“I keep running into people that seemed to have skipped one or both of the first two components.” Recent Facebook post.
Unfortunately, this is nothing new. For some reason there has been an uptick in reports coming my way highlighting this situation.
It doesn’t take much observational skill, and even less effort to see that people differ greatly in differences in height, weight and limb length, and thats only the exterior view of them. Even Olympic athletes within the same weight class and sport (aka the physical and performance level ideals of their sport) present external anatomical differences.
You shouldn’t need to check page 123 of your trainer book to determine if this is true or not, but if you feel the need knock yourself out.
Knowing this, how can a trainer suggest that all people adhere to a singular means of training? In this specific case, its only certain exercises and a somewhat specific means on how they are to be performed.
This was the recent case involving a “trainer.” I’m told he looks physically impressive and was hired off the gym floor apparently based purely off that qualification. Obviously the gym has high hiring standards. Anyhow, his training background/history is apparently in bodybuilding style training. Based on what was reported back to me, his claim is that 100% of the population needs to train Bodybuilding style, its the safest and most effective.
Before getting any further, I feel I must state that I have nothing against Bodybuilding, or Bodybuilding training itself. Where I do I have a problem is that this individual has one hammer,and everyone is the same nail. For some people, and some goals it can be ideal way to go, for other people and other goals it could be the worst. It may even be the entry point for some people until they can progress to other forms of exercise.
It depends on WHO and FOR WHAT PURPOSE.
Some facts, which counter the trainers comments…
Bodybuilding, or Bodybuilding coaches are not inherently safer or riskier than other method counterparts. To say otherwise without any supporting evidence (as in scientific, evidence) displays an unsubstantiated bias, limit of knowledge or possibly both.
Weight training as a whole, under qualified instruction and supervision is relatively low risk compared to a number of other sports.
Training to, or past failure points is not needed for the majority of people. It certainly isn’t required on EVERY exercise for EVERY person. (He’s reportedly a BIG FAN of taking everything to failure or beyond.)
Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demands (SAID Principle): The body will adapt to the demands placed on it. The key point is that the demands (stress) cannot be too much, or too little. The individual defines what is too much and what is too little, and this is not confined strictly to load, and the same exercises will not produce identical responses in all people.
Machines may not fit all bodies, and not all machines are engineered the best, lack of adjustments or maintenance being just two possible issues.
Putting myself out on Front Street.
PERSONAL EXAMPLE OF LEARN: This is an area that I take some pride in. I’ve always sought continued education on topics, or even individual techniques. To date, I’ve learned Barbell training from the readings of Mark Rippetoe (Starting Strength Basic Barbell) and Louie Simmons (Westside Barbell) and live instruction under Chris Duffin (Kabuki Movement Systems) and Tom Delong (USPA Powerlifting Coach.) Kettlebell, Bodyweight and Movement training have similarly all come from multiple sources.
It could be argued that my obvious investments into education lead to a bias towards other people investing in theirs as well. The fact is, I started with one book, and went from there. Some people never even pick up one book, or do, and believe that the single text is all there is to know.
I consider myself very much a student, and I’m far from where I can ascend.
PERSONAL EXAMPLE OF DO: During and long since the Learn stage, I put in the work of doing. Rather casually I can bench press loads over my bodyweight, near ballistically press over half bodyweight overhead, single hand press a 32kg kettlebell, hold hollow body hold positions for over a minute,knock out at least five strict pull-ups and hit a cartwheel off the floor.
I’m not strong, but I’m not weak either,and based on poolside observation I’m not reflective of a good number of 48 year old males.
I personally believe that the DO is key. There are things lost between Learn and Teach that only DO can address, and I believe that we learn things from the struggles of DO that cannot be conveyed from a book or course.
PERSONAL EXAMPLE OF TEACH: I trained to be able to do these things and I don’t automatically assume everyone else is ready to do them, or would even need to. I know that there are people with contraindications which rule out certain exercises. and points where exercises present challenges.
I learned that by continued learning, making mistakes and correcting them in the do phase and refining my teaching process. I’ve also learned that the method that works best for the individual isn’t what I necessarily favor, its what they need, based on what they are capable of now. Therefore, I teach the individual in front of me accordingly.