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Finding a personal trainer

Personal trainers can make exercising effective
By: Paul Apfel Healthy Living Correspondent
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When choosing a personal trainer, find someone endorsed by the following organizations: American Council on Exercise (ACE) National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) National Federation of Professional Trainers (NFPT) American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AAFA). This time of year, millions of residents throughout the world make New Year’s resolutions to get in shape and lose those extra pounds. If you are one of them, and you’ve made a serious commitment to become more fit, read on because we have some tips for you to consider in getting a coach to guide you along the way. That coach is called a personal trainer and he or she is one of a growing number of professionals trained in the latest physical fitness techniques to help you reach your goals. You can find most of these new professionals in work-out facilities that used to be generically grouped as gymnasiums but now may be more commonly referred to as fitness centers. Some trainers such as Suzanne Gove, owner of Auburn’s ProActive Personal Training and Fitness Education Center, calls her 2,500-square-foot-training facility a personal training studio while Brady Garcia of Sun City Lincoln Hills presides over two training facilities referred to simply as fitness centers. However, Gold’s Gym in Lincoln operated by Diane and Joe Wenson retains the traditional title. But, whatever the name, these health clubs are not your stereotypical sweat parlors of the past. You can now expect to find professional, accredited trainers, in brightly-lit facilities with state-of-the art training machines to help you get started and keep going, whether your goal is to lose weight, gain strength and agility, or recover from some injury or medical procedure. Fitness center directors agree that you should look for trainers with national certifications attesting to their preparation and expertise in the fitness field. Top certification-granting organizations include the following: American Council on Exercise (ACE) National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) National Federation of Professional Trainers (NFPT) American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AAFA). Professionals also recommend finding trainers with the experience or special expertise to resolve your fitness issues. For example, if you’re a senior, look for a trainer who has some seasoning working with mature clients. Or, if weight loss is your goal, find a trainer with some expertise in that field. And because the training relationship should involve a long-term commitment that moves beyond simple goal attainment to maintenance, you should make sure your personalities mesh in a positive way. While there’s no substitute for personal commitment to becoming physically fit and the sweat that goes with it, a personal trainer may be just the catalyst to jumpstart your program to make this year’s fitness goal a reality.