Working out is a great way to clear the mind. Whether you’re in the gym to build muscle, burn fat, or simply get the blood flowing with a little cardio, exercise is one of the last great bastions of personal freedom: nobody’s making you work out, it’s just you, the weights, and possibly your trainer.

That is, unless you live in the nation’s capital. This week, a regulatory panel in Washington, DC plans to vote on a number of new licensing requirements for personal trainers.

While the exact wording of the proposed rules remains unclear, an early draft would require that all personal trainers register with the mayor’s office and pay an as-yet-undetermined fee. The same draft includes a requirement that all personal trainers hold a four-year degree.

Think about that. Let’s say you live in a high-rise building in DC, and conveniently utilize an in-house personal trainer to help you reach your fitness goals. Now, suppose that same trainer doesn’t have, for example, a criminology degree from Arizona State. Does his lack of understanding of the ins and outs of the American legal system give you pause about his ability to coach you through pull-ups?

We’d guess your answer is no. But the City Council of Washington, DC has an obscure regulatory panel called the Board of Physical Therapy, and it seems they needed something to do with the taxpayer money which funds it. So they’ve gone ahead with these proposed changes.

What do you think? Should personal trainers be held accountable by the government for helping you get and stay in shape, or is this the nanny state at its worst? Learn more about the impact of Regulations, and continue the discussion on Facebook.

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