Choosing the right trainer for you is both a very big and very personal decision to make. In order to ensure that you are able to get the most from your training sessions, it’s crucial for you to know exactly what kind of questions you should be asking both yourself and your possible new trainer, as well as making sure that this trainer is the right fit for YOU!
First: Why Do You Want a Trainer?
Before you get started and commit to programs and training schedules, is this even what you really want? Be honest with yourself. What are your reasons for wanting a trainer? Is it to have someone who will hold you accountable for seeing workouts through, and give you that extra push?
If your main reason for wanting a trainer is to have that person who will help you achieve the results that you haven’t been able to reach on your own, make sure you are prepared to ask your trainer about how he/she plans on pushing you (safely) to improve both your health and fitness conditions.
How will they challenge you to leave that comfort zone of yours?
Finding YOUR Trainer:
Today, you can find personal trainers just about anywhere! The most convenient and common place to find them would be your local gym. Or if you prefer to work out at home, there are even private trainers for that who will bring the gym to you. Narrowing down your preferred space to work out, will narrow down the amount of options you have and can start you on the path to finding the right trainer for yourself.
Be prepared to do a little research! Ask around. Look for reviews online. Check them out in action at the gym.
It’s important to make sure that your trainer is qualified to work with you before starting anything. Look for trainers with certifications in: NSCA (National Strength and Conditioning Association), ACSM (American College of Sports Medicine), NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine), ACE (American Council on Exercise), or ISSA (International Sports Sciences Association).
Once that is all out of the way, plan some time when you can sit down with them and ask them some of the following questions:
- What kind of clients have you worked with in the past? What were their results?
- Do you have liability insurance?
- Do you offer a free consultation? Fitness assessment?
- What are your rates/session lengths/cancelation policies?
- Do you have an adaptable schedule?
- Do you have the experience needed to address any special needs or health conditions I may have?
You will potentially be spending A LOT of time with this person so don’t be afraid to ask them direct questions when it comes to their coaching styles and motivation techniques. Some people want to be pushed to the max by a drill sergeant type while others prefer just positive encouragement. You must be up front from the beginning as to which you prefer. You want a trainer who is going to fit your personality and motivation styles.
It is better to know all of things now rather than setting yourself up with the wrong one in the end.
Other Things to Consider:
- If you have a medical condition, make sure that you are checking with your doctor first if starting a training program is even safe for you! Once you are cleared, be upfront and honest with your trainer about ANY and ALL medical conditions that may pop up during your training. They may have experience working with said conditions, and can offer special exercises that could help relieve symptoms. A good trainer will be willing to work with and around any pre-existing conditions. Do not hide these from them, as this will take away from your chances of succeeding!
- Don’t just settle on the first trainer you come across. TAKE YOUR TIME! Look around a little. You are putting your well-being into another person’s hands, this is kind of a big deal! You have every right to be a little picky in your final decision. These people want the best for you as well, so they will totally understand.
- PICK YOUR GOALS FIRST! This will help you to determine if the trainer you would like to pair yourself up with is the right fit for you. Your goals are what will determine the type of trainer you need.
Spotting a GREAT Trainer:
- They listen to you COMPLETELY! They should take the time to get to know you, your goals and your needs.
- They ask you about your nutrition.
- They set proper expectations and help you meet each step along the way
- They must practice what they preach!
It is important to find that person who will take you and your training seriously. Remember, your new trainer works not only with you but FOR YOU! Do not settle for a program that doesn’t match YOUR needs. You are paying for someone’s attention and expertise, so do not be afraid to speak up if something isn’t working for you. It is important to find that person who will take you and your training seriously.
**Remember, finding the right personal trainer is a big decision to make! They may not do the work for you, but they will be there every step of the way of your journey, pushing and encouraging you. Have proper expectations, be willing to the put the work in, and be prepared for an overall awesome experience!