ISSA Blog


Click here to read 4 Reasons Your Client Isn’t Losing Weight That No One is Talking About

You and your client have hit a wall. Weight loss just isn’t happening. What do you do? Before you let your client give up in frustration, consider these four weight loss roadblocks that not everyone knows about, not even most trainers.

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Click here to read Kids in the Weight Room?

Kids in the Weight Room?

June 28, 2016

The benefits of strength training aren’t just for adults. Kids can safely lift to get stronger, to build self-esteem, and just to have fun while being active.

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Click here to read Are Sit Ups Bad for You?  The U.S. Military Seems to Think So…

Is the long reign of the sit-up finally over? Will the crunch be far behind? Here’s the latest scoop on why no one is doing sit-ups anymore, and why you and your clients should be crunching and planking to maximize core strength and minimize your waistline.

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Click here to read What is Body Balance and Why Should You Care?

How do you work out clients for strength and avoid injury?  The secret is body balance!

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Click here to read How Much is Too Much? Protein Myths Busted

You’ve heard that too much protein can be bad for your health, but is it true? Get the real answers, based on research.

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Click here to read Get Over Your Fear of Strength Training and Get in the Weight Room

Weights aren’t just for meatheads.   As an exercise and health nut, you know the drill. A complete workout means cardio AND strength training. But how do you convince these people? Check out and share the 5 reasons and infographics with your clients to get them into the weight room!

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Click here to read What is the most important factor in workout success?

Football coaching legend Vince Lombardi is credited with the famous quote 'Winning isn't everything, it's the only thing.'  Well, not only is the source of the quote misplaced, so, too, is the message.   So then what is the real message and bottom line?

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Click here to read What Time of Day Will Maximize Your Workout?

You want to get the answer right, for yourself and everyone who turns to you for your expert advice. But, the research has been complicated and confusing. You probably have read a lot of blogs and articles that said working out in the morning is best.  Those articles are mostly wrong!

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Click here to read Do Cardio and Strength Training Actually Work Against Each Other?

Resistance training is the key to strength, and aerobic training is critical to cardiovascular health and is a preferred method to reduce body fat. Obviously we need to do both, right? Well, it turns out the answer to that question depends on you (or your clients’) goals. Numerous scientific studies show that aerobic training and resistance training at the same time might not always be the best choice.

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Click here to read 3 Science-Backed Methods for Losing Fat

While it is true that there is no magic pill, or potion to promote healthy and rapid fat loss, there are however, proven scientific methods to help personal training clients burn fat instead of muscle during their workouts, and afterwards as well.   An educated and qualified personal trainer can provide the most up-to-date fitness information possible to help people achieve their fat loss goals while at the same time, improve their health and fitness. 

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Click here to read Should You Recommend Foam Rolling Exercises For Your Client?

Have you seen people foam rolling in the gym before and wondered if this is just another fitness fad, or whether it's actually doing something?

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Click here to read Is High Intensity Interval Training for Everyone?

If you’ve been in a gym lately, you have probably picked up on the fact that High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT, is very much the go-to format for a number of fitness classes these days whether they be cardio based dance classes, boot camps, or intense resistance training programs.  But is HIIT for everyone?

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Click here to read Are your clients actually adopting a fitness lifestyle?

Research shows that a meager 10 percent of all fitness clients actually adopt a fitness lifestyle after they stop getting a personal trainer to assist them.   This bothers Dr. Frederick Hatfield (aka Dr. Squat), the co-founder of ISSA.   What he wants is for each of you to commit to being a better personal trainer and changing those numbers.  To that effect, he shares the ISSA 'Drawing In' process in this article.   

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Click here to read Is Your Warm Up Routine Sabotaging your Training?

With a diversity in warm-up strategies, your client may ask if one warm up strategy superior to others at preparing the body to receive maximal benefits from the training session.

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Click here to read It’s not your fault that YOU DON’T KNOW SQUAT

A recent study surveyed 412 physical education and personal training students?  What they found out will shock you….Over half said they don’t know what proper squat form looks like!

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Click here to read Training frequency - What’s The Ideal Number Of Times Your Clients Should Train?

With so much conflicting advice bouncing around gym walls, it’s mentally (and physically) draining to separate fact from fiction and actually lead your client to the holy grail of rapid, lean muscle growth.  One such area in need of major demystifying?  Training frequency - What’s the ideal number of times your clients should train?

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Click here to read Kids and Strength Training: When Can They Start?

Kids can strength train.  And they can benefit from it.  Don’t stop reading this article until you’ve seen the science and learned the techniques to keep kids safe when you’re training them.

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Click here to read What Your Clients’ Scars Tell You About Their Pain

What you don’t know about your clients’ past injuries could be turning your workouts into torture sessions and ending client relationships).  If you don’t ask about clients’ scars, are you setting them up for “renewed” injuries and more pain?

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Click here to read Nutrient Timing for Bigger Muscles

Have you wondered whether people should eat before or after a workout? Maybe you have heard of nutrient timing and the anabolic window, but the theories about when and how to use it are confusing. Let's take a closer look at the science of nutrient timing.

