You have been having a tough time reaching your goals on your own and you decide to hire a personal trainer to help you push it to the next level.
You go to your gym and take a look at the trainers available to you. Who should you hire?
1. That trainer who you swear could be on the next season of the "Jersey Shore" who has ripped abs and bulging arms?
2. The trainer who everyone says is "so nice, he never makes me do anything I don't want to do"?
3. The trainer you have seen yelling and degrading their clients when they won't do what they tell them?
4. How about the girl trainer you have had a crush on since you joined the gym, she is HOT, so she must know what she is doing. Right?
They may all be great or terrible trainers, but the first question you should be asking is "What is their education?"
Not to throw any of the big chain gyms under the bus, OK maybe I want to throw them under a little, but sad to say many of them don't have very many requirements to become a trainer at their gym. When money is the bottom line, they are quick to throw a trainer shirt on anyone who looks good, will take minimal payment, and has a Personal Trainers Certificate that they got over the internet.
Here are some things to look for:
-Did he/she get a degree in a health related field? Exercise Science, Kinesiology, Fitness Management...
-Does he/she have a nationally known certification? NSCA and ACSM are two Gold Standards for the health and fitness field - you need a degree just to take the tests! NASM, AFAA, and ACE are also credible organizations. Go online and see what it takes to get the certification your trainer has.
-How much experience does the person have? Would one of their clients be willing to speak with you about their experiences with the trainer?
-Personality. Find a trainer who you can stand spending a couple hours a week with. You should be listening to their expertise, not thinking about how much you can't stand this person.
Once you have found the right trainer for you, it can be a great experience. Whether you are someone who has never exercised or you are an advanced exerciser, hiring a trainer can be an awesome thing. They can educate you, keep you motivated, and hold you accountable for what you are trying to do. I think in the years to come having a trainer will be like having a doctor, everyone will have one, some for a check-in once in a while and some who see one every week to make sure everything is OK.
What do you think? Share with me some comments below on pleasant or unpleasant experiences you have had with a trainer....