Benefits of Working With a Personal Trainer

How Working With a Personal Trainer Can Help You Reach Your Fitness Goals

More than 8.3 million gym members, or roughly 15 percent of the total, train with personal trainers. Whether you're having trouble staying motivated, reaching your fitness plateau, or you're just tired of exercising, there are plenty of good reasons to do PT training.

According to Brittany Robles, NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Jesse Feder, Personal Trainer and Registered Dietitian, My Crohn's and Colitis Team, those who may benefit most from working with PT include:

  • Beginners who need help learning the basics of training a muscle group in a safe and effective manner
  • Anyone with a specific fitness goal, such as losing weight, training for a marathon, or building muscle
  • Those with injuries need to know how to modify exercises according to their limitations
  • Anyone who is intimidated by gym machines and equipment
  • People who need outside support to help them stick to their fitness goals
  • "There's a lot of conflicting information out there, and it's hard to know who to trust, who's right and who's wrong, and who has your best interest in mind," explains Joshua Clay, certified strength and conditioning trainer and owner of WeTrain MNM road. "A coach helps you navigate complex training scenarios while telling you why, how and what to train."

With all that in mind, here are some of the top benefits of working with a personal trainer.

You’ll Get More Personalized Workouts

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to exercise. That's why, when working with PT clients, NASM Certified Personal Trainer Evander Nelson likes to tailor workouts to their specific needs and ability levels.

He takes into account factors such as age, size, health or injury, and past fitness experience.

Not only does this ensure that your risk of injury is low, it also increases the chances that you'll actually see the results of all your sweaty training.

"Random workouts get random results," adds Clay. "A coach can help you schedule your workouts more precisely so you don't waste time doing exercises or routines that are more challenging than they actually are."

You’ll Learn Proper Form

We’ve all seen that guy at the gym who makes overly ambitious ego lifts — and cringed at their poor form. Don’t be that guy, or you may end up hurting yourself.

A personal trainer can help to point out issues in your form, whether that’s rounding your back during deadlifts or dropping your chest during squats, and correct them. It’s easy to put yourself at risk for injury if you do not know how to do certain moves properly, says Feder.

“It’s easier to learn the right way to execute an exercise when just starting than to unlearn a

self-taught bad habit,” adds Jake Boly, a certified strength and conditioning coach and founder of That Fit Friend.

As Feder points out, proper form can also help you get the most out of your workouts by ensuring you target the right muscle groups.

You’ll Identify — and Overcome — Your Weak Spots

Whether you're new to fitness or a fitness enthusiast, working with a PT can be a game-changer, says Boley, because an expert layperson can help you identify what really needs to be focused on.

"Even if you're a seasoned lifter, having another pair of eyes can be helpful for fine-tuning your practice and limiting your performance gaps," he tells AskMen. “For example, sometimes it’s hard for us to practice to identify areas of lag that might be holding us back, and that can become more difficult as we get more advanced. Going from 98% to 99% is better than going from 0% to 50% % is much more difficult."

You’ll Get a Boost of Motivation

When you schedule workouts with a personal trainer, you're less likely to ditch your workout routine. That's why experts say working with a PT is a great strategy for making sure you stick to your goals.

"If you've invested in training and other people are relying on you, then that adds another layer of motivation to try and improve," Boley added. "As humans, we crave community and connection, and a personal trainer can help you make your workouts feel more purposeful."

A personal trainer can also challenge you to complete some extra reps or sets when you feel like giving up. If you know you're the type of person who might stop when you don't want to do a plank anymore or start to get tired in the middle of a chest press set, then PT could be the cheerleader you sorely need.

You’ll Get More Variety and Progression in Your Workouts

According to certified personal trainer Macy Westlund, variety and progression are both keys to challenging muscles. If you do the same exercises over and over -- with the same weight and reps -- eventually your body will get used to the moves and you won't see results anymore. Not to mention, you may start to dread workouts because they don't challenge you mentally either.

"A personal trainer can help you avoid boredom and fitness plateaus by introducing new exercises and workouts, keeping your routine fresh and challenging," explains Macy Westlund, certified personal trainer. "They can also monitor your progress and adjust your plan to ensure continuous improvement."

The Bottom Line

Clearly, personal training offers a myriad of potential rewards—from reducing your risk of injury to increasing your odds of achieving your fitness goals.

That said, personal training may not be affordable for everyone. Fortunately, experts say there are many beneficial alternatives to consider.

Experts recommend considering group training, which tends to be less expensive but still gives you the more individualized attention of a professional. You can also try online group training through apps like Truecoach, TrainHeroic, Trainerize or Bridge, says Clay.

"Some even offer feedback and guidance from real coaches," Clay explained. "Training doesn't vary from person to person, but if you're fit and not injured, it might work for you."

Nelson recommends using fitness apps and YouTube tutorials, and finding a workout partner with similar goals who can help you stay motivated.

"Beyond that, you can find some great ebooks from coaches and trainers you follow on Instagram," adds Clay.