Most of my clients choose a combination of individual training and fitness plans to get the most bang for their buck. I generally only put clients on fitness plans if they also do individual training sessions with me. I like to check in on my clients during our sessions to ensure they stay on track with their goals, maintain good form, etc. Unfortunately, clients only on fitness plans do not tend to adhere to their program as well.
Personal training is slightly different in person as opposed to virtual training. I usually travel to the client's home and use my equipment for in-person training. I prefer the in-person training because I can see the client better, touch them to move them in different ways, show them proper form more efficiently, etc. For virtual training, I call the client through either FaceTime or Google Duo, and the client uses their equipment. While the virtual training is not quite as effective, it lets me have clients all over the country and allows for flexibility, For the fitness plans, I create the client's workout through an app called Ptminder. The clients download the app, and their workouts are right on their phone for them to complete at their convenience. Of course, there is a printable version as well- for those who are more old-school!
I expect my clients to commit to the program. If a client requests I check in on them weekly to make sure they stay accountable to their workouts and nutrition, I will- but I expect that when a client enters my program, they have the mindset and the motivation to work hard. I check in on my clients during their sessions, but I don't find checking in every day benefits my clients because they need to learn how to keep themselves accountable to their goals. I have learned through personal experience that I can't want my client's goals for them. I can write them a program, but I can't do the work. If you need a trainer who checks in on you every day to ensure you did your workout and didn't eat only McDonald's the whole week, you're probably not ready for a trainer.
While working with equestrians is my niche within the fitness industry, I am certified to work with anyone! My certification through the National Academy of Sports Medicine educated me to have the ability to work with most demographics. I can design HIIT workouts for weight loss, low-impact exercises for pregnant women, maximal strength for bodybuilding, you name it! However, just because I am certified to work with anyone does not mean I am the best coach for every goal and preferred training style. My strength as a trainer is creating a stronger rider. I focus on low-intensity exercise to work on mobility, balance, suppleness, etc. While I have some clients who want to lose weight, weight loss is not my focus- mainly because I need to be certified to help clients with their nutrition. I usually refer weight loss clients to weight loss specialists. I also rarely have clients lift heavy weights (greater than 15 pounds) because most equestrians do not require that degree of weight training. While I can still coach someone to a 300-pound squat, there are better coaches for the job. I am not a running coach either- I could write someone a program, but they would be better off working with a coach specializing in running.
My point is that I am certified to do it all- but I understand my limitations as a coach and prefer to focus on what I know and what I'm good at!
I expect my clients to walk around for 5-10 minutes and foam roll their designated muscles before our session begins so we have time to focus on more challenging exercises. I start all my sessions by checking in with my client asking how they are feeling that day, if anything is particularly stiff or sore, how their weekend was, how their riding lesson was, etc. While we are catching up, the client begins their warm-up. All my client's sessions include a warm-up and a cool-down to prevent injury and work on any muscle imbalances. These include different mobility and static stretches that the client needs. Once the client is warmed up, we begin the actual workout portion. I typically only complete the exercises with my clients if they specifically request it, if I need to demonstrate a new exercise or help the client with their form. If I complete the whole workout with them, it makes it more difficult for me to observe their form, coach them, count reps, etc. While the client is performing an exercise, I count reps, coach them through proper form and technique, watch for muscle imbalances, etc. I also observe how the client progresses through their exercises to see if they are ready for new exercises or variations.
I am an extremely encouraging coach! I never use harsh language or guilt my clients because I do not find it beneficial. That being said, different clients require different coaching styles. For example, I coach a sassy youth kid much differently than a serious select. I use positive language when coaching a client through a challenging exercise; I don't get frustrated when a client doesn't understand, I don't get upset when they aren't doing it right, etc. I always try to make the client feel better about themselves after they leave their session. My job is to create a willing client, not an anxious one!
I am incredibly flexible when it comes to busy schedules!! Since my business is my full-time job, I don't have days or times I can't offer on my schedule. I am also flexible when life happens, and clients need to cancel their sessions last minute! I offer options ideal for clients with busy lives, such as shorter training sessions and fitness plans the client completes on their own time. I will not guilt you or make you feel bad about yourself for missing a workout- it happens! I create as consistent a schedule as I can for each client. If we try to "fit it in" instead of ingraining it into the schedule, our workouts never happen.
No problem! One of my main goals with my business is to have options for people on budgets. Personal training is an investment, and it will not be cheap. Progress takes time. Personal training is, unfortunately, not something you do for a month and expect results. Most clients work with me for six months or longer; I rarely have short-term clients. For clients on a budget, I offer a few different options. I offer shorter training sessions at a lower rate, and fitness plans the client completes on their own. I have clients who spend anywhere from $30 to $600+ monthly. I honestly can work with you no matter what your budget is!! Clients on budgets will need more self-accountability since I will not see them as often, but they can be just as successful as anyone else in my program.
