Qualities to look for in a personal trainer
If you’re struggling to find the energy, motivation, and expertise required to get yourself in shape, hiring a personal trainer could be one of the smartest decisions you will ever make. We all know how tough it is to get in shape, and even the fittest and healthiest of individuals struggle from time to time, which is where the benefits of a good PT really become apparent. Personal trainers are now in higher demand than ever before, and considering worldwide obesity levels are sky high, it’s easy to understand why that is. Personal trainers however, are no different to any other individuals and because of that, some are great, some not so great, and some are unfortunately downright terrible. Personal trainers do not come cheap, so if you decide to hire one, you will obviously want the best value for money that you can obtain. Finding a good PT is tough, but if you look for the following qualities, your search will become a great deal easier.
When searching for a personal trainer, one very important quality to look for is reliability. Believe it or not, but there are PTs out there who are not the most reliable of individuals, and if you’re truly committed to getting in shape, this can prove to be very annoying. When you have an appointment with a PT, you want to ensure that they are able to arrive at the gym, or your home, or anywhere else, when they say they’re going to. If you’re schedule to see your trainer at 2pm, you want to ensure that they are going to be with you by 2pm, not 2.10pm. If you have a session booked with them, you do not want them constantly cancelled, or asking to move you around because they are running late, or because they cannot manage their schedules properly. You want to relax, safe in the knowledge that your personal trainer will see you on the date and time that they agreed to. Of course the odd rescheduling is perfectly fine, but if it happens frequently, this is not a very professional sign.
Of course all personal trainers were beginners at some point, but when you’re hiring a PT, ideally you want one with plenty of experience. Experience helps any business/business person to learn and grow, and with personal training, this is no different. The more experience a PT has, the safer the hands you will be in. This is because they will have worked with different clients, in different environments, for different reasons. They will therefore, have learnt more about fat loss, muscle growth, strength, endurance, nutrition, and all the other aspects of health and fitness. Whilst credentials and qualifications look great on paper, there really is no substitution for experience.
Approachable and friendly
Of course a PTs primary job is to get you in shape and help you meet your goals, but part of their role is to support you, so try to look for one that leaves you feeling comfortable and relaxed. When you work with a PT, you probably will not be looking for a Drill Sergeant from the army, who constantly screams at you and pushes you to breaking point, you want one you feel relaxed with. They will get stern with you when needed, and they will help spur you on and motivate you, but you will want to feel relaxed around them. Look for a PT that leaves you feeling comfortable, so that you are not worried about asking them a question, or admitting that you slipped up with your diet and/or training.
A good PT should ideally practice what they preach and although a PT doesn’t necessarily have to be in amazing shape to help motivate, teach, and support you, it sure as heck helps. When you’re hiring a PT, would you feel more comfortable hiring a lean and shredded trainer, or an out of shape trainer? You would of course feel more comfortable hiring the in-shape trainer, because if they are motivated enough to practice what they preach and get themselves in shape, they will be far more likely to be able to show you what is required to get yourself in shape, with their help. Your PT needn’t be judged as if they are on stage at the Mr Universe contest, but ideally look for a PT who is in shape, who clearly knows what is required to build an aesthetically pleasing physique.
You can instantly tell whether somebody is passionate about something, as when they start talking about it, their eyes will light up, they will exude enthusiasm, and they will know exactly what they’re talking about, and will talk until they’re blue in the face. If you get these vibes from a PT, this is a very good sign as it shows they care about the profession/lifestyle that they have chosen. If however, you just sense that they have lost their love for fitness, it’s probably for the best if you look elsewhere.
Great communication and teaching skills
Another very important quality to look for in a PT, is just how good they are at communicating and teaching. Teaching fitness to a complete novice is not easy, and no matter how knowledgeable somebody is, if they are not able to concisely convey a certain message to their clients, you may as well save your money as you will find it so tough to learn. You ideally do not want to be confused by super-technical terms and phrases that you know nothing about, you will want to learn everything as easily and as simply as possible, taking in small amounts of knowledge slowly. If a PT assumes that everybody knows what a macro is, what hypertrophy is, and what muscle catabolism is, for example, this shows great ignorance on their part, as not everybody will be as knowledgeable as them, because not everybody does health and fitness for a living.