The main responsibilities of a fitness instructor include leading, instructing and motivating groups or individuals in exercises and activities. Some instructors work in health clubs or gyms, while others work at resorts, hospitals or in private homes. If you are considering pursuing a career as a fitness instructor, you must have several personal qualities, in addition to the required training and certifications.
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Organised and Dependable
Employers look for fitness instructors who are organised and dependable, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Fitness instructors are typically responsible for planning and leading classes that are effective, safe and engaging. People who pay for organised fitness classes or to have a personal trainer come to their homes do not want to do the same routines over and over. They want variety and exercises that will effectively work on target areas in order for them to reach their overall fitness goals. Fitness instructors must be dependable and not flaky. Clients may look for excuses to skip workouts or slack off, and the fitness instructor needs to be a reliable partner who insists the exerciser meet scheduling and fitness goals.
Fit and Healthy
Fitness instructors need to lead healthy and fit lifestyles in order to gain and maintain client relationships. No one is going to take health or fitness advice from someone who is obese or who leads an unhealthy lifestyle. Fitness instructors should be fitness role models in action, mind and body. Clients want leaders who actually walk the walk, instead of just talk about it.
Motivating and Outgoing
Successful fitness instructors need to be able to motivate people and hold a group's or individual's interest in an exercise, despite exhaustion. Many clients truly want to get into shape and improve their health, but they face problems when they become bored or tired. This is exactly why they often hire fitness instructors to begin with. If you are considering becoming a fitness instructor, you must feel confident in leading groups or individuals and pointing out issues.
Excellent communicators feel comfortable talking to all types of people and understand when it's imperative to change communication style to meet the other person's preferred style. Effective fitness instructors can do this easily and efficiently. For example, some people are very sensitive about weight issues, while others can talk about it openly. Good fitness instructors know how to differentiate between the two and practice sensitivity and discretion with their clients. For example, if you are leading a class and want to use a student as an example of good or poor positioning, you will choose one of the outgoing, confident students rather than one who has body issues.
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