Home Blog

The Study EVERY Trainer and Coach Should Read and Understand

There are very few absolutes in the world of health and human performance. The answer to just about every question that's asked is "maybe." Even in the debate between anecdotal observations and exclusively evidence-based practice, there are gray areas that can sometimes be heavily debated. 

There is one study, however, that I think every trainer, coach, rehabilitation specialist, and fitness enthusiast should read and understand. My long-time friend Dr. Stu McGill - arguably the world's premier spine authority - is one of the lead authors as well:

Frost DM, Beach TA, Callaghan JP, McGill SM. Exercise-Based Performance Enhancement and Injury Prevention for Firefighters: Contrasting the Fitness- and Movement-Related Adaptations to Two Training Methodologies. J Strength Cond Res. 2015 Sep;29(9):2441-59.

I know what you're thinking: "What can I learn from how firefighters train? My sport, life, and occupational demands are entirely different."

To understand why this study matters so much to you and how you train, we need to look at the methods of it.

Basically, the researchers took 52 firefighters and plugged them into one of three groups:

1. a movement-guided fitness (MOV) group that received both programming and coaching on how to move correctly

2. a conventional fitness (FIT) group that only received programming, but not coaching

3. a control (CON) group that didn't do any exercise intervention

Before and after the 12-week training (or no training, in the control group) intervention, all the firefighters went through a series of fitness test and laboratory screens. They looked at things like body composition, aerobic capacity, grip strength, muscular endurance (max push-ups, planks for time), lower body power (vertical jump), and flexibility (sit-and-reach test).

Of particular importance was the fact that the pre- and post-tests included "five whole-body tasks" that were NOT included in any part of the training intervention. These challenges were a box deadlift, squat (body weight), lunge, split-stance 1-arm cable press, and split-stance 1-arm cable row. The goal was to evaluate how well the training actually transferred to creating more efficient, high-quality movements in whatever chaos life (or, more specifically, firefighting) threw at them. On these tasks, researchers looked at spine and knee motion with reflective markers to scrutinize movement quality under various conditions of low and speed of movement. The researchers noted (bolded section is from me for emphasis):

FIT and MOV groups exhibited significant improvements in all aspects of fitness; however, only MOV exhibited improvements in spine and frontal plane knee motion control when performing each transfer task. FIT exhibited less controlled spine and frontal plane knee motions while squatting, lunging, pushing, and pulling. More MOV participants (43%) exhibited only positive posttraining changes (i.e., improved control), in comparison with FIT (30%) and CON (23%). Fewer negative posttraining changes were also noted (19, 25, and 36% for MOV, FIT, and CON).

So what the heck does this mean for you? Quality training matters.

Those in the high-quality coaching group moved significantly better on average and had substantially fewer negative outcomes. In the training without coaching group, the average "upside" was lower - and there were more incidences of negative adaptation.

This is a study that proves that coaching a quality single-leg RDL will carry over to our pitchers controlling themselves safely into landing.

It shows that the "true" hip extension we train in the gym will also be there when our athletes run and jump.

It shows that the lateral lunge we coach helps our athletes to change direction safely on the lacrosse field.

It demonstrates that deadlift hip hinge technique we coach so hard in the gym reduces my likelihood of hurting my back when I pick up a squirming toddler.

It means that the 90/90 rotator cuff strength and timing position we meticulous coach and train protects our guys when they lay the arm back during the external rotation phase of throwing.

It also shows that quality strength and conditioning outcomes are about so much more than just a program or even a good training environment; they're about hammering home loads of consistently high quality reps to markedly increase the likelihood of favorable movement quality adaptations - while protecting against the downside.

This study also demonstrates why ready-to-print rotator cuff programs often fail shoulder pain patients. That one-size-fits-all approach - combined with inattentive coaching - often keeps patients on a painful path, when a little bit of technique and programming adjustments could be a game changer. And, it shows why some otherwise healthy people can wind up injured when they do the exact same program as the friend who had no problems at all with it. We see it all the time in individuals who come our way for one-time consultations; just a little coaching or program tinkering makes a huge difference in keeping them asymptomatic and enjoying their training.

