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Meet the team – Graham Ratcliffe

‘The bricks and mortar of the company’ so Graham calls himself. A man with a keen eye for expansion, when he’s not looking for ways to develop Velocity he’s probably trying to earn a quick million on SkyBet, or create himself a catchphrase. Neither are going well.

Graham is responsible for the development of Velocity and he has a great eye about possible new avenues for expansion and ensuring Velocity is always going above and beyond. He is also a fully qualified tutor and assessor, quite the triple threat. Read More

Effects of Resistance Training on Joints

Resistance training produces significant improvements, such as increases in bone density and tendon and ligament strength and stiffness, resulting in improved joint function and reduced injury potential (Whiting and Zernicke 2008).

All joint components respond positively to increased mechanical stimuli and force loading as long as the forces do not exceed the individuals tissues functional limits (Farrell et al. 2011).

Normal adult bone is in a state of homeostasis that is maintained by balanced activity between osteoclasts (which break down). Repetitive bone loading and osteoblasts (which produce new bone). Repetitive bone loading as seen in resistance training, has been shown to increase the activity of osteoblasts, particularly at points of stress, leading to increased bone strength, density and calcium retention. The primary location of osteoblast activity is on the outside of the bones, in the periosteum; the osteoclast activity occurs on the inside surface of the trabecular bone. This pattern of change allows bone to adapt to the imposed demands without losing the relative structure (i.e. diameter of the hollow centre to the total bone diameter) whilst increasing girth, stiffness and strength (Watkins 2010). Note that during activity, particularly in sport, the demands experienced by the body are often not symmetrical. For example, Nazarian and colleagues (2010) investigated the effect of regular participation in football on the bone mineral density of the legs. Their findings indicated that the bones in players’ non-dominant legs had significantly higher bone mineral densities than those of their dominant legs. Read More

Monitoring and managing the client’s lifestyle

A recent trend in technology is lifestyle monitoring and management devices.

One common gadget is an armband or wristband that is capable of monitoring steps (pedometer), heart rate (heart rate monitor), body temperature (thermometer), sitting time (inactivity timer), light exposure (circadian rhythm monitor) and calculations of caloric expenditure. These devices can often link to software applications that analyse the collected data and offer encouraging feedback or healthy lifestyle advice.

Smartphones and tablets also have a wide range of applications that monitor lifestyle status and lifestyle progression. They often provide encouraging feedback, healthy advice and sometimes comparisons and and competitions with a local regional or global community of users (e.g., How do I rank among other users regarding the increase in daily number of steps?). This type of game-like feedback is highly motivating for some, and may be an important tool for a personal trainer. Personal trainers can also find software applications to monitor multisport, including walking, running and cycling, and to allow a client to engage in challenges that can help to boost their motivation, such as running a 10k personal record or running a set a set distance in a month. Some applications even propose to replace the distance in a month. Some applications even propose to replace the personal trainer, claiming to make fitness fun and help people stay