Fitness trainers have to instruct exercise in a professional and confident manner in order to be able to motivate their client as well as gain their trust. Professionalism is a combination of many things, from dressing appropriately to acting in a professional manner.
What Is Professionalism?
Professionalism is the conduct, behaviour and attitude of someone in a work or business environment. A person doesn’t have to work in a specific profession in order to demonstrate the important qualities, as well as characteristics, of a professional. Professionalism leads to workplace success, a strong professional reputation in addition to a high level of work ethic and excellence.
The concept of professionalism is now the foundation of the fitness industry’s contract with society. It is what society and client expect of the personal trainers. Professionalism is the way that fitness professional fulfil their part of this contract and, in response, they are rewarded with the trust of clients.
Some examples of professionalism in the fitness industry are:
- An appropriate training environment must be created for the session (ventilation, space, etc.)
- Keeping clients informed of their objectives and the path taken to reach it, progress made, etc.
- Keeping to an agreed time schedule, if client is 10 minutes late do not cut into next client’s time to make up their time. They must realise that they lose that 10 minutes and if they arrive early don’t cut the session, of the client that you’re training, short.
- Make sure that you have a good theoretical knowledge and understanding of the exercise you are presenting to the client.
- Always be well prepared for your sessions.
Communication Is Key
A fitness trainer corrects the client throughout the training session. The way that this feedback is verbalised – or how the correction is done – makes a huge difference to the way the client feels and acts. The fitness trainer’s voice and volume make a difference, e.g. a soft-spoken client will be intimidated by the fitness trainer who is loud.
Positive feedback makes a client feel more comfortable and open to receiving direction. To keep clients motivated, recognise each improvement – no matter how insignificant. Make sure that you are sincere when praising the client. When verbally making a correcting do it in an appropriate manner and make your correction in a positive manner e.g. “That looks much better, try and extend your arm more in order to benefit more from that position.”
Sometimes verbally correcting the client is not possible and you have to physically position the client. It is important to respect the client’s space and – before touching the client – always ask their permission before using your hands to make the correction or assisting them.
In order for a client to be safe, complete exercises effectively as well as have a sense of mastery they must learn how to complete exercises correctly. As a personal trainer you will demand a lot of your client during instruction as you need to make sure that they can understand – as well as complete – exercises independently. Still, you will want to make doubly sure that your clients are great at the exercises so that you don’t have to spend as much time repeating information and can spend more time and effort on motivating clients and ensuring sessions are beneficial to them.
If you are dead set on learning more about instructing exercise, then you should definitely do our Personal Training Diploma. Follow this link for more information.