When it comes to selecting equipment for a personal trainer, it’s like selecting the right medical equipment for a surgeon.
These are the apparatus that we use every day with our clients. We use these tools to strengthen, sculpt, mobilize and ultimately create health and morphological benefits for the bodies we work with. When it comes to selecting the right tools to put in our personal training toolbox it can be tough. I am here to help guide you through this process with my personal experiences and recommendations to ideally create the best selections.
Here are the top 3 questions you should ask yourself when making the decision to purchase new equipment:
1. What are the right tools for the programming you have designed within your personal training business?
This is extremely important because you want to be able to develop and advance your programming based on the equipment you have within your facility. Think about your base “fundamental” programming and then all of the incremental progressions for those specific movements and how different pieces of equipment would fit into your training systems. You will want to have the appropriate pieces for your programming needs.
2. What do your clients need?
The next step is to ask yourself what are the specific needs of your clients. This is a very strong identifier of what tools you will need as a trainer. For me this is the most important step. These to me are corrective exercises within programming that fix imbalances, improve movement patterns and/or increase mobility. These are the exercises your clients probably do not want to do because they do not see them as “valuable” at the time. But, these are the tools that keep your clients safe and make the biggest changes over the long haul of training.
3. What do your clients want?
Finally, you need to ask yourself what your clients want. It is our job at personal trainers to keep our clients happy. We must take into consideration what the “wants” of our clients are and make sure we can choose the best options when sprinkling them into their workouts. It is important to incorporate your client’s personal desires into programming. It makes them know that you are truly listening. It also it feels like compromise to them and compassion is show not just through listening, but acting upon what they want. The implementation of the client is where we need to get creative as fitness experts and make sure it fits within our methodology and scientific parameters to get the results we are training for.
After addressing these three questions we can establish the best equipment needs based on; programming, client’s needs and client’s wants. Now that you have selected your equipment to order have a few tips I have learned along the way.
- Always look at the measurements/sizing of the equipment. I cannot tell you the number of times something has come in that I have ordered that has been much larger or smaller than I expected because I did not look at the specific dimensions of the product.
- If you have never used it, start by purchasing only one. I have fallen into the trap of thinking, oh I’ll just buy a bunch now. It is important that you test the equipment personally and see the value. Then you will know the exact amount and what sizes, weights, and styles will benefit your client’s best.
- If you have questions about the product don’t hesitate to ask. Rather than waiting until you get the equipment to figure out your questions. Email or call to ask your questions. The same way we want to help our clients, equipment companies want to do the same. They are here to help answer our questions and help us make the best choice when it comes to our needs.
When it comes to making a selection to purchase new equipment be sure to take your time. You want to make sure you are investing in the right pieces for you and your clients. Take the time to ask yourself my top three questions for equipment needs. Then, be sure to utilize my tips for ordering equipment to make the most optimal choice without wasting time or money.