Why Big Box Gym Personal Trainers Suck (and how to avoid them)

Why Big Box Gym Personal Trainers Suck (and how to avoid them)

I’m going to start this one by painting a mental image.  Walk into any mainstream gym these days and there they are.  Try to ignore it if you can, but the image is spreading fast.  There they stand, stopwatch around their necks, clipboards in their hands, carrying their smartphones as if it was an appendage.  What am I referring to you ask?

I’m talking about the vastly spreading big box gym personal trainers.  Yep, that person that spends $200 on an online PT course with one weekend of hands on training.  They pass a simplified test any 5th grader could take, and they are now considered “certified personal trainers”.

You come along & make the decision to get help with your fitness journey. You hire one of these poorly educated fitness trainers expecting great results & quality training.  All of a sudden, you realize the cost to you is a lot more than the simple cost of a personal training session.  Keep using these types of trainers and you could find yourself facing serious health issues, and even worse,  injuries to deal with because of their lack of interest & their lack of training.

It is sad, but my description is all too familiar to me at my personal training studio when I talk to new clients.  Some of the stories I get to hear make me think, WTF???
It sickens me that these types of trainers take advantage of individuals who decided to make a change in their fitness levels & want to get good results for their efforts.  If this sounds like you, keep reading.  I’m going to put some light on how to spot a bad personal trainer & will highlight some ways for you to avoid an encounter with these trainers.

How to recognize the bad ones

Personal Trainers are a great resource.  Their knowledge & experience can be invaluable for a successful body transformation or just a fitness journey in general.  The benefits that a good personal trainer can bring to you can save you big in terms of time & costs.  However, when you lock up with a bad personal trainer, you not only risk meeting your fitness goals, but you also risk serious injury & a worsened physical condition than when you started.

What are some signs and observations of a bad personal trainer?  Here are a few that I personally witnessed & some reported to me by clients.  

Often, a bad personal trainer looks bored, overly tired & just lost in the gym.  Someone that doesn’t really listen to you, the client, and your needs.  If you watch these trainers, you notice that they typically use the same exercises & machines every day to train their clients.  Trainers that are poorly trained don’t have the ability to assess a clients condition. They are also not able to make recommendations/alterations to the clients workout regime.  These trainers end up putting their clients at risk every time they train together.

Other observations noted are that the trainers are too busy checking their smart phones or facebook during a training session.  With a low level of accountability, many of the trainers overbook their sessions & cancel sessions without notice to clients.  That'll do wonders to boost a persons moral who’s trying to diet & get fit! (Insert sarcasm)  Oh, and this one, I personally observed…A trainer sitting on a bench next their client while they were performing a lift rather than spotting the client for safety.  Are you kidding me?

If you encounter a personal trainer that does any of these things, you are well within your right to fire them on the spot. 

What to look for in a good personal trainer?

As I said before, using a good personal trainer can be a very rewarding experience.  They can help you attain your goals in 1/4 of the time you would invest on your own & therefore in the long run, actually save you money on your fitness journey.  

A good personal trainer simplifies his explanation of technical information for you.  They take time to educate you on health and fitness and how exercise and proper nutrition affect your body.  They work tirelessly to perfect your form and show you the correct way to lift & workout.  They give you homework…yes, homework or exercises to do outside of your sessions with them.  A great personal trainer is not only engaged in your workouts, and cares about your progress, but also cares as much about your nutrition as they do about the exercises you perform.  Their focus is on you during your session, not on a smartphone or social media & text messages.  

A good personal trainer should look like they practice what they preach.  So many times I’ve seen personal trainers that looks wimpy or is bigger than the person they are training.  If you can’t look at your personal trainer and say, “Yeah I’d like to look like this person” then that’s probably not the trainer for you.  

If you’ve stuck with me up until this point, I sincerely thank you for taking the time to read this blog.  I’ll be honest in saying that this one hits home for me.  At Fit4Life Studio, I strongly believe in the characteristics I used to describe a great personal trainer.  I do my best to live by those characteristics and to be the best personal trainer for individuals that I can be.  If you are serious about changing your life and want to live a healthy lifestyle, then please reach out to me and let me know you achieve your goals.  I can be reached at fit4lifestudio@gmail.com.  Also please visit my website at https://fit4lifestudio.com

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