About Sal and Athletic Development Coaching

I’m Sal Marinello, the athletic and fitness development coach to call if you want to get into the best shape of your life.  I help people of all ages and ability levels get into great shape without wasting time, money, and effort.

Over 23 years ago when I got started in this business the title was “personal trainer.” However, over the years this title has lost its luster.  Certifications are easy to come buy and the concept of fitness has been perverted to the point where the title of a personal trainer has become meaningless.  And really, what does the term personal trainer mean, anyway? The friends, coaches, and colleagues that I respect are all in agreement that the time has come to throw away the term personal trainer.  Really, it is only natural. Regardless of the field of endeavor, whenever progress is made terms, concepts and other elements that are key to the field need to be refined, defined, and redefined. In the fitness field, now is such a time. So no more personal trainer; from now on it’s athletic and fitness development coach.

From the days when I was a personal trainer – all those many years ago – up through today I have conducted over 35,000 private personal training sessions and have spent thousands of additional hours running my speed and conditioning clinics, serving as a high school and college athletic development coach, giving speeches and making presentations on health and fitness issues and working with youth sports programs.  My byline has appeared in sports pages of The New York Post, my face has been on ESPN and my voice and material are featured on the Steve Czaban Show, Yahoo Sports Radio’s national morning show.

I am a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) as designated by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and a USA Weightlifting Certified Coach.  I also am a member of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).  In addition to my NSCA certifications, I participate in their Fly Solo program that is designed to mentor those who want to become NSCA certified professionals.

I have been involved in coaching sports from the youth level,  high school, and college for over 20 years and I am the Head Athletic Development Coach at Chatham High School in New Jersey.  Over the span of my career, I have worked with thousands of individual kids and teams, in weight rooms, gyms, tracks, and fields all over the state.

Since the fall of 2009, I have served as the Athletic Development Coach for the Mercy College lacrosse program, including their fledgling Division 2 men’s and women’s lacrosse programs located in Dobbs Ferry, New York, and for the past two seasons have been part of the men’s basketball coaching staff at Montclair State University, in Montclair, NJ.


I operate a one-of-a-kind private, fitness, and athletic development coaching business that is part of The Sports Academy in Millburn, New Jersey. My service is unique because I have access to 35,000 square feet of indoor turf and basketball courts, in addition to my private coaching facility. There is not another gym where a  person can train privately in a facility of this size.

I started the first of its kind personal training facility in the suburbs back in 1989 and had a successful run there until the end of 2011.  Being on my own has given me the freedom to provide my clients with the highest quality of private coaching in a clean, new setting.
My specialty is that I do not specialize.  Since I started training people in Manhattan back in the 80s I have trained everyone – models, actors, actresses, the famous and the infamous, wannabes and never-will-bes and average folks, too.  Since I started doing my thing in the suburbs, the ages my our active client base has run the gamut from young kids to 80-year olds, from incredibly gifted athletes to incredibly non-gifted athletes, men and women, soccer players and football players, committed couch potatoes to “ants-in-the-pants” chronic exercisers.  You name it, I’ve trained it.

The one constant in all of these sessions has been my training philosophy.  I can offer up a loyal client base, many of which have been with me for 15-20 years, and a large group of very successful athletes from the complete spectrum of sports, and at all levels.   I don’t charge membership fees, just training fees.  People stay with me because I’m good at what I do. (see Testimonials)

I’ve built a successful business the hard way, by appealing to the needs of real people and delivering on my promise.  Celebrity trainers live and work in a fantasy world and have won the fitness business lottery – and I’m not begrudging them.  However, I was a celebrity trainer when I started in the business and I saw that while it’s nice to say that you train a celebrity, it certainly doesn’t pay the bills – especially when you work for someone else.

I’ve built a business and have become successful as a coach by engaging people just like you, your family, and friends. My program is responsible for the success of my business and for the success that’s been experienced by the individual clients and sports teams that I work with.  My philosophy will get you into great shape and for the most part, you’ll have fun doing it.  Frankly, I’m not interested in pleading with the committed couch potatoes and trying to convince them that they should start to exercise.  My commitment is to those folks who are frustrated by what they have experienced in their efforts to live a healthier lifestyle and are looking for a better way.  I’m not here to sell you gadgets, gimmicks, and other fitness “stuff”.

All you have to do is be willing to listen to me and there’s no limit to what you will be able to accomplish.