The fitness industry is exciting to work in because of its constant, diverse, and fast-paced evolution of teaching, training, and technological innovation. Every year canfitpro draws insights from the experiences of thousands of fitness professionals and business owners across Canada and this year’s Fitness Trends survey unveils a fascinating panorama of the industry’s future. Brace yourself for a transformative era in fitness, characterized by a keen focus on aging well, mental wellness, active recovery, and the rejuvenating power of social interaction. If you have not had the opportunity yet, check out this year’s canfitpro Health & Fitness Trends 2024 which lists the Top 10 trends overall, and the Top 3 trends specifically for Personal Training, Group Fitness, and Nutrition. ‘Upskilling’ is one of the Top 10 trends in this year’s report, and for good reason. You can also access the recording of canfitpro’s State of Fitness 2024 webinar here.

The biggest return on investment you can make for your fitness business comes from being certified and continuously learning and innovating – which is what we mean by ‘Upskilling.’ To stay ahead and be better prepared to tackle potential challenges, it is necessary to prioritize continuing education and lifelong learning. In this article, we focus on the value of continuing education and the importance of certification. It is our role as leaders to work together to define and uphold a standard of practice to reinforce the requirement and maintenance of certification to position fitness as safe, effective, and essential for everyone.

Here are six key ingredients to fostering a culture of continuous education and supporting your staff in obtaining and maintaining their certification – that is vital for them and essential for your business.

1.Boost Your Credibility in the Fitness Industry

Certification and credibility go hand in hand. As you know, in Canada the fitness industry is a self-regulated profession. Therefore, it is up to us to set and uphold the standard of practice for fitness professionals in our industry. The reputation of the fitness industry is in our hands –each of us working as fitness professionals are responsible for creating and upholding the reputation as a profession, and it only takes a few bad experiences to tarnish the entire industry’s reputation. Every club and fitness business can contribute and make a difference in how we are serving fitness consumers, which translates to the impact we have on the health and well-being of other’s lives – we rise together. We have a duty to each other and to all Canadians who trust and expect quality services and results from us. Your training and certifications have a pivotal role in consumer impressions not only in your business but also for the overall impression of the fitness industry. How successful you can be is dependent on the overall reputation of the fitness industry as a whole. Be the difference you seek!

2. Savour the Connections You Will Build

With every course, certification, and event you attend, you have an opportunity to make new connections. You will form connections with fellow certification candidates during the training and certification process thereby expanding your professional network. You never know what kind of valuable opportunities could arise from such chance meetings. A new business partnership could come out of people with shared vision, goals and values coming together to learn something new. Beyond the connections in the classroom, training studio, or conference there are the connections you make that grow into lifelong relationships and friendships. I’m confident you can recall a time when you attended a training or certification or went to a conference and met someone that literally changed the trajectory of your career. These relationships and connections with like-minded leaders are invaluable!

3. Cultivate Your Confidence

When we learn more our confidence and belief in our own abilities expands. The confidence gained through ongoing personal and professional development will give you more clarity of purpose to move you forward on your journey to serve and uphold the standard of practice for your own business.

4. Add New Flavour to Your Revenue Streams

Learning new skills and obtaining new certifications allows you to expand, diversify, and increase your offerings. This can lead to new revenue streams to boost the profitability of your business. For instance, you or someone on your team could take a certification to provide a new club service, personal training or group fitness program, or class format. Doing so can attract more clients with your diversified offerings and provide you with more income.

5. Spice Up Your Career to Stay Motivated

In any profession, things can become stagnant after working in the same position for an extended period. Innovation is essential to keep you motivated. Getting a new certification can rejuvenate and add excitement to what you do and even how you lead. There is a sense of both pride and excitement that comes with acquiring new skills or certification, and if it’s been some time since you learned something new or took a certification course, I encourage you to. Having recently completed a coaching course, I feel exhilarated and invite you to experience the same.

During March, canfitpro has a sale on our certification courses. Check out our current offerings here for some inspiration on how to spice up your career.

6. Invest in Yourself

The idea of allocating time and effort to certification or continuing education may seem like a distraction from your business or regular operations. But it most assuredly is not! When you invest time in learning, you are investing in yourself. You can expect not only a return on investment but also an increased sense of self-worth and accomplishment.

Final Thoughts There are unlimited benefits and valuable reasons to invest in education, obtain a certification, and pursue continuing education. Together we can positively influence the standards in the Canadian Fitness Industry and by each of us doing our part we are elevating our reputation for generations of fitness professionals and fitness enthusiasts, for decades to come. I hope this article has provided you with some things to consider and will inspire you to find learning opportunities to nourish your soul and career this year.

The canfitpro Global Conference and Tradeshow on August 9-10 is going to be the fitness education event of the year! If you are looking for a premium buffet of options for personal and professional development than this is it. Like sharing a delicious meal with friends, learning together is better with friends. So, make your canfitpro learning experience more enjoyable by inviting your staff and colleagues to join you at this event.

Maureen (Mo) Hagan
Maureen (Mo) Hagan

Maureen (Mo) Hagan is COO at canfitpro, and a global fitness ambassador recognized for her leadership in the fitness industry that spans almost four decades. She is an international award-winning fitness professional and her passion for moving people extends beyond the fitness industry as a licensed physiotherapist and with her work on the Canadian National Board of Directors for Prescription To Get Active.