• Tyler Valencia

How Many CECs Do I Need?

The Breakdown…

Certifying organizations require fitness professionals to earn continuing education credit hours to stay up to date on current research, training techniques, industry trends, etc. Regardless of the organization through which you hold your certification, they all require CECs (continuing education credits) to maintain the certification. This process helps you advance in your career and allows you to provide the best care and service to your clients/students.

So, how do you earn CECs?

There are multiple ways to earn CECs. Many certifying organizations will recognize college courses, approved online workshops, live conferences (like FitnessFest), community outreach projects, presenting research, being an author on a paper, or publishing an article in a peer reviewed journal or book. For events that are not pre-approved, certifying organizations have a petition process. It is also important to note that while you may earn more than the minimum required CECs, they do not carry over into the new term.

FitnessFest is an approved provider for the following…

ACE (American Council on Exercise)

-What you need: 20 hours in 2 years AND an up to date CPR/AED card that included a live skills portion

- 0.1 credits equals 1 hour

-When your certification expires: on the last day of the month in which the certification was earned, every 2 years

-IF you hold more than 1 certification through ACE, you may use the same CECs for recertification given that the content is relevant to both certifications. Please refer to the ACE website for additional information.

-Contact information: 1-800.825.3636 or 858.576.6500, ext. 782, or via email at


-ACE provides a recertification booklet for additional information. You can find this here.

AEA (Aquatic Exercise Association)

-What you need: 15 hours every 2 years AND current CPR/AED certification

*CPR/AED certification can be used as 3.0 CECs

-When your certification expires: every 2 years

-Contact information: Phone 941-486-8600

-Additional information can be found here.

AFAA (Athletics and Fitness Association of America)

-What you need: 15 hours in 2 years, AND a current CPR/AED card

**2 hours MUST be from an AFAA or NASM course

-When your certification expires: every 2 years

*AFAA offers a one-time recert fee instead of paying every 2 years. You still have to earn your CECs and submit them every 2 years, but you would no longer have to pay fees every 2 years.

-Contact information: 1-800-446-2322 option #2 or customerservice@afaa.com

-Additional information can be found here.

NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine)

-What you need: 20 hours in 2 years AND a current CPR/AED certification

-0.1 credits equals 1 hour

-you will need to include documentation of CECs earned and your CPR card

-When your certification expires: every 2 years

*NASM does have a recert fee, HOWEVER, you can also pay a 1 time fee to recertify. You still have to submit your CECs and CPR/AED every 2 years but would not be required to pay a renewal fee. Check out their website for more information. https://www.nasm.org/recertify/lifetime-recertification

-Contact information: 1-800-460-6276

-Additional information can be found here.

While FitnessFest is not an approved provider for some organizations (such as ACSM), many of our conference CECs (if not all) can still be used via the petition process.

ACSM (American College of Sports Medicine)

-What you need: CECs depend on the certification held, all certifications renew every 3 years

-Current CPR is also required

-See http://certification.acsm.org/get-stay-certified/stay-certified/recertify-renew for CEC requirements for your specific certification

-While CPR and BLS can not be used as credits for recertification, ACLS contact hours may be used. ACSM will award 3 CECs for this certification.

-When your certification expires: every 3 years, the exact date can be found on your certificate

*Taken from ACSM’s website regarding non approved providers: “An organization DOES NOT have to be listed on the Approved Provider list in order for us to accept their CECs. If the 'event' is directly related to your certification, we will accept it.”

-In this case, CEC equivalency is always 1 to 1. 1 credit is 1 hour or 0.1 credit is 1 hour

-Additional information: http://certification.acsm.org/get-stay-certified/stay-certified/recertification-faqs-2

-Contact information: http://certification.acsm.org/acsm-membership/about-us/offices-contact-information

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663 W. 2nd Ave. Ste. 14  •  Mesa, AZ 85210  •   480-461-3888   •  info@FitnessFest.org