Online training is a current hot topic in the training industry.
To give you some background context I first want to share a few insights on the state of both personal training and performance coaching industries.
In comparison to many other professional careers, personal training has a low barrier of entry for potential newcomers. I have a few clients with careers in real estate, and we have had conversations with them about the similarities between the two industries.
For example, Real Estate Agents do not need a specific degree to earn their credentials. Aspiring agents must pass a state licensing exam.
Likewise, future personal trainers can potentially enter the industry regardless of their previous education. Depending on the position, trainers may only need a certification. A physiology or exercise science degree is typically considered a bonus. In other cases, (bloggers, traveling bootcamps, boutique personal trainers, etc.) trainers enter the industry without any formal education at all – their personal fitness journey and reputation is all the qualification they need.
Now, down another branch of the training industry, we have performance coaches. Performance coaches typically spend their careers training competitive athletes ranging from high school, college, professional, and Olympic levels. In most cases, performance coaches have certifications from respected organizations and formal degrees.
This is not an article arguing which education path is best, or which is “right.” I only make the above statements to give you a brief idea on the different scenarios personal trainers find their way into the career.
Perform24 is in a unique position.
Due to my own formal education in school and my pursuit to train the best athletes in the nation, my training foundations were built on the performance end of the spectrum. However, I find genuine enjoyment working with adults seeking effective training in their daily lives.
While most training businesses will choose one of those populations or the other, I’ve chosen both.
The reason for choosing both is that my training methods do not fluctuate between training an Atlanta Braves Catcher or one of the local real estate clients that I mentioned earlier. I previously wrote in detail about this choice here.
Last week, I came across this post on Instagram. This was written by a coach at a gym in South Florida that’s building a reputation for training big name professional athletes.
Everybody is entitled to perspectives and opinions.
And I designed Perform24 to hold a completely different perspective.
Again, as I wrote in “Pro Training” vs “Joe Training” on my place on the personal training and performance coach spectrum, training these different populations actually enhances my programming and coaching skills. Which ultimately improves the results that each client achieves.
Let me explain.
I’ve been training 6-8 sessions every weekday for over three years. Recently it’s been more and more common to have 10 session days multiple times a week.
This is a massive amount of time spent in the gym with people. Through this process I’ve built the Perform24 training systems that are surprisingly consistent for ALL of my clients.
When I start training a brand new client, I’m not starting from scratch. Unlike the coach’s Instagram post, I can already predict problems, priorities, goals, and processes that we will face.
I’ve trained such a high volume of people, (remember, both professional athletes and local adults) that I can outline a three-month program in about 90 seconds.
I would argue that this outline is not a “cookie cutter” program.
This outline is just that – an outline. The structure isn’t going to waver. The backbone isn’t going to change. My training principals are cement. And I can state this with confidence due to the sheer number of clients I’ve trained.
I don’t have a consistent training system because I’m too lazy to create a new one for each individual.
I have a consistent training system because I’ve put thousands of hours of WORK into building a system I can rely on.
When you drive or walk or commute to work, I bet you use the same roads. You don’t take a new route every day because you’ve done it so many times you’re confident in the path. Eventually, trying something new every day is illogical.
Now, that’s not to say that some days there are problems with your normal path. During those situations I would also bet you know the quickest Plan B.
One training program will never work for everyone. But one training SYSTEM allows flexibility and adjustments. Modifications are planned, and each modification can have three or four options. After these modifications have been selected for the individual, it’s possible that two programs could look entirely different on the surface. But look deeper, and strip away Option 1 vs 2, or Option 1 vs 5, and you’ve got a similar theme.
What Does This Mean for Online Training?
Real quick, I need to take another step back and give you some more industry history.
Jon Goodman’s website, thePTDC, popularized online personal training four or five years ago. He saw the training industry exploding in growth, and built a website to help incoming trainers. One of his strategies was to teach qualified personal trainers to add some kind of virtual programming to their product line.
Jon then took it a step further and left the face-to-face training industry completely. He traveled the world, keeping tabs on his clients using his email inbox.
As with many ideas on the internet, people used his model as an example to shortcut the system. Many trainers attempted online programming, and more often than not it resulted in a poor product that was typically copied-and-pasted to a massive number of paying clients.
Thus, the “cookie cutter” bias was born.
During the last two months, I’ve added online training programs to Perform24. And, despite the popular bias, I couldn’t be more excited or proud about it.
I trust the work I’ve put in with my clients at Perform24. I know that my programs can help 80% of the people reading this because I’ve seen it work with my face-to-face clients for almost three years.
Also, I’ve seen some true heavy hitters in the industry build insane online training platforms. These programs will produce better results than 95% of face-to-face trainers, and you are FORTUNATE to have access to them. Eric Cressey and Christopher Sommers have both created extremely high level products using training strategies that have traditionally been considered exclusive.
Our Goals and The Future of Perform24 (My Prediction)
Firstly, I’ve always wanted Perform24 to be a brick-and-mortar location. I love working face-to-face with people and I have no desire to leave that to pursue a 100% mobile lifestyle.
Adding online training resources is a stage in our natural growth process, but it will never take away what we’re doing here locally every single day.
The quick, instant, overnight “success” tempting new online trainers isn’t in my blood. I love the process of building, I embrace long term goals. While some personal trainers are rapidly attempting to capitalize on before-and-after photos on social media, and performance coaches are constantly scrambling to convince the latest All-Star athlete to come into their facility, Perform24 will be silently grinding.
Quietly training 8-10 hours a day. Slowly creating online content. Consistently sharpening our skill set through repetition and building new ways to share our discoveries.
This grind includes face-to-face AND online. We are dedicated to both.
So, to my friend on Instagram, I AM a true fitness professional. And I AM creating a high standard that’s respected and free of facades, fallacies, and fads.
See you guys at the top.