Authors’ Guidelines for IDEA’s Publications

Has anyone ever told you “You should write an article about that?” Are you overflowing with ideas on how to improve and streamline your fitness career? Are you an expert in a niche area of fitness and have you always wanted to publish your research? We want to hear from you! The editorial team is always looking for articles that serve the needs of fitness, wellness and health professionals.

IDEA is known for publishing articles that meet the needs of the fitness professional on multiple levels. We are particularly adept at balancing theory with practical application. No one offers the same depth of information in a manner that enables and empowers readers to act immediately. If you believe you have the skills, talents and content that will meet our editorial needs, please send us a query (details below).

Our readership includes personal trainers, fitness facility staff, fitness instructors, program directors, business owners and managers, and other health and wellness professionals. These readers have a broad range of educational backgrounds, including many with advanced degrees in health- and fitness-related fields.

Note: Each year, we receive hundreds of queries. We produce a limited number of issues, and we have a limited number of articles that we can assign. Current trends, previous or planned articles on related subjects, and numerous other factors also determine our ability to accept submitted ideas. Whether or not we are able to accept your query, we appreciate your interest in IDEA and your initiative in submitting your idea to us.

Getting Started

An article must be an original piece of work that has not been published elsewhere. In order to determine if your idea is appropriate for IDEA’s publications, ask yourself:
  1. Would this article directly address the needs of fitness and health professionals (not just fitness and health consumers)?
  2. Am I qualified to write this article? Why?
  3. Would this article include practical, how-to application?
  4. Would the general topic area and length of this article be appropriate for the IDEA newsletters, or would it work as a feature or column for IDEA Fitness Journal?

Submission Procedure

After you have determined that your idea is suited for IDEA’s readership, send us a query letter outlining the proposed topic and the questions you will try to answer, and tell us:
  • why this idea is important to fitness and health professionals
  • why you are the person to write the article (a resume or biography listing your credentials is helpful)
  • the general topics or points you will cover with this article (list a few, or include a rough outline)
  • how you will include practical how-to information in your article
Send your query and credentials to:

Keep in Mind...

  • The editorial committee will consider your idea on the basis of timeliness, relevance and your credentials or experience. Written queries are preferred. Unsolicited material must be accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope if you wish it returned.
  • All these written ideas, as well as those generated by the editors, circulate through an editorial board of instructors, exercise physiologists and business experts who determine the query’s relevance and timeliness.
  • The review process takes 6 to 8 weeks. After this time, you will receive notification as to whether or not your article may be used.
  • When an idea is tentatively approved but cannot be immediately slated for a specific issue, it may be held for a period of time for additional consideration. If an idea is approved, it is placed on the "go" list for inclusion in an upcoming issue. When the article is definitely placed in an issue, it is formally assigned to the author.

Preparing the Manuscript

If your idea is accepted for publication, the assigning editor will establish manuscript length and payment. We pay within 60 days of final acceptance and purchase all rights. Remember that your article must target the professional, not the consumer. Write with a voice that is clear, concise and easy-to-understand. Authors are responsible for the accuracy of all data and must be able to document their information with firsthand experience, interviews with experts and/or references to published sources. You will be required to include this backup documentation with your manuscript. IDEA has high fact-checking standards, and we are proud to have very few errors of fact in our publications.

Publications: Content Details

IDEA Fitness Journal

Mission: To inspire and educate fitness and health professionals with up-to-date industry information and comprehensive research on exercise physiology, weight management, nutrition, health promotion, wellness, sports conditioning, industry and programming trends, personal and professional growth, and more.

Features: Each issue of IDEA Fitness Journal includes feature articles, which are approximately 3,000-3,500 words in length and cover industry issues and research reviews. Sample topics include client motivation and counseling techniques, industry growth, health care integration, nutrition research, exercise technique and program design. Check the IDEA Library for a sampling of topics.

