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Requirements »

Health Coach Requirements

To sit for the ACE Health Coach Certification Exam, you must:
  • Be at least 18 years old and hold a current CPR/AED certification with a live skills check.
  • SUBMIT PROOF for ONE of the following three items before registering for your exam:
    • Current NCCA-accredited certification or license in fitness, nutrition, health care, wellness, human resources or a related field; OR
    • An associate's degree or higher from an accredited college or university in fitness, exercise science, nutrition, health care, wellness, human resources or a related field; OR
    • At least two years of comparable work experience in any of the industries specified above.
  • Present a current government-issued photo ID with signature (driver’s license, passport, military ID) on scheduled exam day.

Want to know if you meet these requirements? Please submit your pre-approval documents here.
If you have other questions, contact us at (888) 825-3636, ext. 782.
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or email them with questions.
TOOLS FOR YOUR PRACTICE Explore resources for your practice by contacting or (888) 825-3636, ext 820.

Health Coach for Health Care Professionals

In the United States, about half of all adults — 117 million people — have one or more chronic health conditions, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Providing adequate treatment for those patients, in large part, has fallen on primary care physicians who are limited by time and resources. As a qualified member of the healthcare team, an ACE Certified Health Coach can help deliver individualized treatment based on a non-judgmental, personal relationship and expertise in behavior change, fitness and nutrition. By supporting both the physician and the patient, Health Coaches can help increase quality of care while decreasing costs.

Why Choose ACE?

ACE offers the only Health Coach Certification accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA), the same body that accredits certifications for athletic trainers, nurse practitioners, occupational therapists, registered dietitians and numerous other health professionals. Additionally, our certification is approved by the International Consortium for Health & Wellness Coaching (ICHWC), which is working toward creating a national standard to help further professionalize and advance the field of health and wellness coaching.

Healthcare Perspective

Health coaches on the health care team

Fostering a deeper connection

Earning an ACE Health Coach Certification will help registered nurses, medical assistants, registered dietitians, chiropractors, physical therapists, pharmacists or other members of the healthcare team meet the needs of people who need help changing their lifestyle. The specialized education they receive in behavior modification, physical activity and nutrition will help them connect with patients to identify a path to change, and prepare them to travel on that path with those patients. ACE Certified Health Coaches also hold expertise in motivational interviewing, positive psychology and effective goal-setting to help support meaningful behavior change.


2015 Health Coach Career Guide

New Health Coach Career Guide

Learn more about the evolving field of health coaching and emerging career opportunities in healthcare, workplace wellness and fitness.

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Healthcare Perspective

ACE Academy Select

ACE Academy SelectACE Academy Select

ACE supports professionals throughout their careers, starting the moment they begin studying for the ACE Health Coach Certification exam. As candidates move through the material, experts in our ACE Resource Center are available by phone, email and social media to explain key concepts or offer encouragement. ACE Academy Select, our presentation-led program, also provides an in-depth look at topics covered on the exam and helps streamline the study process. The experience includes custom progress tracking, an exam review course and online practice tests.

ACE Health Coach Manual

Working as part of the health care team, an ACE Health Coach can lead the transition from 'sick care' to 'health care,' and ultimately, to 'wellness.'

ACE Health Coach Manual The ACE Health Coach Manual includes insight from 19 leading experts in behavioral psychology, fitness, nutrition, healthcare and education. Skills in behavior change and coaching psychology, weight management psychology, the physiology of obesity and techniques for lifestyle coaching provide the expertise necessary for ACE Certified Health Coaches to help all types of clients take ownership of their goals. Studies have shown that effectively implemented health coaching interventions like the kind led by ACE Professionals lead to long-term behavioral changes.

Healthcare Perspective


Get Started Today

Become an ACE-certified Health Coach by choosing a program of study materials

Study programs for diverse learning styles

Take the first step in becoming an ACE Certified Health Coach by choosing a study program to help you prepare for the exam. Our two options feature different combinations of materials designed to help you best prepare for the exam and excel at your career.
Learn More »


Professional Resources


Dedicated to helping you grow

In addition to Certified™ our online publication committed to providing new research-based insight to ACE Certified Professionals, ACE has a number of resources to help you succeed. We offer advanced certifications and continuing education approved by a number of national organization. We commission research that evaluates the effectiveness of products and trends. Designed to help educate the public, also offers a number of tools you can use to support your patients including guided, easy-to-follow lifestyle programs and healthy recipe options.
Learn More »


*Data sourced from Ostbye, T., K.S. Yarnall, K.M. Krause, K.I. Pollak, M. Gradison, and J.L. Michener. 2005. Is there time for management of patients with chronic diseases in primary care? Annals of Family Medicine 3: 209-214. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2009). Palmer, S.I, I. Tibbs, and A. Whybrow. 2003. Health coaching to facilitate the promotion of healthy behavior and achievement of health-related goals. International Journal of Health Promotion and Education. 41(3): 91-3. DiMatteo, M. 2004. Social Support and patient adherence to medical treatment: a meta-analysis. Health Psychol. 23: 207218. Sacco, W.P., T. Yanover. 2007 Diabetes and depression: the role of social support ad medical symptoms. J Behav Med 29(6): 523-531. Woolf, S.H. 2009. A closer look at the economic argument for disease prevention. JAMA 301(5): 536-538.

†To sit for the ICHWC Certification Examination, candidates will need to have completed the ACE Health Coach Certification, and take a practical training course (available Fall 2016) through Guiding Mindful Change.