The pride you take in your coaching - and the pride individuals take in their training technique - matters. Don't ever forget it!

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more

Random Thoughts on Long-Term Fitness Industry Success – Installment 10

It's time for the April installment of my thoughts on the business side of fitness.

1. It might take years for you to recognize that a loss leader will pay off.

Wikipedia defines "loss leader" as "a pricing strategy where a product is sold at a price below its market cost to stimulate other sales of more profitable goods or services." I'd add that it doesn't just have to be a price discount to be a loss leader, either. If I go to deliver a free 60-minute presentation to a baseball team, and then some of those athletes come to train with us, you could see that the time and energy I spent on preparing and delivering that talk were the loss leader that yielded longer-term revenues. I often refer to this as a "value addition leaders" because it doesn't devalue your services (the only "loss" is your time). You're simply finding ways to show potential customers a) you care, b) you're qualified, and c) deliver value before the first transaction.

I can't overstate enough the importance of seeing loss leaders as a long game. People are exposed to thousands of marketing messages nowadays, so it's easy to get desensitized to them individually. Collectively, though, they may build to establish longer-term credibility that leads to a business relationship down the road. So, be patient, persistent, and philanthropic in your giving; in many cases, you'll be rewarded down the road.

2. The average American doesn't understand long-term financial planning, and fitness professionals are among the worst.

I recently finished up the book Dollars and Sense by Dan Ariely. It's a fascinating look at the relationship between people and money.

A few interesting statistics Ariely cited as as follows:

1. 46% of financial planners don't have any retirement savings.

2. 30% of Americans of working age have so little retirement savings that they’ll have to work until they’re 80 – even though life expectancy is only 78!

In short, folks aren't particularly good at looking at the long-term when it comes to saving. Fitness professionals are much more likely to make these financial blunders, in my experience, because they very rarely have employer-sponsored retirement accounts. In other industries, 401(k) matching is far more common, so employees not only have a built-in savings strategy that's facilitated by someone else's money, but also built-in accountability as they observe co-workers around them contributing to these plans.

If you're a fitness professional - or any professional, for that matter - and don't have retirement savings, start today. Skip a $3 coffee each week and put that money into savings. Small hinges swing big doors.

3. Gym culture is a moving target on multiple fronts.

When we started Cressey Sports Performance in 2007, all three co-founders (Pete Dupuis, Tony Gentilcore, and me) were closer in age to our high school athletes then we were to their parents. Now, we are all parents ourselves, and closer in age to the adults than the kids.

As a result, we’ve had to make a conscious effort with our staff to get younger to preserve the “cool“ gym culture where athletes and coaches can relate to one another. At the same time, though, it means that it changes our staff culture considerably.

Moreover, as a business grows, the sheer number of people on your staff expands - and your culture becomes even harder to define and standardize. The same goes for the client culture; when you're seeing 100 clients a day, there is a lot more variability in personalities you encounter on a daily basis than what you experienced when only 30 clients stopped in daily.

The point is that you have to stay on top of monitoring and nurturing your culture, both among your staff and clients. This is one reason why I'm working my way through Pat Rigsby's new resource, The Complete Culture Blueprint.

It's on sale for $30 off through the end of the day today, and I'd highly recommend you check it out - whether you own a facility, manage employees, or work as part of any team environment. You won't regret it - especially at an awesome introductory price of only $49.

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more

The Brightest Cressey Sports Performance Shirt We’ve Ever Made

We've long debated whether we should pull the trigger on making a really bright CSP shirt, and we've finally decided to let it fly! This neon green shirt should get the job done - and is now available for sale. 

These shirts are insanely comfortable and run true to size.

Each shirt is $24.99 + S&H. Click the links below to add shirts to your cart:

XXL

Extra Large

Large

Medium

Small

These usually sell quickly, so don’t delay if you’re interested in picking one up. Enjoy!

Read more

Strength and Conditioning Stuff You Should Read: 4/11/18

I hope you're having a great week. Just in case you need some help getting over Hump Day, here's some good reading to brighten your mood:

Should You Squat Tall Athletes? - This was an absolutely outstanding blog from Mike Robertson.

