Archive for the ‘Fitness’ Category

Manage Like a Coach

Monday, July 16th, 2012

The skills that great coaches use to motivate and inspire their players to work hard, be their best and function as a team are the same skills that good managers need to achieve success. Don Shula, a successful NFL coach, is known for his commitment to excellence, not only for his team, but also for himself. For example, he does not believe that he can be effective as a coach if he asks players to do things that he would not do himself. To build a similarly successful record as a manager, you can work to develop the following skills from the C.O.A.C.H. acronym.

Conviction to values

What do you stand for as a manager? A manager’s job is to point people in the right direction and to channel their talents and energies to help employees accomplish shared objectives. If you want your staff to share your values and to perform their jobs well, you need to define those values for them, and, even more important, define them for yourself. What really matters to you? Do your actions reflect these values? If you find an incongruity between your values and your behavior, take corrective action to make them match.

Oriented to details

The difference between a facility’s success and failure is often found in the details, such as always getting a smile from front desk staff and having staff remember members’ names. Create a workplace climate in which employees know that their managers care about the details and are accessible to teach and coach them.

“Audible” ready

An audible in football is a sudden change in play or strategy. To manage in an ever-changing environment, managers need to be ready to shift their game plans. Become a “what if?” manager. Think about what you would do if another club opened three miles away from yours, or if your most popular instructor leaves. Think of changes beyond your control that could affect your facility, and have a “plan B” ready.


One of the biggest challenges to being an effective manager is sublimating your own emotions for the good of your facility. You could be having a terrible day, but you can’t allow your personal challenges to color your behavior. Your professional relationship with your employees and members cannot be dictated by your feelings. Be consistent about praising the actions that you want to perpetuate.


If your employees are going to look to you as a leader, your relationships with them must be based on trust.

Employees must know that you will do what you say you will. It’s simple: Be straight with employees, and they will be straight with you and with the members.

Effective management starts with effective self-assessment. Do a self-inventory, close any gaps between your stated values and your own behavior, then use the C.O.A.C.H. principles to help move your facility to the top.

Being Body Positive

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

A group of English women are my new heroes, brought to my attention by a page-one story in the Jan. 23, 2000, issue of The New York Times. Members of the Women’s Institute in Rylstone (CQ), England, a small village in the dales of Yorkshire, they have struck a blow for women’s rights in a highly unusual way. (more…)

Supplements Are Now a Fact of Life. Part 2

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

* Among high school students, steroid use has increased from 1.8 percent to 2.8 percent over four years, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration. (more…)

Supplements Are Now a Fact of Life. Part 1

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

In its early years, Fitness Management magazine followed the medical experts in pretty much ignoring dietary supplements. But a number of factors (just a few mentioned below) have raised the profile of the issue: (more…)

Examples of Fitness Quacks are Disputed, Part 2

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

In the first instance you berated the author of a newsletter promoting strength training with slow movements and his estimate that most of the fitness industry’s products and programs are bogus. (more…)

Examples of Fitness Quacks are Disputed, Part 1

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

An answer to the pressing question of whether fitness “quackery” is on the increase — my answer is a resounding “No!” From the Charles Atlas ads in the 1940s to the Royal Air Force fitness programs in the 1960s, to many of the ads in Muscle Builder Power magazine in that same decade, to strength and weight-gain formulas, megavitamins, sauna suits, weight-reduction belts, knee wraps, athletic tape, inversion boots, calorie counters, etc., have been around since the beginning of this century. They were, however, mostly in print advertising. (more…)

How Hard is Hard Enough

Monday, January 16th, 2012

Perhaps the most important component of a sound exercise prescription for aerobic fitness is the level of exercise intensity. The prescribed level of intensity must be sufficient to overload the cardiovascular system, but not so severe that it overtaxes any of the systems of the body. (more…)

Take it From the Top, Part 2

Monday, December 12th, 2011

“You must sacrifice, train, do everything possible to put yourself in a position to win. But if you consider second or third a failure, I feel sorry for you.” — Joe Falcon (more…)

Take it From the Top, Part 1

Friday, December 2nd, 2011

“The difference of great players is at a certain point in a match they raise their level of play and maintain it. Lesser players play great for a set, but then less.” (more…)

Muscle Testing, Listening To What Your Body Knows. Part 2

Friday, November 11th, 2011

Second, we need a definition of the proper terms. Muscle testing is defined as just that, testing through muscles. However, many in the natural health arena confuse this with Kinesiology or Contact Reflex Analysis (CRA). They are separate and distinct. Muscle Testing is the easiest form and the beginning for going beyond itself. (more…)