What To Look For In an Online Personal Trainer

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An online personal trainer is one who helps their clients to achieve their fitness goals by designing a personalized workout program, providing motivation, showing proper exercise forms, and educating them on the right nutrition and lifestyle habits. You will gain the benefit of additional accountability and support. 

If you’ve started training and don’t see results with your current exercise routine then having an online personal trainer might be your next best choice. Below I will discuss the benefits of an online personal trainer and what to expect from them.

What To Look For In A Virtual Trainer

It’s one thing to be a virtual trainer and another to be effective and deliver results to their clients. In fact, there are many coaches out there who preach themselves as online coaches and don’t look the part or are able to practice what they preach. To avoid a bad quality online PT you should check the following:

1. Online Personal Trainer Certification

This is the first thing that I would check which is a qualified certification that declares the personal trainer you’re enquiring about their services has the relevant knowledge to be able to educate you with the best possible services to help you achieve your fitness goals. Your trainer should have taken a course (can be online or in person) that teaches them how to become a personal trainer.

The best personal trainer certification online in the U.S are from providers such as the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), American Council on Exercise (ACE), Action Personal Trainer Certification, International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA), National Federation of Professional Trainers (NFPT), American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).

If your online coach is from the UK, look for course accreditations that are regulated by Ofqual and are accredited by a reputable company such as the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMPSA), Focus Awards, YMCA Awards, and Active IQ.

We recommend searching for the Pheonix, Arizona-based ISSA personal training certification for your online personal trainer. Whether you want to become a personal trainer yourself, or are simply looking to hire one, ISSA provides elite courses and certifications that hold all ISSA credential holders to the highest quality standards in the field.

2. Testimonials

When you buy something online, for example, Amazon, you would most likely check with review ratings to see the positive and negative experiences of those who have purchased it. You should do the same with online personal training by checking the testimonials from their clients as it could heavily influence how much you can trust your potential online instructor.

3. Experience

Experience gives your online trainer a wealth of professional knowledge, which in itself is a valuable thing to have. They will be able to offer you the best and effective programs to help you achieve your health and fitness goals. Experienced trainers would have come across most of the obstacles that come with online coaching and would have learned various strategies to tackle them.

10 Benefits of An Online Personal Trainer

A fundamental success is to have a goal to carry your focus and resources. An online personal trainer can help you strive towards that and create a sense of purpose and ambition. 

1. Educate You On Proper Exercise Form and Its Variations

One of the primary reasons why someone should have an online personal trainer is that they can teach you about all areas of fitness and exercise. They would know a variety of different exercises that target specific muscles and exercise progressions allow you to move closer to your fitness goals.  

Your online coach should have the full knowledge of what they teach and would be able to answer any questions you have rather than endlessly scrolling on Google and watching YouTube videos. Having a detailed and personalized answer is the best way to progress in a safer and faster manner. 

2. Create a Personalized Program 

You, me, and everyone are all different people with different abilities and conditions when it comes to exercise. This could range from starting out fresh, coming back from an injury, having a poor body image, or a lack of time. An online trainer will do all of the planning and calculation to help you decide how to train, what exercise to choose, and your weights, sets, and reps. 

They should be able to identify where you currently stand and know the next steps you should take in terms of the next exercise progressions, weight, and routines in order to achieve your fitness goals and be able to explain why. This should give you the framework for you to continue when you’re ready to train on your own.

3. Be Your Accountability Partner

Do you remember the last time you said to yourself that you’re going to train a certain amount a week, eat clean, and repeat this until you reach your goals? And then a few days later, you slipped off into your old bad habits and exercise routines. 

An online personal trainer will ensure that their clients are accountable for their actions. This will keep you motivated and stick to your fitness goals. They will check in on you about your day/week on a regular basis, wanting to know how your training and diet plan is going. Knowing that you’ll have to report will make you less likely to slack.

A study suggests that working out with others may have extra health benefits compared to exercising alone. The psychological benefits include enhanced social connectedness, social support, and peer bonding.

4. Establish Realistic Short-Term and Long-Term Goals

Whether it’s weight loss, improving strength, or achieving a specific exercise skill such as the muscle up. These things need time and if your goals are not realistic it will make it easier for you to get discouraged when you achieve them. An online coach will help you set realistic goals that you will be able to achieve, keep you on track to help you reach those goals, and facilitate competence and self-efficacy.  

For example, if the goal of your goal is to do a muscle up in 6 months, it’s not about blindly attempting the move for 6 months to get it. It’s about working for the right muscle groups to condition your pulling and pushing strength to meet the prerequisites: 10 strict pull-ups, 10 strict dips, and 10 push-ups altering the diet and setting the timeframe in which this can be achieved. Start by setting small goals like:

  • Increase pull-ups and dips by 4 reps in 4 weeks. 
  • Add 10 minutes of cardio into your exercise routines.
  • Cut back on processed and sugary foods.

5. Monitor and Measure Your Progress

At the start of the training processes, you will experience positive results with fitness gains, otherwise known as “nooby gains”. This is true if you have little or no training experience. However, as you become experienced, fitness progress would slow down or even stagnate. 

An online personal trainer will increase your level of fitness by measuring a particular set of parameters on at least two occasions and then comparing the data. This includes body weight, BMI, max reps, and personal best records and testing them again over time. An ideal period is every 4-8 weeks. The reason for this is to ensure that you are accountable for your actions and it will keep you motivated.

6. Provide Nutrition and Weight Management Strategies

Calories are a measure of the energy in the foods you consume. To lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you eat. A healthy diet is one that can help you control your weight and your online coach should show you how to know your habits, so its easier to make changes:

  • What, when, and where do you eat
  • How much do you eat?
  • Your physical activity
  • How you are feeling

According to a 2021 study, nutrition interventions are an effective way to improve sleep quality, quantity, and training performance. Your trainer should set you a safe, suitable, and specific diet program. I have created nutrition guides to help you achieve your dream body:

7. Positivity and Empathy

Positivity on its own is very motivating. An online coach should focus on what you are doing well and keep challenging you in different ways. They should create fitness and nutrition plans with your goals in mind taking into consideration your lifestyle, environment, and the changes you need to ensure you progress towards your fitness goals.   

8. Improve Your Mental Health

Physical activities release chemicals in your brain that make you feel good – promoting your self-esteem and helping you concentrate along with sleeping better and feeling better. Your online trainer should always root for you not only about training but also the outside of it too. They will take an interest in your life from family, career, and well-being. By the time you finish your workout, you’ll feel the benefits:

  • Lower tension, stress, and mental fatigue
  • Energy boost
  • A sense of achievement
  • Improved focus and motivation

What Type Of Traning You Can Expect From Your Online Trainer?

There are various types of online training you can do as there are many ways to go about training. You’ll have to ask yourself what your goals are in order to establish what type of fitness personal trainers you will find.

Here are some viable questions to ask yourself. For instance, do you want to lose weight, build strength, endurance, and flexibility, and train for a certain event such as a marathon? Also, do you want to strictly lift weights or strictly do body weight? Here are the different types of training you can expect from your online coach:

  • Online yoga training
  • Online metabolic weight loss coach
  • Virtual bike trainer
  • Online weightlifting coach
  • Online PT class

The Takeaways: Online Coaching 

Now you know the roles, responsibilities, and benefits of having an online personal trainer, you should be well informed about the traits to look for in your coach because, at the end of the day, they can provide you with support, education, accountability, and motivation for you to reach your fitness goals. At Gymless, we are currently accepting new clients for online personal training. There are limited spaces available to book your first session free so be quick!

Thanks a lot, my Gymless Heroes—we will catch you next time!

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