It’s 2020, we have an instantaneous internet connection, can order food with the touch of a button, and we have limitless entertainment at our fingertips. So it’s no wonder that clients walk into gyms around the world every day wanting to transform their sedentary existence into athletic prowess in just a matter of weeks.
For coaches, this short-term mindset can be incredibly frustrating. While you may realize the client is years away from the goal, you feel obliged to operate under their impossible three-month timeline in order to gain their business. OPEX Fitness Founder, James FitzGerald, has been in this position himself. Here is how he recommends working with clients that want to fast track their results.
First off, it’s not the client’s fault for having an unrealistic expectation of their fitness journey. The fitness industry as a whole sells its products and services as a ‘quick fix’ to a poor lifestyle. On top of this, fitness is seen as a means to an end, a way to look better at that wedding, or sleep better that night. While fitness can provide a lot of these things, the time it takes will depend on the client’s starting point. It is important to ground the client in reality of their start, and there is no better way to do that than with an assessment.
A great way to set realistic expectations for both you and your client is by conducting a physical assessment. This will give both of you an accurate understanding of their current capabilities, that you can then compare to their goals. OPEX Fitness teaches coaches to assess body composition, movement ability, and work capacity, all of which are taught in our free coaching course. With the information gathered during the assessment, you can set a realistic expectation that maybe they won’t be capable of doing 50 pull-ups in three months as they cannot do one right now.
A great way to help clients that want fast results is to slowly educate them over time. The consultation is the perfect opportunity to do this. (Unfamiliar with client consultations? Learn our method here.) Sit the client down and discuss their goals. Depending on the situation, you can explain how a sustainable approach and forming healthy habits aligns with their core values.It may also help to explain how fast-tracking fitness can lead to negative side effects such as adrenal fatigue, injury, and poor movement patterns. One-one-one conversations are an extremely powerful way to educate your clients on the benefits of a slow and steady approach.
It’s easy to preach a system that has coaches and clients working together for years on end. But this isn’t always the case. In some scenarios, you only have an allotted amount of time. Perhaps they are moving, can’t afford coaching, or only signed up for a limited time and can’t continue for reasons beyond your control. Here are two things you can do when the client is going to leave but has not reached their goal yet.
With more than 25 years in the coaching profession, James has come across clients wanting to fast track their results countless times. That is why he has set out to create a solution to the fast track approach, OPEX Coaches and Gyms. These well-educated coaches and the premium facilities they work within preach the long game, participating in fitness for a life-time. These coaches aren’t promoting any “30-day shred” challenges, instead, they are having thoughtful conversations with their clients about why they are interested in fitness, their goals, and their values.
Join the coaches who are sparking a change in the fitness industry by signing up for our free Professional Coaching Blueprint. In this course, you will learn fundamental fitness coaching skills, how to work directly with clients, and how to run a successful coaching business. Sign up today and start making a difference.