Being a fitness coach might seem like a simple job from the outside. But, as soon as you start practicing it, you realize just how nuanced and challenging it can be to lead clients to success and keep them motivated.
To that end, we’ve put together this post outlining four habits of highly successful fitness coaches.
Yes, surprisingly, the first habit of highly successful gym coach isn’t to tell athletes what to do but to listen to them. In doing so, the coach can understand what goals, struggles, and frustrations the client has. The coach can then develop the best plan and approach for the specific client.
Good fitness coaching is about taking the time to truly understand the individual standing in front of you and asking questions like:
- What is your biggest frustration?
- What goals would you like to have achieved in the next 6-12 months?
- What are your most common struggles related to fitness?
2. Set Specific Goals for Clients
Goals like losing fat, building muscle, and getting fit look good on paper but rarely work in real life.
Why? Because each of these is vague and provides no real direction.
A good fitness coach understands the client’s situation and desires well because doing so is vital for setting clear, actionable, and realistic goals.
The SMART model for goals works great:
S – specific
M – measurable
A – actionable
R – relevant
T – time-bound
An example of a SMART goal would be:
“Lose 20 pounds of fat in the next 16 weeks.”
The goal is specific, measurable, actionable, and time bound. Depending on the person, it can also be relevant and desirable.
3. Monitor Clients’ Progress
Aside from understanding clients and setting reasonable goals for them, a good fitness coach knows how to monitor progress. Doing so is essential because all the preparation and execution in the world won’t mean much unless the client gets the desired result.
A good gym coach can keep clients in check by having them:
- Send progress photos
- Fill out sheets for circumference measurements and body weight
- Fill out training sheets and send them back for review
Monitoring clients’ progress is also fantastic for keeping them accountable and on the right track. Leaving them to tackle the process alone can often lead to a loss of motivation. But, if a client knows that they have to give you a weekly update, they are much more likely to stay consistent.
4. Encourage, Motivate, and Keep Accountable
The fourth habit of successful fitness coaches is a combination of encouragement, motivation, and accountability.
A good coach does not intimidate clients but makes them believe that improvement is possible. Good fitness coaching is about getting your clients motivated and keeping them in that state through accountability and encouragement.
As with most things, becoming a good fitness coach is about taking many small steps in the right direction.
The good news is that everyone can be successful in the area, so long as they understand what makes for a good coach. We hope you take the four habits from above and adopt them as your own.