What drives you mad about Fitness Instructors and visa versa!


A good instructor will be a member of the Register of Fitness Professionals which means you can look them up and see how qualified they are, just like you can check to see if the work man who’s just about to bash some walls down in your house is actually qualified to do so. It does amaze me that no one bothers to check to see if their instructor is qualified. I’ve been in the industry for years and I’ve never been asked by customers what qualifications I’ve got, they take the risk that I know what I’m talking about and intrust their health and their joints to my instructions but they wouldn’t risk damage to their house by a cowboy builder?

I asked some customers and staff to be honest with me, here’s what they said:

Over to you!

OK, I’ll give you that one….

‘Clean food’ is a buzz word for healthy eating, in other words chuck out the processed foods, high trans fats and sugar but I guess it can sound a bit pretentious!

This can be confusing. Recent reports state that the average person who works out three times a week doing moderate activity needs approximately 0.8 grams per body weight kg of protein a day to repair muscle breakdown. This is adequately provided by a healthy diet including chicken, meat, nuts etc aiming to eat a protein portion at each meal. If you can do this then there is no need for protein drinks and bars. In fact, any extra protein will be flushed out via the kidneys, it can’t be utilised by the body. This can put strain on the kidneys and in some instances if the individual isn’t drinking enough fluids the unused protein can form as crystals and end up as painful kidney stones, something you definitely don’t want to have!

However, if you are an athlete or you are trying to bulk up your body will need more protein than is humanly possible to eat! You will need approximately 2.0g per kilo which is where the supplements will come in handy.

So, unless you are an athlete, don’t worry too much about supplements, just make sure you eat a healthy balanced diet every day

I get that, but I’m guilty of this. I let my customers know that they are doing a warm up so that they know not to work too hard, it should be a gentle pace gradually increasing in intensity. If you’re shattered by the end of the warm up you worked too hard!

It’s a well-known fact that the corners of your mouth are attached to your legs, the harder you work the higher the corners of your mouth go to form a smile, OK maybe only my customers know this but it makes them smile when I tell them this so it must be true!!

A good instructor will always ask how you are feeling; they want to know if anything is hurting, if you can’t answer them they’ll know you’re working too hard and advice you to take your intensity down, this is actually called the Talk Test. So next time they ask – answer them, if you can!

That’ll be me told then!

Usually they’re not boasting, just enthusiastic!

Sometimes it may come across that the instructor is being lazy but, your session could be the 5th or 6th session they’ve instructed that day! However, I knew an instructor once who actually walked around the studio eating bag of maltesers when the customers were doing sit-ups! (You’ll notice that I spoke about her in the past tense there?!) However active they are the should be enthusiastic and interested in the activity and its participants

Yep, with you there…

I wish! I look like a complete mess and regularly frighten small children on the way home!

Absolutely, Instructors need to correct bad posture and offer advice.

Hmm, confliction here… the best way to do this without bringing attention to one person is to instruct the whole class to, this way the person who is doing something incorrectly will be told without them feeling uncomfortable. It’s easier to instruct one to one in a gym of a group session like Yoga or Pilates than it is in a session of HIIT or Aerobics without causing embarrassment

Some customers like to go to the gym and workout in piece; the ear phones go in as they walk in, head down , on a mission to get to the gym equipment without making eye contact and having to speak to anyone including the instructor. Other people need the support of the instructor and all gyms will get complaints that they are being ignored. Gym instructors are taught to walk the floor and talk to the customers but they know that there will be some people who don’t want this. If you need advice or help with something don’t be afraid to approach them!

Now it’s our turn!

The gym may be the place you go to work out but for staff it is their office! If the person next to your desk had hygiene problems it would make your working environment very unpleasant – you get what I’m saying here?!

When I was on the gym floor my biggest gripe was people who didn’t put equipment away once they’d finished with it. Spare a thought for some of us who aren’t blessed with muscles capable of lifting your discarded dumbbells and have to result to rolling them to the weight stack and doing our backs in!

‘Nuff said…

If you sweat it out- mop it up!

Women giving birth to twins don’t make as much noise giving birth than some hefty bloke bench pressing!

I started an Aerobics class recently at 7pm and a lady strolled in at 7.20. She wasn’t happy when I said she couldn’t join in. At the beginning of the session I make announcements; if there are any new people, any injuries, pregnancies etc , if you’re late you won’t hear any of this and I can’t stop my class half way through to ask late comers the same questions. You’ll also miss the warm up and risk get injured- lecture over!

We can’t compete with the music and people having a catch up!

We don’t want to coughed and sneezed over and neither does the equipment!

This makes doing an induction a nightmare for instructors and annoys other gym users, if you’re resting between sets please let someone else use the equipment.

Instructors spend a long time putting a programme in place for you, working out nutrition plans and motivating you. What we need from you is for you to keep to your side of the bargain! You need to put the effort into the exercise and eat the right foods, the person sitting on an exercise bike leisurely reading a magazine really can’t expect to lose weight and increase their fitness level but they will know what celebs are dating who and the latest fashion trends!

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