Columns: The magazine also includes the following rotating columns, which are approximately 1,200-1,400 words in length:

  • Exercise Rx: These articles are geared to the intermediate/advanced trainer who is familiar with training variables and needs information on how to manipulate them. Target populations include clients with special conditions, or goals.
  • Profit Center: Articles give specifics on marketing a personal training business, retaining clients, payment schemes, finance and administration and career options.
  • Trainer-Entrepreneur: These pieces provide insight to personal trainer business owners on how to leverage their talents and other business concepts for added business success.
  • Tricks of the Trade: An IDEA editor interviews members in a Q & A format covering diverse areas of a personal trainer’s career.
  • Nutrition (Research and Practical): The research style of this column, written by dietitians or nutritionists, may focus on a particular nutrient or food category, or describe eating behaviors, dietary plans or nutrition myths. The practical style of this column takes a more “how-to” approach to food and eating issues. Topics may focus on the latest research regarding sports nutrition and performance or something as practical and immediate as how to shop to keep your pantry stocked with essential items.
  • Group Exercise Skills & Drills This specialty column supports the growth of all group fitness professionals through targeted teaching skills topics such as cuing techniques, management styles, tips and tricks for interacting with members and career enrichment.
  • Buzz: This is a short list of progressive classes and formats from around the world.
  • Class Take Out: A one-page (front and back) choreographed class format, complete with diagrams, music suggestions, counts, injury prevention, etc. (Step, cycling, high-low, circuit, group strength, misc. dance).
  • Ignite/Ebb/Core: This small and powerful column offers practical and effective ideas for the different sections of a group exercise class: the warm-up, cool-down and core sections. Each “block” can be mixed and matched among different formats.
  • Inner IDEA: Provides guest columnists a chance to address the wide array of science and programming that underpin mind-body focused techniques and philosophies.
  • Research: Our only column with a single, regular author. Len Kravitz, PhD, reviews and reports on relevant exercise and health literature and provides practical application suggestions for fitness professionals.
  • Senior Fitness: Articles focus on the special needs of older adults and include communication, program design, exercise modifications and business ideas for serving this burgeoning population well.

IDEA Trainer Success

Mission: To help personal trainers stay up to date with the robust growth and entrepreneurialism in personal training. IDEA Trainer Success is intended for personal trainers who already own and operate businesses, those thinking of starting businesses and those who manage personal training departments in fitness facilities.

Columns (each column is 1,200-1,400 words in length)

  • Reinvigoration Strategies: This column is focused on evaluating your existing business or personal training department and finding ways to refresh and revitalize it.
  • Training for Growth: Once you have your business or personal training department up and running, how do you keep growing it? Topic discussion includes creative ways to add value with the ultimate goals of client and staff satisfaction and increased revenue.
  • Technology: This column highlights specific web-based applications and provides practical advice on how to integrate these time savers into a business or department.
  • Liability/Risk Management: As the popularity of personal training grows, so does your liability and risk. This column raises issues on how to protect yourself and your business.
  • Staff Issues: This column addresses hiring, firing, problem employees, rewarding employees and recruitment and retention challenges.
  • Sales & Marketing: Topics in this column include increasing sales, proven sales techniques and how to market your business, yourself or your department for maximum return.

IDEA Fitness Manager

Mission: To provide the management information that program and fitness directors and facility owners need to effectively plan program choices, supervise staff and attract and retain clients.

Features: Focused on a theme, including program planning, personnel, time management customer service and financial management.

Columns (each column is 1,200-1,400 words in length):

  • People: Topic areas focus on interpersonal communication, staffing issues, hiring and firing, rewarding employees, recruitment and retention.
  • Money/Budgets: This column examines budgeting issues and metrics for success.
  • Best Practices: Topics in this column include practical ideas for increasing sales, proven sales techniques and how to market your facility, department or program.
  • Programs: Programming experts provide examples from their experience arsenals on how to test, budget and introduce new programs.
  • Group Ex Director: This column examines all aspects of programming, staff management and client service for a successful group exercise department.
  • Personal Training Director: Authors look at all aspects of programming, staff management and client service for a successful personal training department.
  • Leadership: Good leaders know how to keep themselves inspired. This column explores methods that support managers and owners in their drive to succeed.

IDEA Pilates Today

Mission:IDEA Pilates Today is produced and written from an unbiased point of view and serves as a platform for professional discussion from multiple viewpoints.

Columns: (each column is approximately 1,200 words in length):

  • Program Design: Topic areas emphasize how to develop successful and effective programs for special populations.
  • Business: This column explores common Pilates studio business-related issues and advice from experts on making improvements.
  • Equipment: Equipment can be an important component of Pilates programming. This column includes insights on equipment maintenance and programming ideas.
  • Instructor Skills: Top Pilates leaders offer tips and techniques for improved teaching skills and cueing.
  • Interviews: Our writers interview Pilates experts from all lineages and backgrounds.
  • Case Studies: This column takes you directly to the studio floor with actual case studies.
  • News: Our writers offer industry news to keep your expertise up to date.