Around this time of the year, a lot of people have given up on their fitness resolutions and are avoiding going to the gym to work out.
This happens each year to the point that fitness trainers are more or less prepared for the mass exodus of people by the end of January or February. But what is it that causes people to abandon their fitness goals after just a couple of months?
The answer lies in gym anxiety. Gym Anxiety is a common phenomenon experienced by a lot of first-time fitness enthusiasts that prevents them from continuing their fitness regimen without making any progress.
A common cause of gym anxiety is simply being overwhelmed. Many clients see other people with much better physiques working out at the gym, and this discourages them from continuing their workouts. Moreover, some workout equipment can be intimidating, and people are hesitant to try them out.
Here are a few ways you can help clients overcome their anxiety and get on with their gym workouts.
Pick A Quiet Time
Most of the gym anxiety comes from seeing others perform better workout routines. An easy way to avoid this is by picking a quieter time for your clients to come and train. With fewer people around, it’ll be easier for your clients to focus on their workouts instead of the surroundings. With time, as they see positive results, their anxiety will decline, and they can work out more confidently in the gym.
Try Outdoor Workout
If going to the gym is the main issue, then you don’t have to train there. Instead, you can opt for outdoor workouts. Exercising outdoors is good for health, and the fresh air and atmosphere help people overcome their anxiety and stay relaxed. This means that they’ll get better results out of their workouts too. However, it’s understandable that outdoor workouts won’t have the same resources available at the gym, so you’ll have to get a bit to create and mix different exercise forms to create a unique routine.
Stick With A Simple Routine
Complicated routines never deliver good results unless your client is a certified ‘gym-aholic.’ When you’re working with new clients, it’s important to stick to the basics and have a light workout routine. Something that doesn’t feel too much for the client. With time, you can get to a more intense routine, but if you start with a tough one, you should know that you’ll have trouble retaining that client.
Even if all your client is doing is stretching and a bit of exercise, stick with it and gradually increase it in the next sessions. That way, the client will not only trust you with their fitness but will also take on more challenging workouts.
Measure Progress Periodically
Progress is subjective to each client, but that doesn’t mean your clients won’t progress even if they have lighter workouts. Also, the number one reason why clients stop working out or have gym anxiety is that they feel like their workouts aren’t enough. A good approach to prevent this is to measure their progress periodically.
Instead of waiting for 6 months or even 3 months, set monthly workout goals for their clients and show them how much they’ve improved compared to last month. This improvement might not be much, but it’ll help the clients see how far they’ve come and keep them motivated to continue.
Listen To The Client’s Concerns
All clients are not alike. They have different requirements, lifestyles, and, sometimes, certain medical issues. So it’s not fair to give them the same workouts. While fitness trainers design a specific workout for each client, sometimes that’s not enough. You’ll have to take a few extra steps to help make your clients feel comfortable enough to continue training with you. This also means that you’ll sometimes have to design a lighter workout than what your client can take just to help them stick to a routine.
Keep Cheat Days And Rest Days
While it’s commonly known that cheat days aren’t required as long as people eat things in moderation, however, cutting down on unhealthy foods seems like a punishment to some. So for them, you can have designated cheat days where they are free to eat their favorite foods. This helps them feel happier and stick to their workouts without abandoning them. Just keep in mind to keep the cheat days to a minimum and not enforce any serious dietary restrictions on your clients.
On the other hand, your clients need rest days, and there’s no question about that. But in the beginning, try to keep the ratio of rest days high so clients don’t feel like they’re drained. Because if they feel such a way, they’ll be less likely to continue working out.
Try Unconventional Exercise Methods
Workouts that don’t feel like workouts have a higher success rate with clients. This is because clients don’t feel pressured into following a workout routine and are more likely to stick to it. Workouts, such as swimming and cycling, not only make people happy but also improve their fitness and general wellness.
Over time the clients would start doing these workouts without being pushed, and that’s the point when you can start introducing them to the gym and revamping their workouts. This slow transition is also beneficial for their bodies as it doesn’t face any abrupt changes in their fitness levels.
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