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TYOK Personal trainer Dom Thorpe
Andy Parsons

Things you only know if you’re a personal trainer

Written by
James FitzGerald

…according to Dom Thorpe, 37.

London’s the place to get fit on the cheap

Don’t sign up for a gym membership you know you’re never going to use. If you feel you’re wasting money on trying to get in shape, you’re going about it the wrong way. Instead, consider London’s many free outdoor exercise classes, try callisthenics in the park, or just follow a fitness vlog from your bedroom. Many personal trainers like me are going online these days.

PTs offer a variety of services (but not that)

Clients tell and ask us all sorts of things – sometimes way more than you’ve bargained for. One time, a colleague of mine was personally requested for a home visit by a woman in Mayfair whose husband was away from home. When he turned up, she was just wearing a dressing gown and sexy underwear.

Taking up running can be bad for you

Often, if you’re overweight, running intensively is actually one of the worst things you can try. Hard, tarmacked city surfaces can be bad news for your knees. Yes, cardio is good, but it needs to be part of an overall mix that also includes weight training. It’s all about giving your whole body a workout: sit-ups alone won’t burn off the fat on your belly. It doesn’t work like that.

For PTs, it’s survival of the fittest

My business, DT Training, specialises in helping people with disabilities. It’s crucial to find a niche because the supply of PTs has outgrown demand. Hundreds of new personal trainers set up each month in London. It’s often thought we just spend a few hours in the gym each day and chill out in between, but developing a client base takes lots of hard work and networking.

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