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Jul 01, 2004

Writing Advice for Fitness Pros

How well have you developed your writing skills?

Strong written communication skills can place you head and shoulders above your fitness peers and can open new areas of opportunity for you in this industry. If you’re asked to write reports regularly or have a desire to turn your fitness knowledge into marketable written material for industry publications such as IDEA Fitness Manager, IDEA Trainer Success and IDEA Fitness Journal, start practicing your writing skills.

To get started, study these fitness-related grammar and spelling tips from IDEA member, author and presenter Amanda Vogel, MA. You can find more tips on her Active Voice website at

A Complimentary Grammar Tip

  • If you advertise a free training session in a flyer, do you write complementary session or complimentary session?
  • When you applaud an instructor for her teaching skills, are you complementing or complimenting her?
  • And does strength training complement cardiovascular exercise—or compliment it?

The difference between these two words is simple: Use compliment/complimentary when you praise someone or offer something for free. Choose complement when referring to things that complete each other or go together well.

It’s Dumbbell, Darn It!

What frequently used gym item is also a frequently misspelled word?

According to, dumbbell is among the top 100 most misspelled words. Remember, dumbbell has two bs, not one. Other common gaffes: exceed (not excede), a lot (not alot), misspell (not mispell) anduntil (not untill).

“Workout” Versus “Work Out”: One Word or Two?

What’s the difference between workout and work out? Have you ever seen both versions in one article or ad? Is that a mistake? Not if the two spellings are used correctly. Workout—one word—is a noun, whereas (to) work out—two words—is a verb. For example:

Noun: That trainer puts you through an intense workout.

Verb: You work out intensely with that trainer.

See the difference? To determine which version to write, identify whether you are using the word(s) to describe an exercise session (workout) or an action (work out). This rule applies to other fitness-related words too: warm-up (noun) versus (to) warm up (verb); choreography breakdown (noun) versus (to) break down choreography (verb).

Business Gems

Small But Brilliant Tips

Growing in the Midst of Change

Upheaval and restructuring are a part of doing business. The process can be alternately exciting and uncomfortable. Here are three ways to help you and your staff not only cope better during times of change, but grow personally and professionally.

1. Concentrate on Effective Delegation. Leaders often feel they must use self-protective measures, especially during organizational change. They start by trying to police all activities. Instead, concentrate on effective delegation during the early stages of the change process. Effective delegation helps you manage and maintain the workload and also gives employees a sense of involvement, which positions them to share responsibility for the change.

2. Raise the Level of Expectation. During change, ask more from your employees. While it may seem practical to expect less in terms of performance, it is actually wiser to raise your level of expectation—and theirs. Require performance improvements and make the process challenging, but remember to keep the goals realistic in order to eliminate frustration and failure.

3. Ask Employees for Commitment. Once a change has been announced, it is important that you personally ask for each employee’s commitment to successfully implement the change. It is also important to assure employees that you want to hear directly from them if there are any problems. If a negative employee does not talk to you about a problem, he or she will surely discuss it with others.

IDEA Fitness Manager, Volume 16, Issue 4

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