A personal trainer is a must for some people looking to get into shape, even though perhaps no more than five percent of those with gym memberships use one. Regardless, these paid-for sweat buddies can be a great way to encourage the reluctant to work out regularly and safely. Thankfully, there are lots of trainers to choose. According to industry statistics, there may be close to 150,000 certified workout specialists in the U.S. alone. But not all trainers are created equal, and neither are those in need of assistance, which is why it’s important to hire a personal trainer that matches a person’s physical conditions, workout goals and budget. Just a note: trainers don’t have to be licensed, although many, if not most, hold at least an associate’s degree in some form of physical fitness and are certified by various training organizations. Regardless, WellWell is here to provide help on how to hire a personal trainer and make the right choice.
Trainers sell themselves to prospective clients. That may be admirable, but credentials in the form of relevant training and experience are more important. Anyone interested in a particular trainer should ask to see their educational background and accreditation credentials. Accreditations should be current. It may also be wise to ask whether a trainer is continuing their education as new techniques and information are flowing onto the market, and it is important for a trainer to be up to date. There are various accreditation agencies, but the best comes from organizations certified by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA).
Rely on References
Trainers are professionals. They can provide references from ongoing or previous clients. It is best to ask for references from people with similar goals and situations. What should a reference supply? Information on the best and worst parts of the trainer’s approach and personality and whether they are professional, prepared, punctual and good at motivating their clients.
Beyond references and certifications, a client and a trainer must have compatible personalities, motivation and how well they can communicate. It also means that clients should try to assess how intense and upfront a trainer is, and their commitment to reaching goals and whether they understand their clients.
Remember Medical Issues
It is important not only to inform trainers about any potential medical issues a client might have but to sense whether trainers have any experience dealing with these issues and how any medical conditions may impact the training program. It may require having them work with medical fitness specialists to ensure exercises and workout programs align, and whether they result from a recent surgery or from ongoing conditions like obesity, diabetes, hypertension, neuromuscular disorders, heart and lung disease, arthritis and orthopedic conditions, among others.
Money matters when hiring a trainer because their rates can range from $50 to $150 per hour, depending on their credentials, experience and location. It is important to find the right trainer, but one at that price that makes sense in creating an effective program. Whether one to three sessions a week is part of an open-ended commitment or one that lasts just a month or more. Deals, of course, abound. But they are only valuable if they help individuals effectively build their health and fitness levels.
What’s your key to hiring a trainer? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WellWell editors independently identify services and products of interest. If readers purchase anything through the associated links, WellWell may earn a commission, which goes to support our work. Learn More.