Health // July 15, 2013

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Regardless of fitness level, everybody needs help as they embark upon their next level, in order to prevent injury, promote enthusiasm, and ensure continued fitness gains. Seeking the guidance of a qualified professional health and fitness coach is advised, whenever changes are being made to an already- or non-existing fitness regimen.

In researching, then selecting, the most appropriate fitness and wellness coach, there are several points to consider:

1. What degree(s) and/or certifications does this coach carry, and are they current? A gym rat and sexy genetic map translated into physical “perfection” does not make a qualified fitness instructor. Minimally, a qualified instructor should be licensed by a nationally recognized organization.

2. Do you have any chronic conditions or pain, injuries, or other special needs that a coach will need to consider (even if you think they might not need to) when planning your fitness program? The coach you are considering should have experience and success working with others who have the same needs that you do.

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3. Does the coach offer single “trial” sessions? Finding the right coach and trainer is like finding the right therapist. Do not allow yourself to be persuaded into buying large packages before you have been able to meet and “sample” (does not imply free) the coach’s services.

4. Will the coach be able to create a fitness program that is considerate of your other daily commitments, such as work and children, and the time that you have allocated to working out? Having a coach who can customize programs for clients includes customization based on goals and schedule.

5. Does the coach have the right personality attributes that will ensure your success? If the coach has personality traits that invoke negative feelings, guilt, or frustration, you may not continue your fitness journey.

The coach who meets most, if not all of the above (and some of your own) criteria, will be the most appropriate person to coach you toward successfully meeting then exceeding your fitness and well-being goals.

Published in Health