Just recently, I passed my Personal Training Certification exam with the National Council on Strength and Fitness. Everyone should be aware that while many big-box gyms require their trainers to have some form of certification to work there, you do not need any sort of certification in order to be a Personal Trainer. Anyone with any background can do it.
That aside, I’m here to tell you that the personal training business model is a scam. Now, not all personal trainers adopt the model I am going to talk about, but it’s important that you know the business of most trainers out there in order for you to make an informed decision about your health.
Now there’s really only one thing you need to keep in mind when it comes to knowing the risks of falling into the trap:
Trainers Need You Coming Back in order to Make Money
Think about how trainers make money. You come to them with specific goals in mind, but do you know if your trainer is doing everything they can to help you reach them?
Personal Trainers need you to keep coming back to them in order for them to continue making money. So there’s a chance that your progress and best interests are actually being held back or drawn out due to the fact that your trainer wants you to continue to come back to them.
So what are the telltale signs of the Personal Trainer scam?
The most important thing you should be wary of when assessing your Personal Trainer and determining if you are falling into the trap is if you find yourself always confused at the end of every workout.
Are you ending each session thinking “What the heck did I just do?”
This is one of the most common tactics Personal Trainers use to create a reliance on coming back to them.
Personal Trainers will have you come in for an hour, instruct you on a list of 12-15 exercises that are different every time you come in.
You may be getting in shape, but you’re reliant on the Trainer’s “knowledge” in order to feel like you had a successful workout.
This tactic ensures that you continue coming back to your trainer, because while you are learning how to do very specific movements and exercises, your trainer isn’t actually teaching you about how your body works, moves, and behaves in order for you to truly progress.
Why? Because if this is done, you’ll be able to apply the skills and knowledge you’ve acquired on your own and you will no longer need a trainer!
Not all personal trainers are bad, obviously there is a spectrum. And sometimes, people are willing to use a trainer solely for the motivational factor alone. Some people need another person to tell them what to do for them to ever do it. And that’s a great reason to use one.
But if you are feeling like you don’t really understand the value in your trainer, you’re not quite satisfied with your results, or are feeling a little too reliant on your Personal Trainer, keep these signs in mind to make sure you’re making the most of your time in the gym and your money.