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Wendy Shafranski


February 23, 2024

Professionalism of the Fitness Industry

Put yourself in the following situations…

If you were walking through Publix and saw someone you knew to be an accountant, would you whip open Quickbooks and ask them to give you advice on your books?

If you were at a party and met a doctor, would you expect him or her to diagnose your symptoms on the spot?

If you were next to an interior designer on a plane, would you show photos of your home and expect the person to tell you what color to paint your walls and how to better arrange your furniture?  

I would imagine the answer to all the scenarios above would be “no.”

So, why then, do people constantly ask trainers for free advice but aren’t willing to hire them? My theory is that the fitness industry hasn’t done a good job in positioning itself as a professional service worthy of investing in.

On a regular basis, I am approached while out and about and bombarded with questions. Why can’t I lose belly fat despite my ab routine? What should I be eating? Why does my back hurt?

I love to help people, but, to really answer anyone’s questions correctly, I would need to spend time with them, watching them move, detailing their food log, digging into their training, sleep, stress, etc. And that would take my time and I would give full effort. But, we get back to my point: man ypeople want free advice from trainers.

The gist of this post is that good personal trainers are valuable and worth investing in. Many of you reading this “get it,” but so many people don’t see it as such.

We’ve had people cut personal training or classes because they want to conserve expenses, yet they don’t cut high-end dinners out, wine, lavish vacations, etc. I’m not saying that these things aren’t important, but it shows that, for many, health, fitness and/or fitness professionals aren’t a priority.

I never will tell someone how to spend their money (it’s really none of my business). But, I do challenge everyone to start to value what we do. We can help someone rehab from an injury, lose weight, get stronger, avoid injury…all of which can impact mental health, overall well-being and quality of life (not to mention saving money in medical expenses later).  

Comments like “that’s too expensive” is basically saying “that’s not worth it” or “trainers don’t deserve to make a decent living.”

That said, I know that personal training isn’t in everyone’s budget - and that’s why we have classes where you get a complete program with personal attention. Yes, we are more expensive than Planet Fitness, but what we provide is value.

Maybe it’s all the influencers, free online programs (they are free for a reason) and $10 per month gyms (whose business plan thrives on you not showing up) that feed into the misnomer that fitness isn’t a valuable investment and personal trainers aren’t a worthwhile expense.

I hope this is something that changes.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this! How can we elevate the profession of training?

And for those of you that do get it and value personal trainers, we thank you!

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