Getting to why during a client intake meeting
It was my first day meeting a new client, after introductions, we started talking about her fitness goals:
Me: So, what would you say is your number one fitness goal.
Client: I would like to lose 10 pounds.
Me: Yeah? Why is that?
Client: Well, I feel tired by the effort it takes to get to work in the morning and I want that to change. I think losing weight will help me.
Me: Yikes, that sounds rough. Tell me about your commute.
Client: (shares about her commute)… I’ve been feeling this way for about 3 months.
Me: Interesting, if you’ve been feeling this way for a few months, why now?
Client: My family has a history of high blood pressure. I think this is a sign that I need to start working to prevent that in my future.
Me: Yeah, high blood pressure has some scary consequences. Tell me more about your family history.
Client: Well, my mom had a stroke and passed away when I was 25. That scares me because I don’t want to die before my baby turns 25. Noticing myself out of breath getting to work was the final straw. I need to make a change.”
BOOM—there it is. That’s really what brought her in that day.
Your job as a coach is to discover your client’s true, core goal and help them move from a big picture goal to specific, incremental goals that will help them work toward their long term goal.
It often takes asking someone “why” 5 times to get to the true goal. We curated a list of questions to ask your clients at the first meeting. This was designed to help you dig deep and discover your client’s big picture goal. With that information, you can break that big goal into specific, incremental goals. We wrote this to be printed and used. So please, use it.
After discovering your client’s true, core goal, it should be central to your programming. Trainers can get stuck in patterns of programming exercises because we like them not because it will specifically help our clients achieve their goals. The focus should be programming exercises that will directly help your client’s goal. That way, when you are in a session, and you tell your client the next exercise, you can directly connect that exercise to their goal.
Once you have this information on your client, you can use Trainer Vision to store this information digitally. Logging their answers on the client intake form allows you to keep the information on hand for programming in the future.
Taking the extra step to connect exercises and goals will increase client engagement in training. This increase in engagement will lead to an increase in goal achievement, and an increase in client retention for you, the trainer.