Fitness and healthcare should be two sides of the same coin. As consumers of both, it makes sense to maintain fitness and manage any health issues that arise as part of a continuum. However, the provision of fitness and healthcare is all too often dichotomized. Geographically, the two are usually separate. You go to a hospital or clinic to be treated when something goes wrong and you go to the leisure center or gym to work on your fitness. Politically, they are managed by distinct departments with different priorities. As professionals, we are trained to work in one or the other. Sometimes it feels like never the twain shall meet! In this article, I discuss my experience as a healthcare professional attempting to cross the boundary and make some friends in fitness.
Stress seems so rampant in our society. As our world accelerates through added pressure at work, technology and the fast pace of our world so does the opportunity to suffer from this condition. Anxiety can develop from biological sensitivity, personality type or overload.
Someone who is anxious is often responsible, hardworking and a perfectionist. They are sensitive to criticism, fearful of rejection and aim to please and seek approval. They are affected by others’ opinions, need to be in control, have difficulty relaxing, difficulty with strong emotions and being assertive.
1. Study with the best. Great instructors remain students at heart and never lose the desire to learn from the best. Develop relationships with mentors and keep up with your continuing education. Do workshops that dive deeper into a particular focus. Take fitness classes outside your niche to open your mind to different cues, stretches, and movement patterns.
2. Work on your voice. Vocal energy has a huge impact on your leadership role when teaching a class (or training one-on-one.) Think of people you greatly admire. Chances are they have great voices. At the very least make sure people can understand and hear you. Consider a local voice class as part of your continuing education or check out YouTube for vocal exercises to increase your range and protect your voice.
Life can be a constant challenge full of daily hurdles. Everyone has their own struggles. No one is immune from stress. While some stresses can actually lead to positive action, stress can be an absolute killer to us physically, mentally, and spiritually. It’s very easy to not want to move or exercise when feeling this constant negative tension. However, this is exactly what we must all do to reverse the adverse effects of stress: exercise. And, as fitness professionals, it’s vital to teach and provide proper guidance to our clients to move even when not with us. So, what’s the proper vernacular that the fitness professional should reiterate to their clients about stress and exercise? Moreover, how does the fitness professional inspire their clients to move especially when not in their company? How does the need become greater than the want?
1. Start with a Lot of Students
What you want to do is set yourself up for success. It is hard enough to feel confident as an instructor but then to have very few students can really drag yourself down. Especially when you are a new teacher or start a new class, pick a location or time you know will get a lot of students. Start with subbing until you become more known or teach within a community where you are already known. You’ll feel a lot more energized as an instructor when there are more people adding to the energy in the room.
These days it seems like everything is “elite this” and “elite that.” Even with personal training, we can’t escape the need for things to be super-high-level all the time. Yet, with that in mind, we still seek to be “Elite Coaches” at Empowered Strength because we believe it gives our members the best experience with the best results.
What makes someone an “Elite Coach?”
Believe it or not, it does not necessarily mean training elite athletes.
In fact, many Elite Coaches prefer to train “regular” individuals, because that is where their true skills come to light. Many times, elite athletes are such that they would excel no matter who they were coached by. The Average Joe/Jane, on the other hand, has many different motivations and needs.
Reflection is vital to our growth but yet so many neglects to take time daily, weekly, or even monthly to reflect. Reflection, by definition, is giving something serious thought or consideration.
Best ways to build reflection into your routine regularly:
Take time at the end of each activity whether it is a phone call, training session, workshop or consultation and review your results. Did you achieve the desired outcome you wanted? What went right? How could you improve before next time?
Ask any experienced Personal Trainer and they will tell you: How you start or finish a session plays a key role in the overall client experience.
With that said, here’s a simple mindfulness practice you can carry out with a client to finish a training session on a positive note.
Or if they arrive somewhat frenzied or distracted, it’s a great way to help them refocus and commit to the session ahead!
This practice can help them unwind, rebalance and let go of worries, concerns and negative feelings that accumulate throughout the day.
When we cultivate and amplify positive feelings, we benefit from their nourishing effects on our body and psyche.
Being a personal trainer and working with clients is much like being in a relationship – you see each other multiple times during the week; you share intimate details of personal lives with each other; you go through some difficult times together (albeit it may be a challenging workout session). Over time these relationships grow and change. You learn more about each other, you share new stories and experiences, and you begin to see someone for what they really bring to the table. Sometimes all this is for the better, other times for the worst.
The Honeymoon period is over…
The beginning of any relationship is great – you get along well, sessions are going as planned, and you think this is the “perfect client” for you. Once that honeymoon period is over though and true personalities begin to shine, you may realize this person you once thought was the “only one for you”, is now your biggest nightmare.
As a general manager or owner of a facility, you are responsible for everything that happens or does not happen within the 4 walls of your facility.
You have no one to blame but yourself so you must take personal responsibility for everything. Does that mean you must do everything?
No, and it’s impossible so please do not try?
What you must learn to become great at managing everything within your 4 walls are 4 things: