CrossFit Discussion Board  

Go Back   CrossFit Discussion Board > Community > Running a CrossFit Facility
CrossFit Home Forum Site Rules CrossFit FAQ Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Running a CrossFit Facility Tips and guidance on how to open and operate a CrossFit gym.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 09-08-2010, 03:05 PM   #1
Matthew S Myers
Member Matthew S Myers is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Ino Kochi  Japan
Posts: 23
What do you look for in a trainer?

Hi everyone,

My name is Matthew Myers. I'm 24, and have been crossfitting on my own for about 3 years now. I've recently realized two important things. One) the things I am most passionate about in this world are fitness and nutrition, and two) I gain no greater satisfaction and joy than helping people get into fitness/ learn more about their diet / get even better at fitness. The idea has been with me for a long time, but now I'm finally going for it: I want to be a trainer.

For all affiliates out there, I am wondering what you look for in the trainers you hire for your box? What certifications are best? What prior education, if any, is necessary? To trainers, how did you get involved in your crossfit box?

Today is the first day of the rest of my life. I want to make this happen. Any help/advice you could provide would be so very much appreciated.

Sincerely,
Matthew
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 09:11 AM   #2
Angela Childress
Member Angela Childress is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Tulsa,   OK
Posts: 49
Red face Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew S Myers View Post
Hi everyone,

My name is Matthew Myers. I'm 24, and have been crossfitting on my own for about 3 years now. I've recently realized two important things. One) the things I am most passionate about in this world are fitness and nutrition, and two) I gain no greater satisfaction and joy than helping people get into fitness/ learn more about their diet / get even better at fitness. The idea has been with me for a long time, but now I'm finally going for it: I want to be a trainer.

For all affiliates out there, I am wondering what you look for in the trainers you hire for your box? What certifications are best? What prior education, if any, is necessary? To trainers, how did you get involved in your crossfit box?


Today is the first day of the rest of my life. I want to make this happen. Any help/advice you could provide would be so very much appreciated.

Sincerely,
Matthew
Hi Matthew,

I am not an affiliate owner, nor a trainer yet. But my husband is a trainer since May '08.

Since no one else has yet answered your question, I'll take a go at answering based on my 2nd hand experience from watching my hubs.

My husband joined up with our affiliate way back when they began in a 1 car garage and a cul de sac. He too loved fitness, and wanted to share his passion with others, so he went and got his cert. At that time there were no openings for trainers in the classes going at that time, so he asked if he could start an early am class, and that is how he was able to start as a trainer.

From our experience with our affiliate, and watching other affiliates in the area, it seems like most affiliates build up trainers from within their own walls. What usually happens, is that a person who is a member and receiving training becomes passionate about CrossFit and becomes certified.

After their certification they return to the affiliate and start training others in some capacity at the affiliate. Some come on as volunteer trainers to gain experience, and some come right on as paid trainer. Some are assistant trainers for a while, and then get some more reimbursement as they take on more responsibility and they prove themselves as valuable trainers.

Most trainers at a box come from within a box. Very rarely have I ever seen an affiliate advertise to recruit a trainer from outside their own box. I think I've seen it done maybe once.

The reasoning behind this (I think) is affiliate owners want to know those who train for them. Their trainers represent the affiliate to the trainees in the classes they oversee. They want to make sure the trainer really represents the philosophy of CrossFit and of the affiliate. They want to make sure the trainer is not there for his own agenda.

So, you could either join a local box, and after you have built a good relationship with the owner, offer to become an assistant trainer on trial for a time. Or you could start your own affiliate.

Now what is looked for in a trainer? I can only answer that as a class member, the wife of a trainer, and what I look for in the person who is running the class session. I can't answer this as an affiliate owner.

But I look for a person who is knowledgeable about what they are teaching. I expect a trainer who does CrossFit and understands the philosophy of CrossFit as a whole. I look for them to understand the reasoning behind a workout (why a workout is put together the way it is).

I look for a trainer who understands the movements of an exercise thoroughly and can explain why it is done, and model good form.

I expect a trainer to be a form nazi. I look for a trainer who expects his trainees to prove they can safely do the basics before they are allowed to move on to the harder movements.

I look for a trainer who is able to share the knowledge they have in a straightforward, but truly caring way. I look for a trainer who checks his/her ego at the door.

While the knowledge of CrossFit and the passion for it is important. A trainer with good personal skills, and the ability to teach a trainee in a way that is grasped and understood is equally as important.

I don't look for a trainer who "just does the workouts". I don't look for a trainer who "just does a WOD because that's what's on the board." I don't look for a trainer who just assigns the WOD, and doesn't carefully watch the trainees to ensure proper movement throughout the whole WOD.
(To me this is very un-professional and can even lead to a trainee getting injured.)
I don't look for a trainer with the attitude that he/she is better than the trainee simply because they have this certificate.

