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2022 IDEA World

Welcome
to the
2022 IDEA World
Opening Ceremonies

Sponsored by
Send me a trainer

Program

Performance by
Culture Shock® Las Vegas

Welcome by Amy Thompson

IDEA World Fitness Awards Presentations

Amy Purdy:
2022 IDEA Inspiration Award Recipient

Elaine LaLanne

Billy Blanks:
2022 IDEA Jack LaLanne Award Recipient

Keynote by Billy Blanks

Closing Thoughts by Amy Thompson

Closing Performance by
Culture Shock® Las Vegas

2022 IDEA World
Fitness Awards Finalists

Herbalife

Sponsored by Herbalife Nutrition

IDEA Fitness Instructor
Of The Year

The IDEA Fitness Instructor of the Year Award honors a certified group fitness instructor who teaches a minimum of five classes per week and whose superior instructional and leadership skills are demonstrated through community and industry involvement, as well as the ability to inspire and motivate others to commit to a healthy lifestyle.

Christine Conti, MEd

Christine Conti, MEd

Brick, New Jersey

When Christine Conti needs a little inspiration, she summons up words of wisdom from . . . Wonder Woman. “You have two choices in life. Do something or do nothing. Always choose something.” She never needed that more than when, at age 30, she was diagnosed with a serious autoimmune disease. After months of battling depression and hopelessness, Conti summoned her superhero muse and chose to take control over the things she could—exercise, nutrition, hydration, sleep, recovery and mindset—and help show others that they do not need to be defined by their diseases. “In fact,” she says now, “my disease has proven to be my biggest gift.”

Aileen Sheron

Aileen Sheron

West Covina, California

“I have loved being an instructor for as long as I can remember,” says Aileen Sheron. “And what it came down to, from the very beginning, was my strong belief in transforming people’s lives for the better.” Her students and peers attest to both her talent and passion. “I have witnessed her cajole, motivate and progress class participants from the unknown to high performance; from anxiety to mastery; from skepticism to devotion,” says Kymberly Williams-Evans, MA. Although Sheron loves presenting and takes pride in mentoring others, she still teaches weekly classes. “I make deep connections with my students by staying current and positive, educating and inspiring my ever-extending fitness family.

Kia Williams, MBA, MS

Kia Williams, MBA, MS

Chicago, Illinois

When asked about her proudest accomplishment, Kia Williams sites her role as health and wellness chairwoman for the NAACP Fort Worth-Tarrant Chapter. “Having the opportunity to deliver fitness programming, research benefits and make fitness a community priority are efforts that will live on longer than I.” It’s an incredible honor, but only one part of her legacy. Williams has a lot to be proud of, including serving on the first-ever IDEA Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee, volunteering in her community, and, of course, leading fitness classes. “I am on a mission to consistently deliver best practices in every group fitness experience I present,” she says.

IDEA Personal Trainer
Of The Year

The IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year Award honors a certified personal trainer who trains clients one-on-one at least 15 hours each week, and whose exceptional leadership, business management and instructional skills motivate and inspire clients to greater personal growth and a higher level of fitness.

Greg Johnson, MS

Greg Johnson, MS

Sacramento, California

Greg Johnson provides 60–70 session hours of training every week, in addition to many other endeavors. His strong work ethic is matched by empathy. “I also want to show [my clients] that I am no exception,” he explains. “There are times when my nutrition is off or I miss workouts; they see that I sometimes struggle with the same things they do.” Johnson fought equally hard for our industry during the COVID-19 gym shutdowns, finding ways to honor mandates and keep clients moving. “I will continue to educate state and local officials”, he says, “so they understand the importance of health and fitness through training.”

Darian Parker, PhD

Darian Parker, PhD

Blaine, Washington

Darian Parker has a clear philosophy as a personal trainer. “It is about creating meaningful, worthwhile and positive relationships,” he says. “While having a solid knowledge base and understanding of how to apply scientific principles related to exercise is critically important, I have found that what is even more important is how you make people feel about themselves in that process.” Parker puts equal effort into diversity and inclusion. “As a black man in the fitness industry, I believe it is also a part of my work to be an example to others. I am representing a hope for other people of color, and I take that very seriously.”

Rick Richey, DHS, MS, LMT

Rick Richey, DHSc, MS, LMT

New York City

Since he began his career as a certified personal trainer in 2002, Rick Richey has shown incredible growth. He has become a licensed massage therapist; group instructor; college and university adjunct professor; NASM faculty instructor; author; subject-matter expert; international presenter; and contributor for educational videos, books and web-based content. He now owns four facilities in New York City, travels around the world teaching, hosts the NASM CPT podcast, and holds a doctorate in health science. “I have been blessed to train people who have opened my eyes in ways I never expected,” he says. “Learning through their experiences has made me a better person.”

