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Expert Personal Trainer Tips That Work!

Here’s what you need to know…

When you’re kicking off your career as a new trainer, avoiding information overload is key to not making mistakes. One of my favourite strength coaches, Charles Poliquin, says “you can’t beat the basics.” I think if you stick to proven principles that work, you won't fail. So here's three gems:

1. Eliminate your clients biggest limiting factor first

Clients need to be eased in to the process of training, so take things slowly and don't force your client to count calories, or restrict their diet straight away. So quit with the “you need to eat at this hour and measure out your macros” talk.

Focus on the biggest limiting factor first, take my client Mark for example; I knew quickly his caffeine intake was causing too much stress and inflammation, so when we dropped the excess Starbucks for water and a good fish oil to clear up the inflammation…

…..This happened

Before & After

Within a few weeks his physique dramatically started to take shape, all because we focused on one problem at a time. Remember this when you’re out there,  all you need to do is find your clients biggest problem, and remove that first.

2. Programme Basics

I chuckle every time I see a trainer try and get their clients to balance on a Swiss ball while holding a kettlebell over their head in session one.

The average client doesn’t have the advanced skills of a gymnast, and when they fall in front of the whole gym, so will your PT Career. Highlighted in the excellent book by Jon Goodman book Ignite the fire, try to pick no more than 2-4 primary movements for new clients.

All movements can be broken down to 4 basic principles:

  • Upper body push – ‘Bench press’

  • Upper body pull – ‘Bent over row’

  • Lower body push – ‘Squat’

  • Lower body pull – ‘deadlift’

Add one or two secondary helper movements like triceps pushdowns or hamstrings curls. Then choose the right cardio for their goals and you’ve a solid mix. I’ve used this approach and continue to have fantastic results time after time.

Sounds basic but trust me, if your client can master a deadlift, it will be a lot easier to master the clean and press when the time comes. See tutorial from   master technician Eric Cressey on how to breakdown a primary movement.

3. Create Accountability

I always ask new clients for two contact emails, so I can send their results to their support network. Usually this is their partner or best friend, and it’s a fantastic way to keep them on track!


Because it has double impact

1. It’s been scienficlly proven that when people know others are counting on them for results, they are a lot more motivated to succeed. Much like when you were part of the school team, you never wanted to let anyone down so tried your best during the games.

2. It’s great for referrals, why? If your best friend sees the results first hand, then who do you think they’re going to call when they need to lose a few pounds?

Not the ghost busters….

You guessed it…You!

Round up:

Start doing the basics right, avoid information overload and you’ll pick up more good trainer habits along the way. If you’d like to find out how to become a trainer? Then reach out to us at Lifetime and let’s make you an expert!

PS: If you’d like what you’ve read, let us know with a thumbs up and feel free spread the love by sharing.

Author: Declan Doyle – Commercial Lifetime Tutor




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