There comes a time in every trainer’s relationship where a client must move on. Milestones will happen in your life. Jobs will change, moves will happen, and you will eventually need to find a new trainer. This is where my type A personality kicks in. When I work with clients for years, I want to make sure they will find a trainer with the right credentials and personality to keep them on top of their fitness game. Here are the top 5 questions I make sure they ask when they are looking for a new trainer.
1. How long have you been certified to train clients?
A newly certified instructor can have a lot of enthusiasm and can be wonderful at their job, but if you have any kind of injuries or health concerns, you should find an instructor that has experience in specific injuries and special populations. A trainer with 10+ years experience is a good place to start. In 10 years, they have probably seen all kinds of bodies and injuries. This is the trainer that will know how to make modifications in certain exercises and help you progress to the next level without causing more pain or discomfort in your body. If you are injury free and don’t have any body issues, you won’t need to be as picky, just make sure your trainer is certified in the area of fitness that you are seeking instruction in.
2. How many hours a week do you work?
This may seem like a pushy question, but the number of clients a trainer instructs each week is a sign of their effectiveness. For example, if a trainer has 10 years of experience, but they only see 5 clients a week, they won’t have as much experience as a trainer that sees 5 clients a day. Find a trainer that has a consistent clientele of 25 clients or classes each week. That is the instructor that has seen it all and knows how to get you to your goal.
3. What is your workout philosophy?
Ask your prospective trainer what their workout philosophy is all about. If they have a “no pain, no gain” philosophy, but you have a low back injury, then you might want to find someone that understands your fitness journey. On the flip side, if you want to train for the next season of “American Ninja Warrior,” you should find the trainer that has already mastered that course. The training process will be completely different for each student but it will get you the result you need. Find the instructor that understands your philosophy.
4. How do you set goals for your clients?
Setting goals for the clients, must be about you, the client, not what the trainer learned from a list. I have seen and experienced first hand the trainers that just read off of their list of “first visit” exercises without really asking their client the right questions. Make sure your trainer knows your injuries, your fitness experience, and your goals. Generally, your first session with your new trainer should be about assessing these 3 areas. Once you both are on the same page, your trainer can build a program for you to help you reach your goals.
5. How do you hold your clients accountable for these goals?
You know the goals you are trying to reach. Make sure your trainer has a timeline to help you reach your goals. Whether it’s losing weight, gaining strength, or becoming more flexible, make sure you have a clear and well planned program to reach your goal. Ask them for testimonials from other clients with similar goals.
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