Your health is an investment, not an expense.
Your Essential Guide to Choosing a Personal Trainer
"I've tried a lot of personal trainers, but Ryan is on another level. What I liked about Ryan was his enthusiasm and his knowledge in both training techniques and diet. With him I lost a total of over 20 kilos (over 3 stone) and that includes the muscle mass I gained. My waistline went from 114cm (45 inches) to 88.7 cm (35 inches). It has made a tremendous impact on my life. I no longer have back pain, I feel more confident, and just feel so much healthier."*
"I was curious as to how we'd workout while not in a gym, or even in the same room together. Workouts were intense and I definitely felt them the next day. My stomach isn't bloated, and my clothes fit more comfortably. I lost 3kg, 3cm off my waist and hips and 2cm off my thighs. Ryan is different from other personal trainers I've worked with."*
How to choose a Personal Trainer.
You and I both know that there are hundreds of Personal Trainers in Brighton to choose from and choosing the right Personal Trainer can be quite daunting if you've never had a Personal Trainer before; you are about to invest your hard earned cash and your precious time and effort so this decision is not to be taken lightly!
Sadly there's a lot of dead wood in the fitness industry and Brighton is no exception and it's only getting worse as Personal Trainer courses are now readily available online through deal sites such as Groupon for as low as £19! The UK is literally littered with thousands of well intentioned Personal Trainers who unfortunately don't have the knowledge, expertise or experience to help you at the level that you truly deserve, yet they're still charging top dollar for their services.
So to help you get the most out of your money and avoid any disappointment down the line, I've listed 6 major points to consider when choosing a Personal Trainer:
How to choose a Personal Trainer Tip No. 1:
Is the Personal Trainer fully qualified?
Anyone can set themselves up and call themselves a Personal Trainer in the UK by completing only a weekend course or even an online course for £19 from GROUPON and getting some business cards printed at Vistaprint! So it is vital that you check that the Personal Trainer has a qualification from a reputable training provider. Here are some of the well respected and industry recognised qualifications in the UK; CYMCA or CYQ, Premier Training International, Focus Training, Future Fit, Drummond Education. In the USA the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).
Despite these training providers being industry leaders, these entry level Personal Trainer courses they provide still do not teach everything a Personal Trainer needs to know to help you at the level that you deserve. So it's important to check your Personal Trainer's further education resume to make sure they have studied above and beyond their entry Level 3 qualification (and I'm not talking about Bodypump, Boxercise or Zumba courses etc).
The best training provider to look out for is the Resistance Training Specialist® (RTS®) training programme. It's only once you have begun to study through the RTS® programme that you quickly realise that this level of education should undoubtedly be the norm for ALL Personal Trainers, not the exception few! If you find a Personal Trainer who has studied RTS® (sadly only a tiny minority of the UK's Personal Trainers) then you know for sure that they take you, your health and your goals very seriously and that you'll be in very safe hands.
How to choose a Personal Trainer Tip No. 2:
Is the Personal Trainer fully certified?
Is the Personal Trainer a member of the government backed Register of Exercise Professionals (REPs) or the European Register of Exercise Professionals (EREPs) which was set up to monitor and regulate the fitness industry? If so, make sure they are at least at Level 4 on the Register anything less and you've got yourself a glorified Gym Instructor. Level 4 Trainers have invested into further education above and beyond their entry level Personal Trainer qualification which shows that the Personal Trainer takes their education, their business AND YOUR RESULTS seriously. Again, look out for Personal Trainers that has studied RTS® (unfortunately they're few and far between).
How to choose a Personal Trainer Tip No. 3:
Is the Personal Trainer insured?
For your peace of mind and your safety and to be a member of REPs/EREPs the Personal Trainer must have valid Public Liability Insurance. Make sure your Personal Trainer has this!
How to choose a Personal Trainer Tip No. 4:
Is the Personal Trainer experienced?
This is very important! Make sure that the Personal Trainer has an excellent track record, this is usually evident through word of mouth recommendations and client's testimonials. If in doubt, ask the Personal Trainer if you can speak to several of their clients to get their feedback before you sign up. They won't mind at all if they have nothing to hide! In my opinion, and having recruited dozens of Personal Trainers over the years in the South East of England, and working with clients since 2004, it takes at least 5 years for a Personal Trainer to gather a suitable amount of further education and experience working with clients for be worthy your money.
How to choose a Personal Trainer Tip No. 5:
Is the Personal Trainer reliable?
You could find the most knowledgeable and experienced Personal Trainer in the world but if they turn up late for every session, cancel on you at the last minute or worse still don't even show up, don't bother replying to your txts, calls or emails for days, then you are not going to get the results you deserve. And yes, there are plenty of Personal Trainers out there like this, I have had the misfortune of crossing paths with many of them as part of my Personal Trainer recruitment programme. The problem is, is that a lot of Personal Trainers operate their businesses as more of a hobby or only do Personal Training part time and work another job and don't take their business seriously enough which results in frustratingly slow and disappointing progress for their clients. The sad thing is that their clients may blame themselves for the lack of progress when in fact it was the outdated and misguided advice and lack of commitment on the Personal Trainer's part that was responsible. My team of Trainers have all been vetted for not only their qualifications and experience but also for their reliability and commitment to their businesses and to their clients.
How to choose a Personal Trainer Tip No. 6:
Don't buy on price alone!
This is a biggie! When it comes to choosing a Personal Trainer, it is unwise to make your decision based on the cheapest one you can find. Choosing a Personal Trainer isn't like choosing car insurance where you can get away with selecting the cheapest one in the hope that you'll never need to make a claim. It's also for example not like buying a specific make and model of TV, where you can search for the cheapest seller and still get the exact same product.
When it comes to Personal Training, you definitely get what you pay for! Your Personal Trainer will charge a fee that they feel they are worthy of. This will be based on their level of education and the amount of experience they have. At the end of the day you want the best results in the shortest possible time so be wary of the "cheaper ones", for the sake of saving £5 or £10 per session, as you may end up spending way more money in the long run due to slow (or no) progress, or even worse an injury from an incompetent Personal Trainer. In the fitness industry, you definitely get what you pay for and the saying, "half the price, pay twice!" definitely applies here. However, there will be exceptions' to this rule therefore it is definitely worth checking out the Personal Trainer's qualifications AND experience as mentioned in Tips No. 1 & 4.