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Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Exchanging services

http://www.feelgoodpt.co.uk
It's important to have a good website and good local search engine results as a personal trainer.

However, as a new business, I didn’t have the money to pay for a web design company to redo my website or a SEO specialist to help my search results.

To overcome this, I decided to try exchanging services with a web design company.

I Googled web design companies in my local area and picked a few companies that I liked the look of and sent out a few emails. If you can find the name of the director and address the email to him you’ll get a better response compared to sending emails out to info@... Or enquiries@...

Here is an example of the email I sent out.

“Hi John,

Please allow me to introduce myself. My name’s Dominic, and I have recently started up a personal training and massage business. I have a website, www.feelgoodpt.co.uk, but I would like to improve the professional image of the website and add some more information.

As a new business I don’t have the resources to spend on a website but I would be more than happy to exchange services. I can offer individual personal training or group training for your business. If this is something you could be interested in please let me know.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.”

After the web design agency replied I met one of the directors for coffee and we discussed his goals, how many sessions his services are worth, location, times etc.

Have a look at my site at the moment - the new one is going to go live next week!

Exchanging services doesn’t just have to be with a web designer ....

Give it a go and see if it works. Have you tired anything like this before?

Dom

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Space saver

Just because you don’t have the luxury of the space of a gym or studio floor doesn’t mean you can’t deliver a fun and hard workout to help clients achieve the results they’re looking for. Here are some ideas on how to train in a small place to help clients achieve their fitness goals.
ViPR, boxing and free weights are great pieces of kit, especially when you have limited space. Try mixing ViPR and free weights with plyometric training for great cardio results. For example, squat jumps to shoulder press or a squat jump when performing the ViPR exercise ‘thread the needle’. One of the great things with ViPR is that there are endless amounts of exercises you can perform with your clients.
To use free weights in a cardio workout try increasing the tempo of the exercises. Put a few high-tempo plyometric exercises into the programme to challenge your clients’ cardiovascular abilities and keep them in the heart rate zone you want.
Boxing is a good exercise for maintaining a cardiovascular workout for a sustainable period of time. Push your clients to hit hard and increase the tempo to progress the exercise. Think about ways in which you can integrate boxing with other exercises, e.g., jabbing with squats or punching above the head combined with sit-ups.
I hope you find this helpful. What type of exercise routine do you use with your clients when you have little space available?
Dom

Thursday, 18 August 2011

PTs: are you training clients online?

One of the problems I found within my business is that by only having a single product of private personal training priced at £40, I didn’t have a second product I could sell to consumers who wanted help to reach their goals but couldn’t afford an hourly rate.

Because of this I created an online package: detailed training plans, nutritional assessment and continuous support via email and text.

My online training package is targeted at former clients who have reached their goals and want to maintain results, plus new clients interested in personal training but who cannot afford £40 for a private session.

One area I'm investigating includes using the online model as a promotion in local sports and fitness shops, tied in with purchases. This creates an incentive for the shop to promote you as they will potentially sell more high-end products. It benefits the consumer as they’re getting more for their money, plus an effective training programme that delivers results. And you will benefit from gaining more online clients.

Try it - and let me know how you get on. All ideas and feedback welcome!
Dom

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

A conditioning programme to improve your client's tennis game

Following the success of Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon many of your clients may be dusting off their tennis racquet and wanting to improve their game - here are some exercises that can help as part of a conditioning routine.

The key to success will be to communicate effectively with your client. This will help the player to understand what they are trying to create through certain exercises.

Having a strong core is important for getting powers into the tennis shot. These exercises are a great way to improve the power of your shot.
  • Russian twists
  • Rotational side plank
  • Medicine ball slams
  • Medicine ball passes
Foot work is important in tennis to ensure you’re in the right position to play the shot. The following exercises are designed to improve your speed, agility and power endurance. Approximately 50% of the movement in a tennis game is lateral, 49% is forward and 1% is backwards. Try to recreate this when performing performance drills.
  • Lateral Ice skaters
  • Frontal hops and lateral hops over the base line
  • Frontal and lateral speed drills using a speed ladder
According to the International Tennis Federation (ITF) the alactic system is used 70% of the time, the lactic system (both under the anaerobic umbrella) 20% and the aerobic 10%. Recreate this when performing cardio vascular training with high tempo power recreating the movement patterns of tennis for the best results.

