Perhaps the greatest professional satisfaction a coach can feel is when he sees the radiant joy of his athlete achieving a personal best. No matter the athlete’s age, sport or level of ability, that person has reached a pinnacle that both she and her coach have worked countless hours to attain. The moment of personal victory is sweetly savored, tucked away not far from reach and taken out time and again as fuel and inspiration on the journey toward the next goal.

As fitness professionals, you have the power to guide and train your client athletes, lifting them to new levels with your specialized knowledge of performance factors and the human body. Most of you won’t ever train an elite athlete, but does that really matter? The single mom you coached to compete in a sprint triathlon and the 68-year-old grand-
father who is golfing in the club championship share the same competitive spirit and sense of achievement as do those who make a living as sport competitors.

Coaching techniques and philosophies have evolved hand in glove with the advancement of sport science; and the demand for increased professional knowledge will continue to escalate as Baby Boomers fight hard to hang onto—or regain—their youthful, sporting identities. Kids, too, are becoming more specialized in sport at an earlier age as they vie for starting positions on high-school squads and for college scholarships. All these trends point to one sure thing for you: a fantastic opportunity to develop an exciting niche in our great industry. Know that this opportunity also demands of you the responsibility to enrich your knowledge base so the training guidance you provide your athletes is safe, effective and enjoyable.

For these reasons and because sport is a wonderful gateway to expanding a client’s fitness horizons, IDEA has made covering sports conditioning in our publications and at our events a serious tradition for many years. To enhance your understanding of this field, we also offer a wide and growing array of sport-related books and DVDs in our Education Store at

For your immediate edification, you’ll find—starting on page 40—a special CEC section on sports conditioning to strengthen your base and to help you earn credits toward keeping your certifications current. The three feature articles give you a primer on water exercise programming for knee injury prevention and postrehabilitation; guidelines on employing the science of nutrient periodization to help athletes attain peak performance; and a fascinating look at the anatomy of the golf swing, with an array of mat Pilates moves that can correct some of the more frustrating glitches that go awry in a golfer’s swing mechanics. Can you say slice, hook or chicken wing? Discover a corrective exercise for each of these problems and others. Our editors, authors and designers hope you’ll enjoy reading this issue as much as they relished putting it together for you.

When the next athlete you’ve designed a program for crosses the finish line with a personal record, you’ll understand why this specialty field is attracting more fitness professionals to its core. No words necessary. The goosebumps on your arms and your client’s ear-to-ear grin will say it all.

Yours in good health,

A Fall Prevention Program, page 33. Help older clients with programs tailored to reducing the risk of falls.

Sports Conditioning CEC Section, page 40. Earn credits toward certification renewal by reading these three features and taking the self-test on page 110.

Seven Secrets
for Totally Outrageous Teaching, page 86. Elevate your teaching and professionalism to make a real difference in members’ lives.

What Is Wellness? page 103. Experts
share their perspectives on wellness and how to make it meaningful
to clients.

The Power of Forgiveness, page 107. Forgiveness
can be a powerful tool to
a happier, healthier future.

Kathie and Peter Davis