Personal Training To the Extreme. Indeed.

I tell you, the New York Times has been publishing some real gems as of late. The latest “drop everything and run out to the newsstand because a client brought it to my attention” article was in last Thursday’s Style and Fashion section, “Taking Personal Training To the Extremes.”
Come to think of it, personal trainers are sort of a fashion accessory nowadays, aren’t we? I’m starting to feel like that unhip mauve Jansport backpack that nobody wants to sport anymore.

The article details the phenomenon by which trainers are making money hand-over-fist by catering to clientle that demand more than a couple weekly sessions; this new breed of clientle more closely resembles the celebrity client that retains a trainer to be at his beck and call 24/7. By making themselves available to the client at all times, to perform workouts with them, plan and order meals for them, and to essentially keep them active, the personal trainer de extreme (PTX) can demand a much higher rate, collecting large sums for chunks of time (like 2 weeks, for example).

Personally, I think this is great. Guys like Phil Kaplan, Jay Abraham, Ryan Lee, et al, endorse leveraging your time to make more money, and this is certainly a prime example. However, the article does contain a dark side…

Unfortunately, the trainers profiled kind of suck – there’s no two ways about it. To a person, they endorse methods that are slipshod at best, harmful at worst. Do these methods get results? Certainly – otherwise they wouldn’t be in business. But are these methods the best way, or even a good way to attain the aforementioned results? They are most definitely not the safest way. All talk of progression, building a proper foundation for fitness, injury prevention, sound biomechanics, all eschewed for “fun stuff.” Hey, I’m not knocking the fun stuff – but it sure ain’t exercise. There is a definite line between performing exercise to reinforce, strengthen, and improve the body, and doing work.

But all “methods” discussion aside, I say, good for them – God bless their entrepreneurial little hearts!

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