One Size does not fit all: Experience, Assessment, and Learning from Industry Leaders

May 03, 2013
Tagged with: One Size does not fit all: Experience, Assessment, and Learning from Industry Leaders


In this article, James R. House, III, discusses the development of his professional expertise as a Movement Specialist and the application of his training in his work with clients.


When I started in the Health and Human Performance Industry, I had a strong interest in movement patterns, body mechanics, strategic and systematic approaches, and measurable success based on work performed.  While I completed all of the core course work including the Foundations of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation, Exercise Physiology, Kinesiology and Body Movement, Motor Learning, and all of the other related requirements, my scope of professional experience comes from a combination of participation and competition in a variety of sports, academic preparation, and from the influences of Industry leaders.

The Influence of Sports and Competition

I am an intense and competitive athlete.  I participated in multiple sports clubs and competed in a variety of sports—and from the opportunities to play and compete, I got to see how high-level athletes performed and moved.  I observed my competitors, watched positions, and looked for what I needed to eliminate from my game.  I was always looking for moves and strategies that I could replicate and for ways to improve my performance.

Academic Preparation

My involvement in competitive sports influenced me to think of the body as “physical hardware”— the physical parts and components that make up a system, such as a computer.  I learned how physical components of the body work.  As I worked to earn my degree, I learned to think in more complex frames.

I went from the small scale to the large scale–I learned the fundamentals of invertebrate and vertebrate zoology, anatomy, and physiology.  I took courses in exercise physiology, kinesiology, nutrition, physics, and chemistry.  I enrolled in any physical education and sports performance electives available.  All of these offerings taught me how the “physical hardware” was supposed to work in theory.


In my frame of thinking, the body is the hardware and the mind is the software— the operating information that directs a person to perform.   As a professional working with a client, I have the challenge to figure out what to do in that work and how to do it.  I have to figure out the connection between the mind (the software) and body (the hardware).

I have to assess whether a presenting problem is physical.  For example, does a person have a pre-existing condition?  Kerry has Spastic Cerebral Palsy.  This condition will impact our work.    I have to determine whether a person has sustained an injury.  Kerry has herniated discs in her back.  So, in any work that we do, I have to keep this past injury in mind to take precautions against further injury.

I have to determine if there are environmental factors that can interfere with performance.   Kerry, for example, experiences tactile and auditory sensitivities that will affect our work.  I have to eliminate any environmental factors that will make it hard for Kerry to adapt to the surroundings and accomplish the work.  When I work with Kerry, I minimize to the extent that I can noise and loud sounds so that we can achieve the highest level of performance.


Learning from Industry Leaders

I have had the opportunity to learn from cutting-edge Leaders in the Health and Human Performance Industry.  I strongly encourage people who are interested in learning about current trends, new approaches, and what is up-and-coming in the Health and Human Performance Industry and specifically in Functional Movement to explore the work of the following professionals:


  1. Charlie Weingroff
  2. Gray Cook
  3. Thomas Myers
  4. Pavel Tsatsoline
  5. Stuart McGill
  6. Michael Boyle
  7. Lee Burton
  8. Brett Jones
  9. Alwyn Cosgrove
  10. Lou Schuler
  11. Robert Taylor
  12. Chris Poirier
  13. Evan Oscar
  14. Josh Henkin
  15. Thomas Plumber
  16. Will Cheng
  17. Tony Gentilcore
  18. Eric Cressey
  19. David Wu
  20. Chad Waterbury
  21. Jimmy Yuan
  22. Mark Cheng
  23. David Weinstock
  24. David Whitley

I have continuously incorporated teachings, principles, practices, and approaches from these Industry Leaders into my work with clients.

One Size Does Not Fit All

As professionals, we need to be aware of what approaches and methods are currently being used in the Health and Human Performance Industry. We also need to know what new and innovative approaches are on the horizon.  We need to be familiar with the work of Industry Leaders like Charlie Weingroff, Gray Cook, Thomas Myers, and numerous others.  We need to be sure that we have the most current information available to meet our client’s needs.  Just because an approach exists, has been used, and is solid does not mean it is the best approach for our client.

There isn’t a fixed formula or recipe that will serve the needs of every client.  Work with every client is unique and individualized.  An approach that worked for one client may only partially work for another.  There is no “one size fits all” in our work.

To be effective as professionals, we need to monitor industry trends and approaches, learn from other industry experts, and, most importantly, use our knowledge and expertise to address the individualized needs of our clients.

—James R. House, III

Author: Kerry