Recent years have seen a surge of personal trainers who train people over the internet. This isn’t (always) a scam. Many online trainers are qualified, experienced virtual versions of the real deal who can help, and often more affordably than in-person trainers. Here’s how to find the right one for you.
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Online personal trainers can give you results the same way any in-person personal trainer could: They provide you with a training program and all of the support you need to get the results you want. Here are some advantages:
- Work with whomever: Train with anyone in the world, including the most renowned and specialised coaches. Distance is a non-issue.
- Keep a flexible schedule: You don’t have to juggle schedules and feel bad about cancelling. Train and work with your trainer on your own time.
- Get constant communication: Even though you can’t see or talk to them in-person, digital technology like Skype, videos, text, email and other forms of communication often make online personal trainers even easier to access.
- Accountability: You may think that if you just never follow the plan, your online personal trainer would be none the wiser. But great online personal trainers are really good at empowering you to be self-sufficient. Plus, they have ways to make you accountable with weekly check-ins, spreadsheets of your measurements and numbers and so on.
The obvious downsides are that they can’t physically be there to enforce good form and be more hands-on with you, but most require you to film yourself working out so they can still assess. You also make up for this by being extra open and communicative, especially about injuries or problems you have. It’s why you should find one that you can trust and be really comfortable with. Online personal trainers aren’t for everyone, but they’re helpful for people who need extra motivation and guidance.
Typically, their services are split into many kinds of “packages” the can cost between $150 to $400, which varies based on commitment and services they provide. Be sure to read what these packages entail and ask many questions:
- What is your access to the personal trainer? In other words, how easily can you reach them?
- How responsive are they?
- How do they find out the right kind of training program for you?
- How can they keep your accountable to your goals?
- What do the results of their current and previous clients look like? Their expertise should match your goal.
- How do they reinforce trust with other clients?
Be wary of online personal trainers who give you a cookie-cutter training and eating plans, or are unresponsive. A good trainer should still be a qualified professional who has at least obtained certifications like ACE or NASM, has prior experience with in-person clients, will assess you as an individual and will tailor their programs and support to your needs and goals.