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Diary of a Fitness Seminar Addict

Are You Guys Doing Any Workshops? – Ask Smart Group Training

In this newest section of the Smart Group Training website, we want to include some answers to questions that we often hear.  This section will range anywhere from group training questions to anything that has to do with training or Smart Group Training.

For the first installment of this series we are going to answer a question that we just received on our facebook page.

Q – Are you guys doing any workshops?

Group Training Workshop
Elite Training Workshop


– We are offering SGT Live workshops on a few different dates this year. This is a workshop designed to show you the FMS and how to use it in your group training program.  We will be covering topics like:

*How to Perform a Functional Movement Screen

*How to Screen Large Groups of People

*The SGT Wristband System

*How to Create Program Designs for Small and Large Group Training Based of the Screen

*Corrective Exercises for YOUR Weakest Links

*How to Incorporate Corrective Exercise into Small and Large Group Training

*How to Make Bootcamp More Like Personal Training

*How to Conduct a Large Group Personal Training Session

*All Your Group Training and Corrective Exercises Questions Answered!      

Smart Group Training Workshop
Smart Group Training Workshop  

The workshop is not for sale yet, but will be very soon. Please sign up for our newsletter to make sure you find out when we launch registration. We will be at the following locations and dates:

Napa Valley California – March 24

Frisco TX – April 14th

St. Louis MO – April 18th

Canton CT – Oct 20th

All of these Smart Group Training Live dates are following Elite Training Workshops, which we will also have more info on soon. We are still putting together details, but we I can promise the price is right.

We also recommend attending FMS certifications for more info on the system that we use for screening. You can find out more about the FMS at

Steve Long

PRI Postural Respiration – Diary of a Fitness Seminar Addict

This weekend a few of us went to the PRI Postural Respiration Course.  I have to say, that during the course I was thinking about how in the world I was going to summarize all if this information in one short article.  I’ll do my best, but I have to be honest and tell you that my main goal with this article is just not to screw up the translation.

The Instructor

Mike Cantrell is awesome. Not only does this guy know pretty much everything, but he is hilarious and just an all around great guy.  He’s a Georgia country boy that has more one-liners than your clients have excuses. This is the second course I’ve taken with Mike and was glad to see that he was instructing.  This information can really be hard to digest, but Mike makes it fun and serious at the same time.

PRI Mike Cantrell

The Content

First of all, the content is really meant for physical therapists, and open-minded physical therapist to boot.  PRI is known for providing a different approach from what people are used to. This means a lot of people are confused by the PRI content because of it being different in nature. Additionally, a lot of people dismiss the content, because it’s hard to face the facts that everything you know could be wrong. Luckily I’ve been exposed to PRI through Mike Robertson and Bill Hartman years ago, and have been studying up on the content, including taking the PRI Myokinematic Restoration Course. I think this gives me just enough experience to able to begin to speak of the content as a personal trainer. Without this prior PRI experience, I would have been lost.

Day 1 – We started the day with PRI philosophy, which really could be 10 days worth of lecture, but Mike did a great job of making sure we had all of the info that we needed to understand the material that we were covering over the weekend without overloading and confusing people.

Postural Respiration is a course that is basically designed to show you the importance of a functional diaphragm and what happens with different kinetic chains in the body when you lose function of the diaphragm. (such an understatement)  There are different patterns that almost all peoples bodies will fall victim to in their life time, and PRI shows you  how to diagnose which pattern your body has chosen to take. They also provide treatment and exercise program to reverse the pattern.

In day one, we went to over the patterns that can occur through the neck and torso, and how they relate to patterns of the pelvis.  We touched on a little bit of what we covered in PRI Myokinematic Restoration in order to show how the two courses go together. This also gave us a glimpse of the big picture.

Day 2 – After day one I was glad that I was absorbing the information, but was a little confused, and had a lot of questions unanswered.  Day two really made me feel good about what I learned in day one, because it was all about implementation.

We went over the tests again to make sure we were proficient, and proceeded to learn about what to do based upon our findings.  PRI provides a complete system of “if/then” situations to make sure that you are following the right path.  From there we went over a few case studies to ensure that we knew what to do with this new arsenal of information.  We spent the majority of day two in lab making sure we knew the manual therapy techniques and exercises to use to help reverse “the pattern”.

Mike wrapped up the day with educating us on the resources that PRI provides to make sure that the attendees are successful in the future.



Three Takeaways

1)   This will be a slow implementation.  I know we need to learn about the philosophies and principals of PRI and see a high percentage of success stories before we start ranting and raving about how people need to learn this.  People like Robertson, Cressey, and Hartman are really on board with PRI, which is what made me want to learn all about it, but at the same time it’s a new shiny object that I need to learn more about.

2)   Facial asymmetry and eyesight have more to do with dysfunction and pain than I thought.  Mike said that the stuff that we learn in PRI Myokinematic Restoration and Postural Respiration would clear up 80% of patients.  That means that 20% of people may have crooked faces and vision issues that are not allowing them to correct.  I need to find a super genius dentist and and eye doctor.

3)   Breathing and pelvic reposition are something that are probably going to have to be added to our group training in the future.  Worse case scenario just adding 1-2 minutes of breathing to start the workout or recommend that our clients come in a little early and knock out a few minutes of breathing with a pelvis reset. After using some of these techniques in small group for a while we can make a decision on the value and effectiveness of adding this into large group training.

