Do Your Personal Trainers Have These Seven Key Hard Skills?

When we think of personal training skills, teaching proper exercise form and execution may come first to mind. However, many other “hard” skills are also necessary. Are the members of your personal training team equipped with everything they need to succeed — and to help your members succeed, too? Here’s a closer look at seven essential hard skills for personal trainers.

1. Client screening and taking health histories

Clients come to personal trainers with different backgrounds, experiences and health conditions. Asking the right questions can help trainers identify risk factors, limitations and other critical information which can help keep clients safe while they work toward their goals. 

2. Conducting fitness assessments

Determining baseline information for variables like strength, flexibility, endurance, and strength is essential to creating individualized fitness plans for clients as well as for goal-setting and measuring their progress.

3. Tracking vital statistics

Biometrics like BMI, heart rate and blood pressure offer invaluable insight into client health and wellness. Are your trainers using the latest technology to measure and monitor vital statistics? If not, this may be a major missed opportunity — not only to move clients closer to their goals, but also to engage them with your fitness business by satisfying the increasing interest by members in wearables. 

4. Record keeping

No personal trainer gets into the business because they love the act of record keeping. And yet from progress charts to workouts, there is a huge amount of information for them to track. Helping personal trainers learn best practices for organization can help them be better at their jobs while also making a favorable impression on clients toward enhanced member retention. 

5. Injury prevention and management

It goes without saying that personal trainers should understand and enforce proper exercise form and execution. But injury prevention and management is also an important skill. Personal trainers should be able to offer specific guidance aimed at helping prevent injuries as well as managing a client’s return to the gym following an injury. Keeping up with the latest wisdom on these topics, such as the importance of rest, is also essential. 

Basket with fruit, free weights and an apple surrounded by a tape measure.

6. Lifestyle counseling and wellness coaching

Personal trainers aren’t nutritionists or behavioral health counselors. However, they can help clients assess their lifestyle behaviors in order to make better choices. This can be as simple as asking a client to keep a food journal and reviewing it with them weekly. Today’s fitness members aren’t looking merely to lose weight or be fit; they want to feel better about themselves and their bodies. Lifestyle coaching can be a positive pathway to facilitating this. 

7. Marketing

Personal trainers need one thing above all else: clients. As such, they need to be able to market themselves in order to build and maintain a solid client base. Your personal trainers don’t need marketing degrees to make sure clients find them. Rather, knowing and applying some basic techniques — such as getting listed in directories for potential clients, running promotions like “bring a friend,” and establishing a positive social media presence — can go a long way. 

Here’s one last thing to keep in mind. While knowing these skills in theory is one thing, practicing them is another. Seeking out experienced personal trainers can help ensure that your members don’t become guinea pigs for a novice. Additionally, seek out trainers with certification from a program like World Instructor Training Schools (W.I.T.S.) which incorporates hands-on learning as well as a practical skills competency exam. Incorporating fitness monitoring technology into your gym can be another member engagement tactic.  Request a demo today to learn what the Accurofit System can do for your fitness business.