How to choose a Personal Trainer?

Congratulations on deciding to become proactive about your health and wellness. You made the decision to hire a Personal Trainer, but now you have the task of actually picking one. Where should you begin? And what should you look for? A Personal Trainer should be certified through a reputable fitness organization and have the education necessary to help you achieve your fitness goals.

Qualifications to consider:

Experience
Your Personal Trainer should have several years of experience and even more importantly, that experience should be in relation to your fitness goals.

Education
As mentioned above, a Personal Trainer should be certified through one of the reputable fitness organizations such as NASM, ISSA or ACSM (more certification information is below). Their certification should also be current.

CPR and/or First Aid
The Personal Trainer you hire should possess a certification in CPR and/or first aid. Most Personal Trainers will tell you upfront what certifications they have, if not, feel free to inquire.

Professionalism
Your Personal Trainer should be well groomed, fit, and be on time and ready to go at your scheduled appointment time. He/she should also do a thorough assessment of your health and goals prior to starting your program, and then continue to track your progress over time.

Personality
You may not consider this at first, but you will be spending time with this person while working closely on your fitness goals, so it will be important that you and your Personal Trainer are compatible. You want someone who listens to you, pays attention to your needs, provides constructive criticism when necessary, and honestly assesses your health and progress.

As far as certification goes, there is a difference between Personal Trainers that are just certified and those that are certified and qualified to train. You want to consider both the experience the Personal Trainer has, and the type of certification he/she has received.

Legitimate Personal Training Certification Companies:

• National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM)
• Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA)
• American Fitness Professional and Associates (AFPA)
• International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA)
• American Council on Exercise (ACE)
• American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)
• National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA)

Good luck!