SAN DIEGO, CA—December 14, 2021—With the goal of giving individuals and communities access to health and fitness programming that positively impacts their lives, the American Council on Exercise (ACE) furthers its commitment to advancing equity, diversity and inclusion with two new courses on how fitness managers and business owners can build more inclusive environments within the fitness industry.

These courses are part of ACE’s Taking Action with ACE series. Taking Action with ACE: Practicing Equity, Diversity and Inclusion as a Fitness Business Owner and Taking Action with ACE: Practicing Equity, Diversity and Inclusion as a Fitness Manager are the newest additions to the series.

The courses are aimed at taking action in the fitness industry to ensure all participants have equal access and feel welcome in every environment. Business owners and fitness managers have a major influence on the fitness industry and are well-positioned to play a key role in creating a more inclusive fitness culture.

Upon completion, business owners and fitness managers will be better equipped to foster an environment in which every client and employee feels valued and included, which leads to improved employee engagement and allows them to reach a more diverse clientele.

“Taking measurable action now is essential in expanding access to fitness resources in every community served by health and wellness professionals,” said ACE chief executive officer, Scott Goudeseune. “We want these professionals to feel empowered to take the next step in ensuring inclusivity is at the heart of their businesses, and these courses are the tools to do just that.”

ACE collaborated with fitness and wellness leader Kia Williams, ACE Certified Group Fitness Instructor, global presenter, and wellness chair of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Fort Worth-Tarrant County Chapter, to design a course for business owners that encourages responsible fitness business practices that can make fitness truly inclusive and accessible.

To create a course for fitness managers, ACE collaborated with wellness educator and ACE Certified Personal Trainer Katrina Pilkington to help fitness managers understand how to remain equitable, embrace diversity and foster inclusion to help shift the culture of wellness into one that is centered around belonging and accessibility.

“We all have a role to play in the betterment of our communities, from creating more inclusive fitness environments to expanding access to physical activity options,” said ACE president and chief science officer, Cedric Bryant, Ph.D., FACSM. “We have to work together in order to make the necessary changes, and to collectively acknowledge our shortcomings as an industry. Only then can we move the needle in the right direction, ensuring we are addressing the disparities present in many communities across the globe.”

One year ago, ACE strengthened its commitment to addressing structural inequities by enacting much-needed change. Since then, ACE has hosted dialogues on issues within the health and fitness industry that affect diverse populations. ACE also partnered with the Women In Fitness Association (WIFA) to create the WIFA Growth Grant, a scholarship providing current ACE Certified Professionals the opportunity to build and grow their careers with a one-year WIFA membership.

Earlier this year, ACE launched Taking Action with ACE: Practicing Equity, Diversity and Inclusion as an Exercise Professional to ensure all physical activity participants have equal access and feel welcome in every environment.

The next courses in the Taking Action with ACE series builds upon ACE’s continuous commitment to its mission to get people moving and reflections from the past year.

About the American Council on Exercise 

The American Council on Exercise (ACE) is a nonprofit organization with global reach that works to improve physical-activity levels by certifying exercise professionals and health coaches, publishing original research, convening experts on physical activity and health, working directly with community groups, and advocating for policies to get people from all walks of life moving. The 90,000 exercise professionals and health coaches certified by ACE are among the most respected in the world of fitness, helping people embrace physical activity and adopt a healthier lifestyle. For more information, call 800-825-3636 or visit AMERICAN COUNCIL ON EXERCISE, ACE and ACE logos are Registered Trademarks of the American Council on Exercise.