Fitness Institute International
  • About Dr. Abbott

    aaamilitarydressAnthony A. Abbott, MS, MSW, EdD

    Founder & President

    Princeton University AB Degree
    Florida State University MSW
    Florida International University MS
    Florida Atlantic University EdD
    American College of Sports Medicine Fellow
    National Strength & Conditioning Association Fellow


    Founder and President of Fitness Institute International as well as principle instructor for exercise science courses. Dr. Abbott’s formal educational training as an exercise physiologist coupled with vocational training in exercise science and over forty years experience as a fitness instructor, personal trainer and facility director has enabled him to conduct courses which are not only academically sound but also practical for today’s health & fitness industry. He has established unprecedented success in preparing students for the credible and prestigious national certifications offered by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) with which he is a Fellow and the National Strength & Conditioning Association (NSCA) with which he is also a fellow. He is the former Chairman of the NSCA’s Certified Personal Trainers Examination Development Committee as well as past Vice-Chair of the Executive Council of the NSCA’s Certification Commission. He now serves as a member of NSCA’s Certified Special Populations Specialist Examination Development Committee. He is a past recipient of both the NSCA’s Ambassadors Award and Personal Trainer of the Year Award. As a result of his contributions to health & fitness education and recognition of excellence in teaching, he was honored as a Distinguished Educator in the top 2% of Who’s Who Among American Teachers.

    Professional Experience

    Over forty years ago Dr. Abbott began fitness instruction while a training officer in the Airborne Department of the U.S. Army’s Infantry School. As a captain in the fabled “Green Berets” or Special Forces, he served in Vietnam where he was a highly decorated combat veteran. During his many years with Special Forces, he was in charge of the physical conditioning of military personnel involved with unconventional warfare and specialized training schools. He served as the Commandant of the Special Forces Airborne School as well as being the Officer in Charge of a U.S. Army Parachute Demonstration Team. As the Commandant of the Special Forces Underwater Swimmers and Para/Scuba Rescue School, he became the Commander of the Apollo Recovery Team for Central & South America. After the service, he worked as the Florida Director of the Physical Fitness Institute of America which helped develop NASA’s exercise program for “Man In Outer Space”.

    During the early years of Fitness Institute International, Dr. Abbott continued to conduct training programs on the “Total Isokinetic/Aerobic” exercise principle as used by astronauts. In addition to being a former health & fitness columnist for both a local and a national newspaper, Dr. Abbott has been an invited “special guest” for numerous radio and television shows throughout the State of Florida. As a highly sought-after speaker during the past thirty-five years, he has lectured to over 1,000 groups including state and national conventions, corporations, universities, hospitals, medical societies, legal associations, service clubs, fire departments, law enforcement agencies and the armed forces. He has also been an international presenter and consultant and worked with the Chinese Olympic Committee prior to the 2008 games. Dr. Abbott has been a consultant to both private industry and municipal governments during which time he created corporate fitness programs for business as well as public safety fitness programs for fire service and law enforcement. Frequently he is hired to conduct programs for fitness facilities which want to upgrade the education and training of instructor personnel.

    In addition to credit courses, Dr. Abbott has taught fitness instructor training programs at three universities within South Florida through their departments of continuing education. Fitness Institute pioneered personal training in the early 70’s, and Dr. Abbott is one of the eight authorities who developed and wrote the first nationally accredited personal trainer certification, NSCA-CPT. As a result of his expertise in exercise science, research in the area of fitness instructor and personal trainer qualifications, and experience as an instructor/trainer in emergency medical response, Dr. Abbott is frequently retained as an expert witness in fitness instructor/facility litigation cases in which individuals have been injured as well as have died. He has authored chapters in textbooks regarding legal concerns for the health & fitness industry, legal issues in fitness instruction & personal training, health & safety considerations for fitness facilities, and maintenance management of a fitness facility & its exercise equipment. Currently he is an associate editor of ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal and writes the “Legal Aspects” column.

    Fitness Certifications

    Dr. Abbott maintains his certifications as an American College of Sports Medicine “Personal Trainer”, “Certified Exercise Physiologist”, and “Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist” as well as an ACSM Inclusive Trainer with the National Council for Physical Activity & Disabilities (NCPAD) and the American Cancer Society (ACS). Additionally, he maintains certifications with the National Strength & Conditioning Association as a “Personal Trainer”, “Strength & Conditioning Specialist”, and “Special Populations Specialist”. In the past, he has been certified as a National Academy of Sports Medicine “Personal Trainer”; YMCA “Fitness Specialist”, “Aerobics Instructor” and “Healthy Back Instructor”; Institute for Aerobics Research “Physical Fitness Specialist” and “Group Exercise Leader”; Physical Fitness Institute of America “Exercise Specialist”; American Council on Exercise “Dance Exercise Instructor” and “Personal Trainer”; National Exercise Trainer’s Association “Aerobics Instructor” and “Personal Trainer”; Aerobics and Fitness Association of America “Resistance Training Instructor” and “Personal Trainer”; National Health Club Association “Professional Fitness Trainer”; United States Weightlifting Federation “Club Coach”; United States Water Fitness Association “Instructor Trainer”; International Sports Sciences Association “Master of Fitness Science”, National Exercise & Sports Trainers Association “Personal trainer”; National Council of Strength & Fitness “Personal Trainer”; National Federation of Professional Trainers “Personal Trainer”; and National Board of Fitness Examiners “Personal Trainer”.

    Special Qualifications

    Dr. Abbott has been licensed or certified in the past as a FAA Commercial Pilot and Flight Instructor; U.S. Coast Guard Commercial Charter Boat Captain (Master); Commercial Deep Sea Diver First Class and Scuba Instructor; U.S. Parachute Association Expert Parachutist and Instructor/Examiner; FAA Master Parachute Rigger; Red Cross First Aid Instructor and Water Safety Instructor; American Heart Association BLS Instructor/Trainer & ACLS Provider as well as a First Responder Instructor.

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