Getting your athletes and clients to buy into your program has always been a challenge for strength coaches and personal trainers alike.
Here are 5 easy ways to solve this problem:
Having recently started a new full-time position as a collegiate strength and conditioning coach, I’m well aware of the ins and outs of trying to get your athletes to get on board with what you are trying to do. The only way you will get credit from the start is if you were a past collegiate or pro athlete or have been working in the NFL, NBA, MLB, etc. For the rest of us, it might take a little more work, explanation, and care to get through to your athletes. I once had a mentor that told me being a strength and conditioning coach was like being a used car salesman. You have to get your athletes to buy the car without letting them see it or test drive it, a daunting task for even Ashley Schaeffer of Ashley Schaeffer BMW.
Try these 5 easy ways and see how they work for you and your athletes and clients.
Explain why they are doing what they are doing
Athletes, kids, and people that are paying you a lot of money always want to know “why am I doing this?” Explain to them how this is going to make them a better baseball player or football player. Whatever cliental you are working with, take the time to tell them how this is beneficial to them in obtaining their goals. You’ll be surprised at the effort you get when they understand the “why.”
Make yourself accessible.
People have busy schedules these days and often need to cancel or move appointments. If you are working with student athletes, you will be dealing with class schedules, final exams, and family issues among others. The easier you are to communicate with the more comfortable your athletes and clients will feel around you.
Show them you care.
There are many ways to do this but something as simple as sending a text to your athletes on their birthdays is a quick and easy way to accomplish showing them that you care. As fitness professionals we lead busy lifestyles but showing up to a clients practice or game unannounced to check their progress and see them in their element makes them feel good that they are training with you. If the opportunity arises, be more than just some guy they see a few days a week in the gym.
Take the time to get baseline numbers on your athletes and show them their progress after the program. Collegiate athletes are extremely competitive. Post their results on a nice poster for not only them to see but their teammates to see as well. You might notice a difference in how they compete in the weight room.
Get involved with recruiting
This is more for the collegiate strength coaches but involve yourself in recruiting. Develop an offseason highlight tape of what you do to prepare for the season. Communicate with your athletes before they even arrive on campus. Show them you are excited to be a part of their collegiate career and sell them that car before they even step into your weight room!