In today’s health-conscious society, the increasing number of people who are more concerned about their physical state have brought rise to the influx of health clubs and personal trainers. Employing a personal trainer has become a rising trend, especially in Houston. There are an estimated 5 million people in the Houston area and an estimated 5% who are already doing these. A personal trainer should be able to mentor you so that you can achieve your personal fitness goals. Choosing the right person to guide you is crucial as it can greatly affect the results. The following are a few ways to pick the right personal trainer in Houston

  1. Certification. Your fitness trainer should be certified by any organization that is accredited by NCCA he or she should also be a member of one of the fitness associations in the Houston area. An initiative launched in 2003 by the fitness industry encouraged organizations offering fitness trainer certifications to seek accreditation from NCCA. The initiative was intended to raise the standards of fitness trainers and to protect the well-being of customers. Check your fitness trainer’s certification and verify it with the issuing organization. Also check if it’s current to ensure that your fitness trainer is updated with the latest information and techniques in personal fitness.
  2. Educational Background. While an NCCA-accredited certification is enough to prove that your personal trainer is professionally trained to do the job, a college degree in kinesiology, sports medicine, nutrition or any related field would be an advantage. This is somehow an assurance that your personal trainer can design a training program and a nutritional plan that is specifically designed to meet your needs.
  3. Work experience. Your personal trainer should at least have one year professional working experience in the field and should be able to give you references of other Houston residents who have used his or her services. He/she should have experience working with someone who has the same needs or condition as you. Ask for references so you can check with past clients about his/her performance. Is he currenlty registered at any Houston Gyms like River Oaks Fitness, LA Fitness, 24 Hour Fitness? Or does he own his own private gym?
  4. Network. A personal trainer who has connections with other health professionals such as well respected  doctors, physical therapists, nutritionists and other allied health professionals in the Houston area is an important factor to consider. He/she should have sources when answering questions that are outside his/her area of expertise.
  5. Personality. Any good personal trainer no matter where you live should be able to communicate well and explain the methods and techniques in a level that is clear to you. He should also be a great motivator and understand that change is a gradual process. Another important thing to consider is compatibility between you and your personal trainer. It is difficult to describe this, but just use your natural instincts to know whether or not you’re compatible with a personal trainer. If you feel comfortable with him/her during the initial meeting, then it is most likely that you will be able to work well with him/her.
  6. Fees. Determine the amount that you are willing to spend on your training. Personal trainer’s fees charge on an hourly basis which can be between $20 and $100. Some offer discount packages. Choose someone who charges a fee that is within your budget. Many personal trainers in Houston will also allow you several free consultations and workouts. This works to your advantage as it lets you see if you like the trainer before you have committed to spending a lot of money with that person.
  7. What kind of workouts does this person do? Houston is a very humid city, and while outdoor activity is great most of the time, the summers can be brutal and you don’t want to be outdoors getting a workout when its 100 degrees outside. Make sure your trainer understands your body and the kinds of workouts you like in different weather conditions.

If you think you’ve found the right trainer for you, ask to see his/her proposed training program for you which should be accompanied by a daily meal plan. Then ask for a free workout session to really make sure that he/she is the one who can help you achieve your personal fitness goals. If everything is to your satisfaction, set a time for your first training session. Remember, there are lots of personal trainers in Houston to choose from: make sure you get the one that’s right for you!