How to: Finding the Right Personal Trainer
Let’s assume you’ve firmly decided to give that gym membership a try. It’s high time you did that, good job! Although there’s nothing shameful about starting from scratch, your lack of gym experience may result in serious trauma. What you need is a personal trainer for faster and healthier results. Follow our tips to find the right one!
Know your goal
Regardless of what’s led you to take the plunge and start personal training, knowing WHY you want to work with a personal trainer will help make the process of finding the right one easier.
Decide where you want to train. A big box gym can typically offer more equipment, class options, the opportunity to work out solo, and one membership with multiple locations. Training at smaller studios offers an opportunity to get to know the staff and other members more closely and build a sense of a community.
Research potential trainers
Most gyms and studios offer personal trainer bios on their websites so check them out and find one with experience and credentials that align with your goals. You don’t want to get stuck with a CrossFit trainer if all you want to do is wrestle, right?
Look for common ground
If you want your personal trainer to understand your goals on a deeper level—say if you’re a new mom and want to get back to your pre-baby weight—ask the manager if there’s someone on staff who has gone through a similar transformation or met a similar goal.
Test the waters
No amount of impressive credentials can make up for a personality clash. Book a consultation with a coach you’re interested in and ask them a bunch of questions about how they would train you for your current goals. Not only will you learn more about a trainer’s coaching style, but you’ll also learn more about whether or not you want to spend your time (and money) with this person.
Give feedback and communicate
So you’ve found a trainer—great!—but your work has really just begun. You and your trainer should work together to set realistic, measurable goals in the beginning so you are able to evaluate if it’s working.
Do your part. You can hire the most popular celebrity trainer on Earth and that won’t guarantee success unless you do your part. Show up well rested and in time, let the trainer push you and show great attitude. Then you’ll get the best out of your coach.
Know when to walk away
If you aren’t getting the results you hoped for—and you’ve communicated this to your trainer, you’ve changed your workouts, and you’re confident you’re meeting your end of the bargain— it might be time to end your personal training relationship. There should be no hard feelings because, like in dating, everyone isn’t the right match every time. Honesty is the best policy when you decide to cut ties.
Decide what’s next
If things don’t work out with one trainer, that doesn’t mean you should give up on personal training altogether. Through all of this, you’ll have learned what you want and don’t want in your next coach. A professional trainer should be willing to recommend a colleague or suggest some new ways to motivate you to reach your goals on your own.