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Construct Your Shopper’s Confidence with These 6 Ideas

“To be trustworthy, I’m afraid of figuring out within the health club.”

Chances are high, as a private coach, you’ve had a shopper (or two) admit their fears about going to the health club after developing with an acceptable coaching program for them.

What do you do in such a state of affairs? It’s a tough one for positive. Do nothing, and their health club anxiousness would possibly get the higher of them, impeding them from attaining their health objectives. However telling them to “simply do it” gained’t minimize it, both.

Don’t fear. This text explores what it is advisable to find out about supporting a shopper coping with “gymtimidation”—together with what it’s, why it happens, and what you can do about it as a fitness coach—to allow them to really feel comfy about getting into the health club.


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What Is “Gymtimidation”?

As implied by its identify, the time period “gymtimidation” refers back to the feeling somebody will get once they’re intimidated by the thought or the precise act of figuring out within the health club.

Oh, and simply so you understand: Your shoppers aren’t the one ones getting right into a bundle of nerves about having to work up a sweat within the health club. “Gymtimidation” is an actual phenomenon that impacts loads of folks. Actually, a survey conducted by PureGym (on their members) discovered that one in 4 folks would quite face spiders than go to the health club!

Research just lately commissioned by Samsung helps this discovering, with 83% of survey individuals agreeing that the health club could be an intimidating expertise.  

However what’s up with this deep-seated worry? Each analysis items arrived at a startlingly comparable checklist of the highest causes of “gymtimidation”:

  1. Not understanding how one can use all of the gear
  2. Feeling intimidated by different “skilled” gym-goers
  3. Visiting the health club when it’s busy (having another person eye the gear they’re utilizing)
  4. Not having an outlined exercise plan
  5. Having to ask for assist or recommendation

This checklist presents useful insights into how you might assist your shopper overcome their health club nerves. So, with out additional ado, let’s bounce proper into that.

#1: Stroll Your Shopper By way of Each Train on Their Exercise Plan

Earlier than you ship your shopper off to clock in a solo exercise session within the health club, be sure that they know how one can carry out each train included of their exercise program. Doing so tackles two main causes of “gymtimidation”: #1 (not understanding how one can use all of the gear) and #5 (having to ask for assist or recommendation).

Right here’s an ideal tip that’ll really enhance your shopper’s confidence within the health club: Have them arrange their very own gear throughout their coaching session with you. For instance, educate them on how they might regulate the bar peak on the squat rack such that it will go well with the train they’re performing, be it a barbell squat, overhead press, or bench press.

The identical goes for machines. Get your shopper accustomed to the totally different knobs and levers they might manipulate on each machine so it fits their distinctive physique proportions and coaching objectives.

Have your shopper report their most well-liked settings (e.g., writing it down in a pocket book or taking an image) if needed; this can function their reference level once they’re within the health club with out you by their facet.

#2: Give Cautious Thought to Your Shopper’s Exercise Plan

Whereas one of the crucial apparent options to fixing trigger #3 of “gymtimidation” (visiting the health club when it’s busy) is asking your shopper to get into the health club throughout off-peak hours, typically, that’s inconceivable contemplating their schedule.

So, the subsequent greatest various can be so that you can program their workout plan in such a manner that minimizes “backwards and forwards” motion within the health club.

What does that imply, precisely?

Within the easiest phrases, it means you need to keep away from programming in supersets or “large units,” the place they need to carry out a number of workouts—typically at totally different machines—in consecutive order with none relaxation in between.

That’s as a result of such a programming technique leaves your shopper susceptible to conditions the place their train gear will get “stolen” by one other gym-goer (and, within the worst-case state of affairs, might get your shopper right into a nasty argument).

One other manner you might reduce mentioned “backwards and forwards” motion?

By accounting for the proximity of varied train gear relative to at least one one other when planning a shopper’s exercise program. For instance, let’s say you’re designing a “push day” in your shopper, and you’ve got the next workouts in thoughts:

  1. Barbell overhead shoulder press
  2. Arnold press
  3. Cable chest flys
  4. Dumbbell lateral raises
  5. Barbell bench press
  6. Triceps pushdown

Right here’s an instance of an train order that’ll assist your shopper reduce motion within the health club:

  1. Barbell bench press (squat rack)
  2. Barbell overhead shoulder press (squat rack)
  3. Dumbbell lateral raises (free weights)
  4. Arnold press (free weights)
  5. Cable chest flys (cable machine)
  6. Triceps pushdown (cable machine)

Apply this to every workout you design for your client. Take into consideration the “stream” of their exercise, and ensure they “maximize” their time at any given area within the health club earlier than shifting on to a different.

#3: Plan Sensible Options for Every Train

Regardless of your greatest efforts to plan the “greatest exercise routine,” your shopper should still run into situations the place one other gym-goer is already utilizing the piece of apparatus they should use (e.g., the ever-popular Smith Machine).

Planning remains to be the important thing right here.

