19: Coaching Process/Approach
Identify barriers to behavior change, specialist diets, and their influence on adaptations to training, recovery, and athletic performance, and apply appropriate levels of coaching.
Chapter 20: Programming
Evaluate all findings from an athlete's needs analysis and design a nutrition intervention which addresses optimal health and performance goals.