Chapter 25

David Stearns
105 Dolphin Boulevard E
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082-1714
(904) 285-0240
Aerobics and Fitness Association of America Profile Biopic

David Edwin Stearns
Born: October 31, 1947
Knoxville, Tennessee
AFAA Membership #106762
AFAA CI #279-44

I am not a typical personal trainer, in that I don't make my living from training clients. I help to train the Jacksonville Beach, Florida, volunteer lifeguards, who are members of the American Red Cross Volunteer Lifesaving Corps. We were the first volunteer lifesaving corps in the United States (1912), and we are the last one remaining. We work for free every Sunday and on national holidays. We still wear a replica of the 1912 uniform.
In 1994, it was my understanding that to be certified as an AFAA personal trainer, you had to first be certified as an aerobics instructor. I passed the written exam with no problem, but failed the aerobics instructor practical exam, not once, but twice. Lucky for me, at that point, I was able to move on and earn my personal trainer certification at APEX in Atlanta, in January of 1996. Of all aspects of fitness, I am most interested in stretching.
I worked as a personal trainer at a country club fitness center and trained clients on my own for several years. I was also bartending at the time, and making more money at that than training, so I cut back to only working with the Jax Beach guards. Currently I own and operate a pool cleaning business and a website design business. During my life, I have moved around a lot, and had a number of careers, including driving a taxi in Honolulu, trimming trees in Sacramento, fiber glassing surfboards in Huntington Beach, and working construction in Florida. I managed to squeeze in an AA degree in liberal arts from Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, California, in 1970. Aside from the school of hard knocks that's as far as I got education wise.
I like to surf, run, lift weights, ride my motorcycle, watch movies and sports on tv, and practice martial arts. I still lifeguard and blow my whistle occasionally, but mostly help train our members and recruits. I have been married to my wonderful wife, Karen, since 1993. My life is richer and fuller for Karen being in it. We actually dated four separate times beginning in 1979, before we tied the knot. I am writing my memoirs online in a website, It's fun and therapeutic to go back and put events and people in their proper historical place. Like many people, I have a Facebook page.
I have always been a philosophical sort and in 1997, a concept dawned on me like a light bulb coming on. What if most of the people in the world were healthy in mind, body, and spirit, what kind of a world would it be? I elaborated on this in a Christmas letter to my friends and family in 1997 and founded a 501(c)(3) non profit corporation in 1998, called Imagine World Health (online at The Imagine World Health website provides accepted guidelines for physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual health, as well as links to other sites and good health suggestions. In 2009, I carried this concept one step further with a project called Lets Move Ahead (online at Lets Move Ahead asserts that human beings cause the vast majority of human problems, and as history repeats itself, we need to address the root causes of our problems.
Many of us in the world are doing good things and trying to make things better, just as many of those who came before us did. The reality is that we are fighting the same battles generation after generation, addressing the symptoms, but not the root causes (i.e. unhealthy human behavior). If we want to be deeply and introspectively honest, we have to ask ourselves, "Do we want to dance around the fire during our time on earth, or do we want to leave a legacy for those who follow us?" Until human nature changes, we are only holding (hopefully) the barbarians at the gates.
I would like to retire on the island of Kaua'i. When I am too old to surf and hike anymore, I want to return to the Appalachians in western North Carolina, and sit on the front porch in a rocking chair, and watch the sun go down.

August 3, 2010


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