Practical Solutions for Back Pain Relief - My good friend Dana Santas recently released this user friendly book that draws on decades of experience of incorporating yoga the right way.

Three Awesome Mobility Drills That Will Make You a Pain-Free Golfer - This is some excellent stuff from Cressey Sports Performance coach Frank Duffy, who heads up not only our strength camps, but also our weekly Kinstretch classes.

Top Tweet of the Week

Top Instagram Post of the Week

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more

CSP-Massachusetts Seminar Announcement: Movement Foundations

We're excited to announce that on May 20th, 2018, the Resilient Performance Systems team of Doug Kechijian, Trevor Rappa and Greg Spatz will be on-hand delivering their one-day course, “Movement Foundations.” This event will take place at our Hudson, MA location. It’s a great chance for coaches, clinicians, and fitness professionals to learn to more effectively integrate sports medicine concepts with performance training - including biomechanically efficient strength training and running technique, joint preparation for sport and fitness, and programming considerations throughout the lifespan; all within a model that accounts for different professional training and scope of practice.

Resilient seeks to systematically explore the continuum between acute rehabilitation and athletic performance. Resilient’s clientele includes athletes and operators from military special operations forces, federal law enforcement tactical teams, Major League Baseball (MLB), National Basketball Association (NBA), professional mixed martial arts, X Games, Winter and Summer Olympics, Major League Lacrosse (MLL), National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), and those with a history of persistent pain and extensive surgical backgrounds. Resilient also advises organizations about medical and performance staffing, program development, and injury risk mitigation strategies.

Course Outline:

• Scientific Foundations
    1. Complexity Theory
    2. Managing Uncertainty
    3. Principles of Adaptation
    4. Variability, Capacity, Power
    5. Rehabilitation to Performance Continuum
    6. Emergent Order: Patterning, Checklists, Degrees of Freedom
    7. Mobility, Tightness, Tone
    8. Autonomic Influences

• Assessment
    1. Test What Matters
    2. The Training Process

• Lower Body Foundations
    1. Biomechanics & Arthrokinematics
    2. Anatomy Review
    3. Hip Impingement
    4. Proximal Motor Control
    5. Appropriate Exercise Selection
    6. Stretches & Exercises We Avoid

• Programming Considerations

•Practical Application: Lower Body
    1. Joint Variability Preparation
    2. Hip Dominant
    3. Knee Dominant
    4. Running
    5. Plyometrics

• Lunch Break (1 hour)

• Upper Body Foundations
    1. Biomechanics
    2. Anatomy Review
    3. Proximal Motor Control
    4. Common Pathology
    5. Appropriate Exercise Selection
    6. Stretches & Exercises We Avoid

• Practical Application: Upper Body
    1. Joint Variability Preparation
    2. Push/Pull
    3. Overhead
    4. Frontal/Transverse

Continuing Education

This event has been approved for 0.8 CEUs from the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

Date/Location:

Sunday, May 20, 2018: 9am-6pm with an hour lunch break.
Cressey Sports Performance
Suite 310
Hudson, MA 01749
Registration Fee: $349.99

Students can save $50 by entering the coupon code STUDENT50 (case sensitive) at checkout.

Note: we’ll be capping the number of participants to ensure that there is a lot of presenter/attendee interaction – particularly during the hands-on workshop portion – so be sure to register early.

Click here to register using our 100% secure server.

About the Presenters

Doug Kechijian is a physical therapist and co-founder of Resilient Performance Systems. Before beginning his sports medicine practice, Doug was a Pararescueman in the U.S. Air force where he deployed throughout the world to help provide technical rescue capability and emergency medical care to U.S and allied forces. In 2015, he was selected as one of the U.S. Air Force's Outstanding Airmen of the Year. Doug received his AB in Biology from Brown University and MA in Exercise Physiology/Doctor of Physical Therapy from Columbia University.

Greg Spatz is a physical therapist and co-founder of Resilient Performance Systems. Before launching Resilient, Greg was a Strength & Conditioning Coach in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization. Greg received his BS in Health & Exercise Science from The College of New Jersey where he competed for the baseball team. He earned the Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Columbia University.

