John Rusin, DPT, CSCS


With more than a decade of elite-level training experience and advanced degrees in both exercise science and physical therapy, Dr. Rusin develops performance, regeneration, and aesthetics programs for some of the world's best power athletes, NFL and MLB athletes, gold-medal Olympians, competitive powerlifters, and bodybuilders.

Dr. Rusin is a coach, speaker, and writer, whose work has been popularized in Men's Fitness, Stack Magazine, Testosterone Nation, and Mountain Dog Diet. In addition to his sports-performance physical-therapy practice in Madison, Wisconsin, he's also the owner of John Rusin Fitness Systems, an online fitness platform geared toward synergizing the best of high-performance training and intelligently designed physiotherapy/regeneration programming to athletes and clients across the world.

Dr. Rusin is also the author of The Functional Hypertrophy Training Program.



  • 7 Exercises to Build Your Foundation of Strength and Power

    Looking to be as strong and capable as possible, with as little pain as possible? You should be. And you can make it happen by prioritizing these lifts in your training, starting right now!

  • The Dropset That Makes You Stronger

    After your heavy lifting is done, strip off the weight strategically to prime your nervous system for the rest of your workout. It's simple, fast, and even makes it easier to clean up after yourself in the gym.

  • The Best Face-Pull Variation You're Not Doing

    Look ma, no hands! With one simple technique tweak, be prepared to feel this shoulder move work its magic like never before.

  • Calf Raise Death Set: This Is How To End Leg Day

    Lifters usually take one of two approaches to calves: go HAM with weight or volume, or skip it entirely. Here's a simple yet sinister protocol that is perfect for adding size, and can even improve your squat!

  • Don't Diss The Goblet Squat Until You've Survived This Workout

    The goblet squat can be every bit as hard as any other lower-body move, if you program it right. Use this video protocol to test your lower-body strength, and then take it to a new level!

  • 3 Simple Secrets To Overcoming Knee Pain

    Spend just a few minutes each week doing these three things, and you'll be rewarded with stronger, more resilient knees. But the benefits definitely won't end there.

  • Safe, Strong Upper-Body Lifting Begins With These Two Ratios

    Don't wonder why you're in pain. Make sure that any program or training style you're following has these two crucial benchmarks covered, and you're setting yourself up for long-term success!

  • Your Old-School Bench Warm-Up Is Getting You Hurt! This Is Better.

    Swing your arms this way, stretch them that way, get under the bar, and go. Isn't this good enough? Not even close. Here's a modern upgrade to your outdated chest and shoulder warm-up.

  • Mix Weights And Body Weight To Build Maximum Muscle!

    Get ready to leave it all out there. By precisely combining heavy strength work with scorching high-rep bodyweight challenge sets, you can inflict maximum muscle fatigue without making your joints raise the white flag!

  • 3 Superior Spine-Friendly Alternatives To Crunches And Sit-Ups

    The old-school way of training abs isn't doing your back any favors. Kick those never-ending sets of sloppy reps out of your life, and build your sixer with these safer and more effective moves!

  • How To Program Your Biceps Training For Pain-Free Gains

    It's an arm workout as old as time: heavy barbell curls, then dumbbells, then hammer or reverse curls. But, turning it on its head might be the best choice you make this year for your elbows, shoulders, and yes, for your biceps!

  • Never Waste Another Warm-Up! Do This Instead.

    Treat your body like a finely-tuned machine and walk into every workout feeling like an animal! This warm-up involves six phases, but you can knock it out in the same 10 minutes you've been wasting on the treadmill!

  • The Only Dumbbell Lateral Raise Article You Need

    All the presses in the world won't earn you big, strong, pain-free shoulders. You need lateral raises, and you need to do them the right way!

  • Most Of You Are Foam Rolling Wrong. Here's How To Do It Right.

    A lot of people do it, but many don't know how or why. If you're looking to maximize the value you can receive from the fitness world's favorite accessory—and you should be—you owe it to yourself to read this article!

  • Don't Do High-Rep Squats, Deads, And Bench! Do These Instead

    To build strength and size, you need both low reps and epic burnouts. But not all moves lend themselves to both approaches! Rather than risking life and limb under the bar, use these smart approaches!

  • Podcast Episode 19: How to Earn Your Best-Ever Back Squat

    In this info-packed episode, strength coach and doctor of physical therapy John Rusin, Ph.D., gives his step-by-step guide to earning your right to kneel before the throne of the so-called King of Lifts. Do these squat variations in this order, and do your back squat this way, and you'll never regret it!

  • The More Gain, Less Pain Guide To Squats

    If you wince at the mere mention of the back squat, you're not necessarily banished to the machines forever. Do these intelligent squat variations instead for pain-free progress in your lower-body training!

  • Stop Going Heavy on These 3 Exercises

    If you've been chasing 1RM strength in these movements, you're barking up the wrong tree. Stay pain-free and get better results by switching to these three exercises!

  • Protect Your Back With This Daily Routine

    Your glutes, core, and lower back called. They're tired of getting the short end of the stick! Give them 5 minutes of love each day with this routine, and you'll never regret it.

  • The Trap-Bar Fix For 3 Painful Movements

    If there were powerlifts for the trap bar, these would be them. You can go heavy on these 3 movements and feel great doing it!