American Council on Exercise by American Council on Exercise

Jijo recently announced a new partnership with ACE to promote the importance of NCCA-accredited exercise professional certification programs and to celebrate the significant role that certified exercise professionals play in the fitness industry. 

Hear from Charles Friedberg, Founder & Chief Executive Officer of Jijo about Jijo’s revolutionary new virtual fitness platform for why Jijo has made a commitment to ensure all exercise professionals on the platform are certified.   

ACE - What is the Jijo platform? 

Charles Friedberg (CF): Jijo is the first-ever two-sided marketplace for virtual fitness.  We focus on what trainers want - new client acquisition, retention and creating additional, non-training fee revenues.  

Our onboarding process for clients and trainers is an e-harmony-like process, resulting in a highly curated and personalized experience for the client. Clients only see trainers and classes matched to their unique profile. By using data and continuing to improve on our matching algorithm, we are highly confident we’ll deliver better, more accurate trainer and class matches to clients, helping keep clients engaged for longer, better enabling trainers to achieve their business goals.  

ACE: Why has Jijo decided to partner with ACE? What kind of partnership is this? 

CF: The goal of the partnership is twofold. First, to promote the importance of recognized personal trainer certifications. We’ll be doing this by continuing to provide educational resources and access to important information and by extending discounts to ACE’s members and aspiring personal trainers who come to Jijo and wish to become certified or maintain existing credentials.  

Second...and equally as important, celebrating and supporting the significant role that certified fitness professionals play in providing leadership and expertise to consumers looking to adopt a more physically active lifestyle or improve their fitness.  

ACE is undoubtedly a trusted and longstanding leader in fitness. This partnership will only strengthen Jijo’s goal to empower instructors to create a thriving online business doing what they do best and enable clients to find consistently safe and high-quality workouts that fit their personalized needs. 

ACE: Why does Jijo believe NCCA accredited certifications are important? What role does continuing education play in this? 

CF: As it has become clear that virtual fitness is here to stay, we believe that ensuring clients are able to connect and train with appropriately qualified personal trainers and health coaches has never been more important. 

Not only has virtual fitness made fitness and health more accessible to all, but in many cases, it has made it accessible to people for the first time, which is one of the many endearing positive attributes of virtual fitness.   

With those benefits however come addition considerations.  One, and the most obvious, is that the trainer is not physically present with the client, which therefore, in our opinion, further raises the need to ensure that anyone who is providing physical fitness instruction virtually, be properly certified to ensure the safety of those clients.  Along with the requirement that all trainers using Jijo pass a background check and have proper liability insurance, as well as current certification from an accredited program from an organization like ACE are some of the most important ways in which consumers can ensure their safety and excellence in instruction. 

ACE: How will Jijo verify the credentials of exercise professionals who would like to use this platform? 

CF: Jijo requires trainers to provide their credential information during the onboarding process. This may seem to be a tedious step as people don’t tend to have this information always handy, but we’ve found that the trainers themselves find this reassuring. They like to know they are on a platform with other professionals and that not just anyone can simply claim to be a trainer and diminish the trust of clients coming to the platform. 

ACE: How does Jijo see the future of virtual personal training and its role in the fitness industry? 

CF: More and more research is showing that virtual fitness is here to stay. Even those eager to return to a gym are planning keeping virtual fitness as part of their routine. The pandemic has helped people realize that they can get as good a workout, for as good if not a better price, in the convenience of their own home and as I mentioned earlier it has opened up healthy living to many who didn’t previously have access.  

That being said, at Jijo we know that each person has unique fitness goals and requires varying levels of motivation to help them on their health and wellness journey. We know that to support these goals it will take more than simply a platform with a stream of uploaded content. What clients want is the answer – the right trainer, the right program for them, the answer to getting “fit” as they define it. And trainers a more effective way to attract new clients and retain them for longer - thus our focus on a highly personalized client experience - which in the end we believe will keep clients engaged for longer, better helping them achieve their goals. 

That’s what Jijo is all about, a platform that will listen to and support the unique goals of both clients and trainers. Or as we like to say... a platform that will empower people to achieve their goals – one virtual class at a time.