Staying on top of the latest best practices and honing their field expertise is how the trainers at Blueprint provide a fitness experience unlike any other. In an industry where trendy big box homogenous work-outs are the classic model, members at The Blueprint achieve results faster using proven methods by trained professionals.
Last February, Blueprint sponsored 5 of their trainers to attend a training conference in Boston hosted by strength and conditioning pioneer and expert, Mike Boyle. Boyle has been training athletes with his proven methods for over 30 years and is training other professionals using his Certified Functional Strength Coach (CFSC) training. The CFSC was developed with one simple intention: to revolutionize education in the fitness industry.
The ability to truly coach an athlete, properly demonstrate exercises and modify programming in real-time is what sets apart great coaches in the field. These skills are lost amongst many of the current certification models in the field of strength & conditioning.
This is what the Blueprint trainers had to say about the conference.
From Lead Trainer Michael Streight
We learned A TON from how to program for the general population and athletes. We heard from influential speakers like Mike Boyle and Dan John.
Taylor and I went through the CFSC Certification. Prior to the in-person certification, we had to complete a tedious amount of course work online. We spent time reviewing the Advanced Strength Coach Book, watching demo movement videos, and passing a 50 question test (had to receive an 80% or higher to pass). The CSCF is one of the only certifications that require an in-person, live practical test, which is very respectable and, in my opinion, should be required by all certs. Why would anyone want to hire a trainer that does not or can not properly demonstrate the movement that they are asking the client or class to do?
After the full day of jam-packed learning, Taylor and I received 100’s on our practical exams and passed with flying colors. We were key leaders in both of our groups and had great conversations with the staff on why we were so much more prepared. This definitely was reassuring for us as trainers at the Blueprint Experience, that what Casey has implemented and taught us all is innovative and at the top of the industry.
Overall it was a GREAT weekend!
From Trainer Taylor Fann
The event was super helpful, it was very informative and helped to reinforce what we believe here at the Blueprint.
The certification itself (CFSC) is the gold standard in functional training. It gave me validation that everything we’re doing here (at The Blueprint) is the right thing to be doing. The system they have in place with exercise selection, progressions, and regressions, is the same system we use, so it was very cool to see that we do things the same way.
From Fitness Director Tammie Aeppli
First of all, I feel very fortunate to work at a place that encourages and supports us in attending events like this. Mike Boyle and Dan John are two of the biggest names in the fitness industry, and it was truly an honor and privilege to hear them speak in person. One of the highlights after the day-long seminar was over: After a long day of learning, All of the trainers were back at our hotel eating dinner together in the lobby area. Dan John, the main guest speaker of the day, happened to be sitting at the bar. He walked over to our table and sat down and talked with us for almost 20 minutes. That was a great moment and definitely a huge highlight!!
One other thing I will mention is what a great team we have at The Blueprint Experience. I had a blast getting to spend time with each of them outside of the walls of the gym. Not only are they all great trainers, they are really amazing people with a true passion for this profession and a desire to continue to better themselves. I’m so blessed to be able to work beside these great trainers each and every day.
A few “take-aways” or “refreshers” for me from the seminar:
- When training your clients, do the more difficult exercises at the beginning of the workout and do Unilateral exercises before Bilateral exercises.
- When doing lateral work with older clients – maybe go at a 45-degree angle instead of 90 degrees.
- Give members a safe, effective, good workout and spare them the details if they aren’t interested.
- When it comes to nutrition – there’s more than one way to get it right – as long as you are moving in the right direction, you are making progress.
From Trainer Kenya Lewis
The Boston trip was great in many ways. The seminar, structure, and concepts were very familiar because we practice them at the Blueprint. I learned more from the details from some of the lectures. Kevin Carr, who is a product of the CFSC, presented over rehab and fitness, “Rehab 101”. Kevin was most relatable for me because I have a lot of clients who are suffering from extreme pain or limitations. There was one important point I took from Kevin’s presentation. I understand that we are our clients’ guide. We get to have a bigger impact than their doctor or physical therapist because we see them often and typically for a much longer period. The best route is to find movements that do not hurt them and build on from there. I love Kevin’s suggestion because sometimes, in this job, we often complicate a situation that has a simple solution. Too often are people trying to go 0 to 100 after therapy, so they can go back to their previous active lifestyle. Slowing the clients down and still peeling back the movement layers can be hard when your client is in a rush or is limited. Find the entry point that does not hurt and continue to pick movements that are pain-free.
The other presentation I enjoyed was by Dan McGinley, I think this is the most relatable for a lot of trainers and their clientele, It was for me for sure. Dan presented over “Practical Nutrition”. Dan’s problem was that he had a client who really enjoyed working out with him, and she was making great strides in the gym, felt stronger, but she was not losing any weight. I see and hear this problem all of the time. We all know nutrition is 80% of weight loss and working out is the other 20%. After two months of hard work, people are upset or feel very upset by the lack of weight loss, and typically will lapse or go on a diet. The main point I liked from Dan’s presentation is to follow principles and not diets. Diets do what they are supposed to do, to help you lose weight, but they are not sustainable, it is not a lifestyle. Dan also recommended implementing one principle at a time. There are multiple reasons behind this. Reason one, it can be overwhelming to implement too many principles too soon, thus causing a lapse. Two, become good at your new habit, have awareness, understand it, how does it work for you? I loved this presentation because almost everyone can get into the gym like they are supposed to, but do not understand how important nutrition is. Going from no eating guidelines to a strict diet is like telling a person to do a hang clean on their first day, which is very complex and a lot of moving parts. Dieting is not the way; follow principles, not diets.
Overall the seminar was great. The biggest take away, and this is through all the presentations, is to make things simple. No matter how complex the training situation is, the answer to it is almost always very simple.
I loved seeing the Blueprint philosophies and principles used in a different population and in a different setting.
From Trainer Matthew Barron
- the client is the conductor; as a personal trainer, we need to recognize the client’s needs and play our role in helping them
- Well dosed exercise creates a healthy environment, for the client, in their entire body
- Marginal gains (for the client) make huge differences, over time.
- As humans, we are a lot stronger eccentrically than concentrically
- When trying to gain control over eating habits, eat to when you are 80% full. (It takes brain & body 20 minutes to realize it’s full)
- Great trainers know how to put themselves in a client’s shoes (ability to see and recognize their perspective)
- Goal is to create a “fence like” body; fences are flexible & resilient
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ABOUT OUR AUTHOR: Blueprint member Kaylene Mathews is a freelance writer specializing in health and fitness, and personal development. Learn more at www.kaylenewrites.com