The question of how to find a good personal trainer is as old as industry itself. In fact, it usually gets transformed into an even bigger question - should you even HIRE a personal trainer? Conveniently enough, answer to one of those questions will dictate answer to other one - every time!
The short and simple truth of matter is that you should only hire a personal trainer if you can find an effective one that is right for you. Here are several things to consider before you decide!
The term professionalism should cover our prospective trainer's skills, as well as his/her ability to act in a professional manner. Both are critical to training process, and if a trainer is lacking in either department, it will spell doom for your program eventually, either in short term, or later on down road.
The days of personal trainers just being jocks with a certification are (thankfully!) coming to a close. Today's personal trainer needs to be a consummate professional with regard to his/her actual skills, as well as ability to treat their clients in a professional and business-like manner.
For now let's just agree that if your trainer doesn't have a clue about how to get you in shape, you probably don't want to hire that trainer!
What about their level of professionalism? A good personal trainer will always maintain their professional bearing. They don't need to be some stick in mud with no personality, but there are several things that a trainer should NOT be doing during a training session. These include things like staring at themselves in mirror, daydreaming, excessively talking to other people, talking on their cell phone, checking out members of opposite sex, and just generally not focusing on you during workout.
Your trainer should look professional as well. Although actual clothing standards vary widely, some things that you should not see are excessive body jewelry, latest fashions such as arm bands, beanie caps, combat boots, etc., or any clothing or accessories that are worn simply as decoration or because style is in. The latest styles have absolutely nothing to do with your training program!
Which level of personal training certification is best has been and continues to be a matter of extreme debate. This article will not propagate that debate with further discussion of details. However, what you should take home is fact that regardless of your fitness goals, your trainer should be qualified to train YOU.
For general health and fitness, any of top 10 nationwide certification agencies offer acceptable programs. A brief list includes - but is not limited to - International Sports Sciences Association, American Council on Exercise, and National Academy of Sports Medicine. There are others, and your trainer should be more than happy to point you to website that governs his or certification, so that you can learn more on your own.