You might have noticed more adverts appearing in the fitness world promoting small group personal training.
But how does that model work?
And why would you ever choose to go down that route if you have the chance to be coached one to one? Is it just a more cost-effective way for coaches to train more people at the same time?
Believe it or not, about 90% of people would be better off in a small group personal training environment, than one to one, and here’s why.
Let’s start by explaining what small group means. It involves one coach and up to four clients being taken through a personal training session together.
You might be asking yourself what if you are not at the same fitness levels as the other people in your session? What if you are new to strength training and have never picked up a weight in your life? These things don’t matter. If the coach is good at their job, they will be able to manipulate and change a programme to suit all levels and you won’t necessarily be doing the same exercise as the other people in your group. Remember it is still a personal training session with just a few other people being coached at the same time.
Most people work best in a group environment. It creates an exciting atmosphere. You are more motivated to push yourself harder in your training with others around you. If the other people training with you are getting on with their workout it will drive, you to do the same. In a group session you are unlikely to spend half the time just having a chat with your coach, you will be focused on your training and getting more out of your session. Remember a coach is there to make sure you are training safely, effectively and proficiently not counting your reps.
Most people need similar strength programmes. Ones that look at correcting posture and alignment (we tend to spend a good amount of the day hunched over a keyboard or a phone), a lot of unilateral (one-sided) work to help with any muscular imbalances, some shoulder stabilisation exercises and many more posterior exercises. You don’t need a very specific or individual programme to work through any of the above.
When would someone need one to one coaching?
Coaching one to one is ideal if you have a very specific fitness goal. For example, if you are an athlete training for a competition or race. Your goals might be so individual that an all-round general strength-based programme might not be appropriate. The one to one road is also the one to follow if you are recovering from a serious injury where your session needs to be personalised and tailored to help you recover and avoid any new injury.
To conclude, if you’re looking at increasing your strength and fitness and are considering using personal training have a think about if small group personal training might be what you are looking for, 9 times out of 10 its usually is.