How to find the right Personal Trainer

by | Mar 5, 2021 | Exercise | 6 comments

5 questions to ask before parting with your cash

Finding the right personal trainer can be a bit daunting. Here are 5 questions to ask yourself when you start looking.

1. Do I like them?

It’s probably the first question to ask. Consider this, you are about to spend a decent amount of money on their services. You are also to be spending regular time with them and sharing some quite personal information. You need to feel comfortable doing so.

It might even be a matter of chemistry! Some people you just ‘click’ with and some you don’t. And that’s ok. To get the results you want from their service you have to want to show up. If they are not a good fit for you, keep looking. Find someone that you can relate to. They don’t need to be your buddy, but you will need to connect.

2. Are they qualified to train me?

It should go without saying.

If you take your car to the mechanic, you want to be confident that he or she has the skills to fix it! You would expect your mechanic to know how the engine worked. It’s so much more important when trusting someone with your body!

Feel free to ask the trainer about their qualifications and also if they are updating their skills. Some knowledge is timeless, but keeping up to date is also important. When a personal trainer add to their knowledge it shows a level of commitment to bothe the client and the health an. d fitness industry.


If you have a medical condition, check that your trainer has the relevant qualification to work with you. Don’t feel awkward about asking the question. It is potentially dangerous to workout with a trainer that is unaware of the exercise contra-indications of your condition.

Every time you start to work with a personal trainer you need to fill out a PARQ (physical activity readiness questionnaire). This is a legal requirement. This is to protect the client and the trainer.

If your PARQ indicates that you have a medical condition, your trainer will need to refer to your GP and outline the exercise that you will be undertaking. Only people with an Exercise Referral Qualification are permitted to work with people who have medical conditions.

Some personal trainers hold specialist qualifications in addition to exercise referral. These can include; obesity and diabetes, lower back pain, pre and post-natal and more. It would be worth finding a trainer that has a qualification relevant to your condition.

3.What’s their story?

Find out a little about your trainers history. They don’t necessarily need personal experience of a situation to be able to work with you. But it can help! Someone who understands the difficulties that come with obesity will appreciate how it feels to do certain things (why you have to wear tights with a dress for example!). Can a 25 year old man work with a menopausal woman? Absolutely. But, can he understand what it’s like to feel sleep deprived because of night sweats? Probably not. It comes down to connection really (re. question number 1). Have a little look at my story here.

4.What do other people say?

We all like a bit of personal recommendation right? When I’ve moved location the thing I find tricky is finding a new set of tradespeople. And we all like to find out who other people would recommend. It’s the same with personal trainers. Ask around. Especially ask people who have (or had) similar goals to yours. It helps.

Also, have a look at the reviews and testimonials on their social media and website. Often looking at a trainers Facebook page and website can tell you a lot about the type of trainer they are. If you’re reading this blog you’ve probably seen mine, but in case you haven’t, take a look. You will find my client testimonials there.

5.Can I commit to this?

Don’t ignore this question. It’s important. Why would you part with your hard earned cash if you’re not going to commit? How many people do you know that join a gym, go a few times and then give up but keep paying membership? I bet we all know someone.

This next bit might sound like a bit of tough love…

If you aren’t able to commit to your goals, think twice about signing up. You don’t want to waste your money. Most personal trainers don’t want to take your money if it’s not going to benefit you. We want to see you get the results you want.

This is the tough love bit…

If your goal is weight loss, turning up for 1 personal training session a week is not going to achieve that goal. Sorry! Your trainer can help you and also give you advice on what else to do. You have 168 hours a week. The 1 hour personal training is a very small percentage. It will definitely help, but it has to be part of the whole of what you are doing. Some trainers offer packages that include a whole lot of help and accountability. To be honest, if people wanted to train they could check out the free videos available (although without any real safeguards). The real reasons most people go to a personal trainer is for accountability and confidence. You cant really get that without some real contact whether that’s online or in person. The programme I’m running is for a very small group of people as I want to give them a high level of support and accountability. You can find out about it here.

So, absolutely sign up to a personal trainer, but commit to the whole process to get the real benefit.

And finally…

If you are considering personal training well done! So many people (especially women) don’t consider themselves worth the investment. But you are. Your family will surely reap the benefits of a healthier energetic you, but that’s not all. To borrow a well known phrase, do it … because you’re worth it.


  1. Maria Jordan-O'Reilly

    Great article, it really answers a lot of questions and prompts some thinking before committing to taking on personal training. Thank you.

    • admin

      Thank you Maria. Exactly what I wanted it to do. Many people don’t feel comfortable checking on people, but it’s a matter of making sure you get what you need.

  2. Montserrat Gili

    Great points! We sometimes feel awkward asking that type of questions, but it’s so important. And if that one PT is not for you, doesn’t mean personal training is not for you… just means you have to find your perfect fit.

    • admin

      Exactly. If people came to me for yoga I would send them to you!

  3. Donelle Clarke

    I loved this article because you hit on all the salient points! And doing this, puts people at ease to best take care of getting these questions answered so they know if they can make that commitment. Well done!

    • admin

      I’m a bit passionate that people have a good experience. Working with someone who isn’t a good fit isn’t good for anyone and reflects badly on the industry.


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