Is art or science more important when it comes to being a personal trainer? Are you better off knowing every muscle in the body and how it works? Or does getting along with people and good business skills trump exercise science?
According to 30-year fitness industry veteran Greg Justice, art and science are equally important. It’s just that the art side of things is too often neglected. Trainers can find information on squats and deadlifts just about anywhere, but where do we go to learn personal training etiquette?
For this reason, Greg decided to write Treadside Manner. A book that has nothing to do with exercise and everything to do with customer service. This book was designed to help fitness professionals succeed in business by understanding what it takes to motivate clients, retain clients and grow your business.
Ever since Greg’s first gig in the industry as a personal trainer, it has been apparent that he has a knack for connecting with people. His career accomplishments speak volumes to his talent.
Greg started Kansas City’s original personal training center in 1986 called AYC Health & Fitness. Before that he managed a more traditional fitness center.
Greg has personally trained more than 55,000 one-hour private sessions over the last 30 years.
Twenty of these clients have trained with him consecutively for 20 years. They are referred to as his Core 20.
Greg has worked with over 60 corporations in Kansas City providing health and wellness services.
This just goes to show that from day one Greg has had a special way with people. It’s no coincidence that his people skills have enabled him to start businesses, for himself and others, as well as negotiate large deals with major corporations to run fitness programs on their property.
In addition to these commitments, Greg also finds the time to write books and articles for some of the leaders in the fitness industry including Idea Fitness and Womens Health.
So now that we know a little bit more about Greg, let’s take a look at the art personal training etiquette through his eyes.
Below you will find 5 of Greg’s top suggestions for developing the artful side of personal training.
#1 “Listen well to your investment with your ears, your eyes and your heart.”
#2 “Avoid discussing politics, religion, other clients, sex, and gossip.”
#3 “Help your clients fulfill their dreams. Most people come to you with a goal, but in reality they have a dream behind the goal.”
#4 “It’s all about them. Sometimes it is not relevant whether you agree or disagree. Sometimes they just need to feel heard.”
#5 “Make it personal, keep it professional. Do your job well for each client as if they were your only client.”
I personally believe that the artful side of personal training is what separates personal trainers more than anything else. I have worked with and follow the trainers I follow today mostly because of their personalities. I guess the old adage that people don’t care what you know until they know how you care means more to me than I thought. Greg Justice is someone I am sure who feels the same way. He lives it and it manifests in his life. And that’s what Treadside Manner is all about. How to care for people.
“Each of us has an opportunity to leave a legacy that makes all the difference in the life of at least one individual.” -Greg Justice