I’d consider within the framework of how risky a movement appears to be. It would have to be pretty dangerous for me to say something, and I wouldn’t do it during session. I might write a tactful note to the training director, presenting the facts.
Client Y, apparent physical capability level
Exercise you found inappropriate
Why it appeared inappropriate
That’s a very tricky situation.
Overall, I would not correct the form in front of the trainer or client.
Courtesy towards the other trainer goes out the window when you (the outsider) correct another trainer. Managers should do this (and it would be best if this was done in private).
Also, since you don’t work in the facility, why should the client listen to you? Did the client ask for your opinion?
As The Rock would say ‘know your role…’
If someone is being completely negligent then yes. Some people will take offense to you offering simple advice even if it is good for them. I find this a lot with males as opposed to females. No guy wants another guy telling him he’s wrong, its sort of a macho thing. Females on the other hand are a lot more receptive. Sometimes I just sit back and shake my head, knowing the injuries i’ve sustained while using a proper warm up, form, and cool down. Some of these people will not be around for long going the way they are going, but you live and learn.
I am going to play devils advocate- if one of my trainers were prescribing downright dangerous activities, I would want to be made aware. If sweet Mrs. Housewife who has never worked out before is being given straight leg dead lifts with heavy weight or a third trimester woman is being challenged to do 500 crunches on her back, I would hope that an observer would discretely approach me so that I can review training practices together with my trainer later.
If the safety of others is eating at you, it may be appropriate to speak to the head trainer or director and very delicately share your observation. It is their facility and they can decide if the information is something they wish to act on. The feedback may also be better received coming from within the facility.
But honestly- if I saw something that crazy I’d be looking around for John Quinones from the TV show What Would You Do?
Most of the time it’s best to agree to disagree with what we see.