Thursday, February 17, 2011

How to choose the right Fitness Academy

If you are toying with the idea of becoming a Personal Trainer in the Indian Fitness Industry (I am assuming that a person toying with this idea would be someone who is extremely passionate about Fitness & Working out.)
Then the first thing that you must do is get formally educated by signing up for a personal trainer course from a reputable FitnessAcademy.

Many Passionate workout enthusiasts who have been at it for years think that they are qualified to train others just because they have been training for a long time & have a good body. Nothing could be further from the truth.

An often heard phrase from exercise enthusiasts who think that formal education is not necessary to become a fitness trainer is, “I may not have theoretical knowledge but I have years of practical experience in working out.”
This though common is absolutely ridiculous. Practical & Theory cannot be separated. Practical experience without theoretical knowledge is an experience in making mistakes. 

On the other side of the coin, there are many certified fitness professionals who have certified themselves by giving online exams. Any certification course that certifies students without a practical exam has no meaning.
No amount of theoretical knowledge can compensate for lack of practical experience. Form & Technique of a personal trainer should be picture book perfect.  This can happen only if the personal trainer course has an intensive practical module.
There are many Fitness Academies in India to choose from. But this article can help you make the right selection vis-a-vis a Fitness Academy in India.The questions to ask a fitness academy before joining a fitness course to become a certified personal trainer in India would be the following:

a)    Who are the faculty? A Fitness Academy should choose Faculty based on the following 3 criteria:
  • Basic Qualification to teach the topic
  • Communication skills & a dynamic personality that loves to teach & engages the students. A Fitness academy should hold mock lectures as part of the interviewing process of Lecturers. There is no meaning to the qualifications of a lecturer if he is going to make a classroom sleep due to his non-engaging way of lecturing. A Fitness Academy should not just look for a knowledgeable & qualified lecturer but also an effective teacher who has the ability to inspire interest in exercise science. 
  • The Teacher must also be one who is intrinsically connected with the fitness lifestyle. It is very important for the faculty of a Fitness Academy to be very passionate about Fitness. A lecturer may be very good at his subject but he will not be able to connect with the students of a Fitness Academy if he/she, himself/herself is not fit & stays far away from the Fitness lifestyle. Thevteacher must look like he or she belongs to the Fitness Industry.
Hence, please ask about the recruitment process that the Fitness Academy follows in employing teaching staff. This tells you a lot about how conscientious the Fitness Academy is about   teaching well to its students.
b)     Is Anatomy & Kinesiology being taught by a Doctor or a Physiotherapist? A Physiotherapist is any day preferred over a doctor in these subjects, when it comes to educating fitness trainers as Physios are more clued into movement than doctors & exercise is all about movements. Indications & contra-indications with regards to movements vis-a-vis pathologies is better understood by Physios rather than Doctors.
c)    Is there an intensive practical module in the fitness course? The Practical module should consist of literal Personal training sessions with the Master trainer & each type of a workout should at least be repeated a minimum of 4 times for the students to be able to get the correct form & Technique. The Practicals must also include teaching of "Spotting Techniques"
d)    How many students per batch are trained by the master trainer during the practical module? Any more than 6 students per batch will dilute the effectiveness of the practical due to lack of personal attention?
e)    Is First-aid & CPR part of the syllabus? Training related injuries will happen despite the most attentive trainers. Accidents cannot be prevented..but what you do as a Fitness professional in the immediate aftermath of a training accident will set you apart as a professional who can be trusted & relied upon. Similarly Cardiac arrests are completely unpredictable & can happen to seemingly fit people even in the sub 40 age category. A correctly administered Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation procedure can save one out of every 10 people who suffer cardiac arrests. Hence First aid & CPR are a must have in the syllabus of any Personal Trainer certification course.   
f)      What are the exams like? The criteria for getting certified should be strict & must involve a Theory (Multiple choice), Practical & a Viva exam. This adds "weightage" to the Certificate & once you get the certificate of an academy that has a strict exam, placements are automatically guaranteed, as the Indian Fitness industry as a whole will respect any individual holding a certificate that is earned after a thorough exam. 
The above questions will help you select the right fitness academy in India that will make you into a reputable, knowledgeable & effective fitness professional with a bright future in the Indian Fitness Industry.

The best Fitness Academy that I have come across is K11 (keleven) Fitness Academy. The fitness course faculty here is the best in the industry and the lectures are of the highest education value.  To know more about this fitness course, you can log onto their website Or Purchase Fitness Manuals Online