Trevor Rappa is a physical therapist and co-founder of Resilient Performance Systems. Before beginning his sports medicine practice, Trevor completed an internship at Mike Boyle's Strength & Conditioning facility. Trevor received his BS in Biology from Amherst College where he competed for the football team. He earned the Doctor of Physical Therapy degree from Columbia University.

Read more

Going Out with a Bang: Creating and Implementing Workout Finishers

Today's guest post comes from Cressey Sports Performance - Florida coach Jason Jabour. Jason heads up the strength camps at the Jupiter location. Enjoy! -EC

In the fitness and performance industry, a coach’s job is to provide clients with a powerful, positive workout experience that yields results. A large part of a client’s success is dependent on their view of the gym experience. Happiness. Motivation. Commitment. Positivity. Energy. These are what we, as coaches, hope to bring out in our clients on a daily basis through relationship building and effective training programs. A properly designed and executed workout “finisher” can be a valuable asset to a trainer or strength coach trying to do just that.

A finisher may take on various forms or structures, but it is ultimately the last segment of a workout that is intended to hit your clients hard with a desired stimulus, putting them on the fence between “I don’t know why I pay money for this” and “whoa, that felt great.” The intent may be to spike the heart rate for conditioning purposes, to mechanically and metabolically challenge a muscle group (the “PUMP!”), or to simply allow your clients to compete and have fun together.

With that said, there are some important DOs and DON’Ts when programming finishers to keep your clients happy, healthy, and coming back for more.

DO:

1. Consider the goals of your clients.

Whether you are training somebody 1-on-1 or leading group training, clients must walk out feeling as if the last thing that they did got them closer to their desired goals. I may blast a guy’s biceps and triceps if his goal is to have bigger arms, as opposed to doing high intensity intervals on the bike. Conversely, a group of women who aren’t too concerned with upper body muscle mass may prefer the latter option. It comes down to communicating with and knowing your clients.

2. Allow for some autonomy and autoregulation.

Make your clients part of the programming process and, occasionally, give them some say in creating a finisher. Further, know when to push and pull back based on the energy, body language, and movement quality of an individual or the group. Just chatting with someone at the beginning of the session can be enough to make that call. If football players had a game the night before, it may not be the best time to run them through a sprint finisher.

3. Pick simple and familiar exercises.

Exercise selection is very important in delivering a potent finisher. There is a positive self-limiting effect that takes place when the appropriate exercises are chosen. Use movement patterns that clients have performed and been coached through a number of times previously. If a movement pattern has been trained, the client can attack it with higher intensity while maintaining quality movement.

Here are some exercises often found in CSP-Florida Strength Camp finishers:
Sled Pushes/Drags/Rows
Sprints
Assault Bike
Battleropes
Bodyweight Lunges
Jump Rope / Jumping Jacks
Pushups
Dumbbell Farmer Carries
Bear Crawls
Low Level Isometric Holds (air squat, hollow body, etc)
Medicine Ball Slams 

As a whole, these movements:

a) are not heavily loaded
b) test different movement patterns
c) can be easily scaled,
d) do not put the client at a high risk of injury if technique falters slightly
e) can all be biased for more conditioning or for more strength/power.

Choose wisely!

4. Consider the physiological and mechanical stimulus you will create.

In creating an effective finisher, one must consider how one exercise affects the execution of the subsequent exercises, potential breathing patterns and heart rate spikes, target muscle groups, and metabolic byproduct accumulation in muscle. I am not saying you have to get super geeky with it, but have an idea of what type of monster the finisher will be.

5. Be creative.

Simple as that! Be smart, but be creative. You can take the same four exercises and create countless finishers simply by changing time domain, rep scheme, exercise order, tempo, etc.

6. Challenge clients and offer opportunities for them to work together.

My clients will often challenge each other’s scores or time on a finisher. Additionally, clients push each other as they work out side-by-side. It is also be beneficial for the culture of a group/class if you challenge clients to work together to accomplish tasks, such as relay races or completing a given amount of work as a team.

