I just got NCSF certified and am trying to figure out where to go from here. I have a fair amount of personal experience (extremely physically active and in sports since early childhood, been doing personal training as a client for a little more than a year, been instructing some people on techniques in Judo and archery) but I don’t yet have much confidence as my ability as a trainer. I’m afraid that I’ll get a client and won’t know how to help them; what they need or what exercises to do with them.
I understand the only way to have experience is to jump in and get experience but I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions/ advice on how to do that, a good course of action from here, advice in general, etc..
Do you have a mentor? Shadowing other trainers helps a lot. As others have said, starting out at gyms and fitness centers, while not particularly lucrative, will give you a bunch of experience with different types of clients.
IMO, your best bet is to find one or two trainers whose style you particularly like, and shadow them. Or find work at a club whose regular staff meetings include co-education (i.e. we take turns at one gym sharing what we learned with our peers when we attend trainings).