Friday, August 1, 2008

How to find a personal trainer

I must admit, I'm not well received by my 'peers' in my city. For that matter, personal trainers all over the US and Canada aren't much better.

I'm not sure if it's just the overwhelming ego that so many people in my industry seem to possess, or the fact that they feel threatened by my presence for the fear of me stealing their business; but I tell you, it's like walking on eggshells around these people. Quite honestly, I don't know how their clients even stand them. On many occasions I've been met with downright snobbery and rudeness.

The whole 'tough and macho' bit has never been a routine that I've endorsed or took part in, partly because it's just not in my nature, and more importantly, I want my clients to feel comfortable and at ease in my presence. The health and fitness realm is intimidating enough as it is without me barking orders and making my clients feel somehow inferior to me.
I so often see trainers prancing around with the attitude like "maybe one day - if you're lucky - you could look HALF as good as me!" Sorry guys, this just aint my shtick.

So how do you find a good personal trainer? And how do you know who to avoid?


(Thanks to my friend Cara for this term!)

Cereal box personal trainers are, I'm afraid, the norm in the entire industry. What I mean by this, is a personal training certificate that is so easy to get, it's like they got it off the back of a cereal box.

There are many, many, many personal training certifications out there. One of which is so incredibly easy to get, a fellow Kinesiologist had his dog certified just to prove this point. This is no joke. Somewhere out there, there is a golden retriever who is a certified personal trainer!

Most of these certifications require no post secondary education, no hands on training, and virtually no prior knowledge of health, the human body, or exercise science.

On average, to obtain a personal training certificate it requires little more than a couple weekend classes, and a brutally easy exam.

To illustrate this further, when I was fresh out of high school I obtained one of these certificates. And I did so without ever cracking open a text book, studying, or receiving guidance of any kind. I knew enough from reading fitness magazines (and you know how I feel about these crummy things) to pass with 98 percent. I even corrected the class instructor on some anatomy mistakes she made on a diagram.

This is not to brag folks, this is to let you know how bloody easy it is. I was by no means prodigy or fitness guru or anything like that. I just knew a little bit from reading garbage magazines and working out with my buddies.

Unfortunately, this is all it takes for you to call yourself a personal trainer in North America.

I won't name the types of certifications - and the trainers that they're attached to - that you should avoid (as I mentioned, I take enough heat from my peers as it is - and I guarantee this is going to upset many of them even further).

What I will do is let you know how to find a personal trainer that you can trust to get you in the best shape of your life, and do it safely, quickly and in a way that isn't torture.

So you'll have to check back here over the next couple days, and I'll let you in a little secret that will weed out 99% of the crappy trainers out there instantly, by asking ONE question.

Helping you achieve sexy and toned arms,