DON’Ts:

1. Don’t introduce a new exercise in a finisher.

If you make this mistake, one of two things will happen. The client will spend too much time trying to execute the movement properly and intensity will diminish, or they will try to power through the movement at high intensity and butcher the technique. Either way, the objective is not accomplished.

2. Don’t program technical lifts – no heavy axial or heavy overhead loading.

It is one thing if a client is competing in the sport of fitness, but chances are they are not, so the risk outweighs the reward. As fatigue, heart rate, and intensity increase, it is likely that one will lose core and joint stability and have subtle deviations in movement patterns, a recipe for injury. For an athlete aiming to get better at a sport or for a general population client looking to get strong and feel good, the following lifts should be done fresh and in a controlled manner, not in a finisher:

Deadlifts
Barbell Squats
Olympic Lifts (Dumbbell and Barbell Snatches, Cleans, and Jerks)
High Repetition Pull-ups
Heavy Upper Body Pressing

What is the common theme here? Don’t move a heavy load up and down. Save it for your strength work.

As a side note, it is probably not a good idea to finish with core exercises that take the spine through high repetition flexion and extension patterns, as this may contribute to subsequent back pain. Further, don’t destroy your client's core; it still needs to be able to work the rest of the day.

3. Don’t over-coach a finisher.

A finisher should be an opportunity for the client to let loose and just get after it for a few minutes. If you have done your job and programmed appropriately, you shouldn’t have to do much coaching outside of holding a stopwatch.

4. Don’t be married to your finishers.

The hay is already in the barn with all the work your client has put in during that session. The finisher is just the cherry on top. If you don’t get to it one day because you spent more time on deadlift technique, oh well. If you have to change your finisher to five minutes of box breathing because your client took a red-eye flight home last night, no big deal.

5. Don’t be a drill sergeant.

Be unconditionally positive and empathetic. Remember, your client is paying you, you are not paying your client. As coaches, we cannot make anyone do anything, we just make strong suggestions and give guidance. The client chooses whether to listen.

CSP Strength Camp example finishers:

2 max effort rounds (rest as needed between):
50 yard Sled Push
25 yard Sprint
15 Overhead Med Ball Stomps
25 yard Sprint
15 Jumping Jacks

In teams of 2, complete:
300 Battlerope Slams
*one person works, while one person performs a hollow body hold

4 rounds, for time:
10 Calorie Assault Bike
30 Jump Rope
5 yard Bear Crawl

A finisher allows a coach to make sure that clients end the training session on a high note. An effective finisher is simple, but it is not easy. It is purposeful and moves the client’s needle in the right direction. It is a time to have fun, to go hard, and to finish strong.

About the Author

Jason Jabour is a strength and conditioning coach at Cressey Sports Performance - Florida. He also serves as Strength Camps Coordinator at the Jupiter, Florida location. You can contact him at jasonjabour@gmail.com and follow him on Instagram.

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more

Strength and Conditioning Stuff You Should Read: 4/5/18

I've been off the grid a bit, as I just made the long drive back to Massachusetts from Florida. That said, it did give me time to check out a few good audiobooks to bolster this week's recommended reading!

Thinking in Bets - I've always been fascinated by the decision-making process as it relates from everything from business strategy to how we acquire habits for training and nutrition. Accomplished poker player Annie Duke did a great job exploring the concepts of uncertainty and probability in this new book.

Chris Chase on the Trainable Exercise Menu - This is an awesome guest post from Atlanta Hawks Strength and Conditioning Coach Chris Chase for Mike Robertson's site. I loved this concept when he initially introduced it on Mike's podcast, and he expands on the concept here.

Top 10 Ways to Build Mental Toughness - T-Nation interviewed several contributors (including me) for this roundtable, and there's some good stuff in there.

