With the Winter Olympics officially over, many of us are feeling inspired. From training for the marathon to skiing there’s so many fun and different ways to get our exercise in during the winter months.
If you’re planning on going skiing or snowboarding but have little to no experience don’t panic, your personal trainer is a lot more equipped to help you than you may initially have thought! Your personal trainer can prepare workouts and exercises for you that are specially designed to support your goals.
Much like most exercises skiing and snowboarding require good core stability as you need to be able to engage your core whilst on the slopes in order to improve your balance and remain in an upright position whilst speeding downhill with a much less likely change of getting injured due to falling. So, asking your trainer for exercises that will strengthen up your core would be extremely beneficial!
Some of our favourite core strengthening exercises are:
- Oblique twist
How to do it? Sit on a mat with your legs bent and raised in the air at 45 degrees. Cross your ankles. Whilst looking straight ahead hold the dumbbell in both hands at chest height with your elbows bent. Twist your torso to one side using your abs to control the speed of the dumbbell and lower the dumbbell to the ground before twisting your torso to the other side.
Why is it good? By moving the dumb-bell from side to side with your legs in the air the exercise will help target your obliques, strengthen your abs and improve your balance.
- Hanging knee raises
How to do it? Holding on to the handles of a pull up machine, raise your knees in the air and crunch them into your core before lowering them again without placing your feet on the ground. You should be suspended in the air hanging.
Why is it good? This exercise works the upper part of the stomach which will help to reveal the upper part of a six pack. This exercise requires control and strength in the core so as not to rock and can be progressed onto straight leg raises once it becomes easy. This exercise will improve your arm strength as well!
How to do it? The best method to perform the perfect plank is to ensure your hips aren’t raised too high or dipped to low. Start by propping up onto your elbows and drive your bodyweight back into your heels. Next tense your abs tightly and squeeze your glutes. Start by holding the plank for thirty seconds and slowly try to increase the timer to a minute then to up to two minutes.
Once you’ve nailed the plank make it a little harder by pushing up from your elbows onto your hands and then coming back down to your elbows without putting your knees down for the whole 30 seconds, working on increasing the timer each time you practice.
Why it is good? The plank is a great exercise to help you increase the strength in your abs whilst additionally building lean muscle mass in your arms. One of the other top benefits of performing the plank is that it can be done in short blasts whilst still leaving you feeling worked out.
Other exercises that will build up your lower body leg strength would also be beneficial to your training regime. You would be able to improve your power and stability and lessen your chances of falling over whilst on the slopes.
Why not enquire at PT Workspace for a trainer who can help you develop strength to achieve your goals now.
It is that time of year where thought becomes action! The London Marathon is taking place this year on 22 April 2018 and if you’ve always wanted to run a Marathon but were not quite sure whether you were ready for it, or how to get yourself into peak physical condition, then read on!
Running that marathon may be something that you have done before, and you may be eager to take part but what if you have been talked into it by friends/colleagues who would like you to participate but you are not quite as confident or experienced as they are? Well for all you budding marathon runners here are a few tips to help you which will also act as a reminder for the experienced runners amongst you!
Lots of people take part for different reasons, you may not be aiming to beat Paula Radcliffe’s world record of 2 hours, 15 minutes and 25 seconds, but lots of serious runners will have their own personal time challenges to achieve. Some people run for fun and to support charities and may not be aiming for speed but endurance is still key! So even if you don’t really want or expect to win, make sure you train properly to prevent unnecessary injuries or aggravate old ones.
Getting into Shape
There is a lot of training needed in order to get into the best possible physical condition before you run that marathon. Firstly, it is probably worth checking with your doctor that there is no medical reason why you shouldn’t take part.
The Right Personal Trainer
Once you have the all clear then start planning your training sessions. You may find that asking a Personal Trainer to make sure you prepare properly would give you that expert help that makes the difference between starting and finishing!
A personal trainer can help with workouts that are specially designed to support your marathon goals. If the personal trainer has already competed in a marathon or is aiming on attending with you even the better as they will know from personal experience how your body and muscles are going to react to the pressure and stress and can tailor make your workouts. A good place to start your search for the best trainer for you could be at your local gym.
Exercises that are suited to Marathon Runners
Improving your general physical fitness is very important although different personal trainers will have their own ideas as to how best get you ready for that important day.
