How to Become a Strength and Conditioning Coach

I’ve received several questions on how to enter the field of strength and conditioning, and how to get into coaching athletes over the last couple of months.

Questions like:

“How do I get started with training athletes?”

“Which certifications should I get?”

“What continuing education tools do you recommend?”

“Yunus, how come you keep getting more handsome every year that passes?”

Rather than answer all those emails landing in my inbox one-by-one, I’m putting this article up as mandatory reading for all ya peeps entertaining thoughts on becoming a strength coach.


Breaking into strength and conditioning certainly isn’t easy if you don’t already have established connections within the industry.

Fear ye not, though.

I’ve compiled your 12-month curriculum for How to Become a Strength and Conditioning Coach 101 below.

Follow the five steps I lay out for one full year, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a strength coach, and further ahead than 98% of those contemplating getting into the field.

Click to continue reading »


New In-Season Training Article Published on STACK.com

With the off-season firmly in the books, I’ve had more time to put fingers to keyboard in the past couple of weeks than during the entire summer before that.

As a result, I should be back to churning out quality training content here and via other online publications.

However, with so many projects going on in the background, I won’t promise that I’ll be writing very frequently.

But I promise that what I’ll be sharing will mos def be worth reading.

STACK.com just published an article of mine on the importance of continuing to build upon the strength gains witnessed in the off-season, and how to keep setting PR’s all year long.

Check it out here:

Why You Should Build Strength During Your Sports Season


Best Strength Training Books of 2016

Let’s kick this article off with two alarming stats:

1. Nearly 800 million adults in the world are illiterate (which translates to a whopping 15% of the adult population)

2. 27% of US adults did not read a SINGLE book in 2015

So we have a colossal amount of people who can’t or won’t read.

As someone who averages two to three books per week – including training, business and fiction (the latter helps me fall asleep better) – I find those statistics above hard to fathom.

Just on the training/fitness/nutrition side of things, I’d estimate I’m well over 300 books in total by now.

(I lost count years ago, so can’t tell you an exact number)

Having said that, my hunger for new information has never waned. In fact, it’s as strong as ever.

Sure, when you’ve devoured a couple hundred books on any topic, you won’t find much that is new or unique. And you shouldn’t expect to have your mind blown anymore.

Still, I keep reading more and more because of the benefits.

Click to continue reading »


Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning Review

“I hear the book’s hard to comprehend – is that true?”

“How much practical stuff is included?”

“Would you recommend it for the CSCS exam?

“$100 for a textbook?! Jeez, it must have been printed by old Gutenberg himself!”

Those are only a tiny sample bunch of comments and questions I have received over the years about Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, one massive resource on athletic performance and THE TEXTBOOK for the National Strength and Conditioning Association’s CSCS exam.

And since you’re reading this review, you must be wondering…

Is it worth the time and cost?

Or would you be better served spending your hard-earned moolah on Under Armour boxerjocks and protein shakes?

Time to find out…


The Basics, Ma’am

Spanning 752 pages and weighing in at a hefty 5.2 pounds (that’s almost 2.4 kilograms for all ya numerically and mathematically challenged folks out there), Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning comes equipped with some impressive thud factor.

Now in its 4th edition (released in November 2015), the book includes 24 chapters written by a number of distinguished authors and scientists with an impressive alphabet soup of credentials after their names.

Just to give you an idea of the caliber of authors who contributed to the book…

Click to continue reading »


2016 Off-Season Training Highlights – Part 2

My hockey guys were hitting PR’s in the gym week in, week out during the off-season.

But it wasn’t just about lifting weights this summer.

As I’ve said many times before, pushing, pulling and squatting a heavy bar is NOT the only part of developing true athleticism.

So we sprinted, we jumped, we changed directions, we pushed the sled and carried heavy objects for distance.

Here’s a taste of what took place in our off-season program…

We had so many guys reach new levels of strength that it would take me ages to upload all their lifting videos to Youtube.

I’m a lazy bastard, so I won’t do that.

But I’ll end this post with a solid display of raw strength.

Here’s Matias Nisula of our U20 team trap bar deadlifting 235 kg for a big PR to cap off the off-season in style.

Props to all the guys for a solid effort throughout the summer. Things will only get better as we move on to in-season training starting next week.

I expect big PR’s all season long…


2016 Off-Season Training Highlights

It has been a great summer.

I had the chance to train ca. 100 hockey players, including college, Junior National Team, and U18 and U20 World Champions.

Even if I say so myself, the strength improvements we’ve witnessed have been excellent.

Here are our U18 and U20 hockey players hitting heavy singles on chin-ups during the last week of the off-season.

I’ll be posting some more vids in the next few days.

Stay tuned…


Elite Athletic Development Seminar 3.0 Review

A rare occurrence, I took last weekend off and even managed to hit the movies for the first time in 6+ months to catch Central Intelligence.

(Quick review: Dwayne Johnson is friggin’ jacked as always, Kevin Hart cracks funny jokes but overacts 50% of the time, plot was written by a third grader, few good laughs, 6/10 overall score).

So to kick off this week the right way, I decided to get my learn on by watching Elite Athletic Development Seminar 3.0, a new DVD set by Joe Kenn and Mike Robertson.

Elite Athletic Development 3.0For those of you not in the know, Joe Kenn serves as the Strength and Conditioning Coach for the NFL’s Carolina Panthers.

As for Mike Robertson, he runs IFAST – an Indianapolis-based training facility that has been voted one of America’s TOP 10 gyms by Men’s Health.

These days, there aren’t many speakers in the fitness industry that I look forward to hearing.

I’ve attended plenty of training seminars and watched enough DVD’s from some of the most recognized figures in fitness and strength and conditioning, and more often than not, I came away from the experience feeling disappointed.

Click to continue reading »

Follow Me On:
© Copyright 2010-2016 Next Level Athletics. All rights reserved. Created by Valentin Spitsyn. Proudly powered by WordPress.