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Developing On And Off The Field With Pro Football Player Chris Ackie

Chris Ackie | Professional Athlete & Business Founder | Toronto Argonauts & Impulse Football

I want to give every athlete at Impulse Football the tools to achieve their goals and for them to learn valuable life skills while on that journey

Chris Ackie

Professional Athlete & Business Founder

Toronto Argonauts & Impulse Football

× The interview with Chris Ackie was conducted via a typed conversation. Editing changes were made to make it easier to read while maintaining the voice of the interview.

Tell us about how you got into football and your journey to becoming a professional athlete.

My football journey began at the age of 10, begging my parents for an entire year until they finally let me play.

My older brother was essentially the guinea pig, my parents told me if Ron doesn’t get hurt this season that I would be allowed to play the following year. I attended all of his practices and games as if I were on the team.

I couldn’t wait to be a part of a team environment and play the game I was quickly falling in love with. My first season was fantastic, I had so much fun.

My team went to the championship game that year, unfortunately, we lost, but I just remember telling myself how I wanted to be a Professional Football Player when I grew up.

Many years later, I was fortunate to have a few university football offers to decide from. Ultimately I went where I felt most comfortable and that was Wilfrid Laurier University. It was a big decision at the time, and I know I made the right one. I had an incredible 4 years at Laurier and made life long friendships.

In 2015 I accepted an invite to the CFL Combine, where I was able to showcase my abilities in hopes to get drafted. I was extremely thankful to be drafted 1st round 4th overall to the Montreal Alouettes, it would be my first opportunity to live out my childhood dreams.

You singed with the Toronto Argonauts in February of 2020. I can imagine it must’ve been an emotional realization that you were now going to be a part of the team you grew up watching. Take us through the moment you found out you were going to be an Argo!

I was so excited to sign with the Toronto Argonauts, I grew up watching all the games and idolizing the players. My friends and family wouldn’t stop calling my phone when they found out the good news.

It happened fairly quickly, when I decided I was going to move on from the Alouettes I had a few other offers come in on Day 1 of free agency, although nothing from the Argos yet.

I remember walking out of my Hot Yoga class that night with 10 missed calls from my agent. He was calling to tell me that the Toronto Argonauts have made an offer and asked if I wanted to accept it tonight. He knew how much I wanted to play back home in Toronto so we accepted the offer that night.

Unfortunately, the CFL was unable to operate this season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. What’re you doing now to keep yourself in shape, physically and mentally?

Unfortunately no season this year…we were all excited to play and compete for the Grey Cup.

I’ve still been in the gym. I’m at the Argos facility 3 days a week. I’m still breaking down game film to keep my mind sharp.

I’ve most recently completed my Canadian Securities Course, which is a financial course that gives me a license to sell mutual funds, mutual fund products and other investment products.

Over the years, you have not only developed on the field, but also a sports business professional. You founded Impulse Football in 2017 to advance youth and community development through football. Tell us about what this company means to you and how playing professionally has given you the platform you needed to start this organization.

Impulse Football is a youth developmental football program.

Our main objective is to create a community where we can grow together and hold each other accountable on and off the field. This company means a lot to me. It has given me the ability to make an impact in my community.

Growing up I was told from outside sources that I would never make it pro and that I should find a new path because I wasn’t good enough.

I want to give every athlete at Impulse Football the tools to achieve their goals and for them to learn valuable life skills while on that journey.

We’ve grown so much as a company since our inception in 2017. We have now started an Impulse Football Charity Day where we donate all the proceeds from the camp to a local not-for-profit organization that is also making an impact in our community.

Impulse Football has led many young athletes to next-level opportunities including scholarships and invitations to the CFL national/regional combine. How has this venture allowed you to develop as an athlete? Would you consider coaching full-time later on in your career?

I’d say running Impulse Football has developed my leadership skills.

I’m continuously motivating our athletes and just being a positive role model in their lives.

I don’t have a desire to coach full-time, but I could see myself being a volunteer coach at a high school or university program.

Emma Greer Emma's Final Thoughts

Chris Ackie has had a love for football since he was young. Once his football journey began, he hasn’t stopped developing on or off the field. Chris makes sure to stay physically fit and game-ready but doesn’t neglect his desire to stay educated. Once he established his athletic career, he was able to start Impulse Football where he’s developed as a leader, while also developing other young athletes. Impulse Football is a place for other athletes to live by the same mentality as Ackie… strong mind and game. Chris has a true passion for sport on both the player and the business side. 

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