Friday, 28 July 2017

Above Average

I've recently completed two linked qualifications - Level 2 Gym Instructing and Level 3 Personal Training.  In this blog I'll discuss how I found them and what I learnt.

I discussed my reasons for starting the qualifications back in October in this blog post.  Since then its been a long, hard slog completing both qualifications back to back and managing them in and around a full time job, other bits of self employed work and being with my family.

But I've enjoyed it.

The Level 2 Gym Instructing course covered the basics of nutrition, anatomy, and planning/instructing gym sessions.  And then I did the much longer and more in-depth Level 3 Personal Training qualification, which covered more.  It did nutrition again but looking specifically at the links between that and fitness and wellbeing / energy levels.  It did anatomy and physiology again but in far more detail and looking at how different parts of the body work together and react under pressure.  It covered different ways of delivering personal training too.

I learnt a great deal and am indebted to the teaching staff at Trafford College for helping me through this qualification, aswell as to Donna Hewitson, Damiana Casile and Alison Morton for being willing test subjects and case studies at various points.

I've developed my skills in a range of areas and of particular note I've really honed my coaching techniques as essentially that's what PT is.  I've added huge rafts of knowledge around nutrition and anatomy that have proved useful in both my personal and working life.

And I've discovered that not only do I *really* enjoy PT work, but I'm actually pretty good at it too.  Its a damn shame there's not loads of money in it otherwise it could be bye-bye HR.

And yet I think there's space in my life for both HR and PT, and think the two are complementary.  Without my existing HR (and L&D/coaching) knowledge I'd not have been able to grasp some of the basics of PT and instruction and knowing how to motivate people. And without my PT knowledge I wouldn't be able to coach in business as holistically as I can do, or to look at employee wellbeing in a new light.

So there's definitely room for both and I'll be using my HR skills in any PT work I do, and my PT skills in my HR work too.

But how much PT work will I do?  Very little.  Its something I may fit in around any full time work I do, and pleasingly is something that can easily be done in evenings and weekends.  But I have given my philosophy some thought and know how I’d do it. 


Above average in physical fitness is achievable for most people. Olympic standard isn’t. I would want to work with people who aren’t happy with who they are and want to change. Those who recognise they could be better and want to learn all the various things that need to happen to be better, from nutrition, to focused training and objectives, to understanding physical limits and work life balance issues, to understand the rules and the need for support, the need to make lasting lifestyle changes. Those who want to be “above average” and harness the Power of Three.

I would want to work with people who are interested in becoming Above Average, without the pressure of trying to be the best - who want to be a bit better than others, without the commitment needed to go out and win races and competitions - who want to feel good about themselves but don't think they have time and energy to completely transform themselves.

I think I can use this philosophy in my main HR work too, and look forward to doing it.

Right now I've finished with formal learning though, but I don't think I'm finished forever. I do enjoy learning and have a few other qualifications and accreditations in my sights.

For now though I'm really looking forward to putting what I've learnt recently into practice, both in PT and in HR.

Till next time...

Gary

PS in other news, its almost holiday time...