Hey everybody, and welcome to the ultimate ACE CPT test prep hub. In this hub, you will learn all of the most important ACE exam tips and the most important ACE study tips.

We will be covering these topics:

  • The General Test Prep Info
  • The Hardest Questions in ACE and How to tackle that
  • ACE exam tips, as well as the most important ACE study tips

By the end of this article, you will know how to pass the ACE Personal Trainer exam without worrying.

Let’s dive in and check out the need-to-know information for ACE!

ACE test questions

ACE CPT Exam Info Introduction

To start, I will discuss the hardest ACE exam questions you will find while taking the exam. I will then give you all the ACE CPT exam answers for those difficult questions.

The ACE, the American Council on Exercise, personal training test is known as one of the hardest tests in the industry, with 150 multiple-choice questions pulled from their massive textbook, approximately 800 pages long. Sometimes they pull very obscure information from a random line of text deep within the huge textbook. This can cause a lot of anxiety for test-takers. This ACE exam prep will help you navigate this sea of content.

I have a free ACE study guide and practice test that you can check out or I recommend checking out the team over at Trainer Academy. They produce the best ACE study materials, reduce your study time by 50%, and even guarantee an exam pass.

Get the ACE personal training exam cheat sheet for free here. Courtesy of Trainer Academy.

If you are undecided on which personal trainer certification to choose, I suggest you take the quiz to find out which cert best fits you. We also have an ACE exam review and other organizations so that you can make the best decision regarding personal trainer testing and certification.

What type of Certification are you looking to get?

All stop beating around the bush now; let’s get right into passing ACE!

How to Pass the ACE CPT Exam:

Top Five Most Difficult ACE Test Questions for Proper ACE Test Prep

Okay, everybody, here I will be talking about the most difficult questions you will find on the ACE exam. You will need good exercise science knowledge for these certified personal trainer practice exams. I suggest you try answering these practice test questions before moving on to the answer sections below. Your textbook will be the best resource for finding these answers. After these five questions, you can also find many more practice questions here on my website.

  1. A 45-year-old lady named Susan comes to look for an exercise program. After you go through the full health risk appraisal, you discover that her mother has diabetes and used to smoke cigarettes. Susan used to smoke as well but quit a year ago. Currently, she switches between the treadmill and stationary bike thrice weekly for approximately 30 or 45 minutes. She has a body mass index of 31, a systolic blood pressure of 142 mmHg, a diastolic reading of 88 mmHg, and 187 mg/dl of total serum cholesterol. What is the risk classification that you would put Susan in, and according to the ACSM and guidelines, how many risk factors to Susan have?
    1. Low risk, 2 risk factors
    2. Moderate risk, 2 risk factors
    3. Moderate risk, 4 risk factors
    4. High risk, 4 risk factors
  2. According to reversibility, what is the rate of strength loss associated with it?
    1. A PT client who stops exercising will lose strength at twice the rate they gained.
    2. A PT client that stops exercising will lose strength at the same pace that they gained it.
    3. A PT client who stops exercising will lose strength at half the rate they gained.
    4. A PT client who stops exercising will lose strength at .25 at the rate they gained.
  3. If you have a client that aims to gain muscular strength, what is the rate of resistance increase you should use for progressing that client?
    1. When the client reaches the terminal number of repetitions, add 5% to the load.
    2. When the client reaches the terminal number of repetitions, add 8% to the load.
    3. When the client reaches the terminal number of repetitions, add 10% to load
    4. When a client reaches the terminal number of repetitions, add 15% to the load.
  4. Which three muscles cause external rotation of the shoulder?
    1. Teres major, Subscapularis, Infraspinatus
    2. Posterior deltoid, Upper Trapezius and Rhomboid major
    3. Pectoralis minor, Teres minor and latissimus dorsi
    4. Teres minor, Posterior deltoid, and Infraspinatus
  5. For a client that has hypertension, what is the recommended exercise intensity?
    1. Between 40 and 50% of VO2 max
    2. And RPE of between 9 and 13
    3. 40 to 60% of VT2
    4. Between 70 and 80% of their max heart rate

Top Five Most Difficult ACE CPT Exam Answers

ACE CPT exam answers

ACE Training certification exam question number 1 breakdown: I’m sure you have memorized all the classifications and risk factors, correct? Honestly, it takes a ton of memorizing to memorize all of the risk factors. On top of that, all of them have more than one factor.

