Christian Thompson

Christian Thompson

About Christian Thompson

Christian is an Associate Professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of San Francisco, an affiliate researcher in Neurology at UCSF Medical Center, and the owner of Thompson Fitness Solutions, LLC.  Christian has published scientific articles on exercise programming for older adults in peer-reviewed journals such as Translational Journal of the ACSM, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, and Journal of Applied Research.

The Abridged Guide to Training Active Older Adults: The Pre-Participation Screening and the Goal-Setting Process

There is much confusion about whether to require older clients to be medically cleared prior to engaging a new exercise program. On one hand, medical clearance can help to further inform the fitness professional about the medical issues an older adult may be experiencing and can guide the development of the training program. On the other hand, medical clearance poses a significant obstacle to many older adults and can be a major disincentive for becoming more active. Recently, the American College of Sports Medicine revised their guidelines for medical screening to be less restrictive for already active older adults. This session will clarify this process to ensure fitness professionals will follow best practice guidelines. Additionally, other aspects of pre-participation intake will be discussed in this session including motivational interviewing tactics, use of a template to explore client’s beliefs about benefits vs. risks of working with a fitness professional, and how goal achievement scales can help to establish a better understanding of your older client and build rapport with them.


1. Identify the structure and function of the vestibular apparatus and understand its role in balance maintenance

2. Understand the vestibule-ocular reflex and how it can be improved through eye tracking and head movement exercises

3. Design effective vestibular training strategies to ensure a well-rounded fall prevention exercise program


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