How to Select a Personal Trainer. Third in a 4-part Series

Katie and Shane Condron are the owners of Fitness Inc. in Garwood, NJ Credits: Fitness Inc

Now that we’ve explored what personal training is, and who needs it, let’s talk about the best way to select the right personal trainer.

Choosing a trainer can be a hard choice. Like any other large field there are multiple areas of specialty and multiple levels of accreditation. The truth is, a bad trainer could do you more harm than good and can turn out to be a waste of time and money. Here are the minimum requirements when selecting a personal trainer:

Nationally recognized certification. These will include A.C.E, NASM, NSCA, CSCS. Some trainers may even have a Bachelors or Masters in Exercise Science (as do all trainers at Fitness Incorporated Training Studios)

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  • Experience of more than 1 year.
  • An initial evaluation or screening process in place to evaluate all new clients. More on that below.
  • CPR/ AED certification
  • Can they look you in the eye when speaking to you?
  • Does their specialty align with your goal?

These requirements should be the minimum when selecting a trainer. A trainer that is missing one of these qualities will not be worth the financial investment.

Trainers should have a screening process in place when evaluating new clients. This will provide them with a clear picture of any imbalances that exist in your body. The screening process will give them a clear starting point to begin designing your program. A good trainer may notice muscular and postural imbalances after a few sessions of training; a great trainer will identify them before beginning an exercise program. A great program will incorporate imbalance correction and eradication into any program, regardless of the goal.

At Fitness Incorporated Training Studios all clients are taken through the Functional Movement Screen ( before beginning any exercise routine.

Trainers can and should have open dialogue with your doctor. Your trainer should know about any medical restrictions and feel comfortable discussing them with your doctor while designing your exercise program.

So when interviewing a personal trainer, be sure to look for these key features. Ask the right questions and be sure that your trainer is one who understands your goals, your health status and your motivation.

Previous Articles:

Week 1: What is Personal Training?

Week 2: Who is Personal Training For?

Next Up: Personal Training Costs and Budgeting

More information can be found on our website at, our Facebook page or by emailing at any time at

Columnists Shane and Katie Condron are the founders and co-owners of Fitness, Inc., a personal training studio in Garwood, NJ.  Both Shane and Katie are graduates of Rutgers University, with degrees in Exercise Science.  The couple has more than nine years of experience in the personal training field. Highly-motivated and goal-driven individuals, the Condrons are committed to the personal success of each of their clients.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

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