Susan’s mother used to smoke in this case, which meant absolutely nothing. The difficult part is that Susan quit smoking a year ago. You need to know that the timeline for quitting smoking is six months to remove it as a positive risk factor.

Susan works out a few days a week, which means she is not a sedentary individual, so there is no risk factor for that. Susan has a body mass index of 31, slightly over the 30 limits, adding a risk factor.

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She has a systolic reading of 142, slightly above the 140 limits, adding another positive risk factor. Her serum cholesterol sits at 188, which is below the 200 cut-offs, so there is no risk factor.

On top of all of this, you need to know how many risk factors are connected with each risk classification., Low risk is considered under two risk factors. Moderate risk is more than two risk factors or equal to two. Susan has two risk factors.

You need to memorize all of the positive risk factors and how to determine them from family history, smoking, age, living sedentary, hypertension, obesity, prediabetes, dyslipidemia elves as well as the single negative risk factor for high HDL cholesterol.

ACE question number 1 answer: B (2): moderate risk, two risk factors

ACE question number 2 breakdown: This is a great example of when ACE pulls a random statistic or line from deep within the textbook. Reversibility talks about how the body will lose muscle mass and strength when a person stops performing resistance training.

According to the textbook, strength is lost at approximately half of the rate it gained. Honestly, this is very important information for the field of personal training. But for the test, many people skip right over it while reading the textbook because it does not really stand out.

ACE question number 1 answer: C (3): Half the rate

ACE question number 3 breakdown: This question comes directly from Chapter 10 on progressing and developing training programs. I hope that you studied and memorized what you need to do to progress toward each training goal because most people don’t. Most people focus on memorizing what the textbook lays out in tables and charts. This makes common sense.

On the other hand, ACE likes to find random statistics in the middle of random paragraphS sometimes. If you see a statistic in the middle of a random paragraph, highlight that immediately.

ACE question number 1 answer: A (1): 5%

ACE question number 4 breakdown: In my opinion, the ACE textbook does not best show which muscles cause certain movements. In the textbook, you will see brief information about the external and internal rotation tests and the rotator cuff.

You need to know information from both parts to correct the answer.

ACE question number 1 answer: D (4): Teres minor, Posterior deltoid, and Infraspinatus

ACE question number 5 breakdown: For this question, you need to have memorized each special population and the recommended intensity level for each. The next part of the question is what method of measuring intensity is used with clients with hypertension.

This question can be difficult because all four methods of measuring intensity are almost sound and look very similar. Especially the VO2 max and VT2. But the answer to this question will not be found in the cardiorespiratory training chapter but in the special population’s chapter.

RPE should be used for most special populations, including hypertensive clients.

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ACE Certification- A Good Fitness Course Online Option - 25&percnt off
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ACE question number 1 answer: B (2): RPE of 9-13

ACE Study Tips

ACE study tips

While you are studying for the ACE exam, here you will learn all of my favorite ACE study tips to make your study time more productive and efficient. Here I’ll be going over all of the essential ACE study materials you should use to crush the test.

Essential ACE CPT Study Materials:

The following is a list of all the materials that I found the most useful for studying ACE.

The Most Current ACE Textbook (currently the 5th edition)

This should be, hands down, your go-to resource for studying. For every question that will be asked on the test, you can find it within their massive textbook.

The current fifth edition of the textbook has 18 chapters. There are also a few appendices (A-C) in the textbook that questions get pulled from. Most of the questions from the appendices are removed from the ACE Code of Ethics section.

Some of the chapters in the textbook are more important than others, but all in all, questions get pulled from all of the chapters. You should not move on to any of the other study resources if you do not yet have the textbook. Other study materials are meant to guide you through the grueling textbook but are not meant to be a replacement for it.

A Great ACE Study Guide

Going through 800 pages of the textbook trying to memorize every little detail will drive anybody completely bonkers. That is why the number two recommended study resource is a great study guide.

Here at PT Pioneer, we have a completely free study guide that goes over all 18 chapters of the ACE study guide. It also includes a personal trainer practice test and flashcards to help cement the information you have learned. I have a free ACE study guide that can be found here. These study materials will help answer all the burning questions like how long it takes to get ACE certified or what ACE certification is good for. If you want to learn exactly what you need to study to pass the test, the Trainer Academy study guide is the way to go.

ACE Practice Assessments

Utilizing ACE practice tests is a fantastic way to test your knowledge after you have been studying for some time.

