So You're A Personal Trainer Now Huh?!
Can you sense the sneer in that question? Well it's there trust me!
It's in there for real! That snarky judgemental tone I get from certain friends and family when I tell them what I now do. As you can tell from the rather humorous image above, everyone has a different view of what a Personal Trainer (PT) is these days! So much so that each and every client and personal trainer you ask would probably give you a completely different explanation of what they expect or provide as a personal trainer.
So to coin a phrase from back in the day....Let me break it down for ya!
Personal Training - How Do you Pick
When most people look for a Personal Trainer the first thing they do is look for a point of reference. For instance, in a commercial gym, available Personal trainers are advertised online, on notice-boards, or via enquiries from reception. You can also find out about available Personal Trainers by watching them work with their clients in the gym. The gym member then decides based on what they've seen or been told. In some cases, some gym members watch a personal trainer train themselves, and make a decision based on either how hard or how well they see the Personal trainer train. This is not always a great way to decide, as someone who trains well or looks great doesn't necessarily make a great Personal trainer!
If you're searching online for a Personal trainer, you make your decision based on location and recommendations/reviews. Again, a rather simple process.
The issue with all this is you don't actually know how you and your prospective Personal Trainer will gel once you sign up for sessions. Which is why it is always advisable to ask for a trial package. This isn't an unreasonable request and I actually tell prospective clients who enquire about my services to pay for 2 sessions to start with, and decide afterwards on whether they want to book more sessions, mainly because both parties have to be sure the relationship will work long-term.
What do you get from YOUR Personal Trainer?
When you engage a Personal trainer, you should be getting a fitness professional ready to offer you not just exercise sessions (online or one on one) but some reassurance and support away from the gym/exercise session covering your nutrition and lifestyle choices.
Granted some Personal Trainers aren't qualified to give nutritional advice, but they should still be able to tell you what foods you should be staying away from to help ensure you hit the goals you've set between you.
Also, you don't necessarily want a Drill Sargent (unless of course that's your preference!), you want someone to show you the right amount of support and drive, as well as empathy when applicable. For instance, I've had sessions where the first 10 minutes were spent talking to a client, whether it be for reassurance, to review the days between the last session, or to talk about nutrition. there always has to be a balance between actual training and all the other facets that all make up the whole Personal training experience. Remember, the session you've paid for is Personal to YOU. The Personal Trainer should therefore NOT be delivering back to back identical sessions! I've seen Personal Trainers literally take their clients through a session with no small talk in between sets, just a quick hello, back to back exercises for the whole duration and done!
So whether you're looking in your local gym, online, or anywhere else, don't make a hasty decision, ask for a taster, and also don't go looking for the best looking Trainer around (although this would make yours truly even busier! hehehe!), look for the one with best recommendations, and results! A personal trainer might look the part, the question is do they get their clients looking the part as well?!!
Until Next Time!
Hi, Lou here, I'll be sharing my thoughts and insights via my blog regularly, so please stay tuned!