A Brief History of Personal Training Assessments

Where the industry has been and where it’s going.


When I started personal training in 1997, I was giving your basic health assessment. It included a questionnaire with basic medical information and then I took the client’s weight, body fat and girth measurements.

Functional Movement Screens came out in the late 90’s. I wasn’t privy to them until 2000. It wasn’t originally designed to identify the cause of the faulty movement, rather it was simply meant to identify if a faulty movement pattern was present. This took personal training to the next level and made us movement experts.

Shortly after I discovered Functional Movement Screens, I stumbled onto the Chek Institute which really took the personal training industry to the next level with advanced assessments, including ROM. These measurements were previously reserved for therapists. Except therapists conduct assessments because the client is in pain. Instead, the Chek Institute said, “Why wait for pain? Why not find the imbalance prior to injury? Why not use this information to design more intelligent programs?”

We were conducting assessments, analyzing results, and designing really smart, detailed programs. Everything was awesome…until the demand was too high. Then we were time-limited. We couldn’t see all the people on our waitlist. It was crazy and stressful.

That’s when our CEO innovated a faster way: version 1.0 of Kinesics. Originally it was meant just for us as an efficiency tool, a way to take range of motion measurements and get a quick analysis. It was a way to boil down all of the stretches in the database of our heads and filter the stretches by measurement with one click.

Today, the Kinesics App has evolved into a sophisticated, user-friendly tool that any personal trainer can learn to use in under 10 minutes. And we offer educational training to teach professionals how to take the 43 ROM measurements that are inside the app.

Niki Driscoll