Hey What’s up I’m Mike. I have been working as personal and group trainer for the past 7 years. This post is for people who are looking for a personal trainer or coach. Here are some tips on how to choose the right personal trainer for you.
1. Do a test-run meeting/workout
Most trainers offer the first session/consultation for free. This gives you a chance to try the training out and see if you like it.
I do the first session for free with all new clients. This gives them a chance to try the training, and gives me a chance to evaluate the client.
2. When you meet your trainer, listen to your gut instinct.
Right away as a personal trainer and client you guys have to connect a bit. It doesn’t mean you have to be buddies but you have to be able to communicate with each other and be on the same page.
This one dude wanted me to train his 2 sons (age 10 and 12) as a supplement to their tennis training. He was working the kids really hard in tennis and wanted me to “push them further”. He kept saying he really wanted me to “put pressure on them” and that he couldn’t be mean enough to them because he was their dad.
I trained them for a bit but it didn’t really work out. I don’t have the “military style” or “screaming trainer” style in me.
I try to motivate my clients in a positive way. But anyway, the kids would basically be screaming and crying during the training sessions because they didn’t want to be there. It didn’t feel like the right fit for me so the relationship ended after a few weeks.
3. Is the trainer attentive while working out with you? Does he/she seem like he/she cares?
Even if you have an in-experienced new trainer but he/she cares about you and works their butt off to help you then that’s good. That inexperienced trainer will learn and improve.
If you have a super good trainer with a super duper reputation but he doesn’t pay attention to you or doesn’t seem to care that much, you may get poor results.
There was a trainer who worked at my gym in Richmond Hill. He would literally eat a sandwhich (sitting down) while training somebody. Dude…what?
He also made people go to the cardio machine for 15 minutes in the middle of their session while he sat in the office. That is really shitty service and a bad example.
Mainly the trainer has to be looking at you while you exercise to make sure your form is good and you don’t get injured.
Phone checking should be minimum too. I do it sometimes but usually just when the client is in the washroom. In my experience checking your texts in front of a client will really piss them off.
4. Do your schedules match?
Training works best when it is consistent. Try to pick 1-3 days per week that you will see the trainer, every week.
When you have to go by the seat of your pants each week and kind of try to fit the workout in you will often miss workouts.
The best way to get results is by being consistent. Pick 1-3 days per week that you’ll be seeing your trainer and stick to those times. See if your schedules match. This is important.
This summer I am pretty busy with clients and my schedule is almost full. I took a new client on because a current client of mine referred them.
We had trouble setting up the first session because our schedules didn’t match. Finally we barely found a time that worked for both of us.
The training went well and the client enjoyed it but for the next few weeks we struggled to find a time to train consistently. It was a strain on me and a strain on them. The relationship didn’t work out.
Lesson: Even if you enjoy the training, make sure you can find 1-3x per week that you two can stick to consistently.
5. I would try more than 1 trainer before deciding. Especially if you’ve never done personal training before.
This may not be doable if you signed up for training at a gym. If you are getting private personal training you can try a few trainers out. It will help you compare and show you what’s out there and for how much.
The shitty trainer I was telling you about earlier, his clients probably thought that was the norm and accepted his behavior. IF they had worked with other trainers they would know that eating in front of clients or sending them off on their own for 15 minutes during an hour which they paid for is ridiculous.
Hope that helps you find a trainer that’s right for you! If you have any questions please post it in the comments below and I’ll answer them.