Thinking of becoming a trainer? Here are some tips I have for future trainers.
Tips for future trainers
- Find your specialty. When you study to be a trainer, you are tested on your knowledge of anatomy, biology, training models, etc. but you learn about all different areas of fitness (flexibility, strength training, weight loss, improving athletic performance, etc.) on the surface. Sure, you will have clients that require your overall expertise, but most trainers find their niche, get deeper understanding of their niche, and that’s how they make themselves marketable with a comparative advantage.
- Listen to your client. Listen to their fears, aversions, daily life, problems, etc. You are their cheerleader, motivator, and coach. They need to know that they can trust you to be with them through thick and thin. Be mindful of their personal life, work life, and any particularly difficult times they may be going through. It will affect their mental state while working out.
- ALWAYS meet with a client before you sign them on. It is important for you to get a feel of each other before you commit your time and energy to each other.
- Let your client know why they need to do what you tell them to do. People are more inclined to follow instructions if they are given the justification behind it. For example, if you explain to a client why drinking more water is important to ease soreness after a workout, they will be more inclined to follow up on that.
- Keeping an open channel of communication is crucial. That is part of building the relationship. For example, if a client understands the importance of eating before a workout and they have not properly eaten, they will be honest with you prior to the workout, rather than when they are close to passing out. To have your client be at their peak, they must trust you and be honest about what is going on in their life, eating habits, etc.
- You will have off days and that is okay. It is important for you to be honest with your client too and let them know today is just not your day. Do your job, but your clients deserve your honesty too.
- If you ever must call medical assistance (ambulance) stay calm. Unless you have been grossly negligent, you are legally protected. Furthermore, if you do not remain calm, you will only make the situation worse.
- Clients will flake on you so make sure you establish a proper session cancellation rule so that you do not lose your wages. If you become too lax with your rules, clients are less inclined to be courteous of your time.
- Positive re-enforcement is important to client success. Let them know that their hard work is noticed. Results are not always immediate, and when that happens, positive feedback is even more important.
- HAVE FUN! And make sure client is too. They should be working hard, but incorporate activities they like too. If your client likes to run, dance, rock climb etc. incorporate aspects of those favored activities in the workout too.