These prediction things are fun, but I believe this is where things are going. Earlier this week, a friend commented on my Facebook wall about the stupid trainer; plus, I remember three blog posts in 2010 where bloggers talked about the stupid personal trainer.
In 2011, we will see the other end of the stupid trainer.
I am not sure what it is in health and fitness, but personal trainers being treated as the bottom of the barrel, or the weakest link in the system, seems to be commonplace.
Knowledge is on the Rise
I have been teaching fitness education courses since 1999.
Back in the day, I saw many personal trainers with just their certifications.
Yes, those online or two-day certifications.
Now it is becoming more and more of a rarity.
More people with advanced university education, like a Kinesiology, Human Kinetics, or Physical Education degree, are entering personal training.
This is a good thing overall, but a degree is not everything; it is an excellent start.
A Degree Does Not Mean You Are a Smart Personal Trainer
I remember training a new personal trainer and asked where his biceps were, and he pointed to his quadriceps.
Yes, the trainer had a degree.
Just like with every profession, you get the full spectrum of people.
Some people lead the profession, some follow the work, some are lost in the job, and some should go into management.
A degree gives you an excellent foundation to build on your training career, but what is more critical is constantly learning, improving your skills, and gathering experience. This can be done with or without a degree. Some of the personal trainers I look up to in my area do not have a degree. They have a passion for specializing in a room and have learned everything they can in this area.
We All Were Stupid
I have not forgotten the first client I trained; I knew nothing.
Yes, I may have had my degree in Kinesiology.
Yes, I may have had my training certification.
I fumbled through the first session. I did everything as per what I remembered from the book, but the book does not always translate into the real world.
What I lacked were personal skills, experience, and confidence.
This came with training more people, reflecting, learning, and constantly improving.
Today, this is still the case with everything I do.
This will be the process that new personal trainers will need to follow.
Book learning is the start. Training clients is where you get your skills, experience, and confidence.
When you reflect on training your clients, you will see where you need more understanding. Then you can seek out the knowledge you need to understand and help that type of client.
If All You Know are Stupid Trainers, This Will Lead To Your Failure
One apprehension of surgeons, doctors, chiropractors, and physical therapists and referring to personal trainers is that they don’t know any good ones.
If this is the case, you must try harder to find good ones.
It would help to search for good trainers because you are letting your clients down.
Suppose the client has gotten a diagnosis from the doctor, and the specialist has confirmed it. In that case, the physical therapist begins the exercise rehabilitation process – and then the client is sent to the gym on their own?
Then the client’s care has failed, and the client will never fully recover from their injury.
I know it sounds harsh, but it is the truth.
If the weakest link in your client’s recovery is the link between your client to a personal trainer, then fix the link.
Doing so will lead to happier clients and clients with better results.
Thanks for reading. I will have more predictions coming up in the next few days.
Rick Kaselj, MS