The Monogamy of Exercise Equipment.

“Identify the essential. Eliminate the rest.” – Leo Babauta

The isolation of training variables by chain gyms and personal trainers is a prolific and outdated concept. Limiting a class to abs, bums and tums or any other perceived problematic body part plays into the glossy media driven exploitation of women’s negative body image. Through a lack of client education this exploitive tactic sadly works and is evidenced by full studio classes and the never ending production of inflatable gym balls!!!

Utilising a singular piece of training equipment for the duration a training session is the hallmark of a uninspired and ineffective instructor. Each piece of training equipment has its individual strengths and weakness. Barbells are excellent for bilateral resistance training, dumbbells are excellent at unilateral resistance training, kettlebells are excellent for multiplannar (different directions) movements.

The foolishness of this concept is highlighted by the comparison of a carpenter who only uses a hammer from 8am to 9am, a saw from 9am to 10am and then a screwdriver from 10am to 11am. The competent carpenter will use which ever tool is best for the task and will likely use many tools to complete the job to a satisfactory standard.

Exercise equipment selection is no different for the competent coach, each tool depending on loading will elicit a desired training response. Why limit the effectiveness of your clients training session by only using one tool?  At what point does the neatness of a class schedule take priority over effective training. Why is the fitness industry still exploiting negative self image rather then promoting education other then to make money?

For the average client training 3-4 times per week, all sessions should include strength training and conditioning work. All sessions should include squat movements, push movements, pull movements and hinge movements. Equipment selection should be based on eliciting the desired training response and not based on what’s being promoted in a glossy magazine by a reality tv star with more hair product then talent.

The insincere marketing tactic of listing a multitude of classes targeting specific body parts or limiting sessions to one specific tool should never take priority over delivering effective training sessions. While to the novice client a schedule full of different colour coded classes may look enticing and may even suggest competence of the instructor by having a multifaceted skill set, the educated client will see through the marketing facade and seek a competent coach who will use all tools at their disposal.

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