Technically, no. Injuries are, unfortunately, outside my scope of practice. I cannot diagnose, treat, or help with injuries. When a client comes to me with a pre-existing injury, I require quite a bit of background knowledge about the injury to create the right program for them. Depending on the injury, especially if it is still present, I may need to be in contact with the client's doctor, physical therapist, etc., or I may require a doctor's release for physical activity before I begin working with them. Once I know the history, I can create the right program for that client. Suppose I notice a client has a persistent problem or the beginning of an injury. In that case, I will recommend they see a practitioner to diagnose what is going on so I can proceed correctly with my programming. That said, once an injury is properly rehabbed and the client is released to begin physical activity, exercise is the best prevention! Once I know the client's history, I can create quite an effective stability program to help prevent re-injuries and new injuries.
Nope! Not a single one of my current clients works out in a gym. I am highly effective at creating home workouts with minimal equipment. I find most of my clients struggle with gym anxiety, do not have access to a gym or do not care for a gym environment. If I have a client who has a gym membership and wants to work out in a gym, that is fine; but honestly, it is more cost-effective to purchase $100 or so of equipment instead of paying for a monthly gym membership. For an effective equestrian-focused workout, expensive equipment is not necessary. A client only needs a yoga mat, a yoga ball, 5 and 10-pound weights, resistance bands, a balance pad, and a foam roller. I rarely program an exercise that requires more equipment.
Depends on your goals! If your goal is to grow muscle and become stronger, weight training is a critical component of that process. However, traditional weight training is not necessary. I program low-weight, high-rep exercises to promote muscular endurance- meaning you will probably not pick up a weight heavier than 10 pounds in my program. If weight training scares you or you dislike it, I can still create an effective workout for you! While most of my clients do use weights, they are optional. Highly recommended, but not essential!
Clients on workout plans can access all their workouts on an app called PTminder. PTminder is the app I currently use to upload all my clients' workouts. It is computer, iPhone, and Android-friendly. Clients also have the option for me to email their workouts directly to them so they can print hard copies- popular for my old-school clients! PTminder contains all the client's previous workouts and notes- making it simple to track their progress. Once on the app, the client clicks on the training button, bringing them to their workouts. The client selects the workouts created for that week, presses begin, and their exercises appear in a slideshow-type formation they can complete at their own pace. Each slideshow page includes the name of the exercise, a short description, a video (if I have the exercise filmed!!), a brief description of the exercise, and the number of sets, reps, weights, etc. The app makes it very simple for clients to complete their workouts independently!
Nope! As long as the client is comfortable and wearing clothing that allows them to move their body effectively, I could not care less if they are wearing LuluLemon or a T-shirt they purchased from Wal-Mart. That being said, quality footwear is important. I recommend a shoe that fits, is comfortable, and has a flat-ish sole that does not push the client's weight around in the shoe. For example, some shoes provide too much arch support and cause the foot to be unbalanced. I often recommend working out barefoot so shoes cannot affect the client's balance.
I can help guide clients toward healthy living and eating habits, but I am not a nutrition coach or dietician. I cannot create meal plans for my clients or tell them precisely what to eat. I can help clients determine their macronutrients and ideal calorie intake, recommend healthy recipes or food alternatives, etc., but that is about my limit regarding nutrition!
Consistency is key. The more consistently a client works out, the more likely they will see timely results. A client who consistently works out two times per week will see more significant gains than a client who works out four times a week one week, then the next week once, then the next week not at all, etc. Muscle takes time to grow- about four to eight weeks of consistent workouts. Stability progresses sooner- taking about two to four weeks of consistent work. Mobility training typically takes two to six weeks for results. But again, it all depends on how consistent you are with your workouts! Patience is important. You will feel the results before you see them- meaning you will feel your clothes fit differently before seeing a drop on the scale or a change in the mirror. Progress takes time- have faith in the process, and you will be rewarded!
As I mentioned above, consistency is key for results. I recommend exercising at least three times per week, but exercise can mean different things. I recommend working out in my program at least two times per week for results, ideally closer to four, and then at least once a week biking, walking, hiking, riding, etc. I recommend my clients complete cardio-type workouts on their own. It is more efficient for us to work on form, control, balance, etc., during our sessions and allow clients to complete cardio-type exercises on their own time.
Coaching is my true passion in life- it is an extremely rewarding experience. There is no greater feeling than hearing a client tell me their life is changed, their riding has improved tremendously, or they fit into old clothes again. I love helping my clients achieve their goals- in and out of the saddle. I love hearing clients tell me how they can finally ride their horse effectively, feel more confident in the mirror, can lift heavy groceries up the stairs- the list goes on. I develop strong relationships with my clients because of our shared passion for horses. My clients become part of my life- I love hearing about how their kids are doing in school, how their horse finally nailed its haunch turn, how their date night was, etc. My clients aren't just my "clients"; they're good friends. One of the coolest experiences is when I meet an out-of-state client at a horse show, take a local client out to lunch, or stay with an out-of-state client when I travel. The best part of my job is the connections I build.