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Written by Kim Leggett (Clean Health Online Master Coach)

All coaches have a responsibility and code of conduct that they must keep in mind when programming for clients. You have to remember that you’re in a line of work where you’re helping another person and instructing them to do things. This also works both ways as the clients are also entrusting their safety in your hands as they follow what you’ve programmed for them. 

So, how do you know if your client’s training program is SAFE?

1. INVESTIGATE
Ensure that during the initial consult you have gotten a clear picture of your client’s medical past, training and dieting history, current lifestyle and their goals. You need to ensure you take all this into consideration when putting together their program. For example, if a client is asthmatic, their training needs to factor this in so that you don’t push them too hard and they aren’t needing to take breaks to use their asthma pump. 

2. PLAN 
Following the consult, you need to ensure that you have taken all factors into consideration before you put together your clients training and nutrition program. Any issues that may have come up during the consult will shape the training programs inclusions. For example, if a client has specific dietary requirements, these need to be respected when putting together the meal plan. 

If your client has come to you for fat loss, it is unethical for you to not provide them with a program that does not cater to their goals. 

3. LEAD BY EXAMPLE 
Once the training program has been put together, all coaches must ensure their programs are delivered clearly so that the clients are fully aware and understand what they are required to do. 

It is also your responsibly to make sure your clients are executing the exercises with proper form. You should demonstrate every exercise as many times as possible until your client can replicate the movement pattern with proper form. 

4. IDENTIFY & ADAPT
Being able to identify your clients training level is a key element in being able to coach and cue them effectively to ensure the training program will be carried out in the safest manner possible when left to their own devices. This is especially important when it comes to the compound lifts such as squats and deadlifts. Clients shouldn’t add weight to any exercise if they aren’t executing correctly and as the coach it is your duty to know how to perform all the different exercises without creating any injury risks. 

5. CREATE A SAFE WORKING ENVIRONMENT
Every coach should ensure their working environment is safe for their clients to train in. If there are potential hazards it probably isn’t ideal to train your clients there as accidents can easily occur. You will be putting your own health at risk and can also be sued if your client gets injured…and nobody wants that! Make sure that you check every setting to ensure it’s safe prior to starting a session regardless of whether you are training indoors or outdoors.

Overall as coaches, we have a duty of care to our clients. We need to take into account their needs and alter our training methods to ensure their goals are factored in whilst being mindful of any important information that will affect their health which we collected from the initial consult. Otherwise, we run the risk of injury. Any advice given should be based on reliable facts from reputable sources – especially when it comes to nutritional advice.

Why is all of this important? If a client isn’t training safely, as a result of your training, the responsibility of them falling short falls on your shoulders (with that, your reputation). Avoid this by ensuring you understand your duty of care as a coach! 

The Performance PT Coach Certification can teach you how to create evidence based training programs safely & effectively, to help you maximize client results! Click here to register for the pre-sale now!

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