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

PTs: what are your favourite ways to train?

Here are my favourites. 

Free weights
Free weights are great for getting results with. Try to avoid fixed resistant machines where you can; free weights are far better for your fixators, core and for recruiting more motor units.

ViPR
Likewise, ViPR is a great personal training tool that can be used with any client. I use it for clients with different goals from weight loss to sports conditioning and everything in between. It’s fantastic for a wide range of whole body exercises that can be tailored to your clients’ abilities. It’s a great piece of fun kit that my clients use to carry out personalised programmes from home with.
  
Boxing
Boxing is a hard, fun workout. I find women love it and it’s a great way for your clients to let off some steam. Try mixing boxing with a mixture of body weight exercise for a great, high intensity workout.




Levers, gravity, ground reaction and momentum
Levers, gravity, ground reaction and momentum are often overlooked when training with a client. Think about how you can use these forces to reach your client's goals. For example if your client wants to work their stomach try a posterior lunge with a bilateral overhead reach. You’re going to have to work the abs as they control the posterior momentum created by legs and gravity.

The great outdoors
Training doesn’t always need to be in a gym! Try training outside; it's a great way to motivate clients and mix things up. Some possibilities are interval training on bikes and hill sprints.


What are your favourite equipment or environment, and why?

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Training a client for dance - using ViPR

Here's a short video of me with one of my PT clients, who is training for partner dances. Here I show him how he can use the ViPR to train at home, without his partner, to build strength and speed to perform the 'dead man's drop'. I'm using a 6kg ViPR and the lateral tilt move.


With thanks to www.fitpro.com for letting me host my video at their YouTube channel ... keep an eye out for my own channel coming soon ...
Dom

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

PTs: do you have a fitness newsletter?

In my last couple of  posts, I've talked about newsletters and partnerships - they are a great way of adding value for existing clients as well as reaching out to new ones. Here's an example of one I send out from FeelGoodPT in association with www.clairebarkernutrition.co.uk 
Have you set-up any partnerships? Do you send out a newsletter? Let me know your stories.
Dom


Tip of the month

Let’s talk about squats

Squats are a great exercise for the glutes, hamstrings and quads. A great quality of the squat is there is room for progression and the option to incorporate other major muscle groups.

Start with your feet shoulder width apart. Keep your eyes and shoulders facing forward, gently lower yourself in a control manner ensuring you keep a straight spine and stop when you reach a 90% angle at your knee. Pause then return to the starting position.

If you find you’re tight in your calves and your heels are coming off the ground try taking a wider stance. This should stop the heels rising and give more stability.

To progress the intensity of this workout you can add a new variable such as, dumbbells, Olympic bars, kettlebells or a VIRP to create a new stimulus.

To increase the intensity of the exercise you can incorporate different muscle groups and compound movements.

A few good combinations are:

  • Squat to shoulder press
  • Squat to bicep curl
  • Squat to frontal or lateral rise

Try mixing squats with different exercises for a great full body workout

For more information on Personal training see www.feelgoodpt.co.uk

Dominic Burns Reps Level 3

How do you recognize a ‘good’ fat?

There has a been a deluge of information about fats in the media but how confident are you that you know what makes a ‘good’ or ‘bad’ fat? Fats can be broadly considered in three groups – saturated, unsaturated and trans-fats. The classifications may be based on the chemical structure but there are everyday observations that help us identify which fat is which.

Saturated fats contain no double bonds and are solid at room temperature e.g. Butter, lard. Saturated fats are not essential to good health but they are probably not as harmful as previously thought. A diet containing low levels of saturated fat is consistent with good health. Most saturated fats come from animal products with palm oil and coconut oil being the only significant vegetable sources. When heated saturated fats cannot form trans-fats and are therefore suitable for heating.

Unsaturated fats contain at least one double bond and are therefore liquids at room temperature e.g. olive oil, sunflower oil. Diets containing unsaturated fats are essential for good health. Omega 3 fats and omega 6 fats are essential in the diet as our bodies cannot form these fats any other way. These oils, found in nuts and seeds, avocados, oily fish, olives, eggs etc should be included in the diet daily. However when heated unsaturated fats can form trans-fats, which are the most dangerous fats to our health. Don’t use olive oil or other low smoke point unsaturated oils to fry foods.