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Click here to read 4 Steps to Stand Out From Other Personal Trainers on the Gym Floor

It seems there is an ongoing pressure for trainers to be excellent 'sales' professionals with less focus on their education and training expertise. Trainers are encouraged instead to spend more time connecting with gym members to 'pitch' their services, a skill that few trainers are prepared to employ.  While personal trainers are well versed in fitness and health expertise, they are rarely trained in sales, nor are they interested. This trend is happening nationwide. 

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Click here to read Fasted Exercise for Faster Weight Loss?

As a personal trainer, you've become the go-to expert that people in your circle turn to for reliable advice on anything related to fitness and nutrition.  One question that can be overheard across the training floors of just about every gym these days has do with the topic of fasted training.  So how do you answer the question “is it better for me to exercise on an empty stomach?”

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Click here to read Five Ways To Reduce Client Cancellations

We all wish they showed up, on time every time. In fact, life would be so much easier for us. But the truth is, clients cancel. Sometimes, much more than we want them to. And while we hear a host of reasons why they don’t show up for a session, most are unspoken.

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Click here to read How to Sip Your Way to a Slimmer Midsection This Summer

If you’ve been around fitness circles for any length of time, then you’re probably no stranger to the infamous “summer cut.”

It’s a rite of passage taken every year when fitness enthusiasts commit to trimming off the extra layer of “insulation” that kept their midsections warm over those frosty winter months.

Sound familiar?

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Click here to read “But how much protein do I really need?” Here’s the answer trainers hesitate to give

As a personal trainer, you already carry a TON of responsibility on your shoulders.

You're accountable for safely guiding your clients through the fitness and lifestyle protocols that will help them achieve the results they’re paying you good money for....

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Click here to read Infographic: Guide to Vitamins & Minerals

Go, go, go. Hurry, hurry, hurry. Grab a bite here, grab a bite there. We all live such busy lives these day and so busy at times, that too often, do not fuel our bodies with the essential nutrients they need to function optimally. So slow down and take a breather and refresh yourself with our complimentary infographics on vitamins and minerals, why you need them, and in what foods you can get them from.

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Click here to read Does Balance Training Improve Speed?

In the world of sports, speed is king. Athletes, parents, coaches and trainers always ask me if different forms of balance training actually create noticeable improvements in running speed? And rightfully so, with all the information out there, that’s a great question.

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Click here to read Bodybuilding Methods and Traditions - Part I

In the world of bodybuilding, “Bro science” is an anecdotal creed emanating from years of training in hard core circles. It has driven training methodologies for generations of iron disciples. Some of these methods have proven to be incredible and validated by scientific studies, while others need to be eradicated from the bodybuilder’s regimen. Let’s take a look at a number of popular methodologies commonly used by bodybuilders.

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Click here to read What You Need to Know About High Intensity Interval Training

High intensity interval training, while around for nearly 100 years, has had a major resurgence in gyms everywhere over the past 10 years, owing in large part, to a veritable blizzard of research papers extolling its benefits. Let's take a look at the history and what you need to know about High Intensity Interval Training.

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Click here to read Busted: The “One Diet That Fits All” Myth

As a fitness professional, one question you will likely get asked more than any other is which “nutrition camp” you fall into. Are you into Paleo? What about vegan? Intermittent fasting? Those are probably the wrong questions to ask in the first place.

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Click here to read Follow Your Passion

Follow Your Passion

February 16, 2015

Our population is getting older, and we’re living longer, so why shouldn’t we be able to really enjoy life when we retire? After all, it’s the quality of life in our later years that’s most important, not how long we can be kept alive. If you are a personal trainer, or thinking of becoming one, your future is very bright indeed!

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Click here to read Great Strength Coaches Help Make  Great Teams and Athletes

Whether it’s the 4th quarter, bottom of the ninth inning, last boxing or MMA round or final weight lifting attempt, speed, strength, and top conditioning separate the winners. If you’re a certified strength coach, the sky can be the limit for your ticket to success.

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Click here to read The Power of Your Words and Actions

We all know the obesity epidemic is everywhere we look, but few people realize just how powerful their words, actions, and examples can be on the lives of others. Dr Sal Arria discuss here on the power of your words and actions and how you can make an impact on the lives of those around you…

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Click here to read Controlling Diabetes is Easier Than You Think

Over 40 million people (just in the USA) are suffering with a condition that, for many of them, can be easily prevented if they would follow a few simple rules. Can the power of exercise and nutrition really make all the difference?

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Click here to read Could Your Shoes Be Giving You Shin Splints?

You know that annoying pain in your lower legs that never seems to get better? This leg pain always seems to slow your training just when you are starting to make some real gains. This group of lower leg injuries commonly referred to as “shin splints” is one of the most commonly occuring injuries in active people.

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Click here to read Practical Periodization

Practical Periodization

July 16, 2011

Periodization is one of the most important parts of a fitness programs ultimate success, yet few trainers and gym-goers truly understand how to employ the concepts and principles behind it. The lack of a bridge between these theories and their practical, everyday application is partly to blame. As you can probably tell from the title, this article attempts to bring periodization down to a practical and usable level.

