It’s an important part of a personal trainer’s toolkit however, few trainers maximise the time available and ask the key questions. Rather they just seemingly work down a “check-list” asking the same questions they ask all prospective clients without deviating based on the answers given. We’ll explore the personal trainer consultation, giving existing or soon to be trainers something to think about with their future contact with new clients.
Personal Trainer Consultation
We’re going to discuss some key points to remember when it comes to conducting the personal trainer consultation. Key points which won’t include the mandatory health checks and forms. But instead, points which will make you more relatable and help with customer relations/retention.
Help and keep the Client Relaxed
A Harvard study has shown that when meeting a prospective client, the first 5 seconds are key when setting a good first impression. People will subconsciously ask one question to themselves when they first meet you. That question is: “Can I trust you?”
Let’s think about this briefly. How can we combat this question and give a positive first impression to help our clients relax when they meet you as a personal trainer? Remember that when you’re meeting new clients it’s likely they’ve got some nerves about them. Intimidated by stepping foot into a fitness environment, possibly embarrassed that they’re having to consult someone about losing weight and feeling self-conscious about their current fitness situation. It’s important that you remember to be friendly, approachable and maintain good eye contact with them.
Enthusiastically Build a Rapport
You should be enthusiastic about working with them and helping the client reach their fitness goals. Immediately building a rapport between yourself and the client is key during the personal trainer consultation. Simple questions about their lifestyle; job, where they live, family and children will help put your client at ease and show to them that you’re taking an interest in them as a person. If possible try and relate to their answers, but be brief, you want to show the client that you’re listening to them, but remember this is the clients chance to talk not yours.
No Distractions and Give
It’s key as we’ve discussed that the potential client has your full attention, this means no glancing at your watch and no checking your phone during your consultation. You may think that it’s OK to have your phone out if it’s face down. However, to the other person, this means that if the phone is going to ring or vibrate it’s still going to create a distraction. Keep that phone in your pocket on silent.
Your client is giving you the information you need to develop a training plan for them. Why not take the time to focus on what you can give them? Obviously, there is no need for a big sales pitch, however, you’re going to want the client to be confident that they’ve made the right decision in taking the time to speak with you and share their exercise past, medical background as well as lifestyle details with you. This is your chance to show the client that during the consultation you have listened intently to everything they have told you. More so that you’re also experienced in helping similar clients successfully achieve their goals.
Time to Talk about Yourself
Right, so you have sat with and discussed your client’s goals, you have talked about exercise history their likes and dislikes. Found out what they do for a living as well as any family/children commitments they may have. Now it’s your time to tell the client what you’re thinking in terms of their plan. How you can help them reach their goals. Use previous clients journeys as an example (obviously, remember data protection you don’t need to be sharing names and photo’s unless you have permission). Your own background in training may help? Maybe you were once in a similar position. The clients want to know that it can be done. Showing them it’s possible is going to increase confidence in your ability as a trainer.
Qualifications and Insurance
Lastly, the client is going to want to know that you’re a fully qualified personal trainer. Use a small portion of the personal trainer consultation to show/inform them of your qualifications, explain if you need to the importance of the qualifications and the industry. As well as informing them that you’re fully insured as a personal trainer as well. This knowledge will again enhance your reputation in that initial consultation.