There are so many personal trainers in San Jose. What separates a bad one from a good one? Here are 7 essential questions you should ask before hiring a personal trainer.
1. “Are You Certified?”
Whether you goal is to lose weight, improve your speed, or build strength, you’ll want to work with someone who’s been certified by an organization you can trust. The National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) is in charge of making sure companies that certify fitness coaches meet the standards of professionalism and competence. There are quite a few organizations that meet these criteria and here are a few notable ones:
- American Council on Exercise (ACE)
- National Academy for Sports Medicine (NASM)
- American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)
- National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)
They have great certifications and are among the most accepted at gyms and fitness centers nationwide. Make sure your coach can provide the proper credentials, so you know that he or she is committed to excellence in the field.
2. “Do you specialize in..?”
What’s the saying? “Jack of all trades, master of none.” Finding a great San Jose personal trainer means finding a professional that meets your specific needs. If you desire to improve on triathlons, find a triathlete coach and trainer. Want to lose weight and dial in your nutrition? Find a coach that specializes in helping their clients achieve this. If 90% of their clientele is focused on one or two particular goals that match yours then you may have a good fit. This means that the coach is not only dedicated to improving on a particular area, but also keeps up on the trends, and has a track record for helping clients achieve their goals.
Plus, a trainer who has been teaching proper technique for a long time has plenty of experience providing the right cues to help you get the most out of every single rep. This also means that they are skilled with helping clients modify exercises based on injuries, aches and pains so that you can still get the most out of every workout without fear of putting your body at more risk.
3. “How much does it cost?”
Hiring a San Jose personal trainer will be an investment, albeit a very wise one! Some things to find out:
- How much do they charge per session?
- Is it large group training, semi-private personal training or 1-on-1 private training?
- Is it a jumbo gym or a smaller and more intimate environment with more accountability or the group motivation and camaraderie?
- Is it within my budget? (Just remember, cheaper is not always better. Trust me on that!)
- How much of a commitment do I need to make? Sometimes you can buy a package of sessions or a month or two at a time. Some fitness coaches will have you join on a membership that could be month-to-month or even 6-12 months. The MOST important aspect of commitment is that you and the coach are clear on what your goals are and a realistic time it will take to achieve them. Commitment can be tough and scary sometimes and usually it is necessary and needed for the accountability to truly achieve your goals.
4. “What are your past clients’ experiences?
Does this San Jose personal trainer have a track record of success? Can they prove it? This is extremely important. Why? Because you want to know that this coach is an expert in delivering results based on what your needs are! For example, they should be able to lead you to a reviews and testimonials that allow you to hear directly from clients about their experiences and results. Some options are:
If the coach can’t provide any proof of their success with other clients, it’s a good bet they may not be able to truly help you achieve your goals.
5. “Where are the workouts conducted?”
This can be an issue especially for outdoor fitness programs. Check out the park or area where the workouts take place and make sure you feel comfortable there. You will also want to inquire if the San Jose personal trainer has the necessary permits to conduct business at that site.
Going indoors for your workouts? Check out the fitness studio or gym online (or in person better yet). Is it clean? No one wants to work out in a dirty place. Do they take pride in using antibacterial wipes or mop solution? More importantly, does it have the “look and feel” of an environment conducive to your workouts? Do you see people like you working out there as well? If so, it could be a win.
6. “How will you track my progress?”
Make sure you are clear about what you want to achieve so that your coach can design your program accordingly and help track your progress.
For example, if your goal is losing weight, fat and inches, you will want to ensure that your coach gets your baseline measurements, bodyfat and “before pics” when you start. You will also want to ask how often they follow up on these measurements. Is it every 30, 60 or 90 days? This way you get a chance to measure your progress, highlight successes, chat about and overcome any obstacles and continue on your path to achieving your goals.
7. “What is your coaching style?”
When it comes to client-coach compatibility, personality and training style are crucial. Consider your own learning style first and what you, specifically are looking for in a fitness coach. If you’re someone who picks up a movement by having it broken down into its smallest components and demonstrated repeatedly, be sure to choose a trainer who is extremely detail-oriented and has the patience and calm demeanor necessary to do so. This would also mean that you may be best suited for 1-on-1 private training rather than a large group workout.
Next up: the personality of your ideal San Jose personal trainer. Do you want a motivational coach who will remind you of how awesome you are for making the effort, or do you need a stern, drill sergeant-type who is more likely to tell you to go harder, faster, and heavier than congratulate you on each small victory? Or maybe a bit of both depending on the context of the situation? Either one (and anything in between) is fine, it’s all about what you want and what style will best suit your needs.
Also, for some additional insight, check out the Facebook Business Page of the trainer or company. Scan the pics, posts, videos, etc. and see if this could be a match for you.
Take the Time to Find Your Fit
Any San Jose personal trainer can deliver a workout. But ultimately, the one that is right for you will be someone who is not only qualified, but also someone who can help you achieve your personal goals. Above all, make sure you can feel the passion and enthusiasm of the San Jose personal trainer you are chatting with. The best coaches are the ones who love what they do and this will almost always translate to a trainer who is constantly improving and expanding his/her knowledge. It also means that you’ll have a coach that will truly provide the support and accountability you need to be successful in your health and fitness program.
Good luck on your journey and reach out if you need any help at all!
Live stronger for today,
The Method3 Fitness Team
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