Overall, in typical PRI fashion, my mind was blown.  However, I do feel that I have a much better understanding of what is going on now that I’ve taken both Myokin and Respiration.  I recommend that every clinician take these courses at least to get some nuggets and learn about what PRI does.

This information is only for the most elite fitness trainers and strength coaches.  To be honest a lot of the PT’s in the group were glazed over for most of the course. It is designed for clinicians, moves fast, and requires a high level knowledge of anatomy.  At the same time it taught me a lot of anatomy that wasn’t in the books, and showed me what physical therapists and chiropractors can do when armed with right knowledge.

So at this point, while I’m still absorbing the information and waiting to take the PRI Pelvic Restoration course this spring, I would only recommend this course to high level personal trainers that are working directly with clinicians. I think PRI is going to be very well known in the near future.  You can learn more about the Postural Restoration Institute at PRI -Website

Steve Long

Sandbag Workshop – Diary of a Fitness Seminar Addict

I’ve received a lot of great questions about the seminars that we attend since writing the post Diary of a Fitness Seminar Addict.  I figure since I love to go to all of these seminars, and I love to write to the best fitness pro’s in the industry that I might as well have a regular segment on the blog about my travels and the seminars that we attend.

For this segment, I’m going to break down each seminar, workshop, or certification into three sections The Speaker, The Content, and Three Takeaways. I hope to help all of our readers that can’t make it to these seminars get an idea of what is being covered to see if it is something that you should attend in the future.

This weekend I attended the DVRT Sandbag Training One Day Workshop.  If you read the original article Diary of a Fitness Seminar Addict you will see that this sandbag workshop was not originally on my list.  I honestly didn’t know that this workshop was coming, but after receiving an email telling me that the workshop would be 10 minutes from my house I quickly signed up.


$100 and a 10-minute drive made this a no brainer, but I wasn’t really sure what I was in for.  I hoped going in to the workshop that I would pick up a few cool new sandbag exercises to spice things up for my clients, and maybe do a little local networking while I was there.  What I got was a whole new outlook on what Sandbag Training is all about.

The Speaker/Instructor:

The instructor of this course was named Mitch Hauschildt.  I’ve never heard of Mitch until I met him on Saturday, but I wonder how because this guy is everywhere.  He is a teacher for Missouri State University, a TRX instructor, a DVRT Sandbag instructor and a long list of other cool stuff.  Mitch did a great job presenting the material, keeping it interesting, and he really knew his stuff.  I wasn’t sure of the quality of the instructor I was going to get because I’m not very familiar with DVRT, but I was really happy with Mitch.

The Content:

Like I said, I really only expected to pick up a few cool new sandbag exercises, but it was a lot more than that.  Sandbags are a little more complex and versatile than I thought.

We started by going over what I’ll call the “anatomy of the sandbag”. Mitch showed us what all of the different handles were for, the different size filer bags, what to fill with, how to fill the bags correctly, and the different kind of bags.  This was honestly one of the best parts because now I have a good understanding of the sandbag, and what it should and shouldn’t be used for.

From there we went through a quick warm-up and started to learn the basics of using the sandbags in a hands on format.

We started with learning the basics of the hip hinge, which was remedial but great because you never know who is going to be in attendance. Just like the kettlbell, this is a MUST HAVE pattern to really get everything out of the sandbag.

We learned a lot of great exercises like the sandbag bear hug clean to squat progressions, regular cleans, front squats, presses, lunge variations and lots of other great exercises.  Although the exercises were great the benefit of the course wasn’t about the exercises, it was about the details. Handling the sandbag, getting a feel for it, and learning about the intricacies of working out with the sandbag is what made this course great.

After learning some great sandbag exercises, and a nice little ladder workout we wrapped up with some program design conversation and a little Q and A. Overall it was a great day with some great takeaways.

sandbag bear hug
Sandbag Bear Hug

3 Takeaways:

1) The sandbags that I had are crap.  I’ve bought two different kinds of sandbags in the past and they both leak and are not near as durable as the DVRT sandbags.  I ended up buying six more sandbags after the event so Mitch didn’t have to break them down and load them back up again J

2) Don’t overfill and or slam the sandbags.  The sandbags that I had are junk, but it sure would have helped to know how to fill them and use them right, before slamming them on the ground like a rookie. There is no such thing as a dumbbell slam, and there is no such thing as a sandbag slam either.

3) One of my favorite complexes with a kettlebell: clean, front squat, press is amazing with a sandbag!  It added an entire new dimension and will be a regular part of my conditioning workouts moving forward.

*) Bonus Takeaway: This workshop went from 9am – 3pm and I loved that! It was perfect for my attention span, and we plan to make our future workshops that we are doing in 2013 the same length.

Overall I really enjoyed the sandbag workshop and totally got a great value for my money and time. I would definitely recommend checking it out if you are new to sandbag training or want to fill in some gaps.  They also have a Level 1 and Level 2 Certification for those who want to dig deeper into sandbags.  You can check out their list of workshops and certifications at:

Sandbag Workshops and Seminars

by Steve Long