3 Reasons Why It's Worth the Money to Hire a Personal Trainer for Your Child

Health & Wellness on 06.23.13
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Many families wouldn't even consider hiring a personal trainer for their child. Usually this investment is saved for serious athletes looking to get an edge at their sport and those families with high disposable incomes. However, all teenagers could benefit from working with a certified personal trainer, especially one with good knowledge of strength training. It is perfectly safe for teens to lift weights, although it is critical they are educated about how to do so safely.

I actually decided to become a personal trainer to specifically work with teenagers. Although it isn't currently a huge part of my clientele, I love having the chance to work with teens. It's a great opportunity to help them to develop a positive body image, which is not based on being thin, but rather on being fit. Budgets might not allow a long-term relationship with a private trainer, but a few goal-oriented sessions can be well worth the money. 

1. Teach your child how to use correct form. Fortunately, many schools still offer a weight lifting class. However, kids usually want to lift heavy weights to impress their friends and don't focus on the details of proper form. This can be dangerous and lead to multiple injuries. A certified trainer can safely teach your child to work on total body functional movements that develop overall strength, such as the deadlift, squat, and shoulder press. 

2. Make exercise something fun to do. Nationwide, children are not getting enough physical activity to maintain basic wellness and many school districts have limited physical education funds. Sure, it would be ideal if kids would play outside more, but just like adults it's helpful to have something scheduled and to have a plan about what to do on a regular basis. A trainer can help develop a fitness program that your teen might even like doing a few times a week, which can also boost child's self-esteem. They will learn basic skills that they can use for the rest of their lives to maintain muscle mass and to develop strong, dense bones.

3. Minimize injury both in and out of the gym. Over 30% of the teens (age 14-18) that I have trained have walked into the gym for the first time with a preexisting back injury. It always surprises me that a seemingly healthy young person can already have a back problem. This could be due to a combination of factors, such as genetics, poor posture, improper carrying of an overloaded backpack, or low core strength. A certified trainer can help improve some of these situations by training the correct muscles to fire so the back doesn't have to overwork and to strengthen the back so it can protect itself better.

Despite all the benefits, private sessions might truly be out of your budget. Look for lower cost opportunities for your child to improve their health through fitness eduction, such as in small group classes or at a local children's club. 

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