Saturday, December 20, 2014

Get Your Group Ex Certification on!

Wow, our recent conversation about respect for Zumba instructors really caused a stir! There are definitely a variety of perspectives out there, but I still feel like we can agree that:
1) we're hard-working, talented fitness instructors who deserve credit for what we do,
2) the not-so-good instructors out there give us a bad rep, and
3) we're committed to continuous improvement through trainings, certifications, and learning from each other.

The whole respect conversation got me thinking about group exercise certification (again). It's not that I feel like I have to get certified in order to be respected, but I do think it would enhance my teaching in a way that more Zumba trainings can't. I also love kickboxing and think it would be super fun to teach other formats. I don't think it's necessary for all instructors, it's a personal decision based on your level of knowledge, goals when it comes to teaching, etc.

Back in October, I did a little comparison of ACE and AFAA certifications. They seem quite similar in terms of price ($299), content, and reputation. But, an anonymous commenter said something that pushed me to do more research:

What is this "APEX Event" that you speak of, Anonymous? I looked into it and it's real! In February, AFAA is offering its primary group exercise certification all over the country for just $99. You can get more information here.

As a reminder, the certification builds "competencies needed to design safe and effective group exercise programming for the general healthy population... appropriate for instructors who teach free-form and/or pre-choreographed programs."
Topics include:
  • Basic Anatomy, Kinesiology, Biomechanics and Exercise Physiology
  • Nutrition and Weight Management
  • Group Exercise Program Design
  • Essentials of Teaching (Basic Exercise Standards & Guidelines, Motivation, Choreography, Cueing, etc.)
  • Exercise- selection, technique, alignment and performance with or without equipment
  • Injury Prevention, Emergency Response and Special Populations
  • Other Modalities (Aqua Fitness, Indoor Cycling, Dance Fitness, Step, etc.)
  • Business Skills and Legal Responsibilities (Substitute teaching, Law and Exercise)
So... I think I'm gonna do it! I got some materials on Amazon while I was doing my holiday shopping (you can save some money using prime shipping and/or checking out the used versions!):

Exam Prep and Flashcards

So, anybody else going for certification during February's APEX event?


  1. I am! I already paid and bought my textbook from someone on ebay. I didn't get the flash cards tho : ( I'm spending a month in Jamaica with family so it'll be the perfect place to study: peace and quiet, no electronic distractions around. Best of luck to you - please fill me in on how you like the flash cards maybe I'll buy them when I return mid Jan.

  2. I'm taking AFAA PT training al APEX in February. I like AFAA's philosophy. A lot of people say it's easier than ACE, but I believe the practical component makes up for the shorter test

  3. Do a search on Facebook for AFAA certified group instructors, or similar - it seems to be active.