I have memberships to about 4 different gyms. Reason being is that I instruct at all of them. So I have come into contact with just about every situation possible that can occur at a fitness facility. One of the things I have encountered is a lack of teamwork amongst staff from various departments. One such situation that is very common is this personal trainer vs. group fitness mindset. These two departments are often at odds when they should be working together to provide a better experience for their clientele.
Person trainers do what their name implies. They are present at gyms to provide individual attention to meet the clients needs. Whether it be weight loss, toning, building muscle, agility etc. People who lack knowledge and or discipline as to attain their desired results will normally seek out the assistance of a personal trainer.
Group fitness instructors provide instruction in a group setting. They typically specialize in a certain area. They may be instructors who focus on strength building, toning, abs, cardio etc. People who have a certain goal and either know or somewhat know the means to achieve them will be in these classes. People who also feel that others get them motivated and want a social environment will be seen here.
The two normally butt heads when it comes to giving advice to customers. I have seen both sides. For example. Johnny the personal trainer is trying to maintain and get new clients. So when Johnny starts noticing that the group fitness classes are growing and his clientele is shrinking. Johnny results to degrading the group fitness department by telling his clients or prospective clients things like: “Oh, I know you are not burning calories in that dance class” or “Those classes are a waste of time, you need to come see me for some real results”. This is not by any means productive.
Group fitness instructors are not exempt from the negativity. They are often times in competition with their fellow group fitness instructors and want to keep their numbers in the class high. So what they will often say their clients regarding personal training are things like: “Ever since you have been doing personal training, I haven’t seen you in class. Forget that, that stuff is expensive. Save your money take my class”. This is also counter productive.
These two scenarios are very detrimental. Not only to the fitness center as a whole but to the departments and individuals who participate in such behavior. The people the gym is servicing may take offense to their favorite group fitness class or personal trainer being insulted. Guaranteeing that either will possibly loose a fan.
These two departments should function in a symbiotic fashion. They should compliant one another. This is what I participate in. At one of the gyms where I instruct. There is a personal trainer by the name of Drew who comes to my hip hop fitness class on the regular. Drew recommends his clients take my class to aid in achieving their results. I in turn will have Drew come up in the front to do a hip hop routine and prior to will introduce him an tell folks to seek him out if they have fitness questions or goals they would like to achieve. This example is how it should be.
Personal trainers and group fitness instructors should be a united front. One where everyone comes together and put their egos aside and make the client their number one priority. Helping them achieve their goals.