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abett07 05-14-2012 01:06 AM

how helpful are personal trainers ?
yesterday I got told by a recently graduated PT the following

squats dont build big calfs
dips dont build big triceps
the bench press with good form shouldnt work your shoulders at all
deadlifts dont work the lats
and that GHR's dont work your hamstrings

I have always thought about getting PT but after yesterday and from seeing the workouts some of my friends with PT's are on (nothing but cable work) I think it might be a big waste of money

what do other members think about personal trainers in general ?

just want to add that I am sure that some personal trainers are great but I am not sure how helpful tha majority of them are

BigJosh 05-14-2012 01:12 AM

Just like any other trade or career, there are people who are good and there are people who aren't worth a crap. Usually the not worth a crap group significantly out number the good group.

And based on the information the guy gave you, he is in the latter group.

bruteforce 05-14-2012 01:14 AM

I'm to the stage where I think:

1. Like in any profession, some people are dumb as a rock
2. You get out what you put in. They get paid if you make progress or not, but I haven't met many who are unhelpful if you want to do work.

Edit: Josh beat me to it.

BendtheBar 05-14-2012 09:07 AM

I know a lot of competitive bodybuilders and figure competitors who are trainers. They can help 99% of the general public reach their goals. I trust many of them and refer people to them occasionally.

Beyond that you really have to look at client success, I would suspect.

TitanCT 05-14-2012 09:26 AM

as a personal trainer myself...


squats dont build big calfs - incorrect
dips dont build big triceps - bull hookey
the bench press with good form shouldnt work your shoulders at all - wrong
deadlifts dont work the lats - kinda true actually. if you've ever seen someone who never works their lats but only does deads. they will have a slight spread, but all the bulk and thickness of their back will run down the center. they work your whole back, especially if you squeeze, but i wouldnt classify them as lat builders.
and that GHR's dont work your hamstrings - considering its in part a hamstring exercise...i'd say thats false as well.
here's the problem. the schools, like technical colleges, taht offer one year trainer programs, are kinda more toward teaching nonsense that will protect you and your gym from possible lawsuits than actual things you need to train a person. I have a certification and half the exam questions and the answers they expect are not very real life useful.

the way to pick a solid trainer is to look at the trainer AND the clients. If either the clients or the trainer dont look good in whatever respect, don't hire them. Theres 2 trainers at my own gym i wouldnt pay to train my cat. They are nice enough, but they dont have the real world experience, too caught up in they nonsense they learned.

lastly, every trainer has their own style and their own way of doing things. if they get results, dont argue or mix n match. biggest mistake people make is going to a trainer then instead of just doing what they're told they start thinking for themselves. i am a trainer and i have a trainer, why? because he's smarter than me and i wanna learn, so i learn by highering him and doing what im told.

jhew 05-14-2012 11:06 AM

There are a LOT of very bad trainers out there. That being said, there are quite a few very good ones. As a personal trainer myself, I can tell you that the ones who are worth your time are not the ones who are fresh out of NASM, ACE, or Canfitpro. A lot of what I learned at Canfit was weider-type BS. It is the trainers who were lifters before, and who continue to do their own research and educate themselves, that are worth your time. I am not knocking newbie trainers, because we all started somewhere; I am just saying that it is best to do your own research and educate yourself rather than just blindly follow the advice of a PT.

5kgLifter 05-14-2012 05:12 PM

Only time I've come across a trainer was during my gym induction and due to his lack of instruction, I got injured even though I'd never had an injury prior to that.

As Titan points out though, there are a percentage of trainers that may have only done a very brief or the most basic course offered in order to have the minimum requirements necessary for their job at a gym/fitness centre; I suspect that is probably the case with the trainer that I had.

If I'd done my own research about the mechanics of the machine I was using, I doubt I would have got injured. Do your research, don't leave your body entirely in the hands of someone else.

Hazzard 05-14-2012 05:42 PM

I just qualified as a personal trainer and I'm awesome.

Tannhauser 05-14-2012 06:09 PM


Originally Posted by Hazzard (Post 241476)
I just qualified as a personal trainer and I'm awesome.

I'd hire you, on the basis of your awesome squatting and command of the English language.

mikethemighty 05-15-2012 09:31 PM

My first one was really bad. Made me want to stop lifting all together. But then I went with another one and he was excellent. Did his job and really cared about my results.

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