As a substitute of permitting your shopper to easily skip out on doing that train, present them with a couple of alternate options that’ll goal the identical muscle teams however at a special machine or with one other setup.

For example, let’s say your shopper is used to doing hip thrusts on the Smith Machine.

Why not additionally train them how one can carry out the train with a free-moving barbell? And even higher: Stroll them via a whole checklist of workouts they might do to focus on their glutes, together with glute-focused hip extensions, single-leg step-ups, and Bulgarian split squats.

Right here’s one other instance. Let’s say the lat pulldown machine is occupied. Let your shopper know that there are many other lat-focused exercises available, such because the seated cable rows, “lats-focused” barbell rows (the place their elbows are stored at round 45 levels relative to their torso), and even the chest-supported dumbbell rows.

Look via your shopper’s exercise plan. Ensure you checklist at the least one various train your shopper might do as an alternative if the required gear is taken.

Equipping your shopper with this checklist of different workouts they might flip to will assist them take advantage of their exercise session, even in a crowded health club.

#4: Encourage Your Shopper to Strive Out Completely different Gyms for the “Proper Match”

There’s no denying it: Sure gyms are extra welcoming than others. In case your shopper plans to get their exercises in at a special health club than the one you are coaching them in, encourage them to “store round.”

Allow them to know that they need to at all times get an excellent really feel of a health club’s type and clientele earlier than committing to a long-term contract.

And one of many best methods they might accomplish that is by signing up for a free trial session, the place a workers member excursions them across the health club, which presents a peek into what it’ll be wish to work on the market. Have your shopper take into account the next questions as they stroll round:

  • Is the health club workers pleasant? Do gym-goers method them in any respect?
  • Is the health club properly maintained? 
  • What’s the health club’s “tradition”?
  • Is the health club crowded?
  • Does the health club structure make sense (e.g., “chest machines” in a single area, in comparison with one the place the machines are far and wide)?

To your shopper, this will likely look like an unnecessarily lengthy checklist of packing containers that have to be ticked simply to discover a health club—however you need to remind them that, on the finish of the day, they’re investing their time, cash, and vitality into the health facility.

It’ll profit them to make certain that it is the only option for them and their coaching objectives.

#5: Educate Them on Correct Gymnasium Etiquette

Dig deeper into trigger #2 of “gymtimidation” (feeling intimidated by extra skilled gym-goers), and also you’ll understand a deeper underlying worry: that of being judged for doing the “flawed factor” by others.

How are you going to assist assuage your shopper’s apprehension? Reply: by educating them primary health club etiquette. Listed below are the highest vital tips to share:

  • Put every little thing again the place it belongs: Have your shopper unload the bar and re-rack all weights and dumbbells after they’re performed with an train.
  • Wipe issues down after utilizing them: Have your shopper wipe their sweat off machines, barbells, flooring mats, and anything they use. Even higher, counsel they convey in a towel to put over benches or whichever gear they plan on utilizing.
  • Don’t block another person’s view of the mirror: Let your shopper know that they need to do their greatest to remain out of somebody’s line of sight once they’re trying out their train type within the mirror. In different phrases, performing lateral raises proper in entrance of somebody doing dumbbell presses—and searching on the mirror—isn’t beneficial.
  • Keep away from slamming weights: It’s noisy and thoughtless. Plus, until the health club explicitly encourages weight-slamming, doing so would irk the health club house owners as it might damage the gear (e.g., breaking the dumbbell heads off).
  • Solely “work in” with another person when it is smart: Tools-sharing is feasible, but it surely ought to make sense for each events. Meaning the particular person your shopper needs to share with is doing the identical train and/or across the similar weights.

#6: Perspective Is All the things

Along with all of the above “technical” factors, you also needs to acknowledge your shopper’s emotional struggles—allow them to know that “gymtimidation” is completely regular.

However reassure your shopper that everybody within the health club, together with the fittest-looking particular person and even your self, was as soon as a newbie too. Everybody begins someplace. Additionally, different folks (and their ranges of health) are irrelevant. Your shopper’s health journey is their very own.

Get your shopper to remain aware of their ideas within the health club. Each time they catch themselves pondering, “They suppose I look foolish,” or “They suppose I don’t know what I’m doing,” have your shopper reframe their perspective in order that they consider the next as an alternative:

  • “I might not be the fittest within the health club, however I’m about to change into the fittest model of myself.”
  • “It doesn’t matter if I don’t elevate as heavy as others. It doesn’t make sense evaluating my chapter one to another person’s chapter twenty.”


Serving to your shopper overcome “gymtimidation” isn’t at all times a straightforward course of. As a coach, ask the right questions to find out about their difficulties, then work with them to handle their reservations about figuring out within the health club.

If it helps, be at liberty to take a step again and take into consideration simply how susceptible you felt whenever you first began in your health journey. Put your self of their footwear. Let your shopper know you perceive how they really feel. Higher nonetheless, share how you bought over your worry. Actual life proof that “gymtimidation” could be overcome at all times helps.  


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