In the world of social media celebrities and online fitness gurus, it can be very hard to spot the fakes from the real deal, when it comes to online personal trainers.
I will give you 3 quick tips to immediately consider when looking for an online trainer:
- Do NOT base your judgement on the amount of followers they have on any given social media network, or how flashy their website looks. This might pique your interest in this particular trainer, however, I advise you not to make your decision based on this factor alone.
- Do NOT base your decision solely on how “ripped” or fit the trainer is. Yes, physical appearance is a big deal in order to know that they practice what they preach, however, everybody is different, and you want proof that they will be able to help YOU! (Tip: look for testimonials or before & after pictures of real clients on their website.)
- RUN AWAY if they immediately try to sell you supplements before really getting to know you, your goals, and current nutrition habits.
Ok, if you have made it past those three quick tips, now it is time to start some further investigations to decide whether this trainer can actually help you reach your fitness and weight loss goals.
Here are a few things you should be investigating:
Certifications and Education
Anyone can train themselves to look fit and “ripped,” or take an online certification to become a “personal trainer”; but this doesn’t always mean they know how to help others reach their fitness goals. There are many certifications that trainers can get, but the thing that trumps them all is a college degree in Kinesiology or related field. I am a firm believer there is no way you an learn online or in a weekend course, what one would learn in a 4 year college degree. If you don’t see a degree, don’t count them out right away, there are some large governing bodies that offer extensive certification courses, such as: NCSA, CSEP, CanfitPro, ACE, NASM, and ACSM to name a few.
Another thing to keep in mind is that letters behind the name don’t necessarily mean a lot, so make sure to check if the trainer is still continuing to attend workshops and read books related to their field. Also, if they are going to be prescribing you a meal plan or specific nutrition information, make sure they have some kind of nutrition certification or education.
Results and Reviews from Past Clients
Is their program effective with others? If the trainer is just starting out, they might not have a lot of before and after pictures; but if they are making claims to be “the #1 online trainer” or that they have “helped thousands lose weight,” then they should have proof of these claims. If testimonials are not posted on their website, do not be scared to just ask for some.
Remember to check that they have worked with clients like yourself with similar goals, not only with bodybuilders, athletes, or very fit men and women. If you are an average person looking for weight loss and to learn how to exercise safely and effectively, this trainer’s speciality might not fall into your needs–not saying they aren’t a good trainer, but you want someone who specializes in your needs.
Cost – and What They Offer For That Cost
With online training you will want know how involved the trainer is going to be in your fitness journey. Are they just going to give you a program and then disappear? Or will they be there for support through email, Skype, and text to ensure you are successful. Make sure you are getting what you pay for.
Bonus Tip: Find out if they are willing to let you have a free one week trial.
Ask if There is an Assessment Process When Setting Up a Program
This is very important if you are paying for a personalized program, meaning one made just for YOU and YOUR GOALS. If the trainer does not do any type of assessment or initial interview process, then how would they possibly be able to make a program tailored to you? If you just want a general cookie cutter workout to perform, then an assessment would not be necessary.
Lastly, How is the Initial Communication?
Go with your gut! During the initial conversation with this trainer, how did you feel? Were they very pushy in trying to sell their services? Or did you get a good vibe? Be sure to choose a trainer you feel comfortable with, because from my experience, the stronger the client/trainer bond, the more likely you will be to stick to it!
Tip: This is a good time to scope out their social media and see what they are like on a daily basis. This will give you a better idea of who you are buying training from.
There are many factors you want to consider when hiring both an online or in-person personal trainer, but this should get you started in the right place. I hope this helps you when choosing an online trainer that is right for you. I wish you luck in your journey!
Any questions feel free to email me at Michelle@trainerize.com or contact on social media @CoreCondition.