Some of the following will apply to you:
- Improving the strength of your muscles will make your body stronger and less likely to receive an injury
- Cardiovascular conditioning helps with your stamina, thereby making the marathon more fun
- Building up leg muscles with squats such as barbell squats, and exercises such as calf raises
- Jumping exercises such as box jumps improve leg strength and for the more experienced plyometric exercises will assist in strength and directional change of movement
- Building up and maintaining a steady pace over long distances and extending the time spent running is an essential form of preparation
- Deadlift weight lifting builds up endurance, strengthens the core, legs and the lower back but is best carried out under the eagle eye of a qualified personal trainer due to the higher risk of injury from this type of exercise
- Additional training exercises such as upper body workouts, abdominal training and endurance exercises should all be part of the preparation
But don’t overdo the exercise – remember you want to be fit and able for the marathon!
Also Keep a close eye on your Diet
Remember what goes into your body is fuel for your training so make sure you eat healthily and regularly with the right proteins, vegetables and carbohydrates to sustain your training and fitness levels.
And finally, the most important part – Enjoy yourself and good luck.
– and afterwards take the advice of your personal trainer in allowing your body to have a well-deserved rest and gradual build up again after the hard work!
New Year, New Resolutions, New Clients? Fantastic if you are one of the really organised (and lucky) Personal Trainers who have started the New Year with your diary full of the training sessions arranged for your existing and new clients. However, if you are not yet in this position, how can you market yourself and your skills and retain or find new clients who require Personal Training?
As the buzz of Christmas and the New Year fades many Personal Trainers are busy getting their clients back into shape after the holidays and looking at ways to attract new clients. It can be difficult to get motivated to go to the gym to train whilst the weather is cold and dark so it is important for us as Personal Trainers to keep our clients interested and enthusiastic as well as happy so that you can continue to grow your PT business.
If you are looking to build up your clientele during this busy season here are our top tips to help!
Building good rapport with your current clients, helping them feel comfortable and being friendly and approachable is vital when marketing yourself as word of mouth goes a long way. Let your current clients know that you will be taking on new clients in the new year and even say that you can give them a free or discounted session for each recommendation! Or even recommend you both come together for a free taster session.
During the taster session you sould ask open ended questions about the client’s lifestyle and fitness, find ways of showing how you can help them but not in a way that makes the prospective client feel defensive – many people are nervous about Personal Trainers, after all you are the epitome of the fit and healthy lifestyle goal they are aiming for!
SHOW YOUR ABILITY TO HELP
Listen to your new and existing clients’ goals and their concerns and take them seriously. If you can give them realistic examples of how you can help them reach their goals then you will have the opportunity to keep that client through different stages of their training. After all, exercise and health is a lifestyle that will alter as needs change. This is an opportunity to keep clients after their initial goals have been achieved. Talk about the next set of goals, keeping them realistic and you will find you can retain them through the different cycles.
Keep notes that will help you plan the clients’ fitness routine and make it customer specific – explain why certain exercises/routines will be used. This indicates you are treating the customer as special with their own personal plan – not one that could be given to just anybody.
SHARE THEIR GLORY
Don’t be shy – if you have good results from other clients that you have documented or photographed, then show them. If you have a website put the photos on it, email your existing clients with updates and healthy tips. If you have recommendations from your clients then put them on your webpage and use social media to your advantage, if you are in really good shape sometimes clients will feel a world away from you, but seeing you get another client slightly more relatable to them in shape, will boost their motivation and definitely help. Above all, keep it professional!
Try offering packages of your training sessions and discounts if the client takes a number of sessions. Or consider discounting the first one or two sessions in a “Try it and See” incentive. Contact your existing and old clients and offer their friends a reduced price first session and as a thank you, a discounted price session for the old client – which may result in new clients and the return of old clients!
3 Easy ways to keep your clients motivated during the Winter season
As Winter rolls in you may notice a drop in motivation or even attendance with your clients. The term summer bodies are made in winter suddenly seems irrelevant as your clients slowly drop off and lose interest during the colder months. Although some external factors such as the cold mornings and evenings which make it harder to leave the house can’t be changed there are a few things you can do to help prevent your clients dropping out.
You need to ensure you have progress reports regularly with your clients, whether that is in the form of a transformation photo, fitness or endurance test or strength improvement check in. This report and check in keeps your clients aware of how far they’ve come so far and motivates them to keep striving for more. There’s nothing more inspiring than remembering why you started and where you are now… If you aren’t documenting their progress they will lose interest as they will forget where they started.
