The invention of the internet has made so many services easier and better for the consumer: online banking instead of having to go to the bank and writing email instead of written letters are just two ways the internet has improved services that already existed. These online services save you time, money, and they can save the businesses themselves time and money. However, there are some online services that just aren’t as good as the real thing. One such service in the fitness industry is online personal training. Even though you can find online personal training programs run by fitness magazines and other fitness professionals pretty easily and for very little money, they may not be the best option for you.
One thing you’re never going to get from an online personal training service is accountability. Sure, you’ll get an email once a week or more “checking in” on you, but there’s no one there making sure you’re getting in your workout each day. One of the number one reasons we hear people wanting to train with us is just to have someone make them accountable to work out that day. An email asking if you’ve worked out that day may not be enough for you to get into the gym that day.
Fitness Assessments and Evaluations
When signing up for an online personal training program, you might answer a few questions about yourself: height, weight, goals, and you might say what injuries you have in rare cases. However, there is no formal assessment of your current health and fitness status so it’s impossible for the online trainer to know what kind of shape you’re in. No matter how detailed the questionnaire is, it will never substitute the evaluation you’d get from a professional in person. We have several clients who sign up every month who are unaware of what their injury even is. They might say they have a knee problem, but it’s really a problem originating from their hip. Or they might say they’re completely injury free but they’re heavily quad dominant (quads are significantly stronger than the hamstrings and hips), which can cause future injury. Height and weight are just simply not enough to determine the fitness level of the client. If you were to take 3 people who were all 6’0 and 180 lbs, they could all be completely different fitness levels. Designing one cookie cutter workout for all three is dangerous and flat out irresponsible. Look at it this way, if you felt you had a serious illness, would you rely on a Web MD diagnosis or would you go to a real doctor to find out what was wrong?
Whether you’re training with a DVD or using an online personal training program, who’s watching your form on each exercise? Bad form leads to injuries, and when you’re injured, you can’t work out.
So Why Do These Programs Exist?
So if these programs are so poorly run, why do they exist? The simple answer is so the company running the program can make an easy buck. Online personal training is completely automated for the personal trainer, which makes it a “set it and forget it” type program. Once the client is set up, they can collect the money and let the software continue to run its’ course. A lot of people are willing to try online personal training programs because it’s cheap and you get your workout plan almost immediately. However, we have one simple question for you. Do you really think you can completely change your body and your health from a program that only costs $29.99 per month? As the old saying goes, you get what you pay for. The harsh truth is, personal training is not cheap. If you’re seriously interested in changing your health and fitness, you need to evaluate what your biggest needs are and what type of training method will meet them. Most people need someone who will hold them accountable, someone who will watch their form, or someone who will track their progress and motivate them to continue to work hard. Most people need someone who can do all three and more.
At Philly Personal Training, we like to feel that we get very in depth with our personal training packages. Not only are we the only personal training studio or gym in Philadelphia that requires our personal trainers to have a college degree in an exercise-related field, but we also give every new client a full fitness assessment and evaluation, a personalized workout plan (once they have mastered all of the movements, of course) and each client gets a consultation with our registered dietitian to make sure their nutrition is on track. This method is proven and has gotten results time and time again for our clients. Why not give it a try? Contact us today for a free consultation!