Originally Posted by abett07
do you have any experience with Goodlife Health clubs ?
There are good and bad trainers everywhere. You have to look at the individual. To get clients, a PT needs to demonstrate competence, establish trust and rapport.
Competence is important because, hey, you can fail on your own for free. Trust is important because you're putting your health in their hands. And rapport's important because you'll spend a lot of time together - I see most of my clients 2-3 times a week, I don't see any of my friends that often!
Trust and rapport are easy to judge for yourself. Competence is harder. One thing I'd say is that very
competent people are easy to spot. I don't need to know anything about basketball to know Jordan was good, it was all so smooth... A very
competent trainer is going to radiate it. Ordinarily competent, maybe, maybe not.
So the trick is, if there are no very
competent trainers, how do you find the ordinarily competent ones. Watch the trainers in your gym, chat to some of them, and take note of things like,
- focused attention - are they actually looking while the person exercises?
- general attention - are they distracted by mobile phone, hot chicks in lycra or hot guys in tank tops?
- popular - perhaps not the best word, but do people know and greet them? A good trainer will have spoken to and given advice to quite a few people in the gym. However consider this with the focus/attention points above
- achievements - if they talk about achievements, do they talk of themselves or their clients? Because you don't care what they can do for themselves, but what they can do for you
- explanations - are they willing and able to explain the reason for each exercise, set and rep done?
- progression - do their clients progress, using heavier weights, more complex exercises etc over time? If you ask, can they tell you how you might progress? Not exact timeframes, but general trends. "First we do the leg press, when you can 80kg x20 and a plank for 1'00", the goblet squat, when you can do 10kg x20, the barbell back squat," etc.
- regression - if someone is obviously incapable of doing some exercise, can they produce an appropriate regression of it, an easier version? Or do they just get you to do a half-arsed version instead? eg pushups from knees for pushups, rather than "slight elbow bend pushups".
Note that I didn't list physique changes in clients as something to watch for. That depends on things the client does, like their food. A client could have a great diet, and grow or shrink as desired on a shit routine; or have a terrible diet, and never change on a great routine. And in any case not everyone has physique change as a primary goal, some just want to get stronger, rehab an injury, etc.
There are plenty of other things to look for, those are just some off the top of my head.