Bob Harper and Anna Kournikova will not be the only trainers next season on “The Biggest Loser.” NBC announced that they will be joined by Dolvett Quince, a trainer with a star following based in Atlanta.
Quince boasts celebrity clients such as Janet Jackson, Justin Bieber, and “Soul Food” actress Nicole Ari Parker. He also considers himself a Master Trainer with two certifications, one from ISSA (International Sports Sciences Association, an online only cert), and one from IFFA. ISSA is a decent body of material to learn, but you don’t need to step foot in a gym to study the material, and you take the exam online so there’s no guy with a clipboard making sure you can actually train someone. IFFA was interesting; it rang a bell when I saw it and I went online but I couldn’t find information anywhere. I did find other trainers listing IFFA as their cert and I saw one reference saying it was just a weekend, basic training class, but I have no way to confirm that. I’m guessing IFFA went out of business.
He’s very easy on the eyeballs! He’s had prior experience working with at least one morbidly obese person (he helped a client lose over 325 pounds) and he’s been training clients for years so he has real-life experience working with real people. He has already put out a fitness DVD so he should be fairly good on camera.
I know, I know, I always get hung up on the certs, and having basic certifications doesn’t mean a person can’t educate themselves to a much higher level. I started out with a basic AFFA cert and worked my way up from there, but I did it by collecting more certs. Someone can certainly do it by reading a lot, learning at conferences, and working with clients. So we’ll see.
My biggest concern is the people he has brought on board as staff. Each of his trainers is drop dead gorgeous and have backgrounds focused more in fitness modeling and high-level athletics (either college or pro). This makes me worry that he’s a little more concerned with looks than form. One of them has an ASFA certification which is an online cert (I use the term loosely) where you take the test first and then decide if you want to pay $129 to get the piece of paper that says you’re “qualified.” Go ahead, click the link and look; you’ll be appalled.
So that doesn’t bode well.
I found this video about Quince on YouTube; he’s very articulate and talks about training a wide variety of people (good!). He also talks a lot about his regimen without getting into the details (mostly marketing here — bad!). He has developed his own nutritional plan for his clients but didn’t go into details about it (no reference to him being a dietician or nutritionist — bad!). He is an advocate of eliminating sugar from the diet which lots of people agree with (good!).
After watching the above video, Quince uses basic moves and basic cues. I didn’t see anything stellar, a couple of things I’d do differently, but it was an interview situation and he might have been nice about not busting the interviewer on camera.
Overall I’m skeptical, but Quince does seem to be an improvement. The biggest plus for me is that he’s well established as a trainer in Atlanta and has been doing it for years. You have to be a good trainer with a good personality to stay in business for that long.
We’ll see come the fall TV season. What do you think?