American Council on Exercise by American Council on Exercise

ACE is a nonprofit among a largely for-profit group of credentialing-organization peers. That means that while most of our peers focus first on selling and profits, ACE can focus on the recruitment of people to our mission to get people moving. Thus, it is essential for us to demonstrate the true value of ACE certification. We must attract aspiring certified personal trainers in a way that shows that our core values align with theirs.

So, on May 1 we dramatically simplified the ACE Personal Trainer Certification study program offerings, which is the primary way ACE engages people in our mission. The configuration of the product is now far more straightforward, and its presentation is easier to understand. When an aspiring certified personal trainer is ready to purchase, there are two options to choose from. One of those options is at a compellingly low price -- $299. It’s for those individuals who simply wouldn’t be able to access such a career opportunity otherwise. Those prices will fluctuate less, and in a less extreme way, so our customer can count on relatively stable pricing. And either option can be had with or without a certification exam. We seek to no longer force people to commit to a certification exam before they’re ready.

In a way, we’re getting back to basics, refocusing on how to attract great people to a great field in the most straightforward, accessible way possible. For those who feel called to help others adopt and maintain healthier lifestyles, the third-party-accredited certifications we offer are crucial to establishing trust and creating opportunities to thrive in that work. We’re not certain that we nor our peers have been sending that signal as clearly as we could be. And all of us need to tell a more compelling story about why people should choose these accredited-certification products. So, we are making an honest attempt to correct the course. If we’re fortunate, and if our predictions hold true, the marketplace will affirm that we’re making the right decision.