Trans-fats are unsaturated fats found both in nature and in processed foods such as hydrogenated oils and heated unsaturated fats. Naturally formed trans-fats such as those found in milk are not thought to be harmful whereas those formed by processing are considered very harmful. Avoid all foods containing hydrogenated fat and foods cooked at high temperature in unsaturated oils.

For more information see www.clairebarkernutrition.co.uk

Claire Barker DipION mBANT, Nutritional Therapist

Promotions

Nutritional plan and online exercise programs
Just £75 per month
Email me: dominic@feelgoodpt.co.uk

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

PTs: how can you create a successful support network?

Make a list of local providers
At Feel Good PT I've been creating a support network for myself and my clients.

Having a support network behind you is a great tool for marketing and ensures you can provide for all the needs of your clients. Useful contacts include nutritionists and physiotherapists.
Creating this network will benefit you by being able to consult with other professions to ask for advice and offer the opportunity to refer/gain clients. The support network benefits clients by your contacts being able to offer promotions/discounted rates on first sessions.
A great way to pitch this idea to other professions is by contacting them offering a referral scheme. The advantages for them are getting more clients and the possibility of free marketing in your client's training folder.
I recommend meeting up for a relaxed coffee to give you the opportunity to get more information on each other’s services. Some of the key areas to ask about include prices, locations that you’re both willing to travel to, whether you/they work from a studio, plus insurance, qualifications and past experience. It also presents a good opportunity to discuss what marketing has/hasn’t been working for both of you in your local communities.
Ways you can generate new clients through a partnership include
  • Referrals
  • Website links
  • Promotional material in client folders
  • Newsletters
  • Exclusive discounts/ introduction price
Do you currently do anything like this? If so, let me know how its working out for you.
Dom

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Getting into small group training


Feel Good PT had its first group personal training class today at Dunorlan park in Tunbridge Wells. The group was made up of three ladies wanting to improve their fitness, tone up and lose a little bit of weight. We looked at a mixture of VIPR work and free weights all tailored to the client’s individual fitness level. Looking forward to running my next class on Thursday at the Vine cricket ground in Sevenoaks
Any tips on what you have found your clients to enjoy in group training?

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

PTs: What to do in your first session?

Your first session with your client can always be tricky. You’ve gone through your paperwork in the consultation. Now you need to use your knowledge and experience to know what exercises to use and how hard to push your client.

Having a flexible range of exercises in the programme is key to making sure the session flows. Think of exercises that are easy to progress and regress to provide the necessary stimulus for your client.

Here is an example of a ViPR programme I used with a new client at Feel Good PT who was new to exercise with poor fitness levels. I created and downloaded the programme from www.ptonthenet.com.




Warm Up



Cardio Program

Activity
Intensity
Duration
Comments
VIPR

20 minutes

Summary Of Program

Activity
Type
Sets
Reps
Duration
Tempo
Intensity
Rest
Basic Squat
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute
Chest Press - On Bench With DB
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute
Shoulder Press - Standing With DB
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute
Deadlift - Dumbbells
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute
Rotatory, Step (Sagittal), Pivot Step
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute
Flip (outdoor sagittal), Run, Quick feet (180° turn)
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute
Tilt (Sagittal), Shuffle (Sagittal plane with Turn), Shuffle - 180° turn
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute
Lift / Shift (Posterior), Standing Hip Flexion to Extention, Staggered Stance
Exercise
3

1 minute


1 minute

Cool Down



BASIC SQUAT
Reps :

Sets :
Intensity :

Tempo :

Rest :
1 minute 
Duration :
1 minute 
Preparation :
  • Ensure the individual has strength in the posterior chain (glutes, hamstrings and erector spinae) before prescribing this exercise.
Movement :
  • Stand tall with the gaze straight ahead.
  • Initiate a squat with a knee bend.
  • As the knees bend past 10 degrees, push the hips back and keep bending the knees.
  • Only descend into the squat half way as shown.
  • Squat back up and repeat pattern.

