Client who is dealing injury

How to Support a Client Who Is Dealing With An Injury

Table of Contents

Guiding fitness clients to success can be a considerable challenge, especially when they are dealing with an injury.

Luckily, there are effective tactics to deal with the situation and keep providing value.

Read on because we’ll review how to deal with an injured athlete.

Determine the Severity of the Injury

Determining the severity of the injury is crucial for knowing how to move forward. Some injuries heal quickly with little to no treatment, but others last for a long time and can develop into chronic issues if not handled correctly.

The best approach is to have your client work with a doctor to diagnose the issue and its severity.

Coordinate with the medical professional to better understand your client’s needs and how to best approach the situation.

Adjust Their Training Plan

Once you know how serious your client’s injury is, the next step is to adjust their training plan to work around the affected area. Keeping your client active is crucial for helping them feel better and not fall off the wagon.

Some injuries are trickier to work around than others, but your job is to figure it out. For example, if a client is dealing with a knee injury, talk with their doctor and discuss what changes you can make to the workout plan.

Determine What (If Any) Movements Aggravate the Injury

Once you’ve changed your client’s workout plan, pay careful attention and look for exercises that might be triggering the injured area.

Sometimes, an exercise might not be directly related to the affected area, but it could still cause issues.

For instance, if a client is dealing with a lower-body injury and standing upper-body exercises cause pain, make changes to alleviate the stress. One example would be to switch from standing to seated exercises:

  • Standing bicep curl ⇒ Seated
  • Standing shoulder press ⇒ Seated
  • Standing tricep extension ⇒ Seated

Aim For Steady Progress

The way to treat clients when injured is to take care of their physical and mental health. Dealing with an injury is as physical as it is psychological, so it’s crucial to show your support and help them feel better.

One of the most effective ways to speed up the healing process and make your clients feel better is to help them make steady progress at the gym.

Under normal circumstances, steady progress might mean lifting more weight, doing more reps, or mastering more challenging exercises. But when dealing with an injury, it could be:

  • Training through a slightly longer range of motion
  • Doing the same workout as last week but feeling much less discomfort
  • Feeling more stable and secure than the previous time

Every serious trainee yearns for improvements. So, when a client deals with an injury, help them feel like they are moving in a good direction.

How to Handle Client Injury: A Few Final Words

The question, “How do you treat a client with an injury?” is challenging. Luckily, there are several effective tactics you can employ.

Supporting your client in their time of need is a great way to overcome challenges and build lasting relationships.


Wade, D.T. (2020). What is rehabilitation? An empirical investigation leading to an evidence-based description. Clinical Rehabilitation, 34(5), pp.571–583. doi:10.1177/0269215520905112.

‌Mills, S.E.E., Nicolson, K.P. and Smith, B.H. (2019). Chronic pain: a review of its epidemiology and associated factors in population-based studies. British journal of anaesthesia, [online] 123(2), pp.e273–e283. doi:10.1016/j.bja.2019.03.023.

Lu, L., Tan, Y., Klaic, M., Galea, M.P., Khan, F., Oliver, A., Mareels, I., Oetomo, D. and Zhao, E. (2021). Evaluating Rehabilitation Progress Using Motion Features Identified by Machine Learning. IEEE transactions on bio-medical engineering, [online] 68(4), pp.1417–1428. doi:10.1109/TBME.2020.3036095.

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