As a newly qualified PT there is a pressure to feel like you are supposed to be endlessly knowledgeable and that you have to be all things to all people. This can lead you to over reach in various ways and sometimes speak outside of your scope of expertise. This series of 5 blogs, shares some of my experiences so you don’t trip up on the same things I did!
As with any new career or venture you will make many mistakes at first. In fact you will always make mistakes, although they will hopefully become less common and less serious 😊As soon as you think you know it all you will no longer grow as a PT or as an individual so you should always be open to learning opportunities and trying out new things, don’t be scared to still make mistakes, just try not to make the same mistake twice!
There are a few incidents in particular, from earlier on in my career as a PT, which really make me cringe when I think back to them :-/
Experience 1: Managing Client Expectations
Do not give people unrealistic expectations. People are paying you to get them results. The last thing you want to do is dampen their expectations or pour cold water on their enthusiasm. After all, if they think that something is possible and you tell them that it isn’t, then it feels like you are telling them not to train with you. However, if you can explain with confidence and authority why their expectations may be unrealistic and enthusiastically explain what is possible, how you will get them there and the myriad of other benefits that they will get along the way, then you will come across as a confident and knowledgeable expert in the field – which is exactly what they are looking for!
One client asked me if it was possible to put on 4kg of muscle in one month and without thinking I said yes. Now this guy was an ectomorph, a hard gainer, and I hadn’t even explained that to him yet. I certainly hadn’t explained exactly what it was he would have to do to get anywhere near his target of 4kg in one month. Instead when he asked the question all I heard was him questioning whether I, as a trainer, could get him to his target. And my go to answer was yes because I wanted him to think I was the best PT to get him the results he wanted.
I should have removed my ego from the conversation and given him the straight facts about the situation. Btw this guy was a doctor so he should already have known the answer, or maybe he did and was testing me, either way I could tell as soon as I answered yes that he could smell the bullshit. I hadn’t come across as genuine and I knew it.
Be prepared to explain cold, hard facts to people even if it isn’t what you think they want to hear. Be ready to explain to them exactly what they will have to do to hit their targets, especially if these are very ambitious targets. People are paying you to help them get results and that includes managing their expectations. You should always be ready to motivate clients with an extensive list of the benefits that your training and nutrition plans will bring them, even if it isn’t the 4kg of muscle in one month that they specifically asked you about!
If you want to know more about me or engage me as your Personal Trainer, take a look at https://www.andycummingspt.co.uk or https://www.swisscottagepersonaltraining.com