Substance Abuse and Addictions 101: What Every Personal Trainer Needs to Know

Substance Abuse and Addictions 101: What Every Personal Trainer Needs to Know

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About The Course

In talking about substance abuse and addiction, I recognize the difficulty many trainers, and certainly clients, may have. While it is a difficult subject to address, the reality is that substance abuse and addiction rates in our society today are astronomical. Not only are these rates astronomical, but they pervade all aspects of society, including the fitness field. In thinking of most people's interpretation of the typical health club member, we tend to associate such an individual with health, missing the point that the typical member is, for the most part, aesthetically motivated. The health club environment itself provides a wide array of shortcuts for achieving the desired result. Simply looking at the labeling of many of the common weight loss supplements available, promising rapid weight loss in a very short time with no effort at all, provides an example of the type of thinking that motivates many people who join health clubs. In recognizing that this type of thinking provides a fertile ground for addictions and that many illicit substances are available in many health club environments, one realizes that the majority of fitness professionals have probably dealt with substance abusing clients without even recognizing it. Therefore, I have written this course with both novice and experienced fitness professionals in mind and have tried to organize the information in the most useful and applicable format possible. Whether you are a fitness professional who has some experience with addictions and substance abuse or you have no experience with this subject at all, this course has been written to be useful to you when working with the substance abusing client.

In the pages that follow, we will explore the various stages and forms of abuse and addiction, and I will give you the information necessary to recognize the signs of substance abuse. We will also explore the various cognitive, psychological, and behavioral changes associated with substance abuse. This information will guide you, the fitness professional, in designing a program for the substance abusing client and teach you to determine when and how to administer a substance abuse questionnaire, when and how to use collateral resources, and when and how to refer the client. We will also discuss the specific components of working with a substance abusing client on a daily basis, such as avoiding counter-transference, maintaining boundaries, and avoiding risks and contra-indications. Substance abusing clients, whether active or not, think, act, and perform differently than other people, and understanding this is absolutely necessary for anyone who wants to have an effective training relationship with them.

Substance abusing and recovering clients are an underserved population in the health and fitness community, yet they are among the people who can benefit the most from a safe and effective exercise program. Not only are they the fastest growing subset of the population, but they also have the lowest retention rates. What this means for the fitness professional is that there is a huge opportunity to effect change in a very large part of the population. Armed with the knowledge, skills, and abilities provided in this course, the fitness professional should be well equipped to not only work effectively with the substance abusing client, but also to have a significant impact on his or her life. As this course will demonstrate, self-esteem, personal responsibility, self worth, and accountability are all very closely linked to body image, and in many cases, a positive body image can play a pivotal role in the client's long-term sobriety.

Features online enrollment, online exam and instant grading as well as automatic certificate generation upon completion of course.


Hear how ISSA has helped students like you

Yvonne Roth

My experience with ISSA was amazing. I was so impressed with the online self-study program and how it was organized. I was equally impressed with the staff support, knowledge and integrity!

Yvonne Roth

Gabriela Cumberbatch

This Strength and Conditioning Certification from ISSA gave me the opportunity to expand my knowledge in strength and conditioning, whether it be in the gym or outside on the field or court, with a team or an individual.

Gabriela Cumberbatch

Yudishteer Seewooruttun

The ISSA certified personal trainer program is the best experience of my life.

Yudishteer Seewooruttun

Christopher Romano

Of my now 25 coaching certifications, I was super impressed with how in-depth and thorough the ISSA SSC is.

Christopher Romano

Pilar Roberts

The education I received will put me above my competition and has provided me to the tools to helps other meet their personal fitness goals.

Pilar Roberts

Suresh Chalapathi Kumar Babu

I am now one step closer to my visions. I can't wait to get out there and help others. I highly recommend this course to individuals who are interested in becoming a certified personal trainer.

Suresh Chalapathi Kumar Babu

Joel Bunche

I highly recommend anyone who is in this field or career and to take ISSA, they are very helpful, professional and they help you expand in the personal training, fitness and healthy lifestyle.

Joel Bunche

Jamil Karimov

With the knowledge, I've gained from the program. I feel confident to go into the work as a personal trainer now, and to start this phase in my life.

Jamil Karimov

Arjun Shaw

I loved every single page of my book. They were so informative and every topic we're in-depth.

Arjun Shaw

Tyson Zanski

If it weren’t for my injury, or my struggle with weight when I was younger I wouldn’t have the passion and excitement for fitness I do now! I’m so excited for what the future holds due to this program!

Tyson Zanski

Chelsea Mitchell

Not only was the program extremely informative, but the final exam was challenging and really put what I had learned to test.

Chelsea Mitchell

Tarini Bhagwansingh

The ISSA is one of the only organizations I’ve worked with that has had nothing but encouragement to give to me and that’s exactly what I needed.

Tarini Bhagwansingh

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