The Active People, Healthy NationSM Initiative from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a mission of helping 27 million Americans become physically active and “creating an active America, together.”
ACE—with our mission of Getting People Moving—is proud to support this important initiative. A key value that ACE shares with Active People, Healthy NationSM is equitable and inclusive access to opportunities to be physically active, regardless of age, race, education level, socio-economic status, disability status, sexual orientation or geographic location.
There are three distinct elements involved in reaching that 27 million milestone:
Inspiring inactive individuals to perform at least one 10-minute session of moderate-intensity physical activity each week,
Motivating people who are already somewhat active to perform enough physical activity to meet the minimum aerobic physical activity guidelines and
Empowering youth to be physically active for at least 60 minutes every day.
So, what can you—and your approximately 90,000 fellow ACE Certified Professionals—do to become ambassadors for Active People, Healthy NationSM and help the CDC achieve this mission?
ACE Certified Personal Trainers, Health Coaches, Group Fitness Instructors and Medical Exercise Specialists are perfectly positioned to empower and inspire people to get moving, or to get moving more. For many of the people this CDC initiative is designed to reach, understanding the need for behavior change—and acquiring the tools to achieve it—are essential first steps.
In addition to encouraging current clients to add to their routines to reach certain physical activity–related milestones, exercise professionals and health coaches can participate in community-based programs that impact sedentary and inactive people they might not otherwise reach. Inspiring someone to participate in a single exercise session each week, even if the workout lasts only 10 minutes, can show someone who has negative associations with physical activity that it can be a fun and enjoyable experience, which may set them on a new path toward more regular physical activity.
Programs focused on youth present another opportunity for ACE Certified Professionals. Many children who have overweight or obesity have had negative experiences with physical activity, so the key here is to offer well-rounded exercise experiences that focus on fun and movement, not competition and comparison.
ACE would like to challenge you to be creative as you think of ways to reach out to individuals who are currently inactive, as well as new ways to empower existing clients to increase their physical-activity levels. Use the ACE Mover Method and other behavior-change principles and tools to meet people where they are in terms of both their health and fitness levels and their readiness to change their behavior. And remember, every person you reach is one more step toward achieving that 27 million milestone and, more importantly, is another person you have helped take ownership of their personal health and fitness or make progress on their personal journey toward better overall wellness.