Hi, I’m a new trainer I’m 23 years old and I look young. What can I do to find people who will take me seriously and respect my knowledge to some degree? I don’t know what kind of client likes to work with a young trainer. I would like to help those with lower or middle class incomes. Please share any ideas for a new trainer to find who they can help the most, Thank you.
Andrew, I think it is wonderful that you observe a great need in an under-served population. There may be community programs where you can help and at the same time develop a good reputation for yourself.
It is important to strike a balance. You have bills to pay, and you cannot be an effective trainer it you live on constant worry about money. There is nothing unethical about making a decent living. That will enable you to further your education; just imagine having enough left over to go to one of the IDEA conferences.
Thank you Shawn and Karin. I will focus my efforts where they will be fruitful. I just can’t help but notice that most out of shape people have low incomes. I hope that in time I can find a way to help these people while still focusing on the needs of the wealthy. I never thought of my young appearance as a conversation starter; maybe I can turn this thing around and use it to my advantage. Awesome idea I feel more confident.
Shawn is right. You will have problems finding clients in that income-bracket who are able to afford to train with you. And – sad as it sounds – I often found that free training is not really valued by the recipient.
Having said that, a novice trainer usually has to start with comp session; to get exposure and experience.
One more comment on the wording of your question: you ask how you can “appear” competent. It may just be a linguistic sensitivity of mine but you want to give more than just the appearance of competence. Acting and looking professionally is important. Be also aware that people watch you when you are ‘off duty’. You mentioned in an earlier question that you look younger than you are. Try to offset that by at least acting mature. You can then use your young appearance as a conversation starter.