I’ve had my fair share of gym memberships. In various gyms I’ve seen great trainers, and I’ve seen some down right horrible trainers just based on how the client responds to the trainer. I don’t hide the fact that I’m a personal trainer, but I don’t flaunt it either. In the course of conversations with other gym members, I’ve found that many trainers often leave clients with more questions than they give answers, and when I’m asked as a personal trainer to clarify something that their trainer has told them, I do my best to give an honest after getting more information. Without sounding pompous, the case has been that more often than not I was able to more effectively answer a question for another trainer’s client than was the trainer.
Some trainers would consider me giving these answers as “undercutting” them or trying to take their business, but I make it a point not to solicit other trainers’ clients as a professional courtesy. What is the most professional way to deal with situations like this, and do you think that it is wrong to simply clarify something for another trainer’s client if that client wasn’t satisfied with the answer that the trainer gave him/her? Also, do you think that as professionals we should just stand idly by and watch other trainers’ clients have less than fulfilling fitness experiences? Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions? Concerns? I’m open!
As Wendy said…when you’re a Group Fitness Instructor and a Personal Trainer – people tend to ask you questions because they know you from Group. I recently had this issue…a class participant told me her Trainer told her that cardio classes were “worthless”…her friend chimed in…”yeah, what do you think”. It was so hard to hold my tongue…but I had to stop and think and realize I was hearing only one side of the conversation – AND more than likely he didn’t say useless the way she did (or perhaps not at all). I prefer to use the “do unto others” rule – to maintain my integrity and ensure that no one can speak ill of my professionalism.
My response was that since I am not her Trainer and don’t know her goals or the training program he has her on, I cannot speak to that comment. I suggested she talk to her Trainer to get clafication, tell him of her concerns and perhaps he’ll create a plan that incorporates some classes into her program since she’s gonna do them anyway. Classes are not just about the workout for most women, and she needs to speak with him about why she “needs” the classes.
But of course, if she’s not satisfied with her trainer or the answers he provides to an honest question, its within her rights to look for another one.
*oh, one last point – be careful to whom you offer advice about their current trainer. That same person who is so “sincerely” seeing your advice because he/she doesn’t like what his/her trainer said – could be the same person who will run to another trainer when YOU say something he/she doesn’t like.