Closure of Provincial Fitness Unit Announced

Due to a lack of funding, the Faculty has made the hard budget-driven decision to cease operation of the Provincial Fitness Unit

13 January 2021

Since 1981 the Provincial Fitness Unit has led the way in Alberta and Canada to support evidence-informed standards and professional development for exercise professionals, as well as championing physical activity and physical literacy in communities across Edmonton and Alberta. Our mandate has been to support professionalism and standards in the unregulated fitness and exercise industry and to champion physical activity in Alberta.

With deep regrets, we announce that due to the severe budget constraints that the University of Alberta is facing, the Provincial Fitness Unit (PFU), and its programs—the Health and Fitness Program, and Be Fit for Life Edmonton Centre, and Network coordination—will cease operations as part of the University of Alberta on June 30, 2021.

Over this time our staff have worked incredibly hard, and their significant achievements include:

  • The Provincial Fitness Unit led the way in developing evidence-informed qualifications and standards for fitness professionals, developing the first evidence-informed qualifications and certification for group exercise fitness professionals in Canada. These have become the standard resource for group exercise certification across Canada.
  • Participated in the initial development of standards for personal training and unified all the provinces for personal training qualifications.
  • Our program, Perspectives in Exercise Health and Fitness has been a mainstay for knowledge transfer since 1984. In 1991 it became a biennial conference attracting thought leaders, and researchers in exercise science from around the world to deliver research into the hands of practitioners.
  • Fit Rendezvous began in 1986 and was the first provincial exercise conference of its kind bringing applied leading practice to group exercise and personal training professionals annually.
  • Be Fit For Life coordinated by the PFU since 1984, was a unique partnership between the Alberta Government and post-secondary campuses to champion physical activity and physical literacy across the province; this partnership was an opportunity to leverage costs, share information and best practices and to remain responsive to distinct community needs.

We are deeply saddened by this decision and will work with our stakeholders to lessen the impact from the loss of these programs.

The AFLCA will continue its operations as a non-profit social enterprise and looks forward to many more decades of continued service, providing to Alberta, Canada and our international partners, as a champion of evidence-informed education, professionalism and standards for exercise practitioners at all levels of the fitness industry.