 TIP
The reason I chose perform the exercise for 1 minute compare to giving a set rep range is that is allows your client to push themselves within their comfort zone. You can then increase the intensity by increasing the weights, changing tempo, time, or progressing the exercise. I use this with clients for the first session to give me more detail on their fitness and capability. 

One of the most important areas that I think is often overlooked when taking on a new client is their ability to be coached. This is why I have chosen the deadlift - it's a more complex lift, which allows me to see how responsive my clients are to learning new movement patterns

What do you do with your new clients?

Monday, 23 May 2011

PTs: make it professional

As a newly qualified personal trainer, what things do you put in place to keep your clients motivated and on-track to achieve their goals?

One of the key areas I concentrate on at Feel Good PT is to ensure that personal training is kept personal and professional. Because of this I create a personalised folder for my clients. It helps to keep my clients on track to reaching their health and fitness goals. My clients use it to store the programmes I send them during the week from ptonthenet.com. There is a notes section at the back with allows them to write down any questions they may have. Alternatively, they ask me questions via phone and use the notes section to write down anything that they weren’t clear on.

Have a look
These are the sections I use:

  • programmes
  • nutritional advice
  • client assessments
  • terms & conditions
  • current promotions
  • links to local businesses that can help my clients


It’s a great opportunity for you to use the folder to keep clients up-to-date with current promotions and to create a referral system with good nutritionist and psychotherapist in the local area (this is a whole other opportunity that I'll be blogging about soon).


It's also a nice visual present to give to new clients, and a signal to them of that we both take their goals seriously.


Do you do something similar with any of your clients?

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Conversation starters

After having a very old scrappy pair of old trainers that I’d had for far too long, I thought it was time to get a new pair and improve my professional image. At Fitpro’s Spring Convention I treated myself to a pair of Vibram FiveFingers shoes. I really wasn’t sure what I thought about them, but decided to just go for it.

After training and wearing them I have found some interesting benefits. Leaving aside how they feel and the physiological implications, they are fantastic conversation starters.

From wearing them, having a branded personal training T-shirt and business cards I have gained two clients from conversations started in a supermarket and pub. I’ve found that they make a statement; people ask you questions about them and why you’re wearing them. This then gives you an opportunity to make a sneaky sales pitch.

I explain to them the benefits and then ask them questions about what shoes they currently wear for their training/sports. After you have found out how active they are (or not!) it gives you a great opportunity to provide them with some information about how they can improve their training and how you can benefit them as a personal trainer.

I always try to make sure I ask open questions and, importantly, leave them with a way to contact me by giving them one of my business cards. If anyone else has any interesting ways to get a conversation with potential clients going then let me know!  

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Recovering after hard sessions

As a new personal trainer, one of the most important things I’ve learned is the need to judge is the recovery time of clients. If clients are suffering from delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) it will have two effects. Firstly, it will reduce the effectiveness of subsequent workouts due to fatigue and, secondly, it will negatively affect their motivation, as they are unlikely to enjoy the session if they’re sore before you even begin.
The three key areas to consider regarding recovery after a hard training session are nutrition, rest and your client’s programme/periodisation.
Nutrition provides our bodies with the fuel for exercise and the building blocks to repair micro-trauma after a hard session. Post-exercise, we should consume a high GI carbohydrate (CHO), as this replaces the glucose lost during exercise. A great high GI food post-exercise is fruit. During exercise micro-trauma is created within the muscle. Because of this, it is important to consume protein to repair the muscle and aid recovery. If our nutrition isn’t right, then we won’t recover as efficiently as we could.
Rest is an important factor in recovery. When working out, you’re trying to create new stimuli by putting the body under stress to create an adaption in the body. The adaption will take place when you’re resting. Because of this, rest becomes just as important as working hard during a workout.
Good periodisation is important for recovery. I always strive to ensure clients get enough rest between workouts to allow for recovery in the muscles they’re working. For example, if you see a client twice a week and perform a hard session on their legs on Monday and then ask them to perform 30 minutes of hard interval training on the rowing machine on Thursday, they are not going to perform as well as they could.
One of the last lessons I’ve learned is that sometimes the best thing you can do as a trainer is ensure that your client gets enough rest.
Hope this helps.
Dom

Friday, 15 April 2011

Fitpro Spring Convention 2011

This weekend I was at the FitPro Spring Convention at Loughborough University in the north of England – and it was an amazing event!

