As we leave 2020 behind, it’s important to reflect on the lessons learned as trainers and as human beings. In 2021, it’s important to recognize the negative impact that COVID-19 had on our industry and our individual lives. On the other hand, we should take the opportunity to emphasize a new fitness perspective that will help our clients and ourselves take on 2021 with confidence and good health.
Here are some perspectives to consider taking in this new year.
New Fitness Perspective #1: Emphasize Health Rather Than Aesthetic
While in the past many trainers may have marketed themselves to potential clients looking to train for a certain aesthetic for things like red carpet events or beach vacations, those things were cancelled in 2020. It’s no secret that exercise, nutrition, sleep, and mental wellness are paramount when it comes to enduring difficult times. Reassure your clients that an investment in their health will be just as worthwhile – if not more – than an investment in their aesthetic. Keep resources regarding COVID-19 on hand as well as a list of health professionals that work outside the personal training scope of practice who can help support your clients’ other health concerns.
New Fitness Perspective #2: Emphasize Balance in All Areas of Health and Wellness
More than ever, a holistic, healthy lifestyle needs to be promoted and supported through personal training. The events of 2020 not only took a toll on physical health, but probably every aspect of wellness for most individuals. Consider these seven aspects of wellness and strategize how you can either integrate them into your personal training practice, or refer your clients to trusted experts in these areas.
- Physical Wellness – Fitness, nutrition, sleep, absence of sickness, etc.
- Mental – Stress relief/management, coping with mental illness, creating mental resilience, etc.
- Emotional – Healthy body image, journaling, self-reflection, etc.
- Intellectual – Hobbies, learning new skills, education, etc.
- Financial – Budgeting, financial planning, saving, investing, etc.
- Spiritual – Prayer, meditating, reading, spiritual practices, etc.
- Social – Volunteering, mentor others, safely gathering with friends, etc.
New Fitness Perspective #3: Keep it Simple
During difficult times, maintaining a complex exercise regimen doesn’t make anything easier. If you’ve found that you’re having a hard time getting clients to stick to their exercise programming, it may be time to simplify it and allow for activities that can be done daily, from home.
Depending on your clients’ goals, consider simplifying their programming with some of these ideas:
- Bodyweight training
- Interval training
- Simple circuit training
- Group fitness style/follow-along sessions
New Fitness Perspective #4: Make it Matter
If your 2020 went anything like mine, I realized that the things that drain me of value, time, or enjoyment just aren’t as important as they used to be. Even the way I exercise changed. Sixty minutes of regimented programming wasn’t bringing me joy anymore. I found a love for outdoor exercise, HIIT training, and barre in 2020.
Help your clients find joy in exercise both during their sessions with you and during their free time. Even incorporating things like their favorite musical genres, outdoor workouts, and exercise games can help bring a little extra joy to their day and keep them coming back for more. If your presence and practice bring joy and purpose to your clients’ lives, you’re not likely to be cut from their priority list in 2021.
While 2020 is behind us, a world with COVID-19 is still here. Personal trainers must continue to adapt, pivot, innovate, create, and iterate to continuously add value to the health and wellness industry.