Finding The Right Coach or Trainer

Hello Masters!  OGS has been out on sabbatical but is back and ready to tackle the fitness issues of Masters Athletes.

Today, let’s look at how to find the right coach or trainer.  You may need a coach or you might be trying to get someone off the couch and on the track to a fitness oriented life. Finding the right coach is key to keeping any athlete motivated and moving toward their goals.

Not long ago, one of the members at the gym told a story about her father.  He finally decided it was time to get in shape.  He made his way to a local gym and signed up for a session with a personal trainer.  Unfortunately, he was so sore after his first session, that he never went back.

A good trainer/coach will move the athlete towards their goal, while avoiding injury, and making the experience fun (or at least rewarding).  Here are a few tips to choosing the right trainer or coach for you:

  • Make sure they have the proper certifications.  Yes, this is important.
  • Have some specific goals in mind before you talk to a trainer.  “I want to get in shape”, is too general.  “I want to lose 30 pounds”, is a specific goal that a trainer can work with.  “I want to run my first 5k and be able to do a pull-up”, is even better.
  • Interview any potential trainer.  You don’t have to go with the first one you meet.  Remember this is an important decision.  It’s your health.  Choose a trainer that you feel understands you.  Do you want to be pushed to the edge on your first day or do you want to ease into it?
  • If a friend or colleague is referring a trainer to you, ask the friend why?  Why, specifically, do they like the trainer?
  • If you have any special circumstances that keep you from being fully operational (a bad shoulder or knee), ask the trainer how they plan to work around your physical issue.
  • Lastly, the trainer should want to work themselves out of a job.  If they get you to your goal and have you motivated to live a fitness oriented life, you should only need to see them every month or so.

The big box gyms all have personal trainers.  They are in abundance and are usually young, fit and enthusiastic.  As a Master’s Athlete or future Master’s Athlete, it is advisable to find a trainer with years of experience working with older athletes.  Let’s face it.  We have different physical issues than we did 20 years ago.  Go online and look up personal trainers in your area.  Check out their background and their bios.  You will quickly be able to sort out likely candidates for you.

That’s it for today.

Happy workouts,


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