It can be hard to find a good trainer/coach. While there are tons of people running around in the gyms and online boasting that they know all about fitness, what really matters is “can they help me get the results I need?”
So what makes a good personal trainer / coach?
A good trainer first and foremost should understand how the body works, the concepts behind exercises & nutrition science, and how to apply them to their clients. Having a certification or a degree in the field is the bare minimum to get started.
While a person can get a cheap certification in a weekend, a real pro has years of experience helping people. When looking for a trainer, look for someone who has successfully helped people who have similar goals to you. Most good trainers have a reputation that precedes them, or have testimonials to back up their abilities.
Most people don't care how to properly pronounce hypertrophy… what they care about is if you can teach them how to build a better body without overcomplicating their lives. All the Knowledge in the world won’t matter if a trainer cannot communicate it in a way that a client can use. While having a ton of spreadsheets and using the proper scientific/medical terms sound cool, a good teacher knows how to explain an idea to all levels. Communication skills are especially important if using an online trainer.
It’s hard to work with someone you cannot connect with on a personal level. If a person just rubs you the wrong way, or doesn’t understand the struggles that you face with your own personal fitness journey eventually it will wear on you. Find a trainer who either is empathetic or has shared similar experiences.
Attention to detail
If a person is doing something incorrect, it’s only a matter of time before they hurt themselves. A good trainer will point out errors in technique and offer easy solutions to correct the person’s form.
Ability to adapt
Not everyone will be able to do the same workout. Not everyone can have the perfect schedule. Not everyone will be able to have access to the perfect diet plan. Not everyone has free time to workout an hour each day. A good trainer will help adapt your workout plan to fit your needs as best that can be done.
A good trainer knows that they don’t know everything. A good trainer knows their limitations and scope of practice. A good trainer knows when to say “I don’t know for sure, but I will find you someone who does.”