Personal trainers are a dime a dozen nowadays. There are a ton of different personal trainer certification programs that can be completed in as little as a couple of weeks, and the online availability of these programs has opened the career up to almost anybody with an interest in fitness.
Unlike professions in the industry that have strict licensing requirements, like Strength and Conditioning Coaches or Dietitians, there isn’t a requirement to call yourself a personal trainer at all. So, with all of these different pathways to becoming a trainer, how is someone like yourself supposed to be able to find a good personal trainer?
What Makes A Good Personal Trainer?
A “good” personal trainer isn’t strictly defined. What works well for one client may be a terrible coaching choice for another. This means that some people may call a trainer awesome while others call that same trainer a waste of time and money!
What makes a good personal trainer is a specificity to your goals alone. If your personal trainer keeps you motivated to workout, is easy to get along with, and helps you reach your physical fitness and overall health goals, then they should be called a good trainer or coach.
It’s hard to judge a personal trainer just by some reviews you read online. The clients leaving those reviews may have completely different goals than you and different levels of motivation. This means their feedback on a trainer doesn’t apply to your situation.
There are a few things that you can do to narrow down your search for a high-quality trainer though!
Find A Good Personal Trainer To Help You Achieve Goals
There are a couple of things that you need to establish before hiring a personal trainer if you want to succeed:
- Establishing a specific goal, or set of goals
- Being realistic with your time commitment
- Being reasonable with what you need from your personal trainer
Having a specific set of goals before approaching a personal trainer is a great idea to ensure that the trainer knows exactly what you want to achieve. Just a goal to “get in better shape” is one of the most ambiguous goals that people tell their personal trainers. It simply doesn’t allow the trainer to customize their coaching to your needs enough.
You also have to be realistic with the amount of time you intend to commit. This entails the time spent working out with your trainer and the amount of time it will take to reach your goal. For example: weight loss, thinking you can lose 50 lbs in 6 weeks simply because the personal trainer is rated highly is setting yourself up for failure. A good trainer will help you set up a timeline for your specific goal.
Last, but not least, you need to be realistic about what a trainer can do for you. You won’t be paying them enough to harp on your dietary habits 24/7 and they can’t force you to complete additional workouts outside of your normal sessions. This motivation and dedication will have to come from inside. A trainer is just there to design your program and help you through it.
It’s you who does all the work to reach your goal, after all.
Once you understand these things, you are ready to search for a good personal trainer.
Find A Specialized Trainer
A trainer that focuses on preparation for running events won’t be the best choice for someone looking to pack on as much muscle as possible. A trainer that specializes in athletic performance won’t be the right choice for an individual only looking on how to lose weight without any actual fitness goals.
Find a personal trainer that specializes in what you want to do. A bodybuilding-focused trainer is great if you want to build muscle and get ripped. Don’t pick a trainer that doesn’t work with clients that have the same goals as you, even if they are rated the best in town.
If you want to concentrate on home cardio workout and train at home using a home elliptical equipment, finding someone who knows about different types of rowing machine or is knowledge about types of treadmills will be beneficial.
Find A Flexible Trainer
The reasons that you need to hire a personal trainer probably involve some, or all of these:
- You don’t have the required knowledge to design a program
- You can’t stay motivated on your own
- You don’t have enough time in your daily schedule for cookie-cutter programs you’ve found
- You don’t enjoy repetitive workouts that you find online
Find a personal trainer that is flexible and will work with you whenever you need a change of pace. You should be able to negotiate different session lengths and training styles. Your trainer shouldn’t design a program and make you stick to it if you don’t enjoy it, period!
Find A Reputable Trainer
A specialist trainer without any testimonials or reviews to prove that specialty isn’t a specialist. A personal trainer can say whatever they want about their coaching styles and who they work with.
Finding a trainer that has a reputation for helping those with similar goals as you are the best choice to be your trainer.
I’m not saying that you can’t trust new trainers. Everybody starts somewhere. But, you’ll have better odds with someone with a proven track record of helping people do exactly what you want to do!
A Good Personal Trainer Is Only As Good As Your Adherence
I know it was mentioned a bit earlier, but it requires repeating: your trainer won’t be with you 24/7 to force you to make the required changes to achieve your fitness goals. They can make your food choices for you, lead you through every home workout, or chat with you every time you feel like quitting.
They will take your goals, needs, and current fitness level and develop a foolproof plan that only requires that you adhere to it. The guesswork is taken out and you move through the plan step by step until you reach your goal!
Good Luck With Your Fitness Journey!
Hiring a personal trainer is a serious step in the right direction for achieving your fitness goals. Finding a good personal trainer that matches your needs will ensure you don’t waste your time or money working with someone not suited to your goals. Hopefully, this guide helped you narrow down your search!