Friday, May 18, 2007

Base of Knowledge...

I believe that knowledge is not power - Application is power - but you have to have the knowledge base to apply in order to have the power that can result.

Maybe a bit of splitting hairs but I know people with lots of knowledge without the power to apply it who are just as dangerous as those without the knowledge. And I know people with very little knowledge who are all too willing to apply and are very dangerous. Either through it's misapplication or through a lack of - knowledge is an itegral part of any profession.

Why bring this up?

1. My AFPA presentations, 2. A conversation with a client today, 3. Franz Sniderman's blog
1. My AFPA presentations - which went very well and included a great many people actively seeking to expand their knowledge - were interesting because it is a look into the personal training and group exercise industry. During my presentations I include a great deal of information from Stuart McGill, Vladamir Janda, Pavel, and many other current names in the fitness industry (Cressey, Cosgrove, Santana etc...) and when I would ask a room of 100 people if they had heard of McGill or Janda - one or two hands would go up.

The two most important names in back health, training and research and 2% of the crowd had heard of them!

This in my mind reflects a lack of base of knowledge (which at least was filled in this case). But what if they hadn't been there to study?

2. I had a conversation with a client today where he was relating a conversation with an othopedic - the orthopedic was saying that he loved trainers because they send him 50% of his business.

Lovely to hear - and sad but true.
In an unregulated industry where 200 question multiple choice tests are the standard we are bound to run into people who are not really ready to be a part of a profession where people trust you with their health and well-being.

There are 400+ certifying bodies and thousands upon thousands of "certified" trainers - very few with an appropriate base of knowledge. Scary!

3. Franz Sniderman had a blog a couple of entries ago was excellent. He was relating the story of attending a cadaver class and being somewhat surprised by the difference between what he/we think things look like and what they actually look like. Your sciatic nerve is the size of your thumb. Your ulnar nerve is the size of your pinkie. Your Psoas mucle is larger than your forearm. And as Franz discussed - your adductor magnus is huge. And it is hard to understand fascia until you have seen it in place in the body. And Franz already knew his anatomy.
It is just different live than in a book.

And this doesn't even scratch the surface of interactive live anatomy - co-contractions, joint mechanoreceptors, GTO, Joint capsules, neurological factors, psychological factors - all go in to the mix and make living, moving anatomy a whole 'nother ball game.

So the base of knowledge is of great importance and needs to be continually developed.


Christine said...

I sat for (and passed) the NSCA CPT exam... but I do not train *anyone*.

Brett Jones said...

Did you feel that the exam "prepared" you for or meant you were "ready" to train people?

Believe me I do not mean this as a slam or in any negative way - I used to hold the NSCA-CPT and I still hold the CSCS - but I don't feel that either of those prepared me for meant I was actually ready for training people.

Christine said...

No, I didn't feel that it prepared me to train anyone, which is why I don't use it on individual clients.

I initially got the CPT to assist Randy Hauer in training a girl's softball team, but I was only responsible for checking technique and keeping an eye out for safety. I didn't design anything, and Randy taught the movements.

It gave me a general knowledge base, but I came to realize it didn't prepare me for "troubleshooting" problems with clients and movement patterns. So, beyond the softball team I didn't use it.

Unknown said...

So, what kinds of experiences would prepare someone to be an effective trainer? Cressey often lauds the UConn Kinesiology program, Bill Hartman can cite a.r.t certification and p.t. degree, Alwyn Cosgrove cites nasm, acsm and chek, among others, on his website. And you, Brett, obviously are well-versed in the FMS, RKC and Clarion's rehab science program....

In an ideal world, what qualifications would you want in an individual training a friend or family member?

Brett Jones said...

Thank you - I felt the same way after taking my cert exams - I had a bit more knowledge but it didn't "prepare" me for training people.

C.Sheridan - see today's blog...
Thanks for posting

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