CHANGE IT UP
If you feel that your client is starting to lose interest in your training sessions you need to ask yourself the question, ‘am I doing the same old thing?’ If your answer is yes it’s time to spice up your old routine. If your lost for ideas perhaps it’s worth heading down to a class or gym and trying out a complimentary day pass / 1-1 session with one of their personal trainers yourself. You will not only pick up some new exercises but maybe a new style of training too!
AVOID COLDS & THE FLU
Yes, this is slightly harder than it sounds! But there are some steps you can take. During the Winter months it is well known that ‘flu season’ arrives. Although you technically can’t control whether your client gets the flu you can of course have an impact over their diets. Upping their intake of vitamin and minerals in the form of fruits and vegetables and recommending a multi-vitamin will keep them healthier and their immune system stronger. That way if the flu does come their way they will be able to fight it better!
How to improve consultation practices as Personal Trainer
To turn any consultation into a paying client it first comes down to how comfortable they feel with you. This can be split into numerous different things, firstly feeling comfortable and confident that you can deliver what they want from their training. Secondly that you are the right person to get them to their goal. The first consultation is key to proving to your potential client that you are all of these things. If you can impress your client enough you are sure to set the path for a business relationship going forwards.
So, what are the best ways to build rapport with your client during the initial consultation?
1. Be Friendly and ask open ended questions
Yes, surely this is an obvious one but it’s important to mention. When your client arrives, ensure you go to the door to greet them with a positive, friendly attitude. Introduce yourself and show them around the asking open ended questions, such as ‘what type of training have you done previously?’ and ‘Which gyms have you trained at before?’, which will allow them to relax and chat to you before the proper consultation begins. Make sure your client is put at ease and create an environment that is relaxing.
2. Listen to them
Ask about their health and fitness history and make notes.This shows the client you genuinely want to help them in a personal way, rather than giving them a basic plan made for anyone. Once you fully understand their health history you can help craft a informative response. Consultations are inherently as they are worded consultancy practices not a pitch, use the opportunity to find information that will help structure your own explanation on how you can support them with there fitness goals.
3.Breaking down barriers
With any sales situation often the most important factor is that you find the key barrier that could prevent a client feeling comfortable to work with you. Listed above is “listen to them”, this is simple but often the most difficult. To listen you must also find detailed information and concentrate on the conversation at hand, it is easy to plan ahead during conversations looking for the right opportunity to pitch yourself. Conversations during consultations is about gathering further information that can often be personal and build rapport with positive and insightful solutions to problems they may have faced previous in their fitness journey prior (everyone has one) to meeting yourself. Always acknowledge you may have a list of great ways to help them but listen for what is important to them as an individual.
4. Goal Setting
Remember, this is the MAIN reason they have come to see you, so it’s a very important part. Listen cafefully and again make notes of what they say and offer suggestions that could get them there. For example if a lady is saying she wants to grow her legs and bum, you could say, ‘Perfect, there are so many leg exercises that I know which are very effective at building up the muscles in your quads, glutes and hamstrings, which I know would work wonders for your body type.’ It is your utmost importance to really understand their goals and let them know your plan to get them there. Reaffirm any reservations they have about personal training and assure them that you have a history of helping clients reach goals.
Perhaps you have clients that have achieved something similar? If so it might be worth talking or showing them their results as a way of motivating your potential client further. Talk about your method of training and why it would be the perfect method to help them hit their goals and make sure above anything else you leave them feeling excited and motivated that it is TOTALLY POSSIBLE to reach. If it’s not a likely goal, it is best to be honest straight away. However, rather than simply saying no it’s not going to happen – try and change their goal to something more realistic and give them a time frame that you think it could be possible for them to hit it in.
5. Statistics and costs
During the consultation you can choose to take their measurements, fitness tests, before photos, weight and e-mail for your records. They will already be feeling motivated about training from your chat and the subtle reminder of why they are doing it will hit them again during the statistic taking process.
Once you’ve secured all the information you need, it’s time to give them your package prices. At this point it is important to have already decided what you want to charge. Give them your typical price point of a session and wait for their response, if it seems out of their budget perhaps offer a smaller package or a slight reduction if it suits you. You don’t want to lose a client but at the same time it’s important to know your worth and not under-cut yourself. After they’ve left follow up with an e-mail letting them know it was great to meet them and you hope to help them get on track to achieving their goal soon. Many sales situations you can talk yourself down or even out of a package with a client. Allow the client to make up their mind and proceed accordingly always respecting any conversations that may include slight haggling.Often the most uncomfortable but highly recommended technique is to offer your packages and pricelist remain quiet.
