EuropeActive successfully hosted its first training providers online Roundtable on Monday, 30th March 2020. The meeting brought together a number of EuropeActive Accredited Providers from all over Europe and beyond with the aim of sharing how they are adapting their courses and available material in the current situation.
The meeting began with Director of Professional Standards Committee Julian Berriman welcoming participants and encouraging them to briefly update the audience on how they are currently adapting their courses to keep their students active and motivated.
Attendees included Attendees: Alexis Habich – DNA Academy Belgium, Barbara Borrelli – ISSA Europe Italy, Chirag Sethi - Classic Fitness, India, Dawn Monterde, NASM USA, Espen Artnzen – AFPT Norway, Fabrice Williquet – Physical Coaching Academy Belgium, George Xiros, Studio One Greece, Jana Havrdova – Cesky Svas Aerobiku Czech Republic, Laszlo Zopcsak – IWI, Hungary, Naumman Mazicioglu, Blue Vision Fitness Akademi Turkey, Sara Ciabucchi, ELAV, Italy, Viktorija Manzinni, Empire Fitness Association Slovenia and Wael Jaber, SPI Lebanon.
Many of the providers are placing the focus on the theoretical part of their courses by using online classrooms, tests, case studies, free webinars, Q&A sessions with students and digital evaluation processes like self-assessments to check students’ learning progress. The idea of assisting studying in the learning process as a key aspect during these unprecedented times was also reinforced.
Charlie Heywood, EuropeActive Accreditation Manager, discussed the flexible measures EuropeActive are prepared to allow for the use of a modified online assessment for both theory and practical aspects of their courses. This flexibility is to address learners who are in programme and have completed most of their studies prior to the lockdown situation across Europe. Providers could adapt their theory examinations to be held online or practical assessments to be in the learners’ home using a participant from their own household acting as the client. Practical assessment could be either a video submitted or live link for the assessor to observe and complete an extensive VIVA/Professional Discussion to confirm all criteria. All these adaptations could be considered during these exceptional times.
Attendees also emphasised that even in our current crisis there are positives to be taken. Tutor teams amongst providers were uniting like never before to innovate and deliver in the online space. New digital skills were being developed in an effort to safeguard and not diminish the learner experience. This would serve tutors, training organisations and learners well in an increasingly digital age.
It was also pointed out that many instructors and trainers were using the current environment to add to their knowledge base. Training providers were supporting this positive approach through the provision of continuing education courses, free webinars and other online upskilling opportunities. Now more than ever, training providers had the opportunity to engage with their graduate communities and support their on-going lifelong learning journey.
Participants also supported EuropeActive’s recently launched #LetsBEACTIVEathome campaign, an initiative that aims to gather positive stories on how fitness professionals have actively engaged with members & clients to keep them safely and effectively exercising and e-learning at home.
Julian Berriman, Director of the Professional Standards Committee, commented on the event: “The Training Providers Roundtable is an example of the great job EuropeActive does in communicating the online learning alternatives training providers are offering to all fitness professionals. I am very impressed by the numerous e-learning solutions our accredited training providers are facilitating, thus providing the strength and resources our sector needs during challenging times. We will keep promoting the good practices and digital solutions offered by our members to keep the industry working through this unprecedented period.”
The meeting wrapped-up with participants sharing their impressions on the debate and giving thumbs up for a follow-up roundtable in 3 weeks’ time.