It will help you spot the difference between a bad personal trainer and an AMAZING trainer. There’s nothing worse than spending 3+ months in a gym (and thousands of dollars) with a personal trainer, only to step on the scale or looking at your reflection on the mirror and realize that you haven’t made any progress.
We have worked with good trainers and bad trainers over the past 14 years. In this post we will uncover the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to personal trainers:
- What do you really need from a personal trainer?
- What are the signs of a bad personal trainer?
- How much does a personal trainer cost?
- What do you really need from a personal trainer?
- And that means we are going to have to pick some fitness goals at the start!
If somebody is a competitive marathon runner, they might not be a great powerlifting coach, and vice versa.
- 10% body fat?
- get stronger or hold your first pullup?
- Do you just want to get in shape and feel better?
MISTAKE #1: Not making sure your trainer has expertise in the area you want to train in. After that, you would want to think about what you NEED from your personal trainer: Are you new to working out or looking to kick start your first 3 months of training with 2 to 3 sessions per week to keep you disciplined? Once you set proper expectations with what you want and how long you need a trainer for, then you can pick out one that hopefully will work for you.
MISTAKE #2: Aimlessly accepting what your personal trainer tells you without making sure that both of you fit together!
They SHOULD ask about any past issues with injuries or previous experience with fitness training. If you’re injured or have any shortcoming, they should know about this so they can create a great training program just for you.
They SHOULD practice what they preach. They don’t have to be an Olympian, but should have a healthy lifestyle.
They SHOULD set proper expectations. You won’t get ripped in a month, but they can let you know it could take many months to get in shape or build the right kind of habits.
MISTAKE #3: Thinking that the workout is more effective because it is confusing.
Why? Because they know it makes them look more knowledgeable without actually needing to do something effectively:
Sure, it might elevate your heart rate and tire you out, but if it’s not building towards your fitness goals in a way that you couldn’t do at home, what are you paying for?If your personal trainer says any of the following phrases, withdraw now!
“You should not squat too low – it’s bad for your knees.”“Yes, you should be using mostly your back. That’s why it’s called the back squat”
I have overheard all of these sound bites from real trainers in real gyms, and it made me weep like the Native American in the 1970s pollution ad:
I often see clients working with personal trainers for months and months and that client never looks any different.
Remember, your personal trainer works for YOU: Don’t let them build a program that doesn’t actually fit your needs!
Are they encouraging or helping you succeed in the way you want to be encouraged, or are they scrolling through Instagram and Facebook on their phones while you’re doing your sets? You’re paying money for this person’s expertise and attention – it’s not too much to ask to find somebody who takes those things seriously.
What certifications and qualifications should a personal trainer have?
The more traditional path – a degree in exercise and sport science or kinesiology may mean the personal trainer in question is knowledgeable about the human body.5 of the most popular personal trainer certifications are:
ACSM: American College of Sports Medicine
NASM: National Academy of Sports Medicine
ACE: American Council on ExerciseCrossFit
MISTAKE #4: Blindly accepting a personal trainer’s credentials or discounting a personal trainer without certain credentials.
One of the most important things to look for in your personal trainer isn’t a credential or certification at all, but real experience and an enthusiasm for helping you reach your goals. Looking to powerlift or get into Olympic lifting?
Look for someone who has successfully competed in their fields, or someone who actually coaches athletes who do compete! lose a lot of weight? Ask a personal trainer to share with you success stories from people who are like you. The credential is only a starting point. Remember, you are not paying simply for their time with you. You’re paying for the years and years they’ve spent learning, training, and coaching. How much does a personal trainer cost? Are Personal Trainers Worth it? The quantity and duration of your personal training sessions.
But you want specificity.
Here are the prices for working with a personal trainer in various capacities at generic commercial personal training gym in the CBD area (definitely on the more expensive end):
4 sessions per month:$240 per session = $960/month
12 sessions per month: $200 per session = $2400/month
Here is how much a personal trainer costs at:
Commercial Gyms: Most big box gyms offer personal training: Fitness First : you can expect to pay about $100 per session (60 mins).Luxury Gyms: If you go to a more upscale gym like Ultimate Performance, expect to pay “luxury” prices of $250+ an hour.
Different personal trainers will have different qualifications and expertise, leading to vastly different training experiences.
MISTAKE #5: Thinking “more expensive” automatically means “better results.” Depending on your goals and the results you’re after:$80 per session might be overpaying for a lousy trainer who gives you a generic workout and doesn’t care about you.
That’s why remembering your “get in shape” goals is critical when buying a personal trainer.
HOW TO THINK ABOUT HIRING A PERSONAL TRAINER: You’re paying for their years of experience, schooling, training, and expertise. Somebody who gives you the confidence you’re training correctly. After all, workouts only make up 1-3 hours per week.
How to hire a personal trainer
The first session is often exploratory, explanatory, and introductory, and the personal trainer needs to test your limits and movements to build upon that. Don’t expect miracles in a day!
DO NOT USE YOUR PERSONAL TRAINER AS AN EXCUSE: Too many people will hire up a personal trainer and give no effort in the gym or the kitchen. This happens so much more often than you’d think.
MAKE CRITICISM CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM: Often when the personal trainer asks them to do something (walk every day and eat more fruits and vegetable), the client/trainee comes back with 1,001 reasons why they can’t do that. Instead of saying “no,” offer an alternative solution and negotiate a plan: “I don’t really like broccoli, do you have a way to make vegetables taste better?”
IF YOU ENJOY WORKING WITH YOUR PERSONAL TRAINER: Let them know and continue working with them.
IF YOU DON’T ENJOY WORKING WITH YOUR PERSONAL TRAINER: That’s okay too. Not all relationships end in marriages .I think you can be honest with them and let them know that it’s not a good fit and you will not be continuing to work with them. Personal trainers who are simply after your money may guilt trip you or beg you to stick around. Try somebody new and keep the search going.
Our personal training allows you to meet your lifestyle needs and is flexible to fit into your busy schedule. Feel free to contact us for details.