After a fat shaming comment was posted on one of my links about a new trainer joining the Slim Force mobile personal training team last year, I was inspired to write about WHY I am happy to hire plus size personal trainers at Slim Force. It’s not just plus size trainers that I hire either, it’s trainers who don’t necessarily meet that normal stereotypical mould of a personal trainer. However, I’ll focus on why I have no problem hiring someone who might not fit the mould based on their body size and shape due to the comments that were made.
A very important point in this discussion is that a trainer’s weight has absolutely ZERO to do with their knowledge nor their ability to motivate and coach clients toward their fitness goals. Their weight also has ZERO to do with their fitness. There are many reasons why people are overweight and it’s far more complex than just moving more and eating less – it’s NEVER that straight forward, despite what so many so-called ‘gurus’ might tell us.
Many of the plus size personal trainers I have hired in the past have started out exactly where our clients are. Sick of trying everything under the sun, trying to muddle their way through a sea of misinformation and outrageous claims, looking for a way forward that was manageable and sustainable – not the quick fix that is so often promised and rarely delivered. These trainers have lived that, they know what it’s like to try to move a bigger body and all that comes along with it. In many ways, I believe trainers like this are even more qualified to assist people in taking the initial steps toward improved health and fitness. At the very least, they most certainly have a unique insight into the journey that other trainers do not.
It’s far more complicated than simply moving more and eating less – you know that, Slim Force trainers absolutely understand that. It can also most definitely put clients at ease knowing they are working with someone who can understand exactly what it’s like to be starting from scratch and what challenges they are experiencing. It can just make the whole experience a little less intimidating for people starting out if they can see we are real people with real struggles. There’s nothing like feeling like you have to be perfect – nobody is, nobody can be, there is no such thing.
This isn’t to say that trainers who are not plus size (and never have been) can’t be superstar trainers and get people off to amazing starts with their fitness – just that those who have had the same struggles have a unique insight into the situation and are ABSOLUTELY qualified to coach people toward their goals. They have the knowledge, empathy and personal experience necessary to help people find ways of moving that they enjoy and see health benefits from – which is ultimately what it’s all about. Weight absolutely does not determine someone’s current fitness levels, knowledge or worth as a personal trainer.