16.06.2007 00:00 Age: 5 yrs
By: Hamish Abbie BPhEd, BComm, CHEK L1, XLR8 Coach, REPs
Hiring a Personal Trainer - your need to know guide.
5 Things you Need to Know before you Hire a Personal Trainer
1) Are they Qualified? Research your potential Personal Trainers experience and education, as it is essential you find someone who has a proven track record in dealing with clients with similar goals. For instance, an ex-drill sergeant will be perfect for you if you are looking for a disciplinarian, however their expertise is unlikely to be as beneficial to someone suffering or recovering from an injury.
Having a personal trainer that understands what an exercise is trying to achieve, how it should be performed and where it should be placed in a programme, is imperative to your results. My philosophy is that your personal trainer should be able to perform any exercise that they prescribe with technical proficiency and a theoretical understanding which can only be gained through experience and education.
2) Do they Invest in Themselves with On-Going Education? The fitness industry is constantly evolving, with a steady flow of new information emerging on methods for improving your results. Unless your personal trainer invests in themselves by taking the time to stay on top of new research and training developments, they can quickly lose touch.
Imagine that you spend all day sitting at a desk with poor posture (rounded shoulders, forward head lean), which at the end of the day leaves you with shoulder and neck pain. Then you might go to the gym and do a programme that includes bench and shoulder presses as well as ab crunches. All you have done is reinforced the poor posture you have been in all day, so chances are youve done more harm than good.
4) Do they get Results? Isnt this the whole point? Again regular and on-going assessments will help you determine whether or not your programme is working. With these results your personal trainer can fine-tune your programme to suit your rate of progression with respect to your immediate, medium and long term goals.
Make sure you ask your potential personal trainer if they have any background in working with people with similar goals or aspirations to yours. Any personal trainer with experience and confidence in their ability to help you achieve your goals, will have testimonials from clients they have helped in past. Ask to have a look at these and see if they reflect your goals and aspirations.
5) Will you get along? I know it sounds a bit cliché, but personality is important. You are going to be spending a lot of time with this person, so its important that you find someone that you gel with. Additionally, the traits that your trainer shows need to reflect your needs for instance, if you need someone to provide you with support and encouragement, its important that this is one of your trainers strengths.