The personal fitness training industry has grown, and will continue to grow, according to statistics listed on the Bureau of Labor and the International Dance Exercise website. Trainers have a high earning potential, but when exercise programs become routine, both the client and the trainer experience workout burnout. Successful trainers make themselves indispensable by developing varied and creative programs that align with their clients' fitness goals and needs.
Some trainers suffer financially during an uncertain economy. Avoid financial disaster by creating a Plan B. Referral or goal incentive programs are an example. Giver your clients one free session for every new client they refer. Some trainers require new clients to enroll in a multi-session training package. Goal-oriented incentives are another option. Offer your client one free session for every fitness milepost he achieves. This may be losing weight or body-fat, or completing a race.
Small Group Training
Small group training is a relatively new concept. It involves groups of two to four participants with similar goals, fitness levels and interests. Prenatal exercise, sport-specific training, senior fitness and back pain exercise are examples of small-group training themes. This type of training is potentially a win-win scenario for the trainer and her clients. The trainer may usually earn $50 for a private session, but small group participants may pay $15 to $20 a session. The trainer earns more and the participants pay less. Participants also get the social benefits of group exercise class, combined with the personalized attention of a private training session.
Time management is essential for personal trainers, and it becomes particularly important if you train during prime time. Waiting to perform three sets of an exercise easily eats up an hour of training time. Integrated training, developed by the National Academy of Sports Medicine, is an effective solution. This type of program incorporates strength, balance and power training into one session. An athlete training for a power sport may perform a set of weighted squats, and follow it with a set of plyometric box jumps. A client wanting to improve her balance performs one set on the leg-press machine, and then performs a set of lunges with one foot on a balance board. Pushups with your client's feet on a balance ball, following a set on the bench-press machine, enhance core development.
The Fun Factor
The fun factor plays an important role in client adherence, says exercise physiologist and personal trainer Rodney Corn. In an article on the International Dance Exercise Association website, Corn asserts that modifying exercise planes of movement, tempo and equipment adds an element of play, and may make the workout more effective. If you always use the weight machines, experiment with kettlebells, free weights or resistance bands. Cook demonstrates an interesting core exercise involving a balloon. Partners assume the plank position and use one hand to toss a balloon to each other. When your client grows weary of forward treadmill running, incorporate backward walking for the hamstrings, and lateral walking for the inner and out thighs.
Hooping is not just for kids. The American Council on Exercise sponsored a University of Wisconsin study on the benefits of hula-hoop training. Lead author John Porcari, Ph.D., reported that hooping participants burned approximately seven calories per minute, which means a 30-minute hooping session provides aerobic benefits while enhancing coordination. Hooping may even be more effective than abdominal crunches, says physical therapist Matt Dormann, owner of SOAR Physical Therapy in Rapid City. In an article in the "Rapid City Journal," Dormann explained that hooping is effective abdominal exercise because it works the muscles in a variety of planes.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Fitness Workers
- IDEAFit.com: Turn Your Gym Into a Playground
- Marketwired.com: New Research Study Validates Benefits of Integrated Training and the Optimum Performance Training Model; National Academy of Sports Medicine
- American Council on Exercise: ACE-sponsored Research: Hooping—Effective Workout or Child’s Play?
- Rapid City Journal: Hoopnotica: Have Fun, Tone Muscles With Hula Hoops