The fitness industry, feeling good, and looking even better has become a world-wide phenomenon over the past few years with a high volume of people becoming personal trainers. With this we get a greater variety of trainers (good and unfortunately bad) to select from. So what should you expect and do you think that just any trainer can help you?

Personal training should be exactly as it describes “personal training” this means that you should have someone who guides you through physical performance, correct technique and health. A lot of the time we look at these 3 things and think of nothing but results, but it comes down to how well your trainer constructs your sessions to make it fun, educational and beneficial. If you can turn to your trainer and ask “why am I jumping on this box” and they say “because it’s good for you” then you need to look at you options and if you’re getting your money’s worth! If you ask them the same question and they say “well we are looking to build your fast twitch muscle fibre so you can run faster, push more weight which will make you burn more body fat” then you’re on the right track with choosing a Personal Trainer who is worth the $$.

When choosing a trainer use these 5 key factors

  • Physically look at their appearance and attitude to training (are they fit and healthy, fun and energetic about training).
  • Look into their experience (how many years have they been a Personal Trainer, where did they train and how long did it take to get their accreditation). Do they have any extra accreditation that you’re interested in? eg. Kettlebells, boxing, strength and conditioning.
  • Talk to their current clients and ask for testimonials and before and afters on their work.
  • Ask them how they are going to help you achieve your goals (programming, progression on exercise). This is the biggest one of all!
  • Are they willing to spend time on you (free session to show you what they can do) if they aren’t keen on helping you and are more focused on the $$ then you are just another client. If they are taking time (within reason) to help you out with diet, extra exercise or mentally training yourself to achieve your goals.

With these 5 factors in play then how should you go about starting training? If you can always make permanent times for you to train eg, Monday, Wednesday, Friday at 7am. This allows your trainer to make sure they have you locked in to help you get the most out of your training. After making times, you will find most trainers will ask for you to pay for sessions as a package (10-50) as a direct debit or up front as a package of sessions. Price per session will be based around what they believe they are worth to you (average $30-$70 per session) this though should be also assessed by you with the 5 key points above taken into account. An average trainer with 2-3 years’ experience and 1-2 extra courses should charge around $30- $40 per session, which should include a pre exercise screening and body fat and health assessment. A trainer with 4-7 years’ experience with either a diploma or extensive study in a certain field expect to pay anywhere from $42-$55 per session, which you should have an extensive overlook into the way you move and correct body screening and assessment. 10 years plus you will get exactly what you pay for and expertise and coaching to assure you to be on your road to health but expect an average of around $60-$80 per session, depending on their current availability coaching status.

Before you jump into committing to your trainer, remember a few key points to help you get the most out of your training.

  1. Always be EARLY, not on time but be in the gym, or studio at least 10 minutes early! This will give you time to warm up, be prepared for your training session. Your trainer depending on their philosophy will probably instruct you on the way they want you to warm up, so why not do it before you start paying for the session so you can squeeze that extra 5 minutes of training in with your coach.
  2. Remember training is meant to be hard, which doesn’t always mean physically but also mentally! Some days you might be struggling with motivation but your coach should get you right back on track regardless of your day.
  3. Be aware of the cancellation policy of your trainer! This is a big one, as most trainers will charge you if you don’t give anywhere from 12-24 hours’ notice on you not attending your Personal Training session (unless for unforeseeable reasons). This is their job and just like you going to work no one wants to go to work and not get paid for their time.
  4. Make sure you communicate with your Personal Trainer, regardless if it’s about how you feel training sessions are going or even if you feel you need more guidance on exercises or diet. Communication is the biggest factor, as its helps your Personal Trainer coach you through every obstacle.
  5. You’re going to have up and down phases of your training, trust in your Personal Trainer. Don’t stress about if you’re not losing the weight, gaining strength or getting as fit as quick as you wanted because eventually it will happen!

Now you’re ready to get stuck into some training use these dot points, shop around, ask questions and don’t be afraid of being challenged!