Training at home via streaming with a fitness trainer
A recent report from NBC News revealed that one of the hottest trends happening in the area of fitness right now is working out from home with the help of a personal trainer.
Using this approach, people hire a fitness coach to teach and motivate them to achieve specific wellness goals. But here’s the thing – in many cases, the trainer never steps foot in the trainee’s home.
Instead, the trainer does home visits through streaming (and recorded) video. Examples include Skype or Facetime for live sessions. Recorded sessions can happen through YouTube, Instagram or other modalities.
Recently, I caught up with bodybuilder and certified fitness trainer Cameron Mitchell at world famous Quads Gym in Chicago. He's the owner and operator of JCN Fitness; a wellness company dedicated to helping people learn the essentials of exercise. Cameron is also a former U.S. Marine.
Given interest in this topic, I was curious about how the whole home fitness thing works – plus what to expect from the consumer perspective. What follows are a series of Q and A’s.
Let’s jump right in!
MV: Why has personal training at home become so popular?
CM: One of the reasons why home personal training has become so popular is because of convenience. Nowadays, people are so busy, and they want to keep things simple and readily accessible.
Personal training at home like the Peloton is a great concept because it makes people to do the workout while having fun.
The Peloton trainers are very upbeat, and the program allows you to compete against other people who are doing the same video as you are. One can do the Peloton from the comfort of their home.
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However, some clients prefer one on one training. I prefer to work with my clients in person or at least meet with them once a week. To be able to work my with clients in person allows me to learn about them as much as I can.
This includes everything about their eating habits, sleeping, health, lifestyle, and anything that might affect their workouts and the program.
I also specialize in online training which is different from personal training at home. I prepare specialized online diets and exercises for my clients.
Depending on the Client and their needs, I send my clients daily, weekly updates with their diet and exercise changes.
We make adjustments, depending on how they react to the diet and exercise plans. I don't do cookie cutter diet and exercise plans so my priority is to make sure that each of my clients gets the plan that fits best their needs.
MV: What are the advantages of working out with trainer at home?
CM: The first reason why working out with a trainer at home is advantages is because it saves time. As I mentioned most people are busy and having the personal trainer come to their home saves them a lot of time.
A lot of time that they could spend on doing something different.
The second reason why working out when a trainer at home is that it is private. Some people do not like crowded gyms and would prefer to work in the comfort and privacy of their home.
Let’s face it – gyms can be intimidating for many. Thus, working out home is a great alternative.
Lastly, trainer is also popular because it might a cheaper option for some people. Rather than paying both for the gym membership and the trainer with trainer people just need to pay for the training services.
They do not need to pay for the gym membership which can be costly.
MV: How does the process work – do you do live sessions or do you send videos?
CM: It really depends on the client and what they prefer to do and their needs. As I mentioned I like to work closely with my clients.
To be able to come up with a proper diet and exercise plan for the client, I need to know as much as I can.
I usually send the diet and exercise plans to my clients vie email and they follow up with any questions that they might have.
Further, we can meet in person and discuss their plans. The way I approach each client varies because they all have different needs and they want to achieve different things. I help them at different stages of their journey.
I work with people who just started to workout to people who compete at national shows. I also use Instagram to reach out to my clients where I post information about workouts and diet.
Some clients prefer to see the exercises so I take lots of videos to show them the proper technique and how to do them.
MV: Can you speak to the coaching aspects of the relationship?
CM: First and foremost to establish a working relationship there has to be a trust on both ends.
My clients have to be honest with me and trust me. Since any minor changes in their diet, sleep, stress can impact their progress, it is crucial that they tell me what is going on in their life.
They have to follow my program and believe in it.
Changes don’t happen overnight; it takes time to achieve changes and keep them. It is hard work and it takes dedication to achieve the goals that my clients want.
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I am there for them to guide them through every step of the process especially at the beginning of the relationship.
Being a coach is a big responsibility since people have questions at all times of the day and answering in a timely fashion is very important.
It is a great feeling when I can help my clients achieve their goals whether it may helping them lose fat and get them in shape or helping them preparing for a competition.
MV: What should consumers look for in a trainer?
CM: Consumers should look for trainers who will be honest with them. It is crucial to make sure that trainers personalize diets and exercise plans for each client.
It is important that the trainer learns as much about the client as they can. The more information the trainer has the better results the client can achieve.
Further, a consumer should make sure that the trainer really wants the best for them. The consumer should look for a trainer who will take time to really help them and understand their goals.
MV: Is there an ideal candidate for home training? (certifications, education)
CM: I would say that an ideal candidate for home training is a personal trainer with several years of experience with in person training. I started training people in 1996 so I have decades under my belt with training people and multiple certifications in nutrition and training.
I stay away from people who do not have accredited certifications and no track record. I would research if people are science based or do they just make up their own opinions about what to do.
I find it extremely important to make sure that I stay current with the new research and I keep myself well-read, so I can explain the science to my clients.
MV: When is training at home not appropriate?
CM: I would say that it really depends on the client and their specific needs and what they feel comfortable doing. I would say that training at home is not appropriate for people who never lifted and have little experience at the gym.
They should first seek out a personal trainer who would meet with them in person. This way they can learn the proper mechanics, so they can avoid any injuries and waste time by doing incorrectly.
Men’s Variety would like to thank Cameron Mitchell for his time and for helping us to make this piece possible. Also, thank you Cameron for your previous service to our country.