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Tony Horton (exercise instructor)

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Tony Horton (exercise instructor)

For other people named Tony Horton, see Tony Horton (disambiguation).
Anthony "Tony" Horton
Tony Horton in 2010.
Born Anthony Sawyer Horton, Jr.
(1958-07-02) July 2, 1958 (age 56)
Westerly, Rhode Island, United States
Residence Santa Monica, California
Occupation Fitness expert, exercise instructor, stand-up comedian, author
Years active 1981–present
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)

Anthony Sawyer "Tony" Horton, Jr. (born July 2, 1958) is an American fitness guru best known for the boot camp style P90X home fitness program. His direct-response advertisements are some of the most frequently aired infomercials on American television. [1]

Horton was raised in Trumbull, Connecticut,[2] and attended the University of Rhode Island[3] where he became a member of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. By 1980, however, he had embarked on a coast-to-coast move to Los Angeles with the intention of becoming an actor.[4] For a time, he also earned a living as a stand-up comedian; [5] but, following his love of fitness, he began working out at the World Gym in Venice, California, which had been frequented by professional bodybuilders such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lou Ferrigno. [6] In an attempt to avoid the bulky, non-flexible bodybuilder look, Horton focused more on exercise routines to bring about speed, flexibility, and balance, as well as muscle growth. Later, he collaborated with former-triathlete and Ironman competitor Mark Sisson, [7] who introduced him to interval training.

During the early 1980s, Horton became a personal trainer and established his business, ASH Fitness (based on the initials of his given name), in Santa Monica. He began to gather a list of clients that included celebrities such as Billy Idol, Tom Petty, Lindsey Buckingham, Stevie Nicks, and Bruce Springsteen. More recently, he has trained multiple-Grammy-winner Usher Raymond and actor Ewan McGregor. He has also developed workout plans for a variety of health and fitness magazines, and tailored workouts for television programs such as the Dr. Oz Show. [8] Prior to his success with P90X, Horton served as spokesman for NordicTrack exercise machines. [9] Horton is on the Board of Directors of GO Campaign, a nonprofit that supports orphans and vulnerable children around the world.

Home fitness programs

Early programs

In 1998, Horton and fitness trainer Debbie Siebers created a program called "Great Body Guaranteed." Another of Horton's early programs was the "Power90 In-Home Boot Camp," which combined cardiovascular with strength training.[10]

P90X and earlier programs

When Beachbody (distributor of Horton's programs) asked Horton to help develop and star in a workout video series, he obliged. His biggest early success came in 2001 with Power 90, an in-home boot camp-style program. Power 90 combined quick, intense cardiovascular exercises with moderate-level strength and weight training moves. Power 90 was followed by a variety of other one-off fitness series. By 2004, Horton had created the more-intense P90X (i.e., "Power 90 Extreme") program, which is designed to deliver a "ripped" physique to those who follow the rigorous workouts and meal plans for 90-day rounds. He has been the "sensei" of such WWE superstars as John Cena, Hunter Hearst Helmsley, and David Batista.

P90X features workouts with such participants as Dreya Weber, among many others. Adapting his penchant for bodyweight, resistance training, and yoga, Horton compiled in P90X a format that also included cardio training, jump training (or plyometrics), and the martial art of kenpo. The varied workout schedule is based on the concept of "muscle confusion", a form of periodization or cross-training that is designed to achieve maximum results while avoiding the plateau effect, allowing muscle groups to continuously improve during phases of controlled yet unfamiliar movements. It was due to the concept of muscle confusion that Billy Idol nicknamed Horton "Muscle Confucius." [11]

After the P90X program was released, the Power 90 Master Series workout was created as a bridge between Power 90 and P90X. P90X has become the best-selling product offered by parent-company Beachbody, with an estimated 3 million copies having been sold as of November 2010.[12]


In 2007, Horton created "P90X+" as a series of follow-up DVDs designed as a supplemental series for graduates of P90X, although P90X+ was not a stand-alone series as was P90X. "Tony Horton's 10 Minute Trainer," a collection of brief workouts designed for those with tight schedules, came to the fitness market in 2008. Also in 2008, "Tony Horton's One-on-One" series, a monthly offering of individual workouts, has continued to provide high-intensity workouts in a minimalist style, as they feature Horton personally engaging in extreme exercise routines filmed in his home fitness studio by Mason Bendewald. The series was renamed "P90X One-on-One" and aimed as a trial program for P90X2, which was released in 2011. Rodale published Horton's first book, "Bring It!", in December of 2010.[13]

Program distribution

Horton's fitness programs, along with associated gear and nutritional supplements, are sold mainly by mail order, marketed by parent company Beachbody and a network of authorized affiliates, known as coaches, as well as through infomercials.


  • P90X3 (2013)
  • P90X2 (2011)
  • P90X One on One (formerly known as "One on One with Tony Horton"), monthly exercise video series (2008-2011)
  • 10-Minute Trainer (Exercise Video Series) (2007)
  • P90X Plus (Exercise Video Series) (2007)
  • The Gymnast (film role: Chad) (2006)[14]
  • Power 90 Master Series (Exercise Video Series) (2005)
  • P90X (Exercise Video Series) (2004)
  • Tony & the Folks! (Exercise Video) (2003)
  • Tony & the Kids! (Exercise Video) (2003)
  • Power Half Hour (Exercise Video Series) (2002)
  • Ho’ Ala ke Kino – Awaken the Body (Exercise Video) (2002)
  • Power 90 (Exercise Video Series) (2001)
  • Great Body Guaranteed! (Exercise Video Series, with Debbie Siebers) (1998)
  • "Rebecca's Secret" (TV movie role: Howard Martin) (1998)[15]
  • Last Action Hero (film role, uncredited) (1993)


  • BRING IT!: The Revolutionary Fitness Plan for All Levels That Burns Fat, Builds Muscle, and Shreds Inches (2010)


External links

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