We hope these tips have helped you. Good luck at that consultation!
How to build your Brand as a trainer
Branching out on your own can be a scary thing…
Losing the security of a full time job and deciding to start your own business is probably the scariest, bravest and eventually most rewarding thing you could possibly do. However before you reap the benefits of getting rid of your horrible boss or bin your alarm clock there are a few things you need to be aware of and know how to deal with before making the change.
GETTING CLIENTS TO NOTICE YOU
Marketing yourself is one of the best ways to get clients to notice you but hiring a PR could be a costly choice so what other options do you have?
Use social media: get active on twitter, Facebook and Instagram and interact with people who seem to be after your skills. You can search the hashtags motivation, inspiration or weight loss and comment on photos and reach out to your community.
Build a website: Websites are another great platform to showcase your skills. You have somewhere to direct potential clients too and you can plaster the site in progress photos or testimonials to reassure other clients.
Media: have you ever been featured in the media? If you’ve been in the news or TV for fitness don’t hide it – make sure people know and see. Share it across your platforms and reach out to local radio stations to see if they’d be interested in a current health interview – most likely they will want the free content and the fact it’s on their doorstep is a bonus!
If you haven’t got a calendar or diary yet then it’s definitely time to get one! This will become your new best friend once you start your own business. You won’t begin your day with someone telling you what you’ve got planned and as much as you might think you have the memory of an elephant you probably will forget something (maybe even a clients name… not ideal!) So, in order to prevent this embarrassment get yourself organised and make sure you write down what you are doing each day so you can feel de-stressed, organised and on top of things.
Another idea would be to write down how many sessions each client has done and how many they have paid for. This ensures you don’t lose out on money or time.
As we mentioned earlier the last thing you want is to miss out on money especially at the start of your business growth when it may not be as busy as you’d like. So documenting who has paid what, whether that’s on your phone, in a folder or by checking invoices will ensure you don’t lose money.
How to keep your Finances in order+ What to look out for
The initial idea of building your business is a no brainer. You become your own boss. You are in control of your time and you pick and choose when you want to work. Easy, right? Wrong.
Starting your own business is an exciting opportunity and can be extremely rewarding, however without ensuring you totally understand what you are up against it can also be a very stressful situation, therefore not everyone can face branching out on their own.
So, if you are someone who wants to start working for yourself, what are the biggest things to be aware off?
When you become self-employed you are the soul means of your income. Nobody will be paying you at the end of the month so it’s up to you to ensure that you have enough money to keep you feeling financially secure each month.
The best way to do this is to plan for the month ahead. How much have you got coming in for that month and if it’s not enough to live off, how will you reach your target? If you are trying to build up a client base try and work out what your niche in the market is, and make the effort to meet and surround yourself with that sort of clientele and build up your relationship with them so as soon as they are ready to start training they have got you in mind already.
Try and make an active effort to save as well, not every month will be the same. Some months you might find you earn more than others. Most personal trainers find that January is an exceptionally busy time whilst summer seems to die down. If you are aware of this, you can find alternative means of work in these months to ensure you stay on top of it.
Another thing to be wary of is holidays. Again, there is no one paying for you whilst you go abroad. Being self-employed mean you won’t have annual leave so if you want to take a holiday you will be doing it off your own back and funds.
Try and schedule your holidays around your clients. You know that most people will be going away during the school holidays or over summer, so try and make your holidays fit around theirs. That way you won’t go on holiday and come back to find they are also away as that would mean you miss out on even more work and money.
As your client gets close to approaching their end goal try to think of ways to motivate them to continue. For example if they are training for weight loss, it’s time to turn their interest to something less aesthetically driving. Perhaps strength or cardiovascular based goals, why not see if they are interested in lifting heavier weights and improving their strength or stamina.
If there is no way that your client can be persuaded to continue onwards why not offer them a discount or session free if they recommend a friend, this can be a great motivation to clients and it will also help you build up your client base when you are running low.
* Often PT requires working those extra hours during busy periods due to quieter holiday periods.
* Account for clients finishing with consistent marketing throughout the year
* Build a business cash flow sheet every year to track data
* You are a business so it requires operating with margins and costs of services provided. You must look through your per hour rate and deduct travel/food/rental.