I applaud your decision to become a trainer. Its a very fulfilling job because it's helping others get better and better.

The beauty of CrossFit is that you don't have to have any formal training. Everything you need to know you can learn by reading, watching, asking, listening, and your own hard work.

Every cert you can sign up for, I suggest you go to. Yes you can become a good trainer by only going to the L1 cert. But the knowledge that is shared at all the specialty certs really make you a better CrossFitter and CrossFit trainer. If you can take the L1 more than once, that is recommended from my point of view as well.

I hope this answered some of your questions. Sorry it was so lengthy!

Have a blessed day!

Last edited by Angela Childress; 09-09-2010 at 09:13 AM..
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 10:58 AM   #3
Timothy Gilday
Member Timothy Gilday is offline
 
Timothy Gilday's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Miami  FL
Posts: 104
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Wow, great answer. I would have to concur that in my experience that is exactly what has happened over the last year and a half at an affiliate that has grown from one location to three and has spun off a few other boxes from its own members/trainers. Each time members have stepped up from the ranks to become trainers and filled the void of more senior members/owners spending more time at the new locations.

I would also add that enthusiasm plays an important role as well. Both during the wod and before/after. A trainer has to have a true sense of the community that is formed at the box. The trainer should always go out of their way to introduce themselves first, use the names of members as often as possible and always reflect a positive team attitude. I've seen the alternative and it doesn't work in CF.
__________________
6'1" | 182 | One Man Wolf Pack Barbell Club
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 11:37 AM   #4
Jason David
Affiliate Jason David is offline
 
Jason David's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: May 2008
Location: St. Clair Shores  MI
Posts: 3,037
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Angela Childress View Post
Hi Matthew,

I am not an affiliate owner, nor a trainer yet. But my husband is a trainer since May '08.

Since no one else has yet answered your question, I'll take a go at answering based on my 2nd hand experience from watching my hubs.

My husband joined up with our affiliate way back when they began in a 1 car garage and a cul de sac. He too loved fitness, and wanted to share his passion with others, so he went and got his cert. At that time there were no openings for trainers in the classes going at that time, so he asked if he could start an early am class, and that is how he was able to start as a trainer.

From our experience with our affiliate, and watching other affiliates in the area, it seems like most affiliates build up trainers from within their own walls. What usually happens, is that a person who is a member and receiving training becomes passionate about CrossFit and becomes certified.

After their certification they return to the affiliate and start training others in some capacity at the affiliate. Some come on as volunteer trainers to gain experience, and some come right on as paid trainer. Some are assistant trainers for a while, and then get some more reimbursement as they take on more responsibility and they prove themselves as valuable trainers.

Most trainers at a box come from within a box. Very rarely have I ever seen an affiliate advertise to recruit a trainer from outside their own box. I think I've seen it done maybe once.

The reasoning behind this (I think) is affiliate owners want to know those who train for them. Their trainers represent the affiliate to the trainees in the classes they oversee. They want to make sure the trainer really represents the philosophy of CrossFit and of the affiliate. They want to make sure the trainer is not there for his own agenda.

So, you could either join a local box, and after you have built a good relationship with the owner, offer to become an assistant trainer on trial for a time. Or you could start your own affiliate.

Now what is looked for in a trainer? I can only answer that as a class member, the wife of a trainer, and what I look for in the person who is running the class session. I can't answer this as an affiliate owner.

But I look for a person who is knowledgeable about what they are teaching. I expect a trainer who does CrossFit and understands the philosophy of CrossFit as a whole. I look for them to understand the reasoning behind a workout (why a workout is put together the way it is).

I look for a trainer who understands the movements of an exercise thoroughly and can explain why it is done, and model good form.

I expect a trainer to be a form nazi. I look for a trainer who expects his trainees to prove they can safely do the basics before they are allowed to move on to the harder movements.

I look for a trainer who is able to share the knowledge they have in a straightforward, but truly caring way. I look for a trainer who checks his/her ego at the door.

While the knowledge of CrossFit and the passion for it is important. A trainer with good personal skills, and the ability to teach a trainee in a way that is grasped and understood is equally as important.

I don't look for a trainer who "just does the workouts". I don't look for a trainer who "just does a WOD because that's what's on the board." I don't look for a trainer who just assigns the WOD, and doesn't carefully watch the trainees to ensure proper movement throughout the whole WOD.
(To me this is very un-professional and can even lead to a trainee getting injured.)
I don't look for a trainer with the attitude that he/she is better than the trainee simply because they have this certificate.

I applaud your decision to become a trainer. Its a very fulfilling job because it's helping others get better and better.

