When To Fire Your Fitness Trainer, Part 1

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Teaching Side Plank with TRX®

As a fitness trainer at a very high end luxury private island resort I have the unique opportunity to work regularly with other people's clients. The majority of the people who take personal training sessions while on holiday are pretty fit to begin with and are looking to maintain what they achieved at home. Unfortunately, most have lousy trainers that cost a whole lot of money and time.

I was talking to a client this morning and he wondered, "Why do we just assume that the trainer knows more than we do? Why do we listen even when we are not so sure the advice is any good? And why don't we worry more when we get no feedback on our form or reasons why we are doing specific exercises?" I wonder the same thing. We do not do that with medical care, with financial matters, or even with travel planning. Yet, somehow, we trust personal fitness trainers with our bodies.

  • Fire your trainer when you ask what the purpose of the exercise is and your trainer says, "Don't ask; just do it!" If you ask me why I choose a certain exercise or a certain muscle group to focus on, I will be able to answer you. For example, I have my clients do a lot of full range of motion squats. They generally do not enjoy the exercise and often question me. My answer is, "Squatting is how we get up and down from the toilet seat, the chair, the bed, and the floor. If you do not keep working your squat, you will lose the ability to squat." Hence the "comfort height" toilet.
  • Fire Your Trainer when you are in back, neck, or joint pain and your trainer tells you to "stop whining!" Many people hire a trainer because they are in some kind of pain and want to know which are the best exercises to do and how to do them well. If you are exercising in great form you will feel your muscles working hard, but should not be in neck, back, or joint pain.

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NYC resident Lynda Lippin is a world-renowned Pilates, Fitness, and Reiki instructor with nearly 25 years of experience. She is also an accomplished writer and a former Philosophy professor. In her Featured Column, Lynda will lead you on a path towards Fitness Sanity. Got Questions? Want Lynda to check…

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