Here’s a question I got recently from a Super-Trainer reader, Renee from Barbados.
(I didnt’ know Personal Training was big out in Barbados – I might move out there)
Renee’s question was very timely because there’s been some heat again in the press recently about Personal Training qualifications –
Let me hear your opinion below:
definitely agree with you on this one man. I did the NPTI back when it was on 34th st in Manhattan in 2003. As far as training goes you learn a HUGE amount of top level training. Im talking everything including from proper olympic lifts to testing VO2 max. At some points it becomes very intense and scientific. ALOT of studying.
Now as far as making MONEY which is a big part of why we do this along with helping people, this blog and information CANNOT be beat. Would I do it again? I dont know. Probably not. But I can train anybody with or without equipment and design a killer program that gets results. But you can argue that with time you will learn those things anyway.
Skip the program, get an GOOD certification and follow this blog for its AMAZING info. In 6 months you can do ALOT of damage( in a good way) and change your life!
Ok, first of all, I checked out Barbados to see where that’s at… The Caribbean. Wow! Well at least it is spring here already and we have green grass, blossoming trees and SUN… at last so I can feel a lil better about myself LOL!
Second of all, here are my thoughts – this kind of program is no doubt full of good info. But, it is not the right path, because out of it you are heading to a very low-ceiling job as a club trainer. What I mean is – they will take most of your money from the sessions, you will be forced to work lots of hours, this is NO career.
The right way to succeed is to do it on your own – someone said you only need to be good to succeed on your own and I agree. When working for a club, even if you are good, you are capped (the glass ceiling on your earnings)
And to succeed on your own, it’s not about the training info (which you no doubt need, but I’m sure you read/watch training stuff all the time for pleasure if you are into fitness – I know I do; again – you need to be good at what you do!) but about learning how to present yourself, how to get and retain clients, how to deliver world-class training sessions, etc
Great input Gaby from a guy that’s been through it –
Yes the training knowledge is essential – but learning, and especially specialization, can occur much quicker OUTSIDE of a classroom setting – and forget about the marketing – the only place you’ll learn that is on your own –
And yeah Yavor, you summed up the whole case – this course and other similar ones prepare you for a gym-job – and just to expand about your comment about just “being good” – some people might take that the wrong way – that just means that every training practice has it’s own strengths it’s promoting – there’s nothing wrong with that – the client will just chose the one that suits them best –
What would be the best way to gain practical experience? I already called some of the local gyms here and I asked if I could work along with them or just observe how the trainers operate. The responses I got were very discouraging. Some owners told me that I had a strange request and they don’t think that they will allow it. I can get a day pass and do the classes but that’s it.
The location that I’m looking at allows you to train your clients using their gym FREE for 3 months. So it sounds as though that particular location is also steering you to be independent as well, not only working in a gym.
Gaby – did you learn about nutrition and business ? Did you have to create a business portfolio as well?
I have a major niche market in mind – children fitness
(post-kindergarden to teens). Teenage girls here don’t even like to engage in P.E. (When I was 16 and still at secondary school only 3 of my friends and my self did P.E. It’s was so bad that the P.E teacher didn’t even worry to come on the hard courts anymore to teach. So we played basketball until the period was over. I spoke to a teacher at a secondary school (high school) and she said that a particular girl is absent every Tuesday because she doesn’t want to do P.E.). I am thinking of introducing an exciting program for those not interested in learning a sport.
Other niche markets I would like to touch are weight gain for men and women (don’t know if the market will be big enough) and weight loss management for women (includes post natal as well).
If anyone has any specialised information on any of these areas or how I can get started, I will appreciate it as well.
I agree you just need to get a GOOD certification that does not cost very much it costs about 300 to 400 dollars however you need to maintain that which cost around 70 to 200 dollars every 2 years, but I also believe you need to bring a lot to the table I have been involved in the fitness industry for 18 years and that is something you cannot learn from school, it is called real world experience.
