What Do You Specialise In?

What do you specialise in? As a personal trainer, it’s one of those questions I’ve been asked a lot. A lot. And to be honest, it’s a pet peeve of mine. Yeah, another one. I don’t begrudge personal trainers who do specialise, I more begrudge the insinuation that you must have a specialist subject. I believe my job as a personal trainer is to be personal to you, no matter what you need.

To me, that means I should endeavour to know as much as possible about everything. My research should be varied, I shouldn’t limit myself to one specific area. Especially as you often find there’s so much of a crossover between subjects. And especially because if you focus on one particular area, you can either become too narrow-minded, single-minded that what you’ve studied is the be all and end all, or you’re actually limiting the scope of what and who you can teach. If I specialise in one thing, and it becomes the focal point of my learning, that might not cover what my other clients, or potential clients, need. Or worse, it could be detrimental to them, because I’m only teaching them from this one area, possibly neglecting other things that might help more.

So, what do I do when come across a client, or a potential client, who has a specific need that maybe I feel like I don’t know enough about yet? Well, I have two options. One, I can refer them to someone I know who has more knowledge in that area. Or two, I can go and increase my knowledge of that area myself. I think the choice depends on the level your client requires. If it’s incredibly important, say they’re a high level athlete, or they have a particular injury or illness, it’s wiser to refer them to someone with more training and experience. If they’re a more casual or amateur level, you can probably get away with researching it yourself, and incorporating it into their training regime. That decision is yours.

I don’t like to specialise. I think it can limit you, blind you, and it somewhat devalues the point of being a PERSONAL trainer. It’s ok to have areas you know more about, that you’ve trained more in, I do, but as far as I’m concerned, I should be flexible in my learning, and flexible in my teaching. See you next week.

Dan Miller

Body Fuel Personal Fitness Trainer