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  1. #1
    Registered User freddel's Avatar
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    First Workout for Client

    Hi folks,

    I have a quick question for the resident PT's. I am due to give my first workout session to a client next week and whilst I feel totally confident in my abilities, I would like to hear your opinions on my planned routine.

    The client is a total newbie to the gym and wants to increase his general health and fitness. The workout is to include a 5 minute warmup, 20 minutes workout and then 5 minute stretch/warmdown. No machines are to be used, not even for the warmup.

    Here is my plan:

    Warmup:
    * Boxing with pushups OR
    * Stepups with high knees OR
    * Star jumps and burpees

    Workout:
    Circuit style, minimal rest between (I will give the client around 30 seconds rest if he needs it throughout the workout)
    * 30 seconds of squats + shoulder press (squat holding medicine ball, performing shoulder press with the medicine ball as they come to the top of the squat)
    * Pushups giving me a high 5 with each hand at the top of the pushup (client interaction) - 15 reps
    * Situps with me kneeling at their feet and they punch my hands as they come up to the top of the situp - 20 total (10 punches per hand)
    * Seated russian twist / oblique ball throw (throw the medicine ball to them from the side, they rotate, then throw it back whilst rotating back towards me) - 8 per side
    * Towel single arm rows (I hold a towel and they do standing single arm rows) - set of 15
    * Walking lunges

    Stretch:
    * Hands on PNF hamstring stretch
    * Hands on chest stretch (client has hands behind their head, me behind them pulling elbows back)
    * Hands on glute stretch
    * (Optional) calf SMR/foam roller

    Any suggestions or criticisms welcome.

    Thanks!
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  2. #2
    BRB... Eating a chicken askthetrainer's Avatar
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    The workout is to include a 5 minute warmup, 20 minutes workout and then 5 minute stretch/warmdown. No machines are to be used, not even for the warmup.

    Here is my plan:

    Warmup:
    * Boxing with pushups OR
    Even if the client is experienced and/or expressed their interest in boxing, I wouldn't start off the first session with it. You need somewhere to progress and you likely don't know the client's mindset and how they will react to stuff yet.

    * Stepups with high knees OR
    * Star jumps and burpees

    Again, you likely don't know their true fitness level so for a warm-up on the first session definitely have a lower key warm-up such as the standard 5 min on a stationary bike, even step-ups may burn them out before the workout even starts

    Workout:
    Circuit style, minimal rest between (I will give the client around 30 seconds rest if he needs it throughout the workout)
    * 30 seconds of squats + shoulder press (squat holding medicine ball, performing shoulder press with the medicine ball as they come to the top of the squat)
    * Pushups giving me a high 5 with each hand at the top of the pushup (client interaction) - 15 reps
    * Situps with me kneeling at their feet and they punch my hands as they come up to the top of the situp - 20 total (10 punches per hand)
    * Seated russian twist / oblique ball throw (throw the medicine ball to them from the side, they rotate, then throw it back whilst rotating back towards me) - 8 per side
    * Towel single arm rows (I hold a towel and they do standing single arm rows) - set of 15
    * Walking lunges

    Again, you have the right idea about your exercise selection but it's way too early. If this is the first session you truly have zero idea of what this client is capable of. You don't want to blow your personal trainer load all over the client on the first session

    Stretch:
    * Hands on PNF hamstring stretch
    * Hands on chest stretch (client has hands behind their head, me behind them pulling elbows back)
    * Hands on glute stretch
    * (Optional) calf SMR/foam roller
    Your hands-on approach with your client is an excellent idea in the fact that in the client's eyes it adds value for your service, far more than the actual physical benefit of the stretches

    Again, to me it sounds like you're blowing your load too early, premature asskickulation. Develop more of a progressive plan because if you start off too intense you will not be able to increase intensity incrementally over time which is the key to client retention as well as lasting results.


    I remember vividly I had a client that was actually a current golden gloves boxer so I developed an intense workout for the first session because he's used to getting punched in the head and gut for fun, well, turned out that boxing fitness doesn't directly translate to different kind of circuit style resistance training.