If possible, could Bedros Keuillian comment on this as well?
Classroom learning is not a waste of time! This is what sets you up to get the knowledge of how it all works. This is where you learn how to prevent and rehab injury. This is peoples lives and wellbeing were talking about. I dont care how long you have been in the industry, the science and teachings have changed an EXTREME amount over the last 10 years. Things once thought were good back then are seen in a totally different way now. Why do you think strength and conditioning coaches need masters degrees to work with college athletes. Its demanded because there are health issues involved. And without the schooling do you know how to workout a person who is comming out of cardiac rehab? Doubtful. We can’t take chances with peoples lives, and if its really something you want to do, ESPECIALLY in working with children, then i think you should take the time to get your schooling and learn. Anything that happens to kids could last the rest of their lives. (such as injuries to back, ankle, knees)
I’ll take everyone’s responses into consideration.
Jason – What channels did you go through to get certified? Did you attend NPTI as well?
NPTI doesn’t go into depth about children’s fitness. I still need a source that provides valuable information. Does any of the personal trainers on this blog specialise in children’s fitness?
I have a four year degree in exercise science and cscs certified through the National Strength and Conditioning Association. There are some great specialists out there that work specially with children such as Brian Grasso out there. http://www.completeathletedevelopment.com/briangrasso.html
The reason i tell you that you should get your education is that it takes a significant amount of time to learn the things you would in school, on your own. Going to continuing education courses and reading textbooks on your own would take longer than just sucking it up and doing it. The reason there is controversy on this topic is that a lot of the older trainers that have been doing it for a while and they have learned all that they need over the years so they sometimes influence younger people to do the same. Just starting out school and internships are by far the most valuable, and the safest.
$6000 for a PT certification?
The main reason why USA is overweight is because they can’t stick with a workout. People lack consistency.
That’s why, as a Personal Trainer, you must have your clients like you. Don’t lecture them with the certification wisdom – people don’t like to be lectured in the first place, and often the more certifications you have, the less you ‘speak their language’
If they like you….they come back to the workout…and that’s how they get in shape.
Hey Jason – good point about Brian Grasso’s program – that’s something Renee may want to invest in –
And yeah, it’s true that with special populations you will need a high level of technical knowledge …
But if you have chosen the relatively healthy segment of the general to target your services, and have your own unique product you’re offering them, the best step is to get started on your journey and learn rapidly along the way –
The commitment to learning and mastery is a given – that’s why we rarely talk about it here – but unless you get real world experience in reaching new ideal clients with it, it’s useless –
Jason – I can’t even get an internship here. I asked some major gym owners and they said my request was “strange” and they wouldn’t allow it. NPTI will cover class work, hands on training and business not specialised populations.
I have approached the president of the Sports Club at my organisation about teaching a group class (probably aerobics and some body weight training). She has no problem with it but I will have to start after 8 June (preparing for a fitness competition).
Do you think this is a good way to gain experience or should I still try to go to school? Apart from the online certification course, what are other resources that I can gain information? Any good book or program recommendations will be accepted.
Hey Renee – the group class idea sounds amazing – yeah, you’ll get a ton of experience – groups are much harder than individual clients –
And you can then slowly start pulling clients into your private or semi-private sessions from here –
Sounds very good – good luck with that!
Do you know where I can find information that can help me structure a group class program?
Hey Renee – I asked almost the same question when I started my bootcamp – you can search the SUPER-TRAINER FORUMS for that old thread, or just re-ask it and sure some trainers will chime in – let them know your full situation –
Renee if thats the route your taking it would probably be in your best interest to but a couple books. Human Kinetics books are very good and widely accepted by all health and fitness organizations. They have one called “group exercise instruction” i believe and its a very good tool. Also pretty much all of the other human kinetics books are quite good and could help you along the way.
Thanks alot for the feedback. I still haven’t made up my mind about what I will do eventually but I will take all of the responses into consideration.
Still awaiting comment from Bedros. Can anyone get him to comment?