So You're Thinking About Hiring a Personal Trainer...
So you''re thinking about hiring a personal trainer, but you've got no idea where to start, or what to look for. As a personal trainer myself, here are some suggestions.
Where to start:
1. Ask your friends. Talking to friends who work with trainers is a great first step. You will get names of people that your friends already know and trust. It's not a guarantee that they'll be a perfect fit for you, but if they're not, then perhaps they can recommend other trainers who might work better.
2. Ask at the gym. If you belong to a gym, ask about the personal training services they have available. Most gyms have their own training staff, but be sure to read about “What to Look For” below.
3. Do an internet search. Many trainers have their own websites where you can read about their credentials, learn a little about their philosophy, and possibly even see a picture or two.
4. Check out IDEA Fitness Connect. This is a huge online database of qualified personal trainers and fitness instructors from all across the United States.
What to look for:
1. A nationally recognized and accredited certification. There are a lot of people who call themselves personal trainers, but who have no qualifications. It is in your best interest to find a trainer who is certified by an accredited program such as those offered by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the American Council on Exercise (ACE), the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), and several others. You can head over to the National Commission for Certifying Agencies to find a list of all accredited personal training certifications.
2. Evidence that the trainer “walks the fitness walk.” Personal trainers should serve as role models, and so it is important that you find someone who takes care of his or her body. This does not mean that you need to find a trainer who has the exact body that you are hoping to have. Your trainer's personal fitness goals may be different than yours. But a well-qualified trainer will be able to design a program that will help you reach your specific goals.Continued on the next page