In one of our previous blog posts, we talked about the right age for young athletes to begin a strength training regiment. You can view that blog HERE for any reference you may need to the topic.
In the blog post, how young is too young to begin strength training, we discuss the importance of a young athlete having a trainer to educate and provide practical feedback that is relateable and helpful for the youth to become strong, and more athletically fit. We are going to expand on the importance of a trainer and how to sift through the "okay" ones to find the perfect trainer for your young athlete.
When first beginning a strength training regiment, it is important to always have a trainer.
A trainer for an athlete is parallel to a guitar instructor. When a student wants to learn how to play guitar they find an instructor to teach the student fundamentals of the instrument, give expert level coaching and oversight when performing exercises, and connect with the student, relating to them in a way he or she will understand.
Finding a trainer for your athlete's strength training is the same concept. No athlete needs to figure out the right way to perform exercises on their own. And in most all cases, students should not be trained by their parents or older brothers or sisters. A trainer who is highly experienced in his/her field of training should be the one teaching your athlete, especially at a young age.
So what are the qualities every parent should look for when seeking out a trainer for their child? Take a look below:
1. Trainer must be certified and continuing education
Education is a must. Personal trainers should be certified by a credible certification organization and have experience under their belt working with other individuals. Having a trainer who has worked with other young athletes before is a bonus. Without quality education, your student athlete will not be given credible information.
Here are some good questions to ask a trainer to discover more about their certification history:
1) Ask to see their certification I.D. card. Every trainer will have one of these upon completion and passing of their exam.
2) What kind of formal education background do you have in regard to health, wellness, personal training, and working with youth?
3) Are you currently CPR certified? If they are not, then their certification is expired or on hold.
2. Trainer must look the part
There is a reason for this. A trainer who looks the part are most likely to have experience in the weight room. These trainers are more knowledgeable in regard to how the machines in your gym work and feel. Because of this, the trainer will better be able to design a proper program for your athlete. Remember, they must have the education to match the muscle.
Some great questions to ask these trainers include:
1) Do you train on the equipment here at the gym?
2) How comfortable are you training others on the equipment in the gym?
3) Do you think the equipment in the gym is suitable for my young athlete?
3. Trainer must have trust with parent and great interaction with the student.
This is vitally important for confidence for the parent and enjoyment for the athlete. The primary goal of enrolling your young athlete into a strength training program is to develop them athletically and physically all while the student is having fun and being educated. Some questions to ask the trainer before signing your athlete up for a program are:
1) Do you offer one free sample session? I would like to see how you and my athlete interact in your session.
2) Have you trained young athletes before and if so how was your experience training them?
3) Have you done any coaching, after school programs, or volunteer work with kids?
All of the above is great criteria for finding the right trainer for your young ahtlete. We want your athlete to come away with a great experience, feel the difference in their performance, and ultimately, continue to cultivate a passion for sports and good health.
If you have any additional questions on how to find the right trainer for your young athlete, please leave a comment below.