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January 30, 2012, 12:00AM PT in Exam Preparation Blog  |  0 Comments

What You Need to Know About Earning an Advanced ACE Certification

personal trainer adherence clientCongratulations on making the decision to obtain an advanced certification with ACE!

We know you may have a few questions about taking this important next step in you fitness career, and we’re here to assist in getting you started on the right path!

Am I eligible to be a Health Coach?

If you are a current ACE-certified Professional who is up to date with your CPR/AED, you are automatically eligible for the Health Coach Certification (HC). 

ACE professionals do not require pre-approval to sit for the Health Coach exam. You may proceed directly to the ACE website and get registered at your special ACE-certified professional rate today!

Not a current ACE-certified professional? If you hold current CPR/AED and have an NCCA-accredited personal trainer or advanced fitness related certification (or hold a degree in Exercise Science), you also meet the eligibility requirement to sit for the Health Coach exam!  In order to obtain pre-approval, simply follow the steps below:

(Exam candidates holding degrees in Nutrition, Nursing or Health may be required to submit documentation supporting completion of Exercise Science-related coursework to obtain approval status.)

You will receive an auto-generated e-mail upon approval by the ACE Exam Registration Department with instructions on how to proceed with registering for your exam via the ACE website.

Am I eligible to be an Advanced Health & Fitness Specialist?

If you hold a current ACE Personal Trainer certification (or have a NCCA-accredited personal trainer certification or advanced fitness related certification, or have a four-year Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science or related field), hold a current CPR/AED certificate and have met the minimum work experience requirement below, you meet the eligibility requirement to be an Advanced Health and Fitness Specialist (AHFS).

You must have 300 hours of work experience designing and implementing exercise programs for apparently healthy individuals and/or high-risk individuals, as documented by a qualified professional to include the following:

  • Risk Factor Screening
  • Client Interview and Assessment
  • Program Design, Implementation and Modification

How do I submit my eligibility documents to ACE?

What kind of documentation will ACE accept?

Documentation of 300 hours of work experience must be provided by one of these preferred methods:

  • Verification provided by a qualified allied health professional: This verification can come from former/current employers, supervisors, colleagues or other allied health professionals with whom you work or collaborate.  Verification may be submitted in the applicant documentation area on page 2 of the AHFS registration form.
  • Verification provided via pay stubs showing personal training hours or copied of weekly training schedules or similar records of training hours. Please be sure not to provide any training records that specify personal information (e.g. client names) that would breach client confidentiality. Please also be sure to remove any personal information that you want to protect.

Self-employed fitness professionals who cannot provide the preferred documentation may provide letters from long-time clients who document the length of time and approximate number of accumulated hours of training they have received from you.

Still have questions? Feel free to contact our Exam Registration Department at 1-800-825-3636 Ext. 783.

By Suzayn Chandler


Sue Chandler is the Exam Registration Manager at ACE and has been with the organization since 2003. She is an ACE-certified Personal Trainer and has run over a dozen marathons, including qualifying for and running Boston.

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