My wife has a saying that she uses as a standard reply when people try to take away her individually and place her in some kind of box. She will say a simple phrase that is loaded with power and creates a boundary when she says it, I am my own person! This statement is powerful in its simplicity and use. In our training we have to understand that we are all also our own people and the way that we respond to the training stimulus and our technique will vary as well as a few other factors. This post will attempt to delve into this principle and break it down so it will both encourage and help you as you train for results.

If you are a fitness coach and have been working with people for any period of time, you probably have found that if you are a dogmatic programmer that your success will be very limited with your clients. People are individuals and even though there are principles that we should apply to our programming, we also need to observe what creates the best changes to the person’s fitness qualities. Such as: better movement, strength gains, conditioning, getting leaner and so-on.


Of course there is also a need to find out what may cause pain to the person. In fact recently, I found that symmetrical squatting caused a client of mine pain. I sent her out for medical help and she felt better. We also did the usual correctives fixed any Valgus collapse and tried squatting again and she had pain after 8 reps. So I began to use the rear foot elevated squat and she had no-pain. For some reason her anthropometry caused her to have pain in high rep squatting so we made the adjustment and she is happy and making fitness gains as a result while staying pain-free and not create dysfunction.

However, she still should do some form of squatting; because within that pattern there is a lot of benefits for strength, caloric expenditure and so-on. Which brings me to my next point, just because some on is an individual doesn’t meant that they shouldn’t do the things that we know are good. For example, everyone should do some form of strength or resistance work, for the very reason that we know it has so many benefits to it.

Now the approach that one takes to get their resistance work in may be different. Some may love body-weight training and use that for a primary means of strength work. Others may love kettlebells, weightlifting, Olympic lifting and so-on. I think the key here is to find by experimentation what you like the most in order to stick to it and what gets you the most bang for your buck as far as results go.

You will also want to calculate in the time you have available to train, what you have an opportunity to use as far as equipment goes and so-on.

So from reading this post I hope that you realize that following a program by some guru from a book may not be the best way to get results and possibly could end up hurting you or leaving disillusioned by this whole fitness thing. So don’t be afraid to make mistakes and learn from them. Also learn every opportunity that you can follow this blog read books by experts and if you are a trainer, read research and objectively learn. Also don’t be afraid to adjust your program according to the needs and goals of your clients. Remember everyone is their own person and should be treated as such.

If you missed any of these posts click here to read them!

  1. […] My Ten Fitness Commandments Part 5: Individual Differences June 4, 2015 […]


  2. […] My Ten Fitness Commandments Part 5: Individual Differences June 4, 2015 […]


  3. […] This group of people believes that their standard will somehow stop the injuries that happen in people due to poor exercise form and overuse. Yet, their clients are often the most “banged up” and it could be different if they did not assume that everyone should look the same, as well as respecting the law of individual differences. […]


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