Advice from Strangers: Good Intentions, Bad Results

16 Nov

  It’s like taking driving lessons from someone who’s never driven.

Take Advice from Qualified Professionals

Have you ever been working out in the gym and started chatting with a random stranger? Then you find yourself showing this person how do do an exercise, “Oh, this is what I do.” You tell them. While I appreciate the intention is to help someone out, you really are putting yourself at risk. You really don’t know this persons’ medical background or fitness level. Suggesting an exercise to a stranger is taking a chance. If this person has a herniated disk and you recommned deadlifts… lets just say it doesn’t end well.

I hear this far too often and I’m quicker to intervene. Someone who offers you exercise advice has good intentions, but isn’t qualified or expert in movement. It frustrates me when people who have no experience feel the need to share their information with others. This can be quite damaging.

          If you give out advice to someone and they get hurt… its your fault. 

     If you have no experience or background working in the exercise profession then you don’t have the right to give people the wrong information. This is a human body. You cannot diagnose someone within two minutes of talking to them. Designing an exercise program takes more than jotting down reps and sets. If you have no experience designing programs or haven’t worked with any clients, then you have no experience. Don’t just assume what you say is going to be right for this particular person. If you’re wrong, you risk their safety.

I say this because it’s my job to look after my clients. Someone who’s giving advice can get in big trouble if they give the wrong advice. Someone who’s taking advice can get hurt if they take the wrong advice. So if you are a Personal Trainer and notice this amongst your members, I encourage you to speak to both parties. Apprise them of the fact that they are liable if they give advice and someone gets hurt. Most people don’t know that. Encourage these people to seek out your assistance if they have questions about an exercise. Then the onus is on you and not on them. You are the professional.

I don’t want anyone getting hurt. I don’t want anyone getting sued. I appreciate people just want to help.  It’s like taking driving lessons from someone who’s never driven. I don’t want you to crash!

 

 

 

Personal Trainers are People Too

15 Nov

There’s often a misconception about personal trainers…

We’re not here to cheat you out of money and provide services you don’t need. Some of us are. I am not. We don’t all take sales classes and taught how to coherse people in to buying services. That’s what people really thing we’re out to do. I am not refined in the art of negotiation. It took making a lot of mistakes in order to learn how to talk to people. That’s all this job is… it’s really learning how to talk to people and helping them with what they need.

Yes, I have to pay bills too. So if you walk up to me and ask me a question, I’m not trying to be rude. We dedicate our time to everyone as much as possible. There are those that require specialized training such as rehab for hip/knee replacements, stroke rehab, cardiac rehab. These are paid clients that invest their money in our services. It is our job to provide more specialized programs for specialized needs. We cannot give out free advice because then we can’t pay our bills. It’s no different from you being paid in your job. You would expected to be compensated for your time and effort. We are in the same boat.

We don’t always have the luxury of steady pay. We count on steady clients to invest their money. If one client drops off, that can mean a big difference. That is money we aren’t getting paid. If you think we’re rolling in wads of money and buying fancy clothes, you’d be incorrect. Often trainers have to take on a second job because a lack of steady pay in their desired profession. It’s a reality that I’ve faced plenty of times.

Our profession does get a bad name because of bad trainers. Those who are out to earn money fast often do a poor job. Then those who do a great job don’t get paid enough. We are not doctors, but we do save peoples lives. I believe that our services are necessary for a good quality of life. I’ve worked with cancer patients, stroke patients, dementia patients and parkinsons patients. It’s taken time, energy and money to learn what I know. The human body is the greatest puzzle you could ever solve. To think that somehow my job is about reps and sets is ignorant quite frankly.

My job is to educate and help others learn how to move. I’ve spent my whole life learning how to do that. Be careful the next time you insist a Personal Trainer isn’t worth the investment. It makes me happy to help people. There’s a difference between someone like me vs. someone who’s trying to sell you a product. I help people. I believe I can help anyone. I say that not to be cocky, but because I’d be willing to try anyway. I will do anything to help anyone if they need it.

Yes, personal trainers are people too. We have thoughts, feelings and emotions. We have families, friends and bills to pay. Sometimes we struggle to make ends meet as well. Don’t be so quick to paint us all with the same brush.

On that note… back to work I go.

Your Body Shape Isn’t Your Body Image

02 Nov

YOUR BODY SHAPE ISN’T YOUR BODY IMAGE

 

I was never really afforded the “ideal” body shape. Whatever that means! Are any of us really afforded the “ideal” body shape? I spend my time exercising. I spend my life teaching others to exercise. I can work out for hours a day and I still have the typical roll of body fat on my stomach. Got a bit of cellulite in the usual places, but again…. what woman doesn’t? I’ve met plenty of women with the “ideal” shape and they have body fat like you and I. They have self confidence issues just like you and I. My logic is, “Even the most beautiful women have cellulite.” So why are we trying so hard?

I don’t necessarily equate my body fat with how I feel about myself. I’ve always loved the person I am as more than just my appearance. Let’s face it, I’m not a model. I don’t have to be nor do I wish to be. If you’re blessed with beauty then I admire that. My thought is that even underneath that beauty lay something far more important. The way you see yourself on the outside doesn’t always match what you see on the inside.

EVERY woman has something to offer. I decided long ago that I’ll never have the perfect “bikini body” and yet I wore a bikini anyway! I’m not saying you have to go and wear a bikini to feel confident. I guess what I’m saying is you need to wear your self confidence no matter what clothes you have on. That’s not necessarily dictated by how many tummy rolls you’re blessed with. I say, OWN THEM AND LOVE THEM! This is the only body we’ll ever have so why not enjoy it?

If you’re not feeling healthy in the body you’re in, then you have the power to change that. That requires eating well and exercising. It’s hard to do but well within your ability to change. The focus is on being healthy mentally, emotionally and physically. At the end of the day, I do not care what you look like. The goal should always be about health. Let’s work towards that.

Love yourself always!