Reply to recent accusations of BTN Academy

***UPDATE MARCH 2018***
The Foundation Academy is now certified by the AFN and REPS.

Recent communications online have intimated that Body Type Nutrition (BTN) has been dishonest in selling its course ‘The BTN Academy’ and giving out false information.

Such recent posts have been by Martin Macdonald 07/06/2016 on Facebook, screen shots below.

Body Type Nutrition has always defended its actions and proved its side of the story, multiple times in closed PT groups and networks, which has never been listened to, which intimates that this attack on BTN is personal.

In light of the above screenshots BTN will take this opportunity to air its side of the accusations to ease the mind of our students, followers, and supporters.

BTN is NOT an accredited course, this is correct, not by the AfN, not by REPS. We are currently going through the AfN certification process as confirmed by the email below, and any accusations that we are not are false and are made to put negative thought or doubt into people’s minds. If anyone is trying to block or inhibit our ability to become a certified course, again this comes down to a personal crusade and not the unified response of the AfN (as far as we are aware).

We did indeed release a statement on Facebook and Email that announced we were REPS accredited for our Foundation Academy, this was discussed through conversation with Paul Garvie of Fitness Training Scotland (FTS) as the BTN Academy was using FTS REPS licence to register the course. We hold our hands up here and are honest that we jumped the gun with notifying people of the accreditation but then immediately removed when we were notified that this was not the case after the announcement. We did this in faith that the information was correct, and we apologise for any miscommunication, which was immediately removed once REPS had been in touch. We have never advertised we are REPS accredited in any other area of the internet (aside from a similar statement at the time on Twitter), not on our website, nowhere. We have also in private conversation never said we were accredited, but when asked have said we are working towards it and hope this will be granted, which is the truth. We never said to prospective students that we are, or will 100% be certified, but that it was happening and we are confident it will eventually go through, but cannot guarantee this will be in your Academy student year.

During the time of trying to go for REPS accreditation Richard Sennewald was in direct communication with Paul Garvie to bring our material into line with the guidelines, while also consulting Gary Mendoza to ensure our course was within the guidelines and ‘evidence based’, of which you can see the below photo of payment to Gary Mendoza for his consulting services to aid us in this process. It was Richard Sennewalds full time role at the time to manage the students in the BTN Academy, the learning experience, and ensure our information was in line with the current research.

Of course this was fruitless as REPS then removed this access, and at the time the industry was going through a shift to the AfN as a governing body, so we were told not to continue our application and wait for the AfN to release their new criteria. Of which we have done, and in recent weeks submitted our completed application.

Nowhere on our website does it say we are accredited by the AfN, and nor will it till we receive this accreditation. If for some reason we don’t receive accreditation and our materials are up to scratch and in line with the guidelines, we can only assume this is due to personal influence and is out of our control, and is a scathing reflection of the industry and how some people choose to behave. Any student passing through our course will, and always has done, recieived the title ‘nutrition coach’ and through Financial Fitness Ltd is insured and able to practice as a nutrition coach with the assurance they have been adequately trained to help others with their nutrition and health goals. If we receive AfN accreditation, this will just be an added bonus to anyone completing the course.

We have indeed over the years re-written many aspects of our course, this is simply evolution, we have improved each time we intake a new set of students, every 6 months, to fall in line with current research and thinking. BTN will not apologise for this approach, it is our duty to keep improving and evolving what we teach for the benefit of the students, and this is one reason we give lifelong access to our course, so that when information is updated and changed, students have access to go back and re-learn the topic areas that may have changed (of which we notify all students via the BTN Facebook community and via email). We will not apologise for having practical application in our course. We are an evidence based course just like other courses, but we pride ourselves on real world application see personal trainers and coach are able to apply the theory to real world situations with their clients.

With regard to our past and present refund policy, we have always dealt with complaints and requests for refunds on a personal, case by case basis. We tend to allow students to stop payments, or move them on to another course if required but we will only offer a refund if the situation/evidence supports the request. It has become clear over time, that some of the mentioned refund requests were not passed on to the correct person, due to staffing changes at the time and therefore we as a company were not aware of them. We have since made changes to the company to ensure this does not happen again, and whilst we apologise for this – we cannot deal with requests that we were never made aware of. If you would like to give feedback on this, or talk about anything related to it, please email and she will happily look at each instance. As with any reputable business, our refund policy is legal and fair and always accessible to our students via the website, members’ area and via email and it has been designed to protect our interest as well as that of our customers. There are no outrageous points, we simply state that any refund we do provide, will only be done so in extenuating circumstances with valid and written proof of the issue.

Ben approached Martin at FitPro after a personal character assassination at the FotPro 2016 live event. Rather than Martin personally talking to Ben to air his differences, he chose to film Ben at the back of the room from behind a chair, what this was for, we don’t know. He then proceeded to post on Facebook about Ben and his talk, dissuading attendees to listen to Ben. When Ben approached Martin to air their differences, it was evident there was a difference of opinion over some areas of how they both practice, and when Ben asked Martin as to why he keeps slandering Ben online, Martin replied “it’s business”. At that point Ben left the conversation.

BTN is committed to the learning experience of its students and aims to constantly improve and shift with the industry so that it is current, up to date, and evidence based while practically applied. We ensure we do this by getting a wide range of expertise and teaching on the course, hence our academy teaching team is made up of diverse expertise in the form of Ben Coomber (BSc, CISSN), Will Hawkins (MSc), Mark Fogarty (PHd), Simon Herbert (CISSN), Phil Patterson (BSc & Team GB Athlete), Jessie Mundell (MSc) and Alex Manos (Msc & Lecturer at CNELM), with each academy teacher specialising in their own areas. 

We will continue to focus our time on improving our course, its teaching, and the students experience. This is the evidence we have presented, for individuals that are so evidence based to not accept the evidence presented is merely a case of cognitive dissonance.