Have you ever sought out advice from an “expert” and had a sneaking suspicion they were wrong?  Not that they were intentionally misleading, but that the advice given didn’t come from a place of expertise, but rather from a Facebook post.  Ok, so maybe this practice is harmless if we’re talking about summer makeup colors or potty training but not when it comes to your health.

As a former athlete with old nagging injuries, I find myself wading through the ups and downs of good musculoskeletal health.  If you can imagine the injury – I’ve had it: hyphema in my eye from soccer, broken humerus from basketball,  broken fingers, arms and ankles, torn cartilage, concussions, etc.  No, I didn’t play in the NFL, just a teen with an “aggressive” attitude toward winning.  Now as a 37 year-old mother of three young children and a diagnosis with Rheumatoid Arthritis and Ankylosing Spondylitis in my back, it’s more important than ever to stay in shape.

Good fitness advice is hard to come by, and if some of the trainers at the gyms I’ve gone to in the past, are any indication, most personal trainers are offering dangerous advice and ill-conceived exercise programs.  For example, I’ve witnessed  personal trainers have their clients perform some of the stupidest exercises imaginable:  trunk twisting with barbells or dumbbells, bent at the waist twisting with a barbell on the client’s back, deadlifting with a curled (flexed spine), sit-ups, clean and jerks with curled spines, and all sorts of bizarre renditions of exercise.  These are the same types of exercises that are great . . . . if you have a healthy spine, but satanic if not.

So who do you trust?  Well, you can start by asking friends and family members.  There’s also an entire network of resources online from Healthgrades.com to Web.MD or your basic social media.  I don’t intend for this advice to sound trite but sometimes the obvious choice isn’t always the right choice.  That’s why you should seek out a skilled, experienced chiropractor like Dr. Rob Fast D.C. when it comes to getting in shape.

Did you know that you trainers are NOT required to be certified in order to work at all gyms?

While there are varying credentials for Personal Trainers, some arduous, others not so difficult, the minimum requirements are relatively low: a high school diploma and a short vocational course of study, possibly a certificate, but not licensed.  I should note that some fitness employers require trainers to have a bachelor’s or even a master’s degree.

Educational programs in Sports and Nutrition, like those at Dr. Fast’s alma mater of Logan University, require several steps before licensure can be sought.  First, applicants need to be accepted to the program for both undergraduate or graduate studies.

Then students engage in an interdisciplinary, comprehensive  program designed to analyze diet and health status, assess nutrition deficiencies and offer clients evidence-based nutrition and lifestyle recommendations. Students are prepared to assess and design nutrition plans to maximize human performance, manage nutrition and content of health and corporate wellness programs, and provide clinical nutrition expertise as an integral member of a collaborative healthcare team.  As you can see, the qualifications for a personal trainer are so much lower than for a chiropractor, I see the advantage for chiropractors to differentiate themselves from the trainer who has just a high school diploma and a short vocational course of study.

Treat yourself to the training and expertise of a qualified physician who knows what they’re talking about!  Visit the Back Pain Clinic Belleville for more information.