Spring Convention is a massive, annual fitness conference, with hundreds of sessions and classes and workshops led by leading PTs and instructors, and its crammed with people who live and love everything health and fitness.

TRX equipment in the sun at Convention


I came away realising just how much I think I know is only the tip of the iceberg. Two lectures in particular have really changed my view of exercise and how I train my clients.


Who’s playing the game?
Scott Hopson

I really enjoyed Scott’s lectures on biomechanics – it was a total eye opener into looking at exercise as full-body movement, compared to isolating body parts as with body building exercises and fixed resistant machines.

It’s amazing how many exercises you can come up with if you pick one ‘traditional’ exercise such as a lunge and manipulate the movements. For example, lunge around an imaginary clock face on the floor, with your leading foot touching 1 o’clock, 2, o’ clock and so on with a different variation at each hour:

Lunge to 12 o’ clock with a shoulder press
Lunge to 1 o’ clock with a bicep curl
Lunge to 2 o’ clock with a lateral rise

Such a simple exercise, but by manipulating the movement you increase the number of muscles worked, increased metabolic output and just have an opportunity not to get bored with your workout!

All my clients want to work their abs, and I came away with loads of exercise ideas featuring a bungee rope: I tie the rope around their waist creating momentum to pull them back or to the side forcing them to use their abs and core to stabilise themselves. They love it!

What is balance within the body?
Douglas Heel

Doug presented a great lecture that opened my mind to movement. He spoke about a sphere of movement and the importance of having correct posture and balance within the body to create strength.Your sphere of movement is when you take a lateral, sagittal and posterior lunge and reach as far as you can. Imagine this to be a dome around your body with the highest point being how high you can reach or jump. I now look at the sphere and what movements (exercise) I can create within these boundaries.

I can’t wait for next year’s Convention!
In the meantime, check out powerclubs - just one of the demos in the trade show.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Beach body bible

Summer is coming. If your clients are looking for the Daniel Craig beach body or worried about getting into their bikini on their summer holiday, then this is the blog for you!
To get your clients’ beach bodies ready, they need to follow four simple steps:

1) Perform compound exercises
2) Increase their cardio
3) Eat a healthy balanced diet
4) And, most importantly, work hard!
Building skeletal muscle is half the battle. This will help to increase your metabolic rate and melt away the unwanted pounds. Squats, lunges, bent over rows, deadlifts, clean and jerks and bench presses are all excellent exercises for shedding fat and increasing muscle tone. Aim to be working out three to four times per week, performing three sets of 12- 15 repetitions with a minute’s rest in between exercises. 

Cardio is an important aspect of creating a beach body, as it improves muscle tone and burns fat. Start by choosing your client’s favourite cardiovascular exercise and performing it for three to four times a week for 30 minutes, increasing the time or distance slowly. Encouraging your clients to take part in sport is a great way to get gains in a fun environment.
You want to be pushing your clients lactate threshold; a great way to do this is interval training. This will improve their fitness and start to manipulate their metabolic rate. Interval training includes changing the pace and effort. This can be done on the treadmill by running at a pace clients are comfortable with, then increasing the pace to a workload that can only be maintained for a short period. Aim for two minutes at a comfortable pace, one minute at a hard pace for a 20 minute session.
Nutrition is very important in getting a beach body. You are what you eat. Try to follow these three simple steps to a healthier diet:

1) Reduce your clients’ intake of simple carbohydrate: chocolate, white bread, pasta, rice and cakes. Suggest they try to eat complex carbohydrate: wholegrain bread, rice, pasta, couscous and quinoa.
2) Ensure your client is eating five fruit or vegetables a day.
3) Stick to fixed meal times. If your clients get hungry between meals, then ensure they are snacking on healthy food.
I hope this helps, good luck!
Dom 

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Motivation magic

It is important to keep clients motivated in order for them to get results, enjoy their personal training sessions and ensure they don’t lose interest in your services.

