Many coaches ignore blogs like this because it’s not sexy information, well guess what?
Its super important, and I know you know that because that’s why you’re here, about to read this blog.
Most coaches want to know about tips and tricks to take their clients results and make them stratospheric. Many coaches are getting results with 40-50% of clients, but 50-60% of clients just do not listen or complain about having to do stuff they don’t want to do until they stop showing up to sessions or responding to emails. We lose interest in them and just claim they are not motivated or too hard to coach.
As an educator my opinion is that if you can’t get a client to follow a diet, it’s your fault. You set the framework, you set the rules, and if you make the rules too hard the client isn’t going to be able to follow them enthusiastically.
Now don’t get me wrong there is always a small % of clients that just won’t change. Some people who apply to work with you are not ready, and really if you can identify that early doors, sit down and have a hard chat with them, you should be able to smell the failure looming. At this point it’s probably time to explain that you don’t think you are right together and ask the client to take some time out to work out what they really want. This is something I talk about in my book a lot ‘How to be an AWESOME Personal Trainer’.
Being a S.M.A.R.T. Personal Trainer is about guiding your clients into making goals which are:
Please take a second, close your eyes and ask yourself honestly if you are doing this with your clients. Are you just giving them a diet plan, giving them a training plan, watching over a few of their sessions, and just hoping they will stick to it?
That’s not coaching, that’s regurgitating acquired knowledge with some form of understanding of it.
Anyone can give someone a diet plan and a training plan, but you don’t want to be an average personal trainer, do you? You want to be an AWESOME Personal Trainer. That means you have to be more personal, you have to care, you have to take things slow sometimes and conduct nutritional foreplay with the client.
So, to be a S.M.A.R.T. personal trainer you have to know where to start your client, that means you don’t have a set system, you have to have a flexible system. Some clients want to go hard or go home, these clients you can give them all the info and let them run away with it, you just have to watch out with these clients that they don’t go too hard and they then have a wobbly moment and ‘fall off the wagon’ because it was all getting a bit too much and the realised they still like going out for beers with the friends and not being 100% dedicated to the gym.
Others you have to start slow and give them more nutritional TLC. You have to start them off with addressing their hydration and protein content, then the week or two after look at boosting their micronutrient intake, and continue with them in this fashion, layering up habits and making it as simple as possible.
This then begs the key question with this blog, are you being a S.M.A.R.T. personal trainer? Are you making things:
Specific to them and their goals
Measurable in a meaningful way to them
Attainable for them, their ability level, environment, and knowledge level Relevant to the goals that they actually have right now
Time bound related to their goals and ability level
When it comes to coaching there are two primary methods I will use. One is taking your time, building the client up, the other is giving them all the gear and letting them run with it checking in and tweaking things as you go. Both methods are right, both have merit. Most trainers don’t use the build them up and go slow approach as it takes more time, more care for the client and top notch admin, but you have to care, its your job. You’re a coach with the responsibility of others health in your hands and it is your job to take the most appropriate path to success with that client, not just to print off a semi-personalised diet plan and training program and hope they follow it, that’s not being a S.M.A.R.T. personal trainer. It’s not even being an ethical business owner.
Now I can’t help you care more as a coach so you can be a S.M.A.R.T. personal trainer, but what I can do is give you the practical skills to teach both scenarios with the client. I can show you how to go full bore with the client, or go slow and build them up, but you have to create the time to learn this stuff, then create the processes to implement it with your clients and not just go on autopilot and print off a tweaked plan.
Let’s get back to coaching, teaching and inspiring. You are there to empower your clients with life skills, teach them about how to eat, why, and how it matches their goals.
Teach them about good hydration practices, the best sources of water, and how to tweak that for when they exercise. Show them what supplements to use and why, and at what stage in their journey they should do so. This is coaching, this is being a S.M.A.R.T. personal trainer.
I can help you, and this is likely why you are reading this blog, because you trust me and what BTN preaches. So sit back from today as a result of reading this blog and analyse if you are being a S.M.A.R.T. personal trainer. If you think there is room for improvement then consider grabbing a copy of my book ‘How to be an AWESOME Personal Trainer’, or consider enrolling on the BTN Academy, starting with the Foundation Academy, which teaches the fundamentals of nutrition and habit change.
From today, let’s be S.M.A.R.T. personal trainers. Not only is it the future of this amazing industry, it makes your job a hell of a lot more fun to do!