There are times when I love the fitness industry. As a whole, we do a lot of good for a lot of people, and I really do think that we save lives, and improve the lives of those we work with.
Then, there are times that make me want to cry. Or punch someone. Or both.
So when I met one of our awesome new clients a few months ago for her orientation, I couldn’t help but be a bit overcome with emotion.
One of the main reasons she was giving Edge a try was because she heard how supportive, caring, and truly kind the team of trainers are. Only being exposed to Edge, I sometimes forget this isn’t always the norm in the industry, so I asked her what she meant. Part of our orientation process is to actually get to know our clients a bit on a personal level so that we can help get them remain more consistent, and get better results.
After some prying, she told me that she was working out with a trainer that had her squat too much, too fast. And she got stuck, and couldn’t get back up.
First, being someone who has squatted for over a decade and missed MAYBE 5x, I had a hard time understanding what the trainer was thinking. Letting a person new to weights fail isn’t the best option. But it didn’t end there.
No, the reason she left the gym immediately is because the trainer laughed at her. She couldn’t get back up from a movement the trainer prescribed, and the response was to L-A-U-G-H. Yes, a fitness professional laughed at his/her then client.
I can’t imagine restarting at a gym at this point. Last year I went to a big gym and couldn’t figure out how to start, and then work, a treadmill for one of my indoor runs on a wintery, rainy day. I was so embarrassed that I nearly walked out. Only my stubbornness stopped me. But, I couldn’t ask for help. I own a gym…how could I not know how to use a simple piece of equipment?
That’s when it hit me. This is how people must feel when they start their fitness journey at a new gym or with a new trainer. Fear of not knowing. Fear of being laughed at. Humiliated. Small. Out of shape.
How awful. Shame on us as an industry who should be helping people for confusing them, laughing at them, and doing things to stifle their growth, instead of helping it.
At Edge, we do literally everything in our power to right the wrongs of the fitness industry. Like I said, there is a lot of good in the industry, and i’m not talking about everyone. Hell, I might only be talking about 10%, I don’t know. But if it’s 10% of our industry making people hate fitness, then that’s 20% too much.
We take the time to get to know people. Their past, their history, and their goals. Then we help them crush their goals. We motivate, encourage, and keep accountable. We befriend people, not belittle them. We build them up, instead of breaking them down. We laugh with them about something funny that happened at work, not at them for them falling short on a goal, or a movement.
That’s why we call it our Edge family. That’s why people feel overwhelmingly welcome at our gym.
Oh, and the client who got laughed at from the other place? She’s been a client for months, is down over 15lbs while still being a busy business owner and mom of 4, and has a smile on her face from the time she walks in until the time she’s walking out the door to the rest of her busy day. She’s got a great Edge trainer who takes phenomenal care of her workouts, and she even squatted with that weight several times, with good form, and zero failing. She is a true OUTworker, and a true success. Definitely an awesome part of our Edge family.
And whenever I see that, it makes me love the fitness industry, and what we stand, for all over again.