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New Year result: Sunderland academic’s fitness handbook working out in China

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Published on 30 December 2019

Morc Coulson
Morc Coulson

A boom in China’s sport and fitness market has led to demand for a Sunderland academic’s acclaimed handbook for personal trainers.

Morc Coulson, a senior lecturer at the University of Sunderland, has been involved in the health and fitness industry for the past 20 years, and recently updated his handbook for personal trainers - the 10th book in his Complete Guide Series, a culmination of his knowledge in the area of health and fitness, which have become key texts for many students and institutions around the UK and overseas.

Morc was chair of the CPD panel of SkillsActive, the Sector Skills Council for Active leisure, Learning and Wellbeing, monitoring the delivery of training qualifications for more than 10 years.

As a result of his knowledge and expertise, his publisher Bloomsbury have now sold the rights for the book to be translated into Chinese and a China-based publisher will then be selling it across the country.

China’s fitness market has a huge potential for growth as more people in the country seek a healthier lifestyle and relief from mounting work pressure. According to the General Administration of Sports of China, by 2020, 700 million people in China are expected to work out once a week, and those who hit the gym regularly will exceed 435 million.

Morc said: “I’m delighted that my knowledge of the industry is now being shared on a truly global platform. I know we’ve sold copies across Europe and in particular the US, but this is great to be reaching a market which is really seeing huge growth.

“There’s a real surge in China right now to improve health and physical fitness coupled with athletic achievements.”

Morc added: “I wrote my first guide to personal training five years ago, but because knowledge in health and fitness areas and trends have shifted rapidly I constantly need to reflect the changes in national occupational standards. We are talking about trends such as HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), boot camps, suspension training and kettlebells.

“Health and fitness is now provided as a service and most personal trainers are self-employed so I have tried to build a portrait of everything that’s needed as a personal trainer, and that includes creating an identity, as without that you are just one of the thousands of trainers struggling to get clients. They need to focus on specialist areas that will make them stand out, that could be anything from older clients to those with specific health conditions.

“A lot of personal trainers are already adding additional qualifications such as sports therapy and sport massage to their CV, hopefully the Complete Guide will help them find that edge. This is something we also teach our students, it’s a core text that can provide a stepping stone that gives them that extra continued professional development in a highly competitive industry.”

The Complete Guide to Personal Trainers is endorsed by REPS (Register of Exercise Professionals), the largest independent public register for the Health and Fitness Industry in the UK.

Morc sits on the PD: Approval endorsement panel which quality assures CPD training for industry professionals.


About Morc Coulson

Morc Coulson is a Senior lecturer of Sport and Exercise Science at the University of Sunderland. He was Chair of the CPD endorsement panel at Skills Active, the Sector Skills Council for Active Leisure, for many years and is a Level 4 Specialist CPD course evaluator. He is author of a number books, including: The Fitness Instructor’s Handbook, The Complete Guide to Teaching Exercise to Special Populations and Practical Fitness Testing.