5 Mistakes Every Personal Trainer Makes
You have just qualified, its a new exciting and nerve-racking experience as you step out onto the gym floor.
1) Try To Impress With The Newest Thing You've Learnt
Your clients really don't care about overload techniques, the newest piriformis release, the new record of calories burnt in 60s on the assult bike or whether their program is daily undulating periodisation.
They just care about how you can help them solve their problems which is either how they can look better naked, wear a bikini with confidence or have a better relationship with themselves and food. Which generally comes down to them moving more and eating less. So get them moving more in that session. Focus on the basics and have your clients moving with great form and focsed each session.
2) Communicating precisely what you want.
"Ok Joe so I want you to take your feet shoulder width apart, your toes at a 45 degree angle, then place your hands out in front, spread the floor with your feet, drives the knees out, push your hips back, drop down inbetween your hips, squeeze your butt, brace your abs, push the floor away and stand up"
This exmple above is extremly common.
It's totally totally lost me, I have no idea what the heck your trying to get me to do. Imagine how that client feels?
I am going to show the client what I want them to do, then tell them 3 key points, get them to do it and see what happens.
If they nail those 3 things but I see a few more technique issues I will then explain 1 at a time what is next. Too much information is just overwheming and confusing.
3) Skipping the basics.
I get squatting and deadlifting is awesome!
BUT if your client cant perform a body weight squat, hinge correctly or do a push up, loading them is going to cause some serious problems. Always start with the basics and progress your clients from there.
Don't allow your clients to dictate the session. They may have squatted in the past with another trainer but you've just highlighted several movement pattern issues that need to be addressed. Show them the value in fixing these issues up now so that you can progress to the big lifts later, injury free.
They will be life long clients if you can take them on a journey and be injury free in the process.
4) Overlooking crappy form
Letting your clients get away with crap from is a big no-no.
Don't be afraid to be assertive and pull back the weight or regress the exercise. If you're not able to cue them into a better position and you don't know what the is problem, then take a video and make a note to research after your session.
Seek out a mentor or an experienced coach to brainstorm what you think might be the issue. The worst thing trainers can do is let is go and not look at finding a solution.
This is a pet hate of mine. And is dont in group training all the time!!!
Don't be the cheerleader counting down the time when someone is perfoming the most ugly looking deadlift you've ever seen, go over and coach them!
5) Letting your client dictate the session.
You wouldn't go to your accountant and tell him how to do your tax return. So why let your client tell you how to run your session?
You are the expert and this is where the art of personal training comes into it.
You need to give the client a little of what they want but more of what you know they need.
They want to squat, but you know they are not ready for that have them squat with a medball, teach them the movement pattern and make them work.
They want to deadlift but they can't hinge? Load up a heavy ass like 200kg barbel and get them to perform 10s holds in the set up position. This is tough and if they are contracting all the muscles they need in a deadlift they will walk away pooped after a few sets of 10s. Then practise hinging.
You learn from your mistakes and you wouldn't be human if you didnt make them. Your career as a PT will be ever evolving.
Join a community of female personal trainers on Facebook here.
Coach Ella 💙