More and more people, novice and veteran exercisers
alike are working with personal trainers because they offer a practical
and affordable means of getting and staying healthy.
A TRAINER FOR EVERYBODY
Many automatically equate personal training with gyms full of hard-core strength trainers and body builders. This is only part of the picture. Anyone, young and old, in shape and out, can utilize a personal trainer for a variety of reasons. For example, many professional and amateur athletes work with a personal trainer during the off season to prepare themselves for in-season competition. Individuals recovering from an injury or accident may enlist the help of a personal trainer (in conjunction with their physical therapist) to get them back in top form. The work of a majority of personal trainers focuses on increasing and/or maintaining their clients’ fitness levels, assisting them in weight loss and overseeing their strength-training, in particular, has received increased recognition in recent years because the lack of strength is now known to be a risk factor for disease, especially for older populations.
TAILOR MADE TRAINING
Personal trainers wear many hats, serving not only as a coach, but also as confidant, role model, educator and a major source of motivation and encouragement. Some people may want constant supervision two to three times a week, which makes them more likely to adhere to their program because they are accountable to someone else for their exercise time. Others may prefer to see a trainer only on occasion to update their exercise program, or for periodic fitness testing to receive feedback on their progress.
It is the novice exerciser, however, who may find a personal trainer most valuable. Working with a personal trainer for a few sessions is often all it takes for some people to feel comfortable with independent exercise. The following describes the most common services offered to those beginning an exercise program:
1. Fitness Evaluation. This is a series of tests designed to assess cardiovascular fitness, body/ fat percentage, flexibility and muscular strength and endurance.
2. Personalized Exercise Program. An individualized exercise program is designed based on the individual’s fitness evaluation results and personal fitness and health goals.
3. Supervised Exercise. Personal attention during exercise is the primary function of personal trainers. Clients are given a detailed orientation that addresses the aerobic strength and flexibility components of the exercise program, and are educated about the fundamentals of strength and aerobic training, as well as the proper and safe use of equipment.