Clients: want vs need

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Clients: want vs need
14
Thu, 03-11-2010 - 8:38am
So, I have this young client who likes certain things, eg BOSU, balance but hates doing arm work. Her arms are really weak and she could use mostly arm exercises. Last week, I had her do walking lunges w/ weights (12 pounds in each arm, just holding them). She said her arms were too tired. So...whenever I'd add an arm exercise, she'd do them half heartedly and told me she couldn't do anymore arms. The level she's working, she's not doing anything to improve her muscle strength. But, if I push her to do more, she's the type who would just stop doing sessions. So...should I give her what she wants or encourage her to do more and have her whine/eventually stop coming? I've trained her mom who is amazing--20 unassisted pull ups amazing. Sigh, this is why I've never been active about recruiting clients. I only want people who buy into working hard but in a safe way. I don't want people who want to overtrain either.










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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2008
Fri, 03-12-2010 - 9:20am

Wellll, are you working for the money or for the enjoyment of being a pt?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-15-2004
Fri, 03-12-2010 - 9:30am

The first thing you have to do is accept that not everybody is going to want to work out in the way that you do or think they should. It's just not gonna happen. Would they get the best results from it? Probably. But really, that is irrelevant.

I have a lady who gets alarmed at every little ache and pain. Every one. She doesn't push herself at all (or at least to a degree that is detectable by me). I try to sneak in extra reps here and then when I can but I've realized that there are limits to what I can make her do.

I agree with FSN that there may be a power struggle going on with her and her mom. If you can, push her in sneaky ways (don't tell her you upped the weight or that she's doing more reps).

Remember that you are not there to babysit people. You offer your advice and they don't want to do it, there's not much else I can do. As a last resort, you can ask her what she wants to get out of her sessions and then do exactly that.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Fri, 03-12-2010 - 10:25am

Trust me, it's not for the money! I think I pay more for certification, continuing ed credits, etc. than I make. Enjoyment? I enjoy working with people I click with--it doesn't have to be someone hard core but someone I enjoy just chatting with and showing new things to, someone who wants to improve, though. I don't want to be a high priced babysitter. Don't get me wrong, she is a great girl but she's young and privileged and it shows. So, she's used to getting what she wants to get and expects it.

At the same time, given all I've done and have to keep doing to keep current as a pt, having a client is nice to help offset the costs. So, I don't want to push her but I would like her to max out on her training but maybe that's not the goal. I need to take my feelings out of it, what "I" want when I pay for something what others want. Some people don't need to max out on what they get so I should keep that in mind.

The power struggle is interesting--not sure if that's where she's coming from, though. She's happy to let her mother be the power house, seems to take pride in it but also know her mother is extreme. She'll work hard where she wants to work hard but not where she's not interested.











iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Fri, 03-12-2010 - 10:28am

"The first thing you have to do is accept that not everybody is going to want to work out in the way that you do or think they should."

Words of wisdom. I have to take a step back and realize what's recommended isn't always what's best for everyone. And, she's at the gym and working out so if she's happy with a 5 pound chest press, she's doing more than if she weren't seeing me.











iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2008
Fri, 03-12-2010 - 10:59am

A five pound chest press?!

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Mon, 03-15-2010 - 8:14am
So, thanks for all your advice. I let it go, gave her enough arms but not as much as I would normally give. She wants to work on her lower body she said, so fine. She shows up about 15-20 minutes late (runs in the family) and wants to socialize as much as work out. It's all I can do to stop her chatting to give her the next exercise but she's working out and hard when she likes the exercise. I just have to let it go that people aren't as frugally driven as I am.










iVillage Member
Registered: 03-15-2004
Mon, 03-15-2010 - 9:54am

Good job, trainer-san.

*bowing*

:)

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Mon, 03-15-2010 - 11:12am
After beating my head against the wall, it feels so good to stop. Thanks for telling me I don't HAVE to do that!










iVillage Member
Registered: 03-15-2004
Mon, 03-15-2010 - 12:00pm
Anytime. :)
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Wed, 03-17-2010 - 10:23am

I agree with Kel and I also wanted to add that you never really know what is going on inside people's heads or bodies. Maybe she is pushing herself as much as SHE can. If not physically, then mentally. It's one thing if someone has come to you and said ahead of time "I tend to slack off unless someone is pushing me hard, so I'm coming to you so you'll push me hard." But if you don't have that kind of understanding with someone, I think you have to respect what they say their limits are, even if you think they can and should push harder.


I'm a bit sensitive to this because often I can't push myself as hard as an observer might think. I might be able to do an hour on the elliptical and lift pretty heavy weights but often I can't do very basic, "easy" yoga moves (like a downward dog) for more than a few seconds. I'm sure my yoga instructor looks at a fit, relatively young woman and feels like he or she should encourage me to push myself harder. And a few words of encouragement are fine, but if the participant says "no" then the right thing to do is drop it.

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