General Etiquette > Life...in general

Personal Trainer Etiquette.

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snowdragon:
At my Y they offer private sessions with a personal trainer for $25 per half hour session.  These are supposed to be one on one sessions with a specific person without interruptions like you would get in a group session or a regular trip to the "wellness center".  I pay for these in blocks of 24  and have them set up from now to July for Mondays and Fridays.  Since the trainer is directing and supervising the person they are training  the fact that this is a private session is fairly obvious. BK/

   The past few times I have been their my trainer and I have been interrupted several times per session by people wanting a spotter for weight lifting, help learning to use equipment, help setting up equipment,ect  This is getting aggravating, since it knocks off time from my session that I am paying for.   There are other staff members in the wellness center  that can be asked but because the trainer is more visible they come to the trainer. Some get very rude to both the trainer and myself when I object to being left for these things during my sessions. 
   I have spoken to the trainer - they do not feel comfortable telling these folks she can't leave me to help them, but told me I could inform them that this was a private session that I was paying for ( I am not pleased about that!).  I have started telling them when they interrupt us - "excuse me, but this is a private training session and I would appreciate it if you would find someone else to help you".   Some are ok with this, others get very nasty about it.
  Today the man who interrupted us three times in the same half hour session told me I was "Rude and selfish and needed to be put in my place."   I've spoken to the trainer about how she needs to be telling these folks no, and spoken to the director of the Wellness Dept. about the constant interruptions. I know others have spoken to the Director also - as she told me so.  The director is "looking in to how often this happens " and has spoken to her staff about being more visible on the floor.
  My etiquette question is would it be rude of my to start insisting that the trainer deal with the interruptions rather than having me do it?

CakeBeret:
I think your trainer is being quite rude and you should escalate. This should not be your responsibility.

When you are interrupted, I think your words are fine but you might want to take a look at your tone. Is your tone friendly or brusque? A firm tone with a friendly smile might help you get results.

WillyNilly:
Wow.  No you would not be rude to insist the trainer does their job.  Their job is to train you, individually for half and hour.  Full stop.  If they are asked to do anything else during that half hour, they need to say "no, I'm sorry, I can't help you right now, I'm in a contracted training session." And if your trainer does not refuse to be called away, you have every right to be refunded the money you spent on the training session.

As for how the gym can handle this - perhaps trainers could wear a certain color t-shirt, while regular staff wears another (perhaps even with a "Ask me for help" message printed on it, or a button that says something like that).  This way members know at a glance who is available for general help and who is engaged in training.  Also the regular gym staff should be walking the floor regularly checking equipment, available for questions, making sure gym rules and basic safety is being observed, etc.

Tea Drinker:

--- Quote from: WillyNilly on February 11, 2013, 05:55:51 PM ---Wow.  No you would not be rude to insist the trainer does their job.  Their job is to train you, individually for half and hour.  Full stop.  If they are asked to do anything else during that half hour, they need to say "no, I'm sorry, I can't help you right now, I'm in a contracted training session." And if your trainer does not refuse to be called away, you have every right to be refunded the money you spent on the training session.

As for how the gym can handle this - perhaps trainers could wear a certain color t-shirt, while regular staff wears another (perhaps even with a "Ask me for help" message printed on it, or a button that says something like that).  This way members know at a glance who is available for general help and who is engaged in training.  Also the regular gym staff should be walking the floor regularly checking equipment, available for questions, making sure gym rules and basic safety is being observed, etc.

--- End quote ---

At my gym, trainers who are currently working with a client wear black shirts that say "personal trainer" or "master trainer." Trainers who aren't with a client, but are on duty, wear red shirts that say "here to help you." That means the gym staff can say "ask anyone in the red 'here to help you' shirt if you have a question or need help," when people first join, and probably makes it easier for the trainers who are with a client to usefully redirect people. Not just "I'm busy right now" but who they should talk to.

That aside, a quick "excuse me, where's the men's locker room" is one thing, but someone who would interrupt your trainer, while s/he is working with you, to ask for a spotter or instruction on how to use a machine is being rude. That would be true even if you weren't paying for a private training session: they're basically trying to cut in line, pressuring someone who is already helping another gym member to abandon her and do something for them.

Softly Spoken:
This is completely unacceptable and your trainer is being totally spineless. It should not be policy to interrupt helping one client in order to help another - the fact that you are paying for the time just makes it even worse.

I POD with others that your trainer needs to deflect these people firmly but politely to another staff member. If they insist on help from your trainer, they can be told "I am free in X minutes, or you can go get help now from Other Employee." This is prime "I'm afraid that won't be possible" territory! >:D

Your trainer should not be helping others when you are paying for her time, and you should not have to deal with people who intrude on that time. Talk to the higher up about 1) having your trainer grow a spine and 2) getting reimbursed for time lost if these interruptions keep happening during your training time.

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