A Good Personal Trainer Will Ask YOU These Questions
How do you know a good personal trainer from someone who might not be right for you or who might not be able to help you reach your goals? Here is another post that will help you compare the quality of personal trainers so you can make the best possible decision!
Last month we posted a 3-part series to help you Find Your Personal Trainer With These Questions (read Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3). Since personal training is such a major investment, in regards to your health, well-being AND money, we suggested that you do your due diligence and interview your potentials so you can choose a personal trainer that is right for you.
Besides the answers a good personal trainer will give you in your interview, you can also identify high quality trainers by the questions they ask YOU. Not only do good personal trainers want to know if you’re committed to the process, they also need to know certain things about you that will help them design a health plan that will be most suited to your needs and personality.
Here are some questions a good personal trainer will ask you before you two invest in each other:
- Basic physical screening questions. You’re looking for your potential personal trainer to ask you basic health questions like, “Do you have any current health issues you’re aware of?” or “Do you drink alcohol and how often?” and “Do you smoke, and how often?” Also, “Are you on any medication?” All of your answers to these questions will have a bearing on the health program your personal trainer will design for you, and if they have the education to properly and safely help you reach your goals.For instance, if you have a heart condition, they should be trained in this area and if you’re on medication, it may affect your blood pressure. If you use other substances, these will also affect your heart-rate and levels of hydration so your personal trainer can work with these variables and adjust your program accordingly. They need to know these facts so they can properly gauge safe workouts.
- Do you have any injuries or aches and pains? This question falls into the basic physical screening questions. Previous injuries will help a good personal trainer know if you need specific rehab exercises or help them determine your physical limitations within a workout program. As for aches and pains, knowing this information will help a good personal trainer design a program that will help you get rid of your aches and pains so you can increase your quality of life.
- Are you open to a physical assessment? They may have with them their tools to do an assessment right away, or they may just give you a head’s up that this is an important part of working with them. A good personal trainer will ask you your age, weight and height. They will then put you through a series of measurements and tests to determine your fitness and health levels. They may use a measuring tape, body-fat analyzer machine or calipers. They may ask you to perform a plank and time you until your muscles fatigue. Different trainers use different methods, but they all want to know the basics: how much body fat you have and what you are capable of doing right now.
- Have you visited your doctor recently? Especially if you have any health issues, but even if you don’t, a good personal trainer will ask if you’ve been to your doctor recently. They will want to know if you’ve shared with your doc that you wish to start a new diet and exercise program. If you answer, “no,” a good personal trainer will ask if you’re open to booking an appointment with your medical care practitioner (especially when you have health issues), once they design a program for you so your doctor can approve it before you begin.
- How much water do you drink? What other fluids do you drink (coffee, pop, etc.) and how often? Your fluid intake will also help a good personal trainer determine your level of hydration. Dehydration will greatly affect your workout performance, so they will be aware of this at the time of your workout to adjust it accordingly, and also suggest changes so you can be more effective in future workouts.
- What are your goals? Needs? Time frame? All of your answers to these questions will help a good personal trainer understand your expectations. At this point, a good personal trainer will be honest with you. They may suggest that you alter some of your plans and will help you come up with something more realistic based on where you’re at right now.
- What are your eating habits? Since nutrition plays a very important part to attaining your health goals no matter what they are, a good personal trainer wants to know where you’re at now and what you need to change. Not only are they looking at the quality of food you’re eating, they also want to know if you’re eating enough and will adjust the intensity of your workouts based on your fuel intake.
- What is your daily lifestyle like? A good personal trainer wants to know what you generally do in a day. Are you active or sedentary? What repetitious actions do you perform most days? A good personal trainer will design a program that will offset the effects of your daily living to help you create more balance and overall health and strength.
- What types of sports/activities do you like? Not only does a good personal trainer want you to enjoy your workouts and be entertained, they may also want to help you improve your game, too! There are sports-specific exercises and so if one of your goals is to be a better skier or tennis player, many trainers have the knowledge to help you excel at your sport of choice. Otherwise, a good personal trainer will design a workout program around your interests and preferences. At least until they get to know you better so they can introduce you to new activities.
- How committed are you to reaching your goals? A good personal trainer may ask you to rate your commitment level on a scale from 1 to 10. Or they may ask you a series of questions to help them determine your level of commitment, like “Are you willing to completely give up all junk food and processed food until we reach your goal?” If some of your answers indicate a lack of dedication on your part, a good personal trainer will actually let you know that they cannot work with you because they feel you’re not ready yet. A good personal trainer is invested in helping you achieve results and will not compromise that personal goal just for money.
These are 10 questions a highly qualified personal trainer will ask you before they take you on as a client. If a potential personal trainer asks only, “When do you want to start?” and neglects to ask any of these questions, you may want to second-guess their credibility. And you must trust your personal trainer. After all, this is your health we’re talking about, not just your hard-earned cash.