What is a Personal Trainer?

This could be answered in so many ways, but I’ll tell you MY opinion of what a personal trainer should be. Any PT can put a programme together but what I believe makes a good personal trainer is someone who really listens to and cares about their clients.

It’s not about ‘beasting’ clients at every session or appeasing them and giving them what they want but making sure that the sessions are fun, different, challenging, at the appropriate level and giving massive amounts of support.

Having said that, exercise is only a small part of the whole process.   You can write programmes for someone but if they are struggling emotionally and personally when they first come to you or any stage in the process, their ability to perform the programmes is going to be impinged and that is something that has to be understood by the PT throughout their time with their client.  Knowing whether a softly softly or harder and more pushy approach is appropriate for that client at that time, is something that comes with experience and really listening to the client, what they say and what they don’t say.

Sometimes, simply listening is what happens in the session.  I have had clients who end up (or even start off) in tears because of something that has happened in their life and exercising would be futile, they just need to be heard.  We can always try and add an element of exercise in at some point if that seems right as it helps to release endorphins and helps people to feel better but sometimes an ear and a hug is needed.

Exercise and understanding – tick…..next….nutrition.

Having a good understanding of nutrition is, again, something that all PTs should have but in addition, knowing what approach to nutrition will help each client is important.  I don’t tend to give people strict diet plans as I don’t want anyone to ever feel they are on a diet, that would imply they then have to come off it at some point and what do they do once I’ve gone?  I think, rather than shredding and drastically overhauling someone’s diet to a point where it’s unrecognisable; it’s much more important to teach someone how to eat ‘normally’ and realistically within a busy lifestyle and something that is sustainable with and without me.

Support out of the sessions is key too.  I don’t ever want people to feel that I am only there for them for the length of the session.

Why see a Personal Trainer?

For the most part, everyone knows what to do, they KNOW they need to exercise more and reduce their sugary snacks etc etc but actually doing it is a completely different thing and that’s when you need a PT.  Someone who is there for YOU, to support you, to guide you, to be your cheerleader when your feeling unmotivated.

I’m also here to ensure that you are doing the exercise correctly!  The smallest changes in posture and position can entirely change the effectiveness of an exercise.  You also want to know that what are doing is going to work. So often people give up because they aren’t seeing the results they want either because they aren’t doing the right exercises or the right amount of exercises and then feel they are wasting their time – and very probably are!

What should I tell my Personal Trainer?

Really, as much as you feel you comfortably can!  You don’t need to unload all your personal secrets!  However, if you feel that your emotional or physical state is or has affected your ability to exercise or lose weight, then share it.  Especially if you feel that you can’t talk to anyone else.  It really is good to talk and you’d be surprised how much emotion and / or hormones affects your ability to exercise and lose weight.

Personal Training - Learn More