Raymond Tucker

Raymond Tucker

Hiring a personal trainer is an investment in your health, and you want to make sure your investment will give you the rate of return you are looking for. Here are a few tips in hiring the right personal trainer for your specific fitness goals.

The first step I recommend when hiring a personal trainer is to find out what type of education they have. Do they have an undergraduate or graduate degree in kinesiology, exercise physiology, exercise sports science or a related field?

The next step is to find out what type of personal training certification they currently hold. What are the requirements for their certification, and does it require continuing education hours to remain current? You should hire a personal trainer who has accumulated several hours of practical and varied training experience and is staying abreast of the evolving knowledge and training methods.

The third step is to ensure they have a current CPR/First Aid/AED certification from the American Red Cross. It might also be a good idea to ask what experience they have had in dealing with emergencies.

The trainer with the best physique might not be the most knowledgeable when it comes to meeting your fitness goals. Ask your personal trainer what their style of training is. If it is bodybuilding, powerlifting or CrossFit and they do not have experience and knowledge in developing various training programs, they are going to train you based on their own style of training.

Questions to ask yourself:

I have not performed an advanced multi-joint exercise in years, so why are we starting with advanced exercises?

Are we following the proper progression and regression for each exercise?

Do I have discomfort in my muscle, or do I feel joint pain?

If an exercise hurts, why am I still doing it?

Would you buy the first car you see? Hopefully not. You would conduct your own research to make sure the car meets your goals and desires. You would also want to take your car for a test drive to see how it feels. There is no difference in hiring a personal trainer. Conduct your research, ask to observe a training session to see how they interact and request contact information from other clients they have trained.

Remember, exercise should not hurt, and there is no such thing as “no pain, no gain!”

Raymond Tucker is an assistant professor of kinesiology in the UHV School of Education, Health Professions and Human Development.

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