Wednesday, May 8, 2013

You call that a Squat?

Towards Standardization of the Nomenclature of Resistance Training Exercises

Was recently published in the Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research:

This article highlights one of the challenges in communicating effectively with athletes and clients.  Physical Therapists, Certified Athletic Trainers, Chiropractors, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists, Sport Coaches, Personal Trainers all have different opinions about what an exercise is called, how the exercise is performed and who the exercise is appropriate for and when.
Pistol Squat

Bottoms Up Windmill 
In clinical practice I spend a good deal of time educating my patients and clients about terminology and how I am applying terminology. Squat, Dead Lift, Clean, Press, Snatch, Turkish Get Up just name every exercise you have ever performed and I bet I can show you another technique of that same exercise and we could disagree all day about it. No wonder the general public does not know who to listen to and trust. 

Kettlebell Swing
 I think the most important thing I educate my clients on is the concept of "Know WHAT you are doing and WHY you are doing it". This applies to individual exercises as well as types of exercise. For example I am often asked :What's the best (exercise, sport, fitness fad......) for (Fill In The Blank)? I answer with a question. What is your end goal? Followed by another. What do you enjoy doing?
Just because I like kettlebell exercises and trail riding on mountain bikes doesn't mean it is the best thing for everyone standing in front of me seeking my guidance.
Hike for One Arm Swing? Snatch, Clean, Press? Not Sure?
In short, Give your patients and clients better answers when they ask you questions about health and fitness, and admit to them when you do not know why the coach at school calls it one thing and you call it something else. Then go find out the answer.

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