The state of the industry: Private sector S&C and the mainstream consumer.

It’s been a while between drinks in terms of blogging, apologies I’ve finally caught up with my life.

I remember reading a networking piece a while back and they ramble on about how you need to be able to give a pitch (about yourself) in under 20 seconds.

Yesterday i head down to my local coffee joint and the lady behind the counter asks me what I do, I begin to explain and she’s perplexed. After minutes I just shut that explanation down and tell her: “personal trainer” and she says “oh I get it now, yeah I love ashy bines, how good is her stuff”.

This might be a huge generalization but I’d comfortably say the general population has no idea what strength & conditioning is and how it differs from personal training/fitness.

What even is strength & conditioning anymore? Every dick, harry and their dog call themselves an S&C coach nowadays.

Stroll into your local gym and read some bios, we’ve got: strength coach, strength & conditioning coach, physical performance coach, functional fitness coach, fitness coach, functional movement coach, rehab fitness coach oh and don’t forget personal trainer. The list goes on, It gets more deluded, more wanky and everybody is trying to separate themselves from the pack. Most of them don’t even have any qualifications besides an overnight course.

My question is: Have these people even worked with an athlete? No I’m not talking figure models or bodybuilder. Also, being at the same event as an athlete doesn’t count as training them.

Personal training for the gen pop shouldn't be getting them on a 5-day isolation split because that's what you read on, its about what they need rather than what you like. There's a better way. It's shouldn't be about absolutely destroying somebody because you want to sell more sessions or improve your name as the "tough trainer".

"OMG he made me like do a 1000 reps on the leg press, i pissed blood and couldn't walk for 10 days" I've heard/seen this done.

I’d like to think I’ve got my ear on the floor and am up to date with the roller coaster industry I’m in (not that I want to be associated with it at times)

It wasn’t long ago people would call me an over qualified PT, I guess I am.

There is light at the end of the tunnel, we have hope.

Times are changing, people are getting smarter and more educated on what a good personal trainer is.  Also what a strength & conditioning coach actually is!

So I read the post on WSSC last night asking what qualifications do you have to have to call yourself a performance coach/S&C coach? It sparks my thoughts.

Tough question, I understand there are exceptions to the rule but from what has been passed around in my circles I would say:


·      Master in exercise science: strength & conditioning

·      ASCA level 2

I understand that’s a very high bar, but isn’t that good?

Some others would say “if they’ve got the experience” which I also agree with.

So there we have it, we don’t really have an answer.

Social media is freaking MASSIVE, paving the way for companies doing it right to be thrown into the spot light. But there’s nothing stopping individuals doing it for the “likes” from getting popular aswell.

If I had a dollar for every time somebody tagged me in a fitness video of somebody doing some retarded exercise, I wouldn’t be sweating it out 10-12 hours a day. They get so much TRACTION/ATTENTION.

I’ve had people messaging me abuse because I don’t think Kayla Itsines is any good.

Proof that their powers are strong, the fitspo’s are everywhere.

They could sell ice to an eskimo.

The problem is that companies and businesses doing the right thing by their clients in training and on the social media front are being beaten by the show ponies day in day out.

Are we fighting a losing battle?

I’d like to think in the last 5 years things have improved and swung towards science based training, programming and education.

I still know so many great coaches who wont put a thing online because they’re scared somebody is going to rip them off. Lets be serious, there is nothing new in S&C, everything is out there and you don’t have the magic secret. Spread the knowledge, educate the public and let’s improve the fitness industry/S&C and spread the love.


Let me know what you think in the comments!





Tim Frey