Practice tests are great because you can learn how to word different questions. The wording on the final ACE practice tests can sometimes be very tricky. These practice tests help you learn the tricks that will come up on the final test.

Practice tests are also a great way to see which areas you are doing good in and which areas you need to focus more study time on.

Here at PTPioneer, we have a free ACE practice test that you can take right here to test your skills.

ACE Flashcards (and possibly the most important)

Utilizing flashcards is probably one of the most underutilized forms of studying. This is especially true for personal training certifications such as the ACE exam. This is because so much memorization is required for this exam.

What I recommend is utilizing spaced repetition learning flashcards. Since you probably don’t know what that is, I’ll give you a quick summary. Compared to normal flashcards, where every single flashcard will be shown to you the same amount of time, space repetition forces you to memorize the difficult topics for you.

The topics you know well will show up with less frequency (let’s say once every two weeks), whereas the more difficult topics for you to memorize will show up more frequently (every day if needed). As you get better at memorizing the difficult topics for you, they will show up with less frequency. The ones you can’t get the hang of will continue to show up daily until you get good at them.

This is the best way to reduce your overall study time for the ACE exam. Stop wasting time going over the information you already know. Focus your time wisely using spaced repetition flashcards. The team over at Trainer Academy has fantastic spaced repetition flashcards for the ACE CPT.

ACE CPT Exam Tips

ACE CPT exam tips

Read Every Single Question and Answer

During the ACE exam, make sure to take your time. You have three full hours to take the test, and most likely will not use up all three hours.

Make sure to read every single question as well as every single answer before choosing your final choice. I can’t tell you how many people have missed up to five questions on the test simply because they thought they knew the answer before reading the full question.

ACE will purposely try to trick you into the first half of the question, leading you to think you know the answer already. I can’t state this enough, read the full question and all of the choices before deciding.

Eliminate Obviously Wrong Answers

After reading the entire question, the first process should be eliminating the clearly wrong answers. This will help increase your odds of you selecting the correct answer as well as helps you work more efficiently.

Maintain a Good Attitude During the Test

Maintaining a good attitude while you are taking the test is very important. You can be sure that you will come across challenging parts of questions on the exam. These challenging parts can slow you down or completely discourage you from even finishing the test.

If you come in with confidence in a good attitude, knowing that you will encounter some difficult parts, you will have no problem getting to the test and passing it.

ACE Test Preparation Conclusion

Will though you have it, ladies and gentlemen, my complete ACE exam prep article. I hope you guys really get some good valuable information from what I discussed above.

If you are still unsure whether ACE is the right certification for you, I recommend taking the quiz to find which certification best fits your training style.

ACE CPT Test Prep [year] - 5 Hardest Exam Questions w/ Answers! 3
ACE CPT Test Prep [year] - 5 Hardest Exam Questions w/ Answers! 4

I suggest checking out my free study guide for ACE. If you want additional study materials, check out the team over at Trainer Academy. They have incredible study materials for ACE.

Make sure to memorize the ACE test questions and the ACE CPT exam answers I discussed. You will probably see all of these on the exam.

If you do not yet have the textbook, pick up a copy for yourself of the fifth edition. I also highly recommend utilizing my free ACE study guide, practice tests, and flashcards. These will greatly reduce your overall study time and help you focus on the more important topics.

Until next time everybody, good luck studying!

Tyler Read - Certified Personal Trainer with PTPioneer

Tyler Read


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6 thoughts on “ACE CPT Test Prep 2024 – 5 Hardest Exam Questions w/ Answers!”

  1. Hello – I currently have the 5th Edition ACE Personal Trainer Manual. Is this Edition still a source to study for the 2024 ACE PT Exam ? Many Thanks in advance – Mike

    Reply
  2. Hey Tyler,
    Not sure if anyone’s asked, but does the MVP Trainer Academy course include the 5th edition manual? If not, do you think what they offer is enough to pass the test without the manual? Appreciate your help.

    Reply
    • Hey Jose, the Trainer Academy materials do not include official textbooks or manuals, but if you have the manuals/textbooks then they will help focus your studies on the most important information.

      Reply
  3. Thank you. I found your you tube tutorial on the 10 tips to help pass the ace exam helpful. Here’s to studying! I am setting my test date in May! 🙏🙏

    Reply
    • Hello Eve,
      that’s so fantastic that you have already set the testate for May. The American Council on exercise is a fantastic certification program to go through. You will learn a lot and in return it will help you become a fantastic personal trainer. Good luck!

      Reply

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