Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Are all Personal Trainers created equal...?


Gym Ninja just about survived the year-old Night Nurse medication last night. 'Just about' was definitely the operable word, as not only was GN almost coma-like for most of the morning (she snoozed her alarm twice), but she had a serious case of eyes rolling inwards aka gozzy-eyed.

In an attempt to wake herself up, Gym Ninja donned a bright red skirt suit for work today. You know, to match her eyes...*yawn*. However, after a day filled with 6 hours driving and chasing up  things her colleagues should be chasing up, interspersed with 'Hollow Leg Syndrome' due to tiredness (Hollow Leg Syndrome is where you want to eat anything and everything within arms reach you're THAT hungry), Gym Ninja was gagging for a gym workout.

Tonight, would be PHA night. That, if you recall back in earlier blogs, stands for 'Peripheral Heart Action'. A herrruge circuit if you will, of 3 compound exercises (push and pull) with no rest between exercises, followed by 3 minutes high intensity cardio, then repeat 3-5 times (or 6 times in GN's case).  As GN was working her upper body, she did the following:

1 x 15 reps DB Shoulder Press
1 x 15 reps DB Chest Press
1 x 15 reps DB Bent Over Row
3 mins fast rowing on Concept II Rower

Repeated above circuit 3 times then moved onto...

1 x 15 reps Upright DB Row
1 x 15 reps Incline DB Chest Press
1 x 15 reps Lat Pulldown
3 mins fast cycling

Also repeated 3 times in circuit manner....

Finished off with supersets of Skull Crushers for triceps and Barbell curls for biceps.

Tadaaa! Keeps the heart rate elevated and gives you maximum bang for you buck!

Whilst GN was performing her weights exercises, her eye was drawn to a club Personal Trainer across the gym (she could see him reflected in her mirror). He was training a client. Well, Gym Ninja 'says' training a client. But it is seriously a case of not ALL Personal Training qualifications being created equal!!!! There was NO WAY this guy got his certification from Premier Training!!!

The client was an older gentleman and the PT was watching him perform dumbbell chest press. The PT was stood at his head, looking down on the guy as he struggled with his reps.

Mistake number 1. As a PT you need to get down on their level with them. He should have been knelt at the head of the guy, coaching him.
Mistake number 2. The guy obviously was struggling with the dumbbells so the PT should have had his hands out spotting him, just in case he dropped the weights. Then, he should have 'regressed' the exercise as the guy was struggling SO much his form was slipping. As it was, the PT was standing above the guy and would be too far away to respond to a Dumbbell dropping situation!

Gym Ninja looked away.

A bit later, during another exercise, GN clocked the couple training shoulders. The old guy was performing standing Arnold Presses with dumbbells. The PT was standing watching him.

Mistake number 1. The old guy had his head stretched right back, his chin almost pointing upwards with the effort. This should have been immediately corrected as it is bad form.
Mistake number 2. The guy was excessively arching his lower back, which would put terrible pressure on the vertebrae. Again, this should have been corrected immediately and the importance of neutral spine and a tight core explained.  Once the 'set' was finished, the PT walked off to refer to a bit of paper, whilst the client dropped the weights, his back now curved forwards. EEEEK!

Why was the PT NOT correcting this client? He was right there, watching him. Gym Ninja could see the danger and she was at the other side of the bl**dy gym!

Pretty soon, the guy was sat on a Swiss stability ball, dumbbells in his hands. Anterior Deltoid Raises was the move. Except it wasn't. It was Anterior Deltoid swings! Good old momentum! Bounce bounce bounce on the Swiss ball, swing swing swing with the dumbbells.

No no no no no!!!!!!!!

You know, some people may get all offended and huffy at reading this. How DARE Gym Ninja correct or slate this guy and his training techniques. Who dies she think she is???  But do you know what? SOMEBODY needs to say it! This client was at serious risk of injury. Anyone with half a brain could see that. This guy was performing exercises in a manner that people who haven't a clue train. So the REASON people hire Personal Trainers is so that they can learn how to train correctly, with good form, and to get a programme that works. Simple. All this guy will get is an empty wallet and a back injury!  The Personal Trainer will then get a bad reputation, so who exactly is benefitting from this? Don't get sloppy training your clients. You are there for your knowledge, experience and expertise so SHOW you have it.

Daggers are-a-heading Gym Ninja's way (again!). Tough. You are putting someone at risk of injury. You need to get your clear head on ok?

Okey dokey. GN needs to go get some study done. Time Bandits are sneaking back into the equation. Oh, and she also needs to buy some Creatamax from Maximuscle..ramp up the endurance training somewhat. Help shape and sculpt the muscle. Gym Ninja needs to be at her peak!

Toodle pip
Oh, and to the PT who knows this was him, do NOT take this a a personal attack. Take it as a wake up call. if you don't tutor your clients properly, then another PT will!

Gym Ninja x