Top Tweet of the Week

Top Instagram Post of the Week

 

You won’t find a picture that’ll teach you more about how what you do in your strength and conditioning program impacts pitching performance. @srshrek31 has one of the more aggressive down-the-mound deliveries in baseball, which has equated to a perceived velocity that’s been about 1.8mph greater than his actual velocity over the course of his career. 👇 In this position, imagine an aggressive single-leg RDL that drives the front leg back toward the rubber. Effectively, this blocking effect is like riding a bike into the curb. It’s the trigger that tells the arm to go. Here, you see that it’s synced up: as soon as that hip starts to extend, the arm releases the elastic energy that’s built up from lay-back (pre-stretching the lat) into a powerful internal rotation. 💪 You need strength in single-leg stance to accept that force, store elastic energy, and powerfully exert it into the ground to firm up and create the catapult effect. You need hip mobility on the front to do it as you flex, adduct, and internally rotate. And, this doesn’t even take into account the force production and mobility from the back hip that’s set up this position. 😮 Further up, the core has to be stable to transfer force. The upper back has to be mobile to allow for sufficient hip-shoulder separation to occur. The scapula has to be positioned snugly to the rib cage for adequate force transfer. The rotator cuff has to be strong and timed up to center the humeral head (ball) on the glenoid fossa (socket) while competing against the bigger pec and lat musculature. 🔥 Pitching puts you in extreme positions – and it does so over and over again over the course of a career – with very little variation. Prepare accordingly. #cspfamily #Repost @cubs with @get_repost ・・・ Big #OpeningDay performance from the ‘pen! #EverybodyIn

A post shared by Eric Cressey (@ericcressey) on

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more

Making Sense of Subclavius

If you’re looking for a really common trigger point in throwers, look no further than subclavius. It’s stuck right between the clavicle (collarbone) and first rib (highlighted in red here).

In normal posture, the clavicle should have a slight upslope. In many throwers who sit in scapular depression, downward rotation, and/or anterior tilt, the clavicle is pulled down even more, as the collarbone interacts with the shoulder blade at the acromioclavicular joint. Wherever the scapula goes, the collarbone goes.

Here’s the problem: with overhead motion, the clavicle actually needs to rotate up as well – and a short, dense, fibrotic subclavius will restrict that movement.

Making matters worse, the subclavius works with the often hypertonic scalenes to elevate the first rib – so this muscle gets smashed from the bottom while it’s already bunched up from the top. And don’t forget that there are important nerve and vascular structures that course between these two bones as well, so subclavius is an anatomical structure that can’t be ignored anytime a thoracic outlet syndrome diagnosis is considered.

From a referral standpoint, trigger points in subclavius can lead to symptoms in the anterior shoulder, biceps muscle belly, and lateral forearm all the way down to the thumb side of the hand. It’s also not uncommon to see the clavicular angle increase (upslope) after good manual therapy on subclavius in someone with a low shoulder.

In short, don’t overlook this muscle just because you’ve never heard of it or it’s really small. Taking care of it can be a game changer, whether it's with quality manual therapy, self-myofascial release on the Acumobility Ball, or a combination of the two.

Also, a friendly reminder that you get 10% off at www.Acumobility.com with the coupon code cressey. Take care of that subclavius! 

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more

Random Thoughts on Long-Term Fitness Industry Success – Installment 9

It's been a while since I posted a new installment on this series, so here are two thoughts that have been rattling around my brain on the business side of fitness.

1. It takes time and many exposures to build top of mind awareness and, more importantly, trust.

I had a chat with one of our free agent minor league baseball players a few weeks ago. He moved down from New Jersey a few months ago to train with us all offseason.

Two years ago, his agent encouraged him to check Cressey Sports Performance out. He didn’t act.

Then, he played with one of our guys in independent ball and again heard our name, but didn’t follow up on it.

Later, he heard my name mentioned twice on the Tim Ferriss Podcast. While intrigued, he still didn’t act.

Then, last summer, he read the New York Times article about our work with Noah Syndergaard, and he finally reached out.

