Matching Clients with Trainers

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Recently, the fitness concierge at my gym sent me an email to remind me that I still had one free orientation session to use. When I joined last year, I was given two. I used the first one right away but forgot about the second, and I appreciated the reminder, not only because I didn’t want to let such a gift go to waste, but also, embarrassingly, because it had been a while since I’d made it to the gym. I needed that refresher course.

The trainer assigned to my case was a sweet, older man who looked like he might be on the verge of retirement (or perhaps even past the typical age). He clearly knew his business, and yet I wondered whether I might not be better off with a trainer who “matched” me more than that one did. Would a woman, and one closer to me in age (let’s just say I’ll soon turn 39 — again) know more instinctively what kinds of exercises I’m most in need of? Would someone who is also the mother of a young child have a sense of the constraints I face and help me figure out a work-out plan accordingly? Would someone a little, er, rounder in the thighs (and elsewhere) have more specific experience that could push me to reach my goals more quickly?

Maybe not. But it got me thinking about how we choose trainers when a member or client calls and wants a consultation. At my gym, the process is random — you get whoever’s available during a given timeslot. A better way to do it might be to ask some questions before pairing a customer with a trainer: age, gender, height, weight, body type, health issues, goals, special concerns or considerations. I did fill out a questionnaire that elicited this sort of information — but only after I’d arrived at the gym for my session.

I liked my trainer, but I have to admit that when he gave me the hard sell at the end, trying to convince me that I should sign up for a three-session training package with him, I declined. Maybe if I’d filled out that questionnaire beforehand and been assigned to a trainer who was a better match for me, I would have shelled out the money. Honestly, I could really benefit from those sessions — just not, I think, with that sweet, older man. If you are interested in learning more about effective examples of personal trainer software, we recommend signing up for a free demonstration.

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