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How can you tell if a personal trainer is good?

Is there a specific certification to be a personal trainer? Do you ask to see pictures of their current clients? How can you tell if they're good?

Fri. Dec 11, 8:33am

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I would say the best way to tell is try and watch the trainers in your gym and the clients they are working with. See how hard they are pushing the client, is the client sweating, or are they just sitting talk to eachother as the expensive minutes go by?

I kind of tracked down my trainer for about a month before I hired him. I saw that he himself was in shape and his clients were really into the workout. He pushed me to the limit and i made significant improvements on my body!

Good luck!

Friday, December 11, 2009, 9:24 AM

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As far as certifications go, the ACSM-HFS* certification is supposed to be the gold standard in the industry. It actually requires a 2 year Associates Degree in a related field before the person can take the exam. There are many certifications out there but no others require any education whatsoever.

Ask the personal trainer for references. Find out which trainers in your gym have lots of experience. What are your specific goals? Many gyms have websites that detail each trainers background, education and specialties.

*American College of Sports Medicine- Health/Fitness Specialist

Friday, December 11, 2009, 1:42 PM

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I completely agree with 9:24. I did the same thing. Funny how some clients of trainers can carry on a conversation while doing every exercise.

When you are on a machine or doing lunges (etc), you should be focused on what you are doing. I can't do that and talk.

See if the trainer is correcting their form and really watching them instead of looking at their notebook or around the gym.

Good luck! Good trainers are out there, but you have to really look.

Friday, December 11, 2009, 2:31 PM

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Yeah watch out for the guy that is texting while his client is doing their crunches. Watch the trainers that give there clients advice on form, etc. Also if you are trying someone and you make progress, great. If you have no motivation and they are not pushing you, move on. Sometimes it just has to do with personalities too. Also you could ask the front desk at the gym who books up. That may not be everything, but people usually stick with someone good, so its an indication of quality.

Thursday, December 31, 2009, 9:44 PM

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You can't which is the major problem. Don't hire one until you only need to tone, not lose weight. they'll only help you build muscle which will just make you bigger until you up the cardio and get your eating under control.

Friday, January 01, 2010, 12:57 PM

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Completely disagree with the pp! I'm a trainer and one of the things I do best is help people lose weight properly. I help them with changing their diet, hold them accountable it they want me to (and they usually do), and monitor cardio and weight workouts. All trainers are not about making people into body builders.

Check certifications. ACSM is best, but you have to have a degree in the area to get ACSM, and my degree is in education. I'm certified through ACE. Ask for references, ask for a trial session, ask around the gym about him/her. If you don't feel comfortable with him/her after several sessions or you question their ability, move on...there are great trainers all over the place, but your first may not be YOUR match. Good luck!

Friday, January 01, 2010, 9:00 PM

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I am also a trainer...ACSM (it is the gold standard and I believe the best) I am ALWAYS looking for new things to learn. There is about to be a major overhaul of certfications which will beneift clients big time. Remember just because a person charges a really high rate does not mean they are good.

A good trainer will be monitoring not only what you do when you are working out together but will also have a plan on what to do when you are NOT together. This includes a cardiovascular workout.

They should also be watching your form and NOT beating you up. Meaning they are teaching you about YOU. On a personal level I want my clients to be weaned off of me. I want them to know how to write out their own programs and consult me every so often when they need something changed.

Another good sign of a good trainer is how they interact with their clients are their clients ;working; or are they just talking. Sometimes you do need to just talk with your trainer but for the bulk of the workout there should be working going on. Okay...I said alot but I really get frustrated with what is going on in my profession sometimes

Saturday, January 02, 2010, 1:17 AM

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I am not a trainer, but had thought about it and have researched. Regarding hiring a trainer to lose weight, I disagree with the poster who said don't hire one to lose weight. A good trainer will be asking what are your goals, and will tailor a program around that. If you want to lose weight they can do that. You can lift and lose weight, and combine that with cardio. Muscle burns more fat so if you add a little muscle you up your calorie burning throughout the day. That is what a good trainer will do. If a trainer doesn't ask a lot of questions about you then you may want to move on. How can they train you if they don't know anything about you.

Saturday, January 02, 2010, 2:02 PM

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014, 6:01 AM

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