 

This #tbt is a video of alternating serratus slides on the @trxtraining suspension trainer, with a great demo from #mets pitcher @nsyndergaard. Some thoughts: 1️⃣One of the things we worked a lot on with Noah this offseason was differentiating between glenohumeral (ball on socket) and scapulothoracic (shoulder blade on rib cage) movement. Most pitchers get too much motion from the upper arm, and not enough from the shoulder blade. Notice how the scapula upwardly rotates around the rib cage - which takes stress off the front of the shoulder. 2️⃣ serratus anterior also helps to drive some thoracic flexion in a throwing population that often presents with a flat/extended thoracic spine (upper back). 3️⃣in a general sense, you could call serratus anterior the “anti-lat.” The latissimus dorsi drives a gross extension pattern and can be heavily overused in throwers; the serratus anterior works in opposition (scapular upward rotation, intimate link with the anterior core, accessory muscle of exhalation). 4️⃣add a full exhale at the “lengthened” position on each rep 5️⃣you could’ve observed the shoulder blades better if he was shirtless, but I figured Thor has already hit his weekly quota for shirtless social media cameos.😜 👍💪#cspfamily

A post shared by Eric Cressey (@ericcressey) on

Top of mind awareness isn’t enough anymore. People need to know, like, and trust you. And it takes longer than ever to get to that trust point. I recall hearing that the law of repeated exposures used to be seven interactions with a marketing message. Now, it’s probably a lot more.

If you want to be perceived as a go-to expert in your chosen field, it’s not just enough to do a good job. People need to be made aware that you’re doing a good job from a number of different angles; you have to make your expertise easier to perceive.

2. Don’t compare apples and oranges in the fitness industry (or any industry, for that matter).

As you probably know, we have Cressey Sports Performance facilities in both Hudson, MA and Jupiter, FL. The systems and overarching approach to coaching are very comparable – especially because I spend part of the year at both locations – but there are actually many differences between the two facilities.

Our professional baseball clientele comprises a larger portion of our yearly revenues in Florida, whereas Massachusetts derives more from high school athletes (especially because the high school offseason is longer in a warm weather climate).

Our Massachusetts facility is larger because we have to do more throwing and sprinting inside during the winter. Conversely, Florida weather allows us to do more of this work outside.

We have different staff members at each location. They have unique expertise and personalities.

CSP-MA opened in 2007, and CSP-FL opened in 2014. Massachusetts is a more “mature” business, which gives us a better picture of norms that allow us to compare how things are progressing from year to year.

I could go on and on about the difference, but the important takeaway is that if I sometimes struggle to compare two facilities with virtually the same name and training philosophy, why should you ever compare yourself to another gym?

What Mark Fisher Fitness has to pay for rent in New York City far exceeds what a personal trainer with a small studio in Alabama would have to pay.

Ben Bruno can train a lot more celebrities in Hollywood than a trainer can in North Dakota.

Gross revenues for a giant commercial gym in San Francisco are going to be substantially higher than what a semi-private operation in Minnesota can take in. Meanwhile, the owner of the MN facility might actually make more money and sleep better at night than the owner of the big box gym.

The point is to have a filter when you look at all the “success” you see around you in the fitness industry. There are gyms grossing millions of dollars that are scraping to get by, and others that only do a small fraction of that amount while having a huge community impact – and allowing a fitness entrepreneur to live the life he wants.

Just like you would never encourage your clients to compare themselves to other clients, supermodels, or professional athletes, you shouldn’t compare yourself to any other trainer, business, or facility. All that matters is that when you compare yourself to what you were days, weeks, months, and years before, you’ve progressed.

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more

Strength and Conditioning Stuff You Should Read: 3/18/18

I hope you had a great St. Patrick's Day. I'm in the middle of a busy few weeks of on-and-off travel, so here's some recommended reading to hold you over until I've got a chance to film some new content:

Ninety Percent Mental - I just started this sports psychology book from my good friend, Bob Tewksbury. A former MLB All-Star, Bob has gone on to work as a sports psychology consultant for multiple MLB organizations and has tons of great wisdom to share. I'm excited to work my way through it.

"Cressey University" Gave Twins Inside Track on Revamped Roster - Twins beat writer Mike Berardino interviewed me last week for this feature on all the Cressey Sports Performance athletes in the Minnesota organization.

Gym Owner Musings - My business partner, Pete Dupuis, always has some great thoughts on the business side of fitness, and this is another excellent example.

Top Tweet of the Week

Top Instagram Post of the Week

Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!

Name
Email
Read more
Page 1 2 3 167
LEARN HOW TO DEADLIFT
  • Avoid the most common deadlifting mistakes
  • 9 - minute instructional video
  • 3 part follow up series