Anna Woods

Anna Woods

Hutchinson/Wichita, Kansas

“I take an unwavering stand for equity and inclusion in every aspect of my business,” says Anna Woods says. “As a mom of children with special needs, I am immersed in this issue every day, and it makes me much more empathetic and aware of the day-to-day struggles of people who appear different.” Compelled by her passion for supporting people with special needs, Woods recently designed an ACE course, “Adaptive Fitness Exercise Programming,” that helps fitness professionals understand how to train clients with special needs, communicate with them and their caretakers, and foster adherence to programming. “In my gym,” she says, “everyone is safe, celebrated and welcome.”

IDEA Fitness Leader
Of The Year

The IDEA Fitness Leader of the Year Award honors an individual whose outstanding contributions to the fitness industry serve staff, fitness professionals, students, clients and their community in inspiring ways and whose leadership and business skills better the overall success of our industry.

David Geslak

David Geslak

Chicago, Illinois

In 2004, David Geslak was thriving as coach for NFL athletes, but he soon found a new group of clients who proved even stronger and more tenacious: those with autism. In 2009, he founded the Exercise Connection Corporation to empower “the autism and special-needs community to successfully use exercise to build an active lifestyle.” Geslak has since become a national leader, writing The Autism Fitness Handbook and partnering with ACSM to create the Autism Exercise Specialist Certificate. “This mission goes beyond my or anyone’s career endeavor,” he says. “It’s part of the human endeavor; to make and leave the world a better place.”

Hayley Hollander

Hayley Hollander

Chicago, Illinois

There are so many ways to describe Hayley Hollander. She’s the co-founder and president of Pivotal, a global development company providing accredited education. She’s a fit pro with more than 22 years of experience. She’s the co-director of education for Gray Institute® and a master coach. She’s a powerhouse. “Hayley has a rare gift to not only craft effective workouts and training programs for fitness professionals, but to deliver them in a way that empowers those around her to perform at their best,” says Erica Tillinghast, director of wellness science and programming at Peloton. Hollander adds: “I live and breathe to help others achieve their dreams.”

Pete Holman, MSPT

Pete Holman, MSPT

Aspen, Colorado

“My mission is simple,” says Pete Holman. “I want to positively impact world health, wellness and vitality.” Holman has approached the complexities of this goal with hard work, creativity and an unwavering commitment to industry leadership. Every step of the way—as a physical therapist, personal trainer, inventor, two-time U.S. national Taekwondo champion, presenter, volunteer, author and mentor—he has “walked the walk,” reaching out to help others and, along the way, he has created the positive impact that’s the core of his personal mission. Today, as president of Aspen Integrative Kinetics, Holman focuses on sports performance, corrective exercise and physical rehabilitation.

IDEA Emerging Trailblazer
of the Year

—New for 2022

The IDEA Emerging Trailblazer of the Year Award honors an up-and-coming fitness professional who has been in the fitness industry for a relatively short period of time, and has demonstrated exceptional ability to innovate, inspire and lead others to fitness and wellness early in their career. Their contributions to the industry and their communities demonstrate how this individual shows promise to become a future fitness industry trailblazer. 

Lacee Green

Lacee Green

Ventura, California

There’s a perfect word to describe Lacee Green: “beYOUtiful!” She’s made it her mission to help women feel that “there is a place for them to be their own version of healthy and fit,” she explains. “Through my fitness programs, classes and social media platforms, my message is to learn to love yourself enough to want to be the happiest and healthiest version of yourself. That looks different for all of us, and that’s okay. I hope to help raise self-confidence, self-love and generational health for women and girls internationally.” Says mentor Doris Thews: “When I think about the future of fitness, I know its bright, because Lacee is the future.”

Maricris Lapaix, MA

Maricris Lapaix, MA

Los Angeles, California

Maricris Lapaix infuses all her work with the positive intentions. “The professional and ethical standards I stand by are rooted in integrity, honesty and loyalty,” says Lapaix. “The mixed-culture family dynamic I grew up in cultivated within me a deep appreciation and generous spirit for others.” She demonstrates that spirit in her 25–30 weekly personal training and group instruction sessions, her work as a brand ambassador, and her extensive social media presence. “My global mission has been to motivate individuals to discover their catalyst for regular movement and a healthy mindset to be strong in life!,” she says.

Alessandro Pisanu

Alessandro Pisanu

Turin, Italy

“I started my fitness journey in a college dorm room when COVID-19 broke out,” says Alessandro Pisanu. “I originally started Facebook online live classes to help my students keep moving while all the gyms were closed.” He was, in fact, one of the first to conduct online classes in Italy. Now, as a group fitness instructor, a personal trainer, fitness presenter and influencer, Pisanu teaches 12 weekly group fitness classes in person and another four from his online platform. “My mission is to connect people around the world through fitness, regardless of countries, cultures, ethnicities, experiences and backgrounds,” he says, “and keep them moving no matter what situation they are in.”