We are THRILLED to be welcoming a new instructor to the team – BCPTI graduate Kim Tasin! She completed our program in 2019 and has worked as a trainer while completing her BSc Kinesiology at UFV. Kim brings a calm, intelligent passion to the team and students will be able to learn a lot from her! Check out her thoughts on the past year including challenges and successes in both personal, educational and career opportunities!
Within the past year, many of us had gone through a variety of lifestyle changes. Although everyone is going through their own unique experience, we have all been required to learn how to adapt to a new way of living. Amidst the pandemic, I have managed to reach milestones in both my work and school life: completing the last two semesters of my bachelor’s degree, and continuing to pursue and develop my career as a personal trainer. Both required perseverance and hard work, even more so during a pandemic. What I learned (and continue to practice) is keeping the bigger picture in mind; my “why”. Why is it important for me to reach this goal? Why is it necessary for me to overcome this challenge? What will it feel like when I finally achieve the outcome I’ve been working towards? For many, adhering to consistent healthy behaviours is already a challenge, doing so amidst a pandemic elevates a lot of the barriers clients face. As a trainer, it’s important to remind our clients to refer back to the bigger picture and ask these questions as they often face barriers that require the ability to adapt and build resilience.
Pre-pandemic, the gym was a place to work towards health and fitness goals, and a place to socialize. For the most part, a busy gym environment can be hectic, but it brings a specific energy that members, clients, and trainers feed and thrive off of. Now, a busy gym environment has become something that most members, clients, and trainers do their best to maneuver around. With the current health and safety protocols/restrictions, it has been even more of a priority to ensure clients are comfortable while still being able to deliver a great session experience. For some clients (especially high-risk clients), that might be doing their session in a private/secluded area of the gym or training virtually.
Barriers that I have faced when navigating through this include
- Client programming: How can I get the client to do what’s needed/best for them with limited access to certain equipment? When something is not accessible, what alternatives do I have?
- Client engagement: How can I keep the client interested when we have to work out in the same area/room every session?
- The experience: How do I provide clients with the same level of service when doing a session in a secluded area compared to doing a session on the gym floor.
What has worked for me to ensure my client’s session experience stays top notch is being extra prepared, bringing both energy and excitement to the session, and expanding my exercise library. Coming prepared to a session may seem like a no-brainer, but there is a difference between being physically prepared and mentally prepared. It makes all the difference when your plan has a back-up plan and when you’re ready to think on the fly. Similar to our own personal workout routines, it’s easy to get comfortable and fall into a specific style. Which in turn, results in putting other styles and exercises on the back burner.
To make sure I keep my exercise library fresh and consistently growing, getting my own trainer and leaning on other colleagues as resources has helped to keep my programming and sessions interesting for both my clients and myself. When I am presenting new movements and exercises that have been re-introduced or recently introduced to, the overall energy I bring to a session is much higher. All of these things have allowed me to practice my ability to adapt, problem solve, and be creative. I find that I am much more confident in giving clients a great experience ever since finding solutions and alternatives to the barriers that we face from the current status and restrictions put in place.
The biggest takeaway for me from the past year is the importance of getting comfortable with being uncomfortable, and to learn to accept that we are always going to face barriers. When you remember your “why” and the bigger picture, the challenges that we have to face along the way are worth it! When I look back at the goals and milestones I’ve accomplished, ALL of them have required me put myself in situations where I don’t feel 100% confident and comfortable. Don’t be afraid to lean on colleagues, peers, mentors, friends, and family for support, and embrace the in-person interactions as we are not able to do much of it nowadays!
That’s one of the things I love about BCPTI – the live learning environment is an incredible way to learn, practice skills, make friends and build a professional network. The students you learn with will, undoubtedly, show up as you continue to progress in your new fitness career!