Today I would like to touch on a disturbing trend I see in many gyms and personal training studios lately. If you have been to a gym or a large personal training facility, you have been exposed to the phenomenon known as the”show off trainer”. This is a trainer who has his or her clients perform exercises beyond their capabilities, thereby putting them at great risk for injury. These exercises are not only extremely advanced but for the most part unnecessary. Listen, I am just as impressed as you are when I see someone performing a one handed pushup while simultaneously juggling fire, and talking on a cell phone. Seriously, I have watched as out of shape beginners are asked to “perform” jump lunges on a Bosu with a medicine ball overhand bounce. If you don’t know what that is don’t worry, either did the person performing the exercise. The benefit of such wild theatrics, while impressive, are minimal at best when weighed against the risks. Exercises like that are better left to professionals and circus performers.
These trainers place their clientele in jeopardy so that they can showcase their knowledge and impress the unwitting. Beware of these trainers folks. I don’t care how many certificates your trainer has on his wall, this sort of showboating should not be rewarded. Your trainer should be aware of your limits and never allow you to overstep them. He or she should push you right to the edge but never over it. A trainer is there for guidance and as your protection against injury. His or her knowledge should provide you with a great and safe workout, and most important of all the results you seek. A client should never be used as a sideshow in order to increase monthly sales. When a trainer is concerned with their next pay-period total, their focus is diverted from you and directed towards a dollar figure. Is that the way you want to be seen?
High turnover rate, low pay and an emphasis on monthly sales fosters this atmosphere. Competition is fierce and many find they need a second job to pay the bills. While this is certainly commendable, it doesn’t bode well for clients. Would you feel comfortable if your Orthopedic Surgeon were moonlighting as a parking attendant?
A great trainer lives by his clients referrals.