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Many of us are feeling the effects of more sedentary lives during the pandemic – and we’ve seen nearly a year at home affect our children’s fitness as well. From sports camps in the summer to physical education classes, gymnastics classes and team sports during the school year, our kids have had fewer opportunities to move about the way they love to.
When we see a light at the end of the isolation tunnel, they may feel like it’s time to get started again – and they may be looking for more focused help than a few jogs around the block. You may want a personal trainer. If so, here are a few things to consider.
Don’t suggest it yourself
Encouraging kids to stay active is great. It is wonderful to invite them for a walk or a hike. Better yet, find a physical activity that you enjoy doing together, such as exercising. B. Skiing or shooting tires in the driveway. However, it is likely to be offensive or embarrassing when they suggest it is time to hire a personal trainer – especially without prompting from them.
Nothing says, “I think you need to lose some weight,” like unsolicited advice on how to get in shape. Nothing good can come of this; However, when they come to you with the idea of getting a personal trainer, there are a few things you should keep in mind to decide whether it makes sense for them and what type of trainer to look for.
Discuss your goals
Before deciding how – or whether – to proceed with hiring a personal trainer, you need to understand exactly what your teen is hoping for from it. If you’ve played a particular sport before it’s all shut down and you want to resume it soon, you may feel that your body is not in shape to jump in right away and you may want a coach who knows exactly what trains them to run to get them back in the groove. If so, you can consider having an experienced high school trainer in your area doing this type of workout on the side rather than a personal trainer at your local gym.
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Another situation could be that you have decided to run your first 5km this spring and you want to get in better shape as part of your workout. Or they want to learn different exercises that they can do at home to overcome the monotony of the treadmill. Or, they have realized that regular exercise will help minimize their anxiety, so they try to prioritize by building in a certain consistency and accountability. These are all valid and understandable reasons to consider a personal trainer.
However, keep an eye out for clues that wanting a personal trainer stems from body image issues or eating disorders. While girls with eating disorders can focus on losing weight or maintaining a low weight, a boy’s disordered eating often includes a desire to look lean and build muscle, which can lead to over-exercising. Talk to them about their fitness goals so you can better understand what they want to achieve through the process.
Remember, we are still in a pandemic
The vaccines are being introduced (slowly) but it will be a few more months before life feels closer to normal. If your teen is considering a personal trainer, talk to them about how they can do this in the safest way possible.
The trainer should already have taken precautions, such as: B. an outdoor training location or a well-ventilated, uncrowded indoor area. Discuss the use of the mask and the importance, whenever possible, of staying at least three feet away from the trainer and washing hands or using hand sanitiser before and after each session.
Consider a trainer for the whole family
Our teenagers are probably not the only ones who could benefit from a little more exercise. If you feel that your teen wants a more consistent exercise regimen but is embarrassed to take the next step – or if you have younger kids who are struggling to exercise – consider hiring a trainer for the whole Family.
Find personal trainers in your area who offer group packages – your whole family might as well be the group. Interview a few trainers (you can do this virtually to get started) to find someone who would be a good fit for the different ages and fitness levels in your family. Your trainer may meet you at a local park once a week to walk you through some stretching and warm-up exercises and then organize relay races for you or coach you through a flag football game. It doesn’t have to be just pushups and laps – find someone that the whole family can enjoy exercising.