Last night on Insight on SBS there was a debate about the competence of personal trainers and the fees that are charged.
The fitness industry like other industries such as the health supplements industry requires more in depth regulation and educational requirements other than completing an 8 week vocational learning course.
A fitness professional is given the responsibility to provide fitness services in a safe environment without causing harm or injury to their clients.
I spent time with a personal training studio that had degree qualified staff that was invaluable in furthering my basic knowledge. Unfortunately undertaking an 8 week course does not prepare you adequately to immediately start to give unsupervised instruction or have a sound understanding of the basic principles of human movement.
Health screening is conducted prior to any clients undertaking our bootcamps. If a prospective client has specific medical conditions or injuries they are referred to the appropriate practitioner. At no point do we give advice on any conditions or injuries.
With our sessions, our trainers are not standing around giving instruction only, we are constantly monitoring and correcting poor exercise technique.
The government needs to take a more active role in regulating the industry. Ultimately the fitness industry is about increasing physical activity. With obesity related deaths set to overtake smoking related deaths, the fitness industry needs to be acknowledged and supported by medical practitioners, insurance companies and the allied health services. This requires confidence in the fitness industry which starts with being more regulated and extending the curriculum to a diploma rather than an eight week certificate.
Like any industry, there are rogue operators that can skew the public’s perception away from the great work performed by the industry.