Three early signs of clients losing motivation are

  •       Lack of enthusiasm and zest for working out
  •       Cancelling sessions without valid reasons
  •       Regressing into poor eating and exercise habits
Keep an eye out for these early signs before it progresses to a complete lack of interest in personal training. Are you seeing these signs in some of your clients?

A great way to keep your clients motivated is to focus on goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timed (SMART). Every client has goals they want to reach through personal training and using the acronym SMART gives a clear and measurable timeline to reaching goals.

Whatever your clients’ goals are, ensuring they are visible is a great way to increase motivation. Do they have an old picture of themselves at their desired weight or perhaps of them winning a medal from a sporting achievement? If so, get a copy and display it where you work out with them.

Repetition in exercises is just plain boring; it’s going to make even the most dedicated fitness fanatic unmotivated. Changing exercises is a great way to make sessions fun and create new stimulus. Be attentive to your clients and listen – if they don’t like an exercise, don’t make them do it if there is another option.

Keeping in touch with your clients during the week so it’s not just a weekly one-hour workout is a great way to keep motivation levels up. Get in touch; find out how your client’s workouts are going during the week. Do they need new programme plans? What have they been eating? These are all great conversation starters.

Is your client training with a friend or partner? If not, it’s a great way to increase motivation, plus gives you the option to charge more if they both train with you!

Hope this helps. What do you do to keep your clients motivated?

Dom

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Perfect posture


One of the most common questions I get from my clients – after weight loss of course! – is about posture. This is a term used to describe body shape – whether good or bad. Good posture is maintaining muscular balance throughout the body to ensure there isn’t an excessive curvature in the spine.

Posture is very important when taking into consideration lower back pain. A common disorder causing lower back pain is lordosis. This is an inward curvature of a portion of the vertebral column, normally found in the lumbar vertebrae. Lordosis can be treated by strengthening the hip extensors and by stretching the hip flexors. Strengthening the posterior chain will also help to treat lordosis and flatten the lumbar vertebrae.
Useful exercises are stiff legged deadlifts, supine hip lifts and supine single leg hip lifts. Exercises that strengthen the posterior chain without involving the hip flexors in the front of the thighs will be beneficial in treating lordosis. This will help to create a posterior turn in the pelvis and flatten the back.
A large reason for lower back pain is often lifestyle. Are your clients sitting at a desk or in a car for a long period of time? If so, their body will adapt to these positions and create muscular imbalance. I re-enforce to them the importance of keeping good posture, not only during exercising but in daily life.
The majority of my clients who suffer from lower back pain spend the majority of their day in a seated position. I ask them to check they are sitting correctly in an upright position, maintaining a neutral spine and not slumping. I enforce this during our sessions by performing exercises, such as the seated shoulder press, in a seated position. Make sure your client is pushing their lower back against the back support and that this is transferred into their daily life when sitting. 
I hope these tips help!
Dom

Thursday, 17 March 2011

The early bird

Thinking about training in the mornings? I would definitely recommend it – it’s a great way to wake up!

Some clients do find it hard work when it’s really early so I remind them why they’re training. I reinforce the weight loss, how well they are doing and how good they will feel for the rest of the day.

The biggest problem with training in the mornings is when clients have low energy levels if they haven't had enough sleep or not consumed the right nutrition.

When training in the morning it’s important to increase blood sugar levels and have enough glucose to fuel the workout. To do this make sure you have sufficient carbohydrates before training. Due to the short time available to digest food in the morning it is important to have a light meal that will give energy but not make you feel so full you can't work out.

Fruits and sports drinks are good to have before working out in the mornings, followed by a more substantial breakfast after the workout. I tend to have a banana and sports drink before I train so I have energy but don't feel uncomfortable. Most sports drinks will take time to provide energy so should be consumed around 20-30 minutes before training.

I start clients off with a hard exercise as I find it wakes them up! We normally start with a run/warm-up then go straight into some hard complex compound moves, such as the clean and jerk.

Early morning is actually my favourite time of the day to train – I find I always end up having a really productive day. I love it!

Dom

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

The black and white of it

Did anyone spot my letter in UltraFit magazine (Feb/Mar 2011)?! It's in the purple feedback box. I wrote in response about an article they ran on working in the fitness industry, and talked about my experiences (as I've been blogging here, in fact).

