Personal Trainer vs. Sports Coach: Which is Right for You?

Personal trainers and sports coaches are both jobs for a certified fitness and health professional. Both types of trainers can help motivate you with inspiring fitness quotes and have knowledge of muscle training anatomy. The type of trainer that works best for you depends on what your personal fitness goals are. Personal trainers have a solid education and foundation of general fitness. Their skills focus on helping individuals get in shape and learn how to incorporate a healthy and active lifestyle into your daily habits. They can help teach you about the benefit of eating healthy and how you can use a healthy diet to complement your personal training to help you reach your personal fitness goals faster. A sports coach has a different set of skills that are unique and specific to a sport.  Running coaches, triathlete coaches, swim coaches, and cycling coaches are all examples of sport coaches that specialize in a specific type of sport. The benefits of a personal trainer and sports coaches can help enhance your fitness training program to help you train harder, train smarter, reduce risk of sports injury, improve recovery times, and compete with more power and strength in competitive sports.

If your goal is to run your first marathon this year, having a running coach would be a bigger benefit to you than a personal trainer. Running coaches are familiar with a variety of training plans that can help you build from where you currently are in your personal fitness and build slowly from that. A running coach knows that trying to add too many miles too quickly to your weekly training mileage could significantly increase your risk of sports injury. A running coach can help you adjust your daily dietary habits to support your training runs and help you with hydration tips to prevent dehydration, muscle cramping, and GI distress. A good running coach will keep tabs on your performance each week and make necessary adjustments based on your previous week’s performance. If your times have been slow and sluggish, you might receive a couple of rest days or active recovery days to allow the body time to heal and not feel burned out from training. A running coach also has access to a variety of running groups and other local runners and could help match you with other runners who are training for a similar event at the same pace that you are training which a huge help with accountability and motivation.

Personal trainers are fantastic at working with clients who are returning to fitness after a long break or who are completely new to working out. They can show you how to use different equipment and machines along with accommodations and modifications that you can use to fit a specific personal need.  A good personal trainer will listen to your needs and help you identify reasonable goals to help you achieve success. Personal trainers can have a good general foundation of both aerobic and anaerobic fitness to help you find the best workouts to meet your needs and achieve your personal fitness goals.


Personal Trainer Certification


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