    Start off from a very low level and if your client can handle it, slowly progress. Also remember, not all clients (actually a very small percentage) want to get their ass kicked by the trainer. Most of my clients had previous trainers before me and they told me their trainers tried to kill them every session.
    Last edited by askthetrainer; 01-06-2010 at 02:16 AM.
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  3. #3
    Registered User popupwindow's Avatar
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    I'd spend 10 minutes warming up, because they're new, and you can use it to get a gauge of their fitness, if you haven't already done a thorough fitness evaluation. Start off easy on the warm up, basic cardio for a few mins to get the HR up and body warm, then move into some mobility type work perhaps, some basic joint rotations (rolling shoulders forward, backward, hip circles), do some bodyweight (squats/pushups etc), and continually notice how they're going. They should have broken a sweat by the end of their warmup. Now take them through some more advanced/intense stuff, based on how they handled the warm-up. At the end I'd show them some useful stretches, and have a chat to them. Show them you're knowledgeable enough to know when to push them harder, and not just one of the trainers who buries everyone day 1 and hopes they survive and want to come back.
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  4. #4
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    Thank you very much for the replies so far everyone. Mike: I totally agree in regards to the boxing and most of the other points you raised... however I forgot to mention one thing which may change your opinion :-).

    The reason for all the PT load blowing asskickulation is because it is a test / practical assesment I have to perform to be hired as a PT at a fitness club. The "client" is actually the head personal trainer "role playing" a newbie client. This is why I made everything so hands on and PT-like and there is to be no machines used, not even treadmills/bikes for cardio warmup :-).

    Thanks again!
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  5. #5
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    Originally Posted by freddel View Post
    Thank you very much for the replies so far everyone. Mike: I totally agree in regards to the boxing and most of the other points you raised... however I forgot to mention one thing which may change your opinion :-).

    The reason for all the PT load blowing asskickulation is because it is a test / practical assesment I have to perform to be hired as a PT at a fitness club. The "client" is actually the head personal trainer "role playing" a newbie client. This is why I made everything so hands on and PT-like and there is to be no machines used, not even treadmills/bikes for cardio warmup :-).

    Thanks again!
    I would include a little bit of everything. Free weights, selectorized, plate loaded, plyo, bodyweight etc... Show him that you can do everything because you never know what he is looking for.
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  6. #6
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    Originally Posted by freddel View Post
    Hi folks,

    I have a quick question for the resident PT's. I am due to give my first workout session to a client next week and whilst I feel totally confident in my abilities, I would like to hear your opinions on my planned routine.

    The client is a total newbie to the gym and wants to increase his general health and fitness. The workout is to include a 5 minute warmup, 20 minutes workout and then 5 minute stretch/warmdown. No machines are to be used, not even for the warmup.

    Here is my plan:

    Warmup:
    * Boxing with pushups OR
    * Stepups with high knees OR
    * Star jumps and burpees

    Workout:
    Circuit style, minimal rest between (I will give the client around 30 seconds rest if he needs it throughout the workout)
    * 30 seconds of squats + shoulder press (squat holding medicine ball, performing shoulder press with the medicine ball as they come to the top of the squat)
    * Pushups giving me a high 5 with each hand at the top of the pushup (client interaction) - 15 reps
    * Situps with me kneeling at their feet and they punch my hands as they come up to the top of the situp - 20 total (10 punches per hand)
    * Seated russian twist / oblique ball throw (throw the medicine ball to them from the side, they rotate, then throw it back whilst rotating back towards me) - 8 per side
    * Towel single arm rows (I hold a towel and they do standing single arm rows) - set of 15
    * Walking lunges

    Stretch:
    * Hands on PNF hamstring stretch
    * Hands on chest stretch (client has hands behind their head, me behind them pulling elbows back)
    * Hands on glute stretch
    * (Optional) calf SMR/foam roller

    Any suggestions or criticisms welcome.

    Thanks!
    Too much warming up for a newbie. You might wear them down too much to have an effective workout. I would keep it simple. Would also extend the rest period until the second or third workout, about a min.
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  7. #7
    Registered User tbrady12's Avatar
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    starting from the bottom of the mountain and working up is a must i think! if you kill them on the first workout...
    A-they will be too sore to want to come back
    B-Injure themselves
    C-Not think this fun
    D-Not like you

    start small, start easy, make it fun, connect with them (be a friend) and compliment them on their efforts!

    sometimes I just use the "KISS METHOD"

    KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID

    good luck in training!
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