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Delivering a marketing knockout

Isn’t it a great feeling when everything comes together with a client? I’ve been training someone new twice a week using some of the skills I picked up on the Outbox™ course I attended. We get along really well and she’s really enjoying the boxing – so much so that she asked me to help her get the right gloves, bags and wraps for her to use both in her own time and during our training.

Going on the Outbox course was really helpful in making the boxing sessions more fun and professional. Having the online videos is also a big help for referring back to teaching points and how Adam Booth and David Haye are coaching.

To try and make sure that I get more new clients – hopefully as nice as my new boxing client! – I’ve been hitting my marketing hard. And, just as I tell my clients to, I’ve been keeping a log to mark all the key points on what I have been doing every day to market myself and my company.

Over the last week I’ve made a few changes to my website to make it more visually appealing, I've contacted different groups on Facebook and have got in touch with a WeightWatchers® meeting to see if I can give a talk on health and fitness.

It really is like anything that you want to do – having set goals clearly written down really helps. I recommend all personal trainers begin keeping a log. We tell clients to write down their goals so we should practise what we preach!


Dom

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

The perfect bum?

As promised in my last blog, here’s a programming exercise for an effective bum/tum workout. A big thank you to PTontheNet – whenever I put together a new programme they are one of the first resources I use. It gives some great ideas on how you can take exercises from a basic level and advance them.
For a great bum/tum workout you need to ensure that all exercises are compound movements to maximise the muscles being used.

Bum/tum programme:


Activity Sets Reps Tempo Intensity
Deadlift – dumbbells 3 15 2:2 High
Basic squat 3 15 2:2 High
Chest press 3 15 2:2 High
Clean and jerk 3 15 2:2 High
Lunge – forward 3 15 2:2 High

There are a number of ways the routine can be progressed. You can change the sets, reps, tempo or rest period to create a new stimulus. One of my favourite things to do is perform the exercises using a heavy weight first, then cut the rest period out and complete the workout in a cardio style. I’ve found clients enjoy this type of training – tough as it is!

I recommend performing this workout on a Monday and then it can be repeated later in the week. If a client feels sore or tight in a specific area, change the workout around.

Here are some alternatives to the exercises listed:

Deadlift – dumbbell deadlift, transverse deadlift, single arm deadlift, single leg deadlift.

Squats – split squats, boss squats, single leg squats, BOSU single leg squat.

Chest press – dumbbell chest press, single arm chest press, Swiss ball chest press, Swiss ball dumbbell chest press, Swiss ball single arm chest press.

Clean and jerk – clean and jerk with dumbbells, single arm clean and jerk.

Lunge – lunge with dumbbells, lunge with Olympic bar, lunge onto BOSU, BOSU lunge with dumbbells, BOSU lunge with Olympic bar.

Of course, if the client is really tired then they may need a rest or for you to perform a totally different routine with them.

I hope this is useful to you all, let me know how you get on!

Dom

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

New clients

I’ve had a good week so far. Had a meeting with a new client on Friday who saw one of my ‘New Year, new you’ flyers and wants to do two morning sessions per week. I then had a new massage client on Saturday who also found my details via a flyer. I talked to her about fitness and nutrition during the hour, and she asked for a price list afterwards – hopefully will hear back from her in the next day or two that she wants to go ahead with personal training. So far I’m making good on my New Year’s resolution to increase my client list.

I’ve created a new list of packages and prices: it’s easier to concentrate the marketing and promotion to attract a certain type of client. I’ve got packages aimed at weight loss, toning, athletes and sports players etc. One of my friends is going to have a play about with my website this week and add the packages and prices ... keep an eye on www.feelgoodpt.co.uk

My mentor had some great advice about my client with shoulder problems, so I've incorporated mobilising exercises with band/gentle movements (flys) with very light weights to myclient's programme. When the shoulder is tight, you want to avoid strengthening it in a compromised position (while movement is limited), and go with mixture of active stretches/gentle exercises to encourage range of motion.

My current topic of interest is programming for my new mum clients who want to tone bums and tums. I'll post a programme next week so you can give it a go yourself. Let me know any tips or requests!

Dom