how to pick a personal trainer

How To Pick The Perfect Trainer

how to pick a personal trainer

Beware of Cookie Cutter Plans

One problem with personal trainers is that some of them take on too many clients at any one time. To deal with this influx, they give out cookie cutter plans that are hard to botch, so that you see results right away, but it may not be the best option for you in terms of sustainability.

For example, going from a high-calorie junk diet to chicken and broccoli four times a day will yield great results, but can you really commit to eating the same meals every day for the rest of your life, assuming you’re in it for the long haul?

If your answer is yes, then you’re in the minority because most people would have a hard time adhering to such a strict diet. This is when cookie cutter diet plans are doomed to fail, and your best bet is to steer clear of a personal trainer who dishes out a new plan by the hour with little to no input on your part as to how it should be structured.

Flexibility is Key

When choosing the perfect personal trainer for you, make sure that he/she is aware of your physical capabilities. You don’t have to be pushing weights every day if you don’t want to. You don’t have to run for hours on the treadmill if you don’t want to because there are always other options that could be more suitable for you. A personal trainer should have more than one successful workout plan under his/her belt. Everyone is different, so your approach may be tweaked based on your schedule, interests and capacity to work. There is such a thing as over-training, wherein your mind or body is too exhausted and no longer functioning optimally during workouts and recovery. By sticking to your limits, you ensure a smooth progression into a healthier, fitter lifestyle.

Bro-science vs. Real Science

Becoming a certified personal trainer is no longer as difficult as it once was. Make sure that whomever you are considering has the appropriate documents proving that he/she is educated and certified to provide you the advice you seek. Some trainers think that once they become a little leaner and put on some muscle that they magically know everything and that whatever they have done will work just as well for you. Don’t fall for ‘bro-science’ or claims that have no scientific basis. When it comes to your health, it’s better to err on the side of caution rather than risk any harm or worse, permanent damage.

Proximity and Accessibility

A personal trainer who can exercise with you one on one or do regular check-ins in person will help keep you more accountable both inside and outside of the gym. It’s one thing to push yourself, but a whole other level to have someone telling you that you can still do a few more reps even if your muscles are already feeling the burn. Also, by having someone else track your progress, you can both decide where to tweak the program if necessary and how to further improve your rate of progress so that you can attain your goals more efficiently.


Treat the whole choosing a personal trainer exactly the same as if you were going shopping for new clothes. ‘Shop’ around before you decide to take someone on.

You need to feel connected to the person you’re putting your trust in – how incredibly boring would it be if you choose a personal trainer that you couldn’t have a laugh with?

Also, like I briefly mentioned above you need to make sure whatever personal trainer you choose has the relevant qualifications. Many trainers specialize in certain areas of fitness – do they specialize in what you’re looking for? It’s well worth asking.

I remember when I worked in a big box gym here in London back when I was a teenager. All the PT’s had their own profile description on the wall upstairs. The profile would show a picture and provide some of the key attributes each trainer provided.

You could also see if the personal trainer has a website. Search their name and find out a little more about them – you may even find some reviews which will help you with your decision.

Most trainers provide a free taster session so make sure you take that opportunity! After you’ve had your taster session make sure you get to see them in action with other clients!

Finally, use your common sense! If you have a bad feeling about someone then trust your instincts. Unfortunately there are trainers out there that just want to take your money, however that being said, there are a lot of great trainers out there that get into the business to actually help people reach their goals.

You just need find the right personal trainer for you.

Take Care,


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