As a personal trainer, your duties can vary: from a nutritional advisor and therapist to a trainer, coach and motivator. One of the main reasons some people pay for personal training is because they cannot motivate themselves. They need someone not only to push them to their limits with every session and guide them through the exercises but hold them accountable to get the results that they truly want.
Your motivational skills are probably the most important tool as a personal trainer. If you cannot motivate your client to exercise and push themselves, you cannot get them the results that they want.
This is especially true regarding newbies – people who have never exercised before or who are starting a new fitness journey. You, as their personal trainer, have the responsibility to get them exercising, keeping them motivated and coming back for more. Here are a few tips on how you can motivate newbie gym-goers or clients in their training session.
Build a trusting and understanding relationship
Know what your client is all about. Find out what they enjoy and don’t enjoy. Ask them about their struggles and what they find most difficult about losing weight or exercising. What has been their biggest obstacle in their journey so far?
We’re all human – we’ve all had difficult days, some just more than others. Be open and honest with you client and tell them about your difficult days. Relate to them and their story and start your relationship with them by understanding, listening and relating. Their success with you as their trainer all relies on the relationship you have with them.
Reward them for milestones reached
Before you begin your journey with your new client, sit them down and work out a plan of action. Set big goals and break these into smaller, weekly goals. Explain how you plan on helping them reach these goals. Work out a reward system that will push and motivate them to reach these goals: it can be a cheat meal, an active day out, a pair of trainers – whatever will make them work that little bit harder.
Let them do more of what they like
A sure-fire way to demotivate someone in a training session is by doing copious amounts of exercises and movements that they hate. This doesn’t mean that they should not do these moves at all but structure their workout sessions around moves and exercises that they love doing. If you make the workout sessions fun, a lot less motivation will be needed to get them moving, and it will help them build a positive association with fitness and exercising – win, win!
Keep track of – and compliment them on – their progress
As they say, there is nothing as motivating as seeing progress. Make sure that you track your clients’ weight, measurements and body fat. Take weekly progress photos and compare it to the week before’s photos. Compliment them on their progress – this will motivate them even more to work even harder!
Positive talk and energy
The way you communicate with your client makes the biggest difference in them failing or succeeding in their rep, set or session. Your energy introduces you before you even speak – make sure that your energy is positive and contagious.
Refuse to allow any negativity into your session with your client – from your side and from theirs. Speak only positive, encouraging and motivating words and phrases, and be completely present in the session. If you are negative, your client will be negative too.
Help them deal with setbacks
There will be tough sessions and days. There will be failed reps and weeks where they seem to stagnate. Instead of punishing them for it, help them deal with it by being encouraging, supportive and understanding.
As a personal trainer, you determine your clients’ success in their fitness regimes. This is a big responsibility and one that should not be taken up lightly. Make sure they have a positive experience with you as their trainer so that they can build a solid, healthy relationship with fitness.
To be the best personal trainer out there you need to have a world-class fitness education. On Trifocus Fitness Academy’s Personal Training Certification, you’ll get this – and so much more. Click here for more information.