Hard bodies, grunting and groaning, screaming spin instructors, and personal trainers yelling out the words “Come on, just one more!”   Does any of this sound familiar?  It should if you exercise in a public gym or health club.  At the gym where I currently train, all of these things are staples of what a fitness atmosphere usually consists of in a public setting.  Ironically, they are also the very reasons that so many people choose not to join a gym or health club in the first place.  Why?  It’s intimidating!

Sometimes I have to stop and remind myself that I am working in a very segregated environment and the things that I see all around me are not necessarily representing the majority of the American public.  For many, the idea of joining a gym or a health club is the most frightening thing in the world.  And why shouldn’t it be?  If an overweight person is surrounded by hard bodied fitness advocates who are going on and on about how great their workouts are, of course it’s going to be uncomfortable!  The endless parade of health club commercials that use perfectly sculpted models to advertise their companies also does not help.  Fitness novices are faced with a number of challenges and one of them is most likely making the decision of getting started on a regular fitness program.  Getting started is always the hardest part.  And getting started in an environment that is perceived to be filled with hard core fitness advocates can make that decision very difficult.  Luckily, there is another option:  in-home fitness training!

There is a common misconception that in order to get in shape, one must join a gym or a health club.  This is not necessarily true.  There are many people who cannot afford a gym membership.  And of course, as I already mentioned, there are a lot of people who are just too intimidated to join a gym or health club.  In- home training has proven to be a very valuable tool for these people.  “But how is this possible?” one might ask.   Well, I’m going to lay it out for you in this article.

In- home fitness training involves a personal trainer coming to the home of an intended client.  The training takes place in the home, so therefore the client does not have to worry about joining a gym or running late for an appointment.  For some people, in- home training can be very effective if they live in a high rise or apartment complex that has an existing exercise room.  If there is not an exercise room available, that’s OK too.  Most good trainers are very creative and can create intensive training programs for their in- home clients by using minimal equipment.  Often, the client will be asked to purchase some of that minimal equipment so that they may exercise in their homes without the trainer being there as well.

Some examples of inexpensive exercise equipment would be:

1.Elastic bands or rubber tubing

2.Swiss balls

3.Medicine balls

4.Yoga mat

5.Step unit

6.Adjustable dumbbells

These simple items can work wonders for the body, and a multitude of exercises can be performed with them.  Exercise videos are also a wonderful training tool for the in- home client.

Just as in the gym, form and technique are extremely important in regards to resistance training.  In- home exercisers need to be aware of what they are doing and know that they are doing it correctly.  That is where the trainer comes in to the action.  There are a number of personal trainers, including myself, who train in- home clients.  There are a number of benefits to hiring an in- home trainer.  Some of them include:

1Expert guidance with exercise and nutrition.

2Motivation

3Proper adherence to the training sessions (when there is money on the line, clients are highly unlikely to cancel).

4Proper documentation of exercise (i.e. workout rosters, journals, etc.)

Rates vary among personal trainers.  Some may charge $40 for an hour session and some may charge $100.  Some in- home clients like to meet with their trainers two or three times per week to insure adherence and to reap the motivational benefits.  However, for those who are financially challenged, often times monthly programs can be arranged where the client meets with the trainer two or three times in one month and then exercises on his own.  A month later, he would meet up with his trainer again to re-assess goals, monitor progress, and construct a new workout program.  As you can see, there are many people who can benefit from in- home training regardless of their income level.

Time is another variable to take into consideration when considering to hire an in- home trainer.  Many people with hectic schedules find themselves faced with the challenge of just trying to find time to exercise.  With an in- home trainer, your time becomes much more manageable.  You won’t have to worry about trying to make time to get to the gym because you know your trainer will be coming to you to give you a great workout.  For many people, hiring an in- home trainer has become a savings grace for this very reason.

There are many people out there who want to make a healthy change in their lifestyle but don’t quite know how.  For those people, in- home trainers can be very valuable.  Getting in shape at home eliminates the fears of going to a gym or health club.  Most novices to exercise will feel more comfortable with exercise if they are learning it in a private atmosphere from a qualified expert.  There is also something that benefits these people emotionally from hiring an in- home trainer.  While professional boundaries are always enforced, most clients feel free to talk openly with their trainers about what’s happening in their lives, how they are feeling about the exercise, what they want to accomplish for the future, and how they feel about their progress.  We are called personal trainers for a reason.  A personal relationship is established.  We are there for our clients.  We care about them and want to help them.  That is our job.  And most of us chose this profession because we want to help others improve their quality of life.  There is no denying that.

So, to recap, there are many benefits to be derived from in- home personal training.  Some of them include:

1.Exercising in a non- threatening atmosphere with a qualified expert.

2.Avoiding the cost of a gym or health club membership.

3.Being able to work out efficiently and effectively using minimal, inexpensive equipment.

4.Having an expert to talk to about nutritional questions.

5.Motivational support.

6.Improved time management.

7.Creating a personal and professional relationship with someone who can guide you to achieving your fitness goals.

There you have it!  So for those of you who have been thinking about getting in shape, but have been too afraid to join a gym or health club, or can’t find the time to get there, you may want to think about investing in some in- home training.  I’ve been doing it for years now and my in- home clients are still thanking me for helping them to achieve their goals.  There’s nothing more rewarding than that!