What to Look For in a Fitness Coach

Halfway through my year at UAA studying the fine art of Personal Training, my instructor asked us to write a mission statement and define what a Personal Trainer should be. I was already in the business before enrolling in this class so I thought I knew everything…wrong! It was really hard to define myself; so I had to think outside the box and then it became clearer. Let me share with you what I would define as an exceptional Trainer.

The most important factor a professional fitness coach expert should possess is knowledge. Knowledge of the correct and safe exercises a client should be executed as well as sound nutritional advice.

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A knowledgeable Trainer should work with the population that she has expertise. A Trainer should be able to know the difference between "fads" and what really works.

The Trainer should read and learn from creditable sources. She should know how to determine if an article is written by an educated individual or someone who is just trying to make a fast buck. A Trainer needs to be certified in her area of specialization.

The second element that I feel a Trainer needs to have is reliability. Reliable to me not only means that the Trainer will be where she's supposed to be on time and ready for work, but also that what she says can be "taken to the bank". Reliability and dependability are synonymous and should be equally important.

The two words are interchangeable in the dictionary and another synonym is trustworthy. These are all qualities that I would look for if I were choosing a Personal Trainer.

When we mention trust we also bring up the issue of confidentiality. The relationship between a client and a Trainer should be along the same lines as the Doctor/Patient relationship. More goes on between a Trainer and a client than just counting reps and changing weights. The Trainer is a helper and educator to the client.