Top critical review
84 people found this helpful
on November 20, 2010
NASM was the first fitness certification that I obtained and at the time I thought it was pretty good. I've been a personal trainer for 5 years and as my knowledge, skill, and awareness in this area has grown -- so too has my disgust with the NASM approach to training. So much so that I did not renew the certification.
The basic concepts they cover are generally correct but they simply leave out too much and focus too much on bullsh... stuff that wastes your time as a trainer and does not give your clients the results they need. I think the founder, Michael Clark, has a physical therapy background and seems to approach physical conditioning from that perspective.
There are so many different aspects (i.e., strength and conditioning, exercise technique, anatomy, bio-energetics, coaching/sports psychology, nutrition, flexibility, client relationship/communication, and business skills) to becoming a top notch and successful personal trainer. I'm still learning. The following are the main sources I recommend and use to help you along the path to mastering exercise science and raising the quality of personal trainers in general:
1. NCSF - National Council on Strength and Fitness. Excellent CEU program.
2. NSCA - National Strength and Conditioning Association. The fitness industry "gold standard" that is solid but still needs much improvement.
3. ISSN - Sports Nutrition Society. Their CISSN certification is impressive.
4. Mark Rippetoe - Starting Strength and Practical Programming books. Read them.
5. Pavel Tsatsouline - Breaks hard science down to practical application.
6. Rachel and Alwyn Cosgrove - Exercise Program Design Manual.
7. Joel Jamieson - Ultimate MMA conditioning book.
8. Mel Siff and Yuri Verkhoshansky - Super Training textbook. Encyclopedic.
9. Steve Cotter - Kettlebell instructor and more.
10. Vladimir Zatsiorsky and William Kraemer - Science and Practice of Strength Training textbook. Learn from the masters.
I hope this helps. Keep on getting better. Nuey.