You’ve received some great thoughts, especially by Paul Thomas where he talks about checking your client’s ability to do steady-state cardio without dizziness.
You’ve mentioned that your client is healthy, but have not mention how fit he or she is in general. Your client might need more warm-up before engaging in HIIT, and a more gradual cool-down. Also, HIIT is a very individual thing; if you’re committed to giving this client a HIIT workout, you have a life-enhancing reason to do so, and you’ve determined that your client can do steady-state cardio without the same symptoms, adjust the HIIT exercise so that it’s a smaller increase above what their “normal” cardio is. So, for example, if they’re comfortable with an RPE of 5, instead of going from 5 to 9, to 5, to 9, try an activity that goes from 5 to 6, to 5, to 6, to 5, to 6. See how the client tolerates that. Then 5 to 7. And so on.
Also consider whether the activities themselves might be the culprit. Are you doing burpees or other things that drop and raise the head suddenly?
Yes – there is a way to help it – reduce the intensity. Nausea & dizziness are definitely red flags, telling you that something’s not right. High intensity interval training is not for everyone. You need to be in very good aerobic condition from the jump to use that method of training – most people aren’t. I know that HIIT training is “all the rage” these days and steady state aerobic exercise has been getting a bad rap. That’s another issue for another time. Don’t get me wrong – HIIT training is very effective – I include it in my own workouts. But as Janet pointed out, you need to build a good aerobic base before you start cranking up the intensity like that. If your client is still experiencing those symptoms with lower intensity (steady state) aerobic exercise, then it’s time they see a physician to see what’s going on. I hope everything works out well Christine.
HIIT is the newest of trends right now, however….
There is no one size fits all with personal training.
As a personal trainer we are hired to design a program that will fit the needs of our clientele.
I am assuming you did a very detailed intake on this person? No medical issues?
If you are training a client with these reactions, I suggest you lower the intensity and make sure you have proper liability insurance.