Client motivation is one of the most critical aspects of running a successful personal training business. If your clients aren’t motivated, that means they won’t be getting the results they want. Which, in turn, probably means less referrals and less business overall. In this article we are going to go over 10 tips that can help you increase client motivation.
- Create a community of support.
- Use Fitness Challenges
- Set realistic goals.
- Make workouts fun.
- Use a client management software.
- Make sure you set expectation correctly.
- Don’t over hype results.
- Keep it simple.
- Be empathetic and relatable.
- Be empathetic, but also be frank.
1. Create a community of support.
One great method you can use to increase client motivation is to take steps to create a community of support.
You can start off simply by creating a group chat with all of your clients in it. In the group chat you can announce client progress, give clients shout outs, and schedule group outings.
Including all clients in the group chat gives a sense of community. Especially if the overall tone of the group chat is one of support.
You clients want a place to go to get support and feel good about the progress they are making.
Other methods of creating a support based community could be starting up a private Facebook page that only your clients get access to. There, you can host clients only challenges, shout outs, giveaways, and anything else that’s helpful, fun, or inspirational.
2. Use fitness challenges.
We touched on it a little in the last section but fitness challenges are a good tool to use to increase client motivation.
Fitness challenges are great because depending on the challenge there might be a giveaway. Although, the grand prize might not be huge, it still gives people two things:
- Competition. The concept of a challenge always gets people motivated, especially when it’s fitness related.
- Incentive. Beside’s the competition aspect, everyone is down to win something as a reward for creating a better version of themselves. What is there to lose? You either win the challenge, you’re a better version of yourself, and you get a reward for it or you don’t win the challenge but your still a better version of yourself.
Now, you don’t want to run fitness challenges all the time. They should be something occasional that you do. The reason being is because you don’t want to burn people out or devalue the concept of a fitness challenges.
Related content: How to run an online fitness challenge.
3. Set realistic goals.
Each and everyone of your clients are going to have a different set of goals. Some bigger then others. This is why it’s important to take what they come to you with and create small incremental steps to achieve.
At the achievement of each small step congratulate them for their progress and push forward to the next step.
This is an effective method of increasing client motivation because:
- People feel good when they feel they are on a clear path to their goals.
- Celebrating smaller achievements also creates a positive and inclusive atmosphere.
Aside from the reasons mentioned above, realistic goals can help you create a clear plan for your clients. As a result, they may feel more secure in how they feel about training.
4. Make workouts fun.
Before you actually start training clients, it’s a good practice to get to know what they like in their training. Gathering the interests of your clients can help you create a more enjoyable experience overall because you can weave those into the training programs you create for them.
You want your clients to be excited about every workout. If they are excited about workout, they are more likely to go into the workout excited to get after it.
If some of your clients are unsure about what they like in their workouts, try different things with their workouts and gather feedback from them on what they like and what they don’t like.
It’s worth being said that not every single workout is going to be the most exciting thing. Depending on their goals, they may have suck it up a couple times. But, if you do a good job of making the workouts fun regularly, they will more likely be excited about most workouts.
5. Use a client management software.
Using a client management software can help make the process less intimidating and more personal. Without using a client management software, you are forced to do things like deliver workouts over Google docs or email.
While this isn’t the worst thing in the world, it will create more work for you and your client. Programs delivered over email or Google docs create a segmented process.
Client management software brings everything together. Plus, clients have all of their programs in the palm of their hand. This give you the trainer and the client a good central place to collect feedback and respond to it promptly.
6. Make sure you set expectations correctly.
If you set expectations correctly the only surprises your clients should find are good ones.
Before you start training with your clients, assess their goals, where they are now, and what needs to be accomplished for them to hit their goals.
Once you have a pretty good grasp of the journey ahead, take 15 min to sit down with your client and run them through everything. They should have a good understanding of what is required of them before you start training them.
In doing this, make sure your client knows you’re in it with them. This can help create an atmosphere similar to that of a team.
7. Don’t over hype results.
Every personal trainer has probably heard the phrase “don’t sell packages, sell results”. While this is a fantastic rule of thumb to go by, some trainers fall into the trap of over hyping the results the client wants.
While you might be trying to increase client motivation, you might actually end up decreasing your client motivation in this case.
Imagine wanting something for awhile or struggling with something for awhile and along comes someone promising the perfect solution for you asap…. and then they don’t deliver what was promised. Even after you spent hundreds if not thousands of dollars working with them and still. No results.
This is exactly what’s happening when you over hype or guarantee results for your clients.
This isn’t a measure of your skill as a personal trainer. This is more so about avoiding disappointment. Even some of the best personal trainers in the world have been in situations where they didn’t help a client achieve the results they wanted. It happens.
8. Keep it simple.
Have you ever had a professor over share during a lecture or dive into a topic that has everyone in the lecture lost? Don’t be that professor.
It’s one thing to help educate your clients about the mind-muscle connection, it’s another thing to dive into the neurological process of why the mind-muscle connection is a thing.
Most people just want to know the why to their questions. Even if they do want to dive deeper into the complexities of the body, mid-session probably isn’t the time to do so.
Try sending clients educational content outside of sessions. The focus of sessions should be about putting knowledge into action.
Additionally, you don’t ever want to be “that person” that’s always a know-it-all.
This actually leads us to the next tip…
Related content: The mind-muscle connection by ACE
9. Be empathetic and relatable.
Each client is going to have their own personality, goals, and struggles. And, let’s face it, we are all human. We love feeling unique when it’s something we’re proud of and not when it’s something we aren’t proud of.
Helping your client not feel alone can turn into increased client motivation.
Sometimes this might even mean getting kind of personal and sharing with your clients part of your story and journey to where you are at now.
Your goal should be to make your client comfortable. Not just because it can increase client motivation but also because part of change is acceptance.
You have accept everything about yourself, even your shortcomings.
Because, think about it, if you don’t address something as an issue, then it more then likely won’t show up on your radar as an issue to begin with. Hence, no change.
10. Be empathetic, but also be frank.
No not Frank from shameless. Frank as in sometimes you need to show a little tough love to give your clients that extra chip on their shoulder.
Look, no one wants to hear about their issues from someone else. It’s not uncommon that people knew what they were doing or how they were living was an issue.
But at the end of the day, part of behavioral change is recognizing what’s wrong to begin with to initiate positive change.
This means providing constructive criticism where necessary. Don’t go overboard with it, but don’t be afraid to correct your client.
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