Challenges of Personal Training workouts online

Rachel Masser says working as a personal trainer is very challenging during the coronavirus lockdown.

The personal trainer from Oxford works with her clients face-to-face online over the computer and tries to motivate them to keep fit in the comfort of their home, whilst seeing it as a chance to socially interact online which is sometimes challenging.

Rachel Masser (right) a personal trainer, in an interview on Zoom with Jack Sale (left) of Solent University. Photo by Sam Oni

Masser said: “The social interaction is huge. Some people come more for that than the actual class, so that’s been quite a challenge.

“People have enjoyed still getting together, once or twice a week to see who they would normally workout with.

“What we have also introduced is the virtual coffee so after some classes people hang around for a coffee and I do if I can as well. They would make a coffee and go sit down and have a chat, just like they would normally do after a class.”

However, having online sessions over the computer due to a global outbreak can be difficult to do because there is very little trainers can do when they are not with their clients physically when help is needed the most.

Masser, gave her views on the struggle she is facing without helping her clients, whilst she checks for progress and giving feedback.

Masser performing an exercise online to clients. Photo by Sam Oni

“I very much want feedback from people on how they’re feeling, what’s working, what’s not working for them. I also need the feedback to correct their form as I can’t physically go up to someone, for instance if their hips are too high in a plank position pushing down.

“I can guide through my voice but that’s all I can do. That’s was the biggest challenge”, said Masser.

Masser continues that not having a lot of equipment to work with during the training sessions can be difficult, meaning that clients will not be able to do a specific type of training without the needed training item.

“Yes, all the classes I am currently doing are bodyweights and one or two other things because some clients only live in flats. They don’t have any outdoor space, only in their front room and enough space to do just a burpee and that’s it,” said Masser.

However, Jerome Sale, one of Masser’s clients, has enjoyed the group sessions online and speaks of the differences than outdoor sessions.

Sale said “I’m really looking forward to doing online boot camps, I didn’t think it would be the same. funny enough I’ve ended up doing more sessions online than I was able to do offline before the coronavirus restrictions came in.”

Sale performing training exercise in garden. Photo by Sam Oni

Sale says that the online sessions are very enjoyable that it helps the body mentally as well as physically.

He said: “The biggest thing I have enjoyed is actually not the physical side of this but mentally. I use to find that the boot camps were really hard, like the hardest hour of the week.

“Now at least you’re so much concentrated on the work you have to do in that hour, what you’re not doing is thinking about the coronavirus and all the stuff going on around the world just for that hour.

“It’s like a little bit of a break, I think it actually helps mental health as much as physical health.”

To watch a video of Masser in action click here: Personal Trainer