Where can I get help and advice about exercise?
A One of the best places to get help is an exercise class. If you join a health club or fitness center, follow the guidelines in the box “Choosing a Fitness Center.” There, expert instructors can help you learn the basics of training and answer your questions. Make sure the instructor is certified by a recognized professional organization and/or has formal training in exercise physiology. Read articles by credible experts in fitness magazines (such as Fitness Rx for Women and Fitness Rx for Men). Many of these magazines include articles by leading experts in exercise science written at a layperson’s level.
A qualified personal trainer can also help you get started in an exercise program or a new form of training. Make sure this person has proper qualifications, such as certification by the ACSM, National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), or International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA).
Don’t seek out a person for advice simply because he or she looks fit. UCLA researchers found that 60% of the personal trainers in their study couldn’t pass a basic exam on training methods, exercise physiology, or biomechanics. Trainers who performed best had college degrees in exercise physiology, physical education, or physical therapy. So choose your trainer carefully and don’t get caught up with fads or appearances.