By Tom Bonanti
If I’ve said it once, I’ve proclaimed it a thousand times, I have one of the best jobs in the world! As a personal trainer (and licensed massage therapist and owner of my own gym), I get to work with some of the finest and most interesting ladies and gentlemen in Fort Lauderdale. Day in and day out, I get to help them feel healthier, look better and live longer.
As a trainer, my work is not just about handing weights to clients and standing around blankly counting to “12.” It is much, much more. A CFT (certified fitness trainer) has a responsibility to provide a safe, happy atmosphere and situation where clients are challenged and pushed, but also respected and affirmed for their hard work and commitment. Is this always an easy task? No, but for the most part, life is good and my clients rock!
With that said, I’d like to remind anyone who presently uses, or is thinking of hiring a personal trainer, what they need to look for in this individual. First, make sure the trainer has an up to date certification and liability insurance. Second, if possible, watch the trainer in action with other clients.
Is he attentive and does he take notes? Or is he on the phone or always texting? If you are going to make the personal and financial commitment of hiring a trainer, get a professional who will be undyingly devoted to you throughout the entire duration of your session.
Most trainers will meet with a prospective client for a free consultation before either party makes a commitment. Make sure to write down your questions and fitness goals. Ask this person about his training philosophy, methods, style, etc., and how he would go about helping you to achieve your objectives. Inquire about the trainer’s flexibility and availability so that you both can easily coordinate your schedules.
Once you’ve found the right person, remember that you as a client have responsibilities to your trainer. If you can’t treat your trainer with courtesy and respect, as you should any other paid professional in your life, then you are wasting his time and your money.
Everyone is occasionally tardy, but some people make it a habit. Not only is this disrespectful to your trainer, but it also shows that you are not serious about attaining your fitness goals (i.e. weight loss, building muscle, staying healthy, etc.). Make the commitment to yourself and your trainer, show up on time, ready to warm up and, if you can, leave that damn phone in the car to reduce distractions.
Habitual cancellations are not acceptable. You would not put up with a personal trainer who was a constant no-show. Everyone, on occasion, has emergencies and scheduling conflicts, and these are understandable. But last minute texts and calls to cancel on a regular basis are rude and inconsiderate. If you have to cancel, at least give your trainer a 24 hour notice, or expect to be charged for the session.
If you find yourself swamped at work or stuck in traffic, simply call your trainer, apologize, and ask if you can re-schedule your session.
Hiring a personal trainer is an investment in your health and well being. Expect nothing less than the best service from your CFT. Realize also that this is a relationship, and as such you must do your part to make it successful and fruitful.
For more information or tips on fall fitness and workout routines that will do the trick for you, contact TrainerTomB@aol.com.