Health and fitness are one of the booming industries today as people are getting more conscious when it comes to their health, appearance, sports performance (recreational and professional) and even work performance. With this fact, a lot of people are shifting into fitness/sports performance training as their profession or as an extra source of income. Which means, the pool of coaches you can choose from are getting bigger, so how do you know who to choose as the person to guide you in your fitness journey?
Different coaches have different training beliefs, styles, specialties, personalities, marketing strategies and more. But excellent coaches do have common qualities they possess which make them trustworthy and are very in demand to a lot of clients.
Here are 5 common qualities you can look for in an excellent fitness coach
1. They care about your fitness goal and explains to you how you can achieve it
Obviously, the reason you will hire a coach is to help you hit your fitness/sports performance goals. Your coach should be responsible to get to know your goals, the reasons why you want them and they should do what they can to help you achieve them. They should be able to design a training program, explain it to you how it will help you move closer to getting your goals. However, some coaches can just give you some random exercises with the equipment available at the time you come to the gym that won’t really be beneficial in optimizing training results. The best coaches are truly serious about you reaching your goals.
2. They do an initial assessment and regularly tracks your progress
Clients will want to reach goals that are measurable, so what do excellent coaches usually do? They measure everything worth measuring and other changes that are significant to adjust your program as you progress. These can be movement assessments, body measurements, fitness tests, lifestyle checks, nutrition and diet records, sports performance evaluations, photo comparisons and many more. As long as your coach gives you initial assessments which are important to your fitness goals, continues to track your progress regularly (4-6 weeks or depending on your agreement) and adjusts your program based on results, you definitely are in good hands.
3. They coach you. They don’t just cheerlead or count reps
The best coaches should be able to guide you well during a training session. They should be able to teach, progress or regress the exercises as needed and push you hard enough to get the best training effect for your body to adapt, change and get stronger. Also, they are able to make effective programs written on paper simple and can be realistically done rather than make complicated programs that look good on paper but cannot be actually done in reality. Any coach can count reps, make you exhausted through a random workout session but it takes a good one to coach you well, make you better and stronger through a well-designed training program.
4. They are credible, qualified, and seek to continuously improve
The best coaches invest in quality education and are always on the lookout for ways to upgrade themselves. Fitness and sports performance are evolving fast so should the people who are best in the business and want to stand out from the rest. Excellent coaches normally make time for continuous study and get training from mentors or attend courses that will beneficial for the success of their clients’ goals.
5. They practice what they preach
It will be hard to trust someone who can’t walk his/her talk. While this doesn’t mean that all the best coaches look like bodybuilders or fitness models (unless if that is what you’re looking for) they should have at least above average levels of health & fitness compared to the majority of the population. This means that they should be able to perform the exercises they are teaching to their clients (unless they are injured or have some special reason why they cannot demonstrate at that time). It makes them credible and that they know how training/nutrition/change psychology affects the body positively.
Finding the right coach for you is crucial to help you achieve your fitness goals faster, so don’t just get the next available coach at the gym. Make sure to take some time to interview, observe and get to know the person who will guide you achieve your fitness goals in life.