I assume that you are talking about personal training for more than one person at a time and not group exercise.
Frankly, I don’t know why there should be any other assessment than one you would do for an individual. I know it takes more time but you will need to know which exercises to modify for certain individuals in the group based on the assessment. Such assessment will also give you an idea if there should be a person who – based on the assessment – just does not meet the criteria for such group training.
Hi Emily. Over the past 9 years I’ve used a variety of assessments at the beginning of my group training programs including FMS, overhead squat as well as performance assessments for athletes. Group size determines which assessment(s) I chose to use.
I find that the NASM overhead squat assessment is easiest to incorporate into a training session with a group of clients. You can find the overhead squat templates on nasm.org under their resources link. I use the assessment session as an opportunity to teach my clients about their body and to empower them to become their own expert.
For example, I currently have a group of 8 participants. I paired them up and gave them each the NASM overhead squat template. As a group I had them assess each other using the template as a guideline. I always find that my clients enjoy being an active part of their assessments.
To ensure that each participant is assessed correctly, I do one more thing: video tape front and side view of their overhead squat. (This is very simple to do if you have an iPhone/smart phone). I then use the iPhone App called ‘Coaches Eye’ which allows me to take a video of my client and review it for them in slow motion, with annotation and verbal comments. By the next day, I send each participant in my class a personalized coaches review of their assessment with suggestions for flexibility and strengthening exercises.
I hope this helps 🙂
Same as with individual session training; if its group training and not a small class. If its a small class, I give everyone an index card, have them write their name on it and draw a stick figure, and use that to track all of their assesment findings. Works with large groups too, and helps for memorizing names when categorizing different fitness levels.
Hi Emily. In my opinion, no mater if you’re training an individual or a small group, there are certain “minimum” assessment tools that everyone should use. For example, a PAR-Q, and a health assessment questionnaire would be this bare minimum for me. However, when I’m working with a group, I will also include other assessments that I feel are pertinent to the group or the type of training that they will be undergoing. For example, with a group of seniors, I may require each senior to obtain a physician’s approval.
I hope that this helps.