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Thursday, January 17 , 2019, 6:22 pm | Fog/Mist 59º


Doug Holt of Conditioning Specialists Makes Personal Fitness Training His Business

Newly certified Master Trainer is passionate about helping others get healthy

Doug Holt, managing owner of Conditioning Specialists in Santa Barbara offers simple advice for people looking to be more healthy and fit: “Get outside. Walk. Stroll through the farmers market and buy some healthy and organic fruits and vegetables.”

Doug Holt
Doug Holt

Holt, a personal trainer recently named a Master Trainer, possesses a wealth of knowledge on fitness and nutrition, but he assigns simple homework to his clients, such as getting outside and walking more.

“I love working with people one-on-one or in a small-group environment, and helping them speed past limitations and help them push past barriers they’ve created — whether those be mental or physical,” he said. “It’s so rewarding.”

Holt is originally from Orange County. He worked for the Department of Recreation while studying at UCSB. After graduation, he landed a full-time job at a health and fitness equipment retailer. He moved back to Santa Barbara after traveling around Asia because he saw a need for a private facility with trainers who have higher levels of certification.

“I opened Conditioning Specialists about six years ago,” Holt said. “I’ve accumulated about 19 fitness and health-related certifications. It’s been a lot of reading. I teach seminars. We offer an apprenticeship program, which is a 200-hour program. You study with myself and other trainers.”

Holt said he’s passionate about guiding the health and fitness industry and making sure it goes the right way.

“I was probably the youngest business owner on State Street when I first started,” he said. “I think I was the youngest by about 20 years.”

At Conditioning Specialists, 529 E. Gutierrez St., Suite C, he has hired experts in their field because he said he wants to make sure the people he works with have a firm knowledge of how the human body works.

“(When hiring people), it comes down to experience,” Holt said. “The people who I’ve hired are experts in their fields. Other trainers are learning from them. I developed a program at Santa Barbara Business College that helps train.”

Just as there are no quick fixes to a healthy lifestyle, Holt said he sees no quick fix to professional health and fitness guidance.

“There is no quick fix. We all know that cognitively, but we still go for it,” he said. “If you have a nice car, you’re going to take it to a good mechanic to fix it. People put the worst food in their bodies and sometimes hire the cheapest professional advice. It seems to bite them in the behind at the end of the day.”

The Santa Barbara residents who go to Conditioning Specialists for help tend to be highly educated.

“Most of (our clients) have a college degree. We help everyone from a librarian’s assistant to housewives to college athletes,” Holt said. “We help everyone from elite athletes to 70-year-olds who are trying to live out their years as healthily as possible so they can do more things. Our common demographic is highly educated people who see the value, not the financial cost, of our services.”

One client, a man who had never been athletic in his life, had little balance and coordination. His goal was to become a decent surfer.

“After working with him, he approached me with tears in his eyes,” Holt said. “A goal of his became joining a sports league because he was in far better shape than most of his peers.”

For the future, Holt said he sees himself doing more speaking arrangements and writing more fitness certification books, along with helping the Santa Barbara community.

“I’d like to create a space for Santa Barbara where everyone has the opportunity to get well and get in shape if they want to be,” he said.

Right now, Holt is helping with the creation of a wellness program at La Cumbre Junior High School. He’s also developing a program to put a state-of-the art fitness facility for the community on the Westside.

“My business is about going above and beyond and helping our clients achieve their goals during off hours,” he said. “The goal is to help people.”

Conditioning Specialists will host a fundraiser from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Thursday at its facility to benefit the Rotary Club of Santa Barbara’s Foster Kids program. The event will include catered food from Rudy’s, refreshments from Carr Winery, live music from J Town, a silent auction and a raffle.

Click here for directions. Click here or call 805.569.0050 for more information.

Noozhawk business writer Taylor Orr can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @NoozhawkBiz, @noozhawk or @NoozhawkNews. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

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