The beauty of CrossFit is that you don't have to have any formal training. Everything you need to know you can learn by reading, watching, asking, listening, and your own hard work.

Every cert you can sign up for, I suggest you go to. Yes you can become a good trainer by only going to the L1 cert. But the knowledge that is shared at all the specialty certs really make you a better CrossFitter and CrossFit trainer. If you can take the L1 more than once, that is recommended from my point of view as well.

I hope this answered some of your questions. Sorry it was so lengthy!

Have a blessed day!
Awesome response. Spot on!
__________________
www.stclairshorescrossfit.com
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 09:40 PM   #5
Brian Strump
Affiliate Brian Strump is offline
 
Brian Strump's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Charlotte  NC
Posts: 2,619
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Knowledge in anatomy and physiology would be helpful.
Books on human psychology and motivation should be high on your list too.
As should be other health and fitness information that is NOT from CrossFit. There is alot of great information out there that is not in CrossFit and that will be helpful to show how you are superior to other trainers with knowledge in just one genre(Not the normal use of the word, but referring to trainers that just get L1, and other CF certs, but no other education outside of CF methodologies)
__________________
Brian Strump, D.C., FMS, NKT
www.crossfitsteelecreek.com/
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2010, 10:17 PM   #6
Mauricio Leal
Affiliate Mauricio Leal is offline
 
Mauricio Leal's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Oakland  CA
Posts: 839
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Love of helping people. Stone cold knowledge of and competency in mechanics. Communication skills. Attention to detail. Multi-tasking. Mental toughness. Ability to perform and smile under duress and adapt to unexpected events.

The first ones are most important of course, but the last ones are what separate the good trainers from the great IMHO.
__________________
CrossFit Cypher
www.crossfitcypher.com
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2010, 12:18 AM   #7
Matthew S Myers
Member Matthew S Myers is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Ino Kochi  Japan
Posts: 23
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Wow, thank you all so much for your answers! Angela, yours was phenomenal. Thanks for taking the time to write all of that out. I really believe in crossfit and helping people to achieve their best. In fact, your posts just gave me more confidence that I CAN do this. Looking to possibly take a level 1 cert in Seoul, South Korea in December since I'm currently living in Japan. Coming back next year to start a Masters in Teaching and begin CrossFit training, and couldn't be more excited!

All the best,
-Matt
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2010, 10:18 AM   #8
Jamie Gowens
Member Jamie Gowens is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Arlington  TX
Posts: 537
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Angela's answer was pretty spot on.

I will say that what you're passionate about will show in your training, and your knowledge must be solid. That said, I think the ability to say "I don't know" to a question one of your clients may ask is important. Finishing the "I don't know..." with "...but I'll find out before you come in again." is pretty essential. Sometimes my clients ask questions that, frankly, I'm not sure how to answer. I always let them know up front that I'm not totally prepared to answer the question, and I don't want to bull**** them but I WILL get the answer.
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-10-2010, 08:00 PM   #9
Jesse Gray
Affiliate Jesse Gray is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Davis  CA
Posts: 545
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

Off the top of my head, here are a few traits common to good trainers. Good trainers are consistent; they bring the same enthusiasm and work ethic every day, not just when they're feeling good. Good trainers are good communicators; it doesn't matter how much you know if you can't rely the information to your clients. Good trainers know their clients well and take a personal interest in their lives. Good trainers never injure their clients. Good trainers are likable people who promote a positive atmosphere in the gym. Good trainers give every member an appropriate level of coaching and interaction; this varies from person to person.
__________________
My Box!
  Reply With Quote
Old 09-12-2010, 09:46 PM   #10
Joe Bernard
Member Joe Bernard is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Philadelphia  PA
Posts: 2,626
Re: What do you look for in a trainer?

I'm not a trainer, but worked out at an affiliate for the first time this summer. To expand on the part about knowing the community and each member's story, host events every month or so. For example, my box has dinners every now and then at the gym. For the one I went to, we grilled ribs that were cooked earlier in the day, and people brought side dishes and snacks and stuff. Just hanging around and talking to everyone, trainers included, was alot of fun and I got to know more of the members better.
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New trainer Vince Mannella Stuff and Nonsense 12 09-02-2010 07:12 AM
Would like to become a trainer. Heath Babb Running a CrossFit Facility 6 01-14-2010 12:47 PM
Need a trainer Justin Flynn Running a CrossFit Facility 0 09-13-2009 07:44 PM
Anyone looking for a trainer?? Jeb Smith Running a CrossFit Facility 2 02-26-2009 11:31 AM
New CF trainer Laura Head Running a CrossFit Facility 2 09-23-2006 03:11 AM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:54 PM.


CrossFit is a registered trademark of CrossFit Inc.