Ahead of the Scientific Curve

An online quote I read recently…

“I’m ahead of the (fitness and training) science”– Online Fitness Guru

Being completely fair to the guy, in time he may be proven right.

Science often plays catch up to what has been happening in the trenches and can confirm, debunk or course correct. As of present, based on available evidence and the professional opinions of numerous fitness industry thought leaders and allied health professionals the Guru is wrong on many levels. Comically wrong in some cases.


The Guru could be ahead of the curve or simply has a huge ego….or both I suppose.

I can’t recall too many of the “ahead of the science curve” types openly admit when they were wrong. It’s my opinion if you’re doing stuff before it has been proven by research then you’re just guessing.

Yes, sometimes you guessed correctly and may truly have been ahead of the curve. It’s also possible you were right, but not for the reasons you thought. On the other hand, there were also times when people guessed completely wrong, and did things that ranged from useless to counterproductive to dangerous.


Even a Blind Squirrel occasionally finds a nut.

Does this mean everything done in training needs triple digit randomized controlled trials clearly proving something works? No, and in the case of the quoted Guru all research save for his sucks anyhow.

In some cases, a simple “Does it work and Is it Safe?” is enough to get started and you can work towards figuring out the “How?” later.


Personally I’m glad Sandow and Schwarzenegger didn’t wait around for studies. I can’t recall either gentleman claiming how “ahead of the scientific curve” they were.  

After being in the fitness industry for a while, I can see how sometimes we as fitness professionals have guessed correct, even though it lacked verification by scientific research. We have also fallen victim to following what exercise and nutrition science stated was correct, but then later retracted after further research.


Remember, we live in a world with plenty of science deniers. Interestingly,the Guru has used some of the same responses when challenged to back up his opinion. 

I believe that we as fitness professionals need to do what we know/learn through a combination of science, experience, and common sense. We need to define and apply things at the right time in relation to the abilities,goals and tolerances of the client.



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