About Daniel

I absolutely love learning and practicing how to be healthy and fit. I also love teaching it to my family, friends and clients. I credit my healthy lifestyle, creativity and drive, largely in part to my childhood.  My parents, siblings and very little technology were the source of that success.

As a farm kid in the 70’s, we often had to use early 1900 techniques to do tasks such as picking rock and milking cows by hand, harvesting corn with an axe, digging wells with shovels, making hay with a pitch fork, chopping cords of wood for the long, cold winters and crawling around on our hands and knees for hours a day in our huge vegetable gardens. Those and all kinds of other laborious tasks kept us in great shape to do just about anything.

While as much as I often hated the bad sunburns, minor cuts, bruises, back aches and blisters, I felt a certain pride and appreciation when the jobs’ were done for the day. Looking back, I also humbly appreciated the spiritual benefit of regularly living in the moment where no mental noise or problems exist, only the activity at hand.

It is my belief that it is increasingly hard for people today to recognize that same appreciation. They have made their technological advancement too important to them to the point where their brain is overly distracted and stressed while their body is under used. They miss out on the physical and mental benefits that can positively shape them. I also believe that with mindful awareness, healthy physical goals and activities can be integrated to make meaningful changes. Fundamentally, if we allow technology to continually encroach on our lifestyle, we will have to continue to engage in regular strength and conditioning programs along with cardiovascular exercise

In my quest to reduce effort, I was always experimenting on ways to get more done in a shorter time. My incentive was play time before darkness set in. We didn’t have money to buy much sports equipment, so instead of complaining about it we would get creative and use or our old, crude tools to make bats, tennis rackets, golf clubs, hockey sticks, or old bike rims to use a basket ball rim. We did what we had to do and enjoyed the process. When we had time to play, my older brothers would always provide me more than enough sports competition. I recall one time playing hide and go seek at night with my evil brother. My brother would hide in the chicken house in complete darkness and when I would get close to reaching him he would throw chickens in my face. Judging by hearing the laughter, he thought it was hilarious and then would run outside to touch home base. When it came to sports my older brothers always made me work my hardest to compete on their level and rarely let me win.

When we had to come inside the house to entertain ourselves, we had one black and white screen tv that had 3 good channels…if the reception was good. We had no phone or electronics…barely an old radio that was only used for news. 

However, we had dozens of books and some board games. My father supplied us with so many books that we would occasionally create our own Jeopardy show. I remember one time my oldest sister would bring out the huge encyclopedia and ask an anatomy question, and for whatever reason my response was always a yell of “scapula!!” Fortunately, one time I remember getting it right. Other than spelling words well I was often the loser of the game. When you are bored you get creative.

Bottom line, I hated losing ! So I learned at a young age to associate a lot of pain to losing. I learned the value of practicing my best at whatever sport or game I would frequently lose. The pleasure of seeing myself improve drove me to be very good in games of skill such as Jeopardy, anatomy, sports, world geography, chess etc.

That same drive has never left me. I strongly dislike not bettering myself or family every month or not giving my clients every opportunity to get closer to their goals. My drive has never stopped learning how the brain and body function, partly because I know I will never fully know, so it gives me a constant worthwhile challenge. One thing I learned is that the more you know about your body the longer and happier you can be. It is never too late to challenge your current mind and body and enjoy getting better. Just make sure you pause to remember your progress so you can fully associate pleasure with that process. Doing so, is a very effective anchor that you so you don’t get off track. If you don’t practice daily you will likely forget the next day. Research shows that people who lost weight for many years exercise daily.

Fast forward to 1999. I moved to the bay area to work at 24 hour fitness on the east side of San Jose. I was one of the few caucasians at that gym but I absolutely loved it because it forced me to expand my world immensely. With deep appreciation I had the pleasure to know and make friends with a lot of members and clients from all over the world. I was completely immersed in training 10-12 clients per day, 6-7 days per week fairly consistently for many years. When I wasn’t doing that I was bodybuilding and studying incessantly.  If there had been a bed I would slept at the gym!

However, there came a point where I really wanted to help injured clients so I decided to scale back training and go back to physical therapy schooling, knowing it would help me get better results with injured clients. But my passion showed clear that although I gained a lot of knowledge, I loved the personal training industry too much and just didn’t want to only help the the injured get out of pain but progress them to advanced levels. The physical therapy profession would not allow me to do that.

I wanted to use my new skills but a local gym is not a performance institution, rehab place or a place that allows me to do exactly what I want. There were often other members in the way and it was just too distracting. That is when realized I needed my own gym to fully use my potential. So around 2003 I opened my own gym. That is when my clients’ success took off. I also became an absolute knowledge junkie at studying and applying functional anatomy, physiology, nutrition, behavior modification, physical therapy, massage therapy, active release, myoskeletal work and manual therapies, stretch techniques and so much other relevant knowledge. You name it, I bought all the books I could, and I read, reread and carefully applied what I learned. I got into teaching all kinds workshops and courses in gyms, senior centers, libraries and Hp and elsewhere. Basically, wherever people would listen.

If machines and tools didn’t work well enough for my clients I wanted to make my own. I also went so far as to create my own core training product. I developed it, successfully tested it at San Jose State University, patented it, put in on the market and called it the Master of Fitness core trainer (www.mofcoretrainer.com) — basically to make core training more fun and getting into shape faster and easier. It is not my primary business at all, but it never the less is a great product for those driven enough to push themselves.

Over the years, I have also gone the route of getting as many national certifications I could, sometimes 4 of them at a time, but I realize they will only teach you so much. The reality is my clients of all backgrounds, ages and goals teach me the most and make my job a joy everyday. I have helped hundreds improve their fitness levels with uncompromising quality and care. The real value that my experience will bring you, is that whatever your challenge and goal is, I have likely heard it, seen it and will likely help you get over it. 

I invite you to experience my services and would enjoy helping you become your own master of your fitness.

Thank you very much for taking the time to read a bit about me. I would love to learn about your influential stories and goals.


Daniel Robertson
Owner and Head Trainer at Master of Fitness