If you decide to hire a personal trainer, make sure that you ask him or her these five questions to make sure you’re employing someone who knows what they’re doing and can actually help you achieve your fitness goals.
1) What are your qualifications?
The personal training industry has more than its fair share of cowboys that pretend to be competent personal trainers but whose expertise is limited to “bro-science” and stuff they’ve read online or in fitness magazines.
The person you hire to be your personal trainer should have a gym instructor qualification at level 2 on the UK national qualifications and skills framework, and a personal trainer qualification like this one at level 3 or 4. Ask them who they did their training with and then Google their response to check that it’s a legitimate, accredited training provider.
2) Do you have insurance?
Never, under any circumstances, hire a freelance personal trainer, or indeed any freelance health and fitness professional, unless you know they have a limited liability insurance policy in place that will protect you in the event you are seriously injured while under their care or supervision.
If something does happen to you and the trainer isn’t insured, you’ll have to sue the trainer themselves to get whatever financial compensation you require for your injury, and if they can’t afford to pay whatever damages you’re awarded, you may never get your compensation.
3) Will there be a signed contract?
Most serious personal trainers will present you with an agreement of some sort to sign before you begin training which carefully outlines what services are being provided, what the costs are, and what the policies are regarding things like lateness or cancellations.
If everything’s clearly stated in writing before your work together begins, there shouldn’t be any confusion or misunderstandings that will harm your relationship later on.
4) Can I see some testimonials?
Make sure that the trainer you hire has testimonials from satisfied clients to show you. This is a good way to make sure you’re hiring someone who actually knows what they’re doing and knows how to get results.
5) What would you say is your area of expertise?
This is important because it gives you an idea of whether the trainer in question is the right person to help you achieve your individual fitness goals. If, for example, you’re a pregnant woman looking to exercise safely during her pregnancy, you’d want a PT that specialises in pre-natal exercise, or maybe water exercises, instead of a more all-round trainer or someone like a body-building specialist.