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Click here to read Personal Trainers: Independent Contractor vs. Employee

An often overlooked component of the personal training business is the status of independent contractor vs. employee. Many trainers and club owners do not fully understand the differentiation between the two, nor how detrimental it can be to make a mistake when determining the status of a personal trainer. Personal trainers can be literally abused if they do not know what their classification truly is.

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Click here to read Romanian Deadlifts: Training the Other Half of Your Leg

Think about your last leg workout – how many quad dominant exercises did you do? How many hip extensor dominant exercises did you do? Was there a balance between the two? Do you even know the difference?

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Click here to read Strength Training for Children,a review of research literature

Two of the most frequently asked questions about children and strength training are; “Is it safe for kids to lift weights?” And “At what age can kids start lifting weights?” The sad truth is, many doubts surround the safety and validity of weight training for children. Many would even have you believe that kids have no place at all in the weight room.

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Click here to read Facts About Fat Burners

There are hundreds, perhaps thousands of nutritional products and schemes on the market promising the uninformed consumer faster and easier fat loss. The truth is, the vast majority of these products burn nothing but your money. The few products that actually aid in fat burning or weight reduction can be quite dangerous, even deadly! Nonetheless, most people do not take the time to research the efficacy and safety of a product before they jump on the quick-fix bandwagon.

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Click here to read Supplements For Boosting Testosterone Levels, Yea or Nay.

One category of dietary supplements that continues to experience controversy is the so-called prohormones or testosterone precursors. For purported muscle building enhancement these products typically contain DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) and Andro (androstenedione). Controversy aside, both Andro and DHEA are actually hormones made by the body. They are also the precursors of testosterone and estrogens.

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Click here to read Improve Muscle Balance & Stability for Increased Performance - Part 3

Welcome back for this third installment of the article series. If you have read up on the previous topics and applied what you have learned, you should notice a few results already starting. Your clients should be much more aware of their posture, their weaknesses should be improving, and if your new found expertise has caught on, you have a few new clients who are impressed with your knowledge.

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Click here to read Improve Muscle Balance & Stability for Increased Performance - Part 2

Welcome back for the second installment of my three-part series on muscular imbalance and its effects on performance. I hope you took the opportunity to read the first part of this article and perform the assignment. Did you take a look at the postural alignment of your clients? Did you notice the faults that I had mentioned? See anything common amongst them?

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Click here to read Shoulder Injuries

Shoulder Injuries

February 11, 2011

At some point in their careers, most powerlifters will experience some form of shoulder pain or injury. Most lifters think of shoulder pain and injury as a normal part of the lifting experience. Still more self-diagnose pain as being a rotator cuff strain and try to work through the discomfort and pain. However, there are several possible reasons for shoulder pain, and very often the rotator cuffs aren’t the only key.

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Click here to read Improve Muscle Balance & Stability for Increased Performance - Part 1

What is Muscle Balance? This concept, unfortunately, is the most underemphasized aspect of many fitness programs everywhere. What is muscle balance really? How do you test it? What the heck does it have to do with stability and performance? Well, let’s take a moment to explain why this concept is important.

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Click here to read Obesity. Who's to Blame?

Obesity. Who's to Blame?

February 3, 2011

We’ve all heard the message. Lean bodies produced by sound nutrition, cardiovascular exercise and resistance training will reduce the risks of cancer, stroke, heart disease and type II diabetes. Now, new research shows that caloric restriction can stop the cell death process associated with age. As a result of a continuing multi-media message, countless numbers of people are dieting. 

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Click here to read Deadlift: The Forgotten Exercise

The Deadlift is an integral, yet often missing component of a strength building program. That’s not to say that everyone should be performing this movement or one of its variations, but the benefits of the Deadlift for a power or strength building program are innumerable.

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Click here to read Protein Supplements Vs. Protein Foods!

Many aspiring bodybuilders are hoping that this is the year that their bodies will transform into the bodies of their dreams. Unfortunately, bodybuilders love for protein puts them at the mercy of protein manufacturers and vulnerable to protein manufacturers marketing ploys. Fledgling bodybuilders may not know as much as veteran bodybuilders but they inevitably know that protein plays a role in their future bodybuilding success.

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Click here to read Training Tips: The Pectoralis Major

The pectoralis major is without question one of the most frequently trained muscles in fitness and sport. Despite it’s popularity, few people know much about the anatomy and kinesiology of this important muscle. Knowing this information will make your training more effective for you and your clients while minimizing the risk of developing muscle imbalances in the shoulder area. Let’s take a closer look at what you need to know to train this muscle safely and effectively.

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Click here to read Rest periods Between Sets: Everything you ever needed to know!

Rest periods between sets is an integral and often overlooked contributor to the success of any strength training program. Chances are, you are not optimizing this crucial variable. So what is the trick to get the most out of your rest? Well, it depends on your training goals and level of conditioning. Optimal rest periods between sets can vary from 30 seconds or less up to 5 minutes!

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