Personal Trainers: Part of Your Healthcare Team
Personal Trainers are viewed as an important link on the alternative healthcare team of professionals. Although the personal training field is still maturing and is less regulated than other fields, such as physical or occupational therapy, personal trainers are becoming more respected and relied upon to help individuals achieve their physical best.
Individuals who are catching onto the wellness revolution want to take control of their health, fitness and well being and rely less upon the government and traditional medical doctors. It’s natural to think of a personal trainer as an expert in making over someone’s body to a more healthful one.
Group Fitness Instructors
Personal trainers may wear many hats in the alternative health care realm or they may work with related health professionals. For example, some personal trainers are also group fitness instructors. They may instruct strength training classes for small or large groups. They should attain a separate certification to work with more than one individual at a time as different leadership and safety guidelines apply. Personal trainers may also lead other group fitness classes besides strength classes such as studio cycling; kick boxing, core classes and so on. Many personal trainers come to the industry with a varied sports background and it’s the perfect platform to be able to apply their passion and expertise in a group setting. Personal trainers may also work with group fitness instructors in sharing clients. Some clients may work with a personal trainer for strength development and participate in a group class for more cardio and or stretching. Both personal trainers and group fitness pro’s should unite to provide the best services for the clients needs.
Physical Therapists are different from personal trainers in that they are licensed by the state and their focus is primarily on rehabilitation versus on prevention. Physical therapists can work with personal trainers in referring patients to each other to best meet the needs of the patient / client. Physical therapy is typically done under the supervision or prescription of a physician and is covered by insurance. Although there are some cases of personal training being covered by insurance, at this time it’s rare. Physical therapists should be confident in recommending qualified personal trainers as their clients graduate from rehabilitation. A personal trainer can be part of an at home final phase of rehabilitation.
Occupational therapists and personal trainers can also work together to help the patient / client best prepare for integration back into activities of daily living. Most personal trainers should be astute in functional training which can help people prepare for activities such as getting in and out of a car, lifting objects from the ground onto a high shelf, balancing on one foot and so on. An occupational therapist may work with a client more acutely after an injury and specifically on the area of need and the personal trainer can then work with the total body in building up strength, stamina, agility, speed, and flexibility. Personal trainers are primarily trained to work with healthy populations, but many have advanced training to be able to work along side occupational and physical therapists to best assist the client / patient.
Athletic Trainers work primarily with sports teams in treating and preventing further injuries. Again, personal trainers can be a compliment to the specific tasks of an athletic trainer. With the proper instructions, a personal trainer can enhance the rehabilitation program of an athlete, work on conditioning all of the components of fitness and agility and help get an athlete recovered as quickly as possible.
Yoga and Pilates Instructors
Personal Trainers also work closely with both yoga and Pilates instructors as the benefits of the combination of training styles is highly beneficial for an over all fitness plan. An individual may see a personal trainer two sessions per week and then engage in a yoga or Pilate’s class on an alternate day. They each have different benefits and cover the major components of fitness that individuals would seek when training for a balanced body.
Personal trainers will continue to weave paths to working with other established alternative care practitioners. As time goes on and more people come to realize the benefits of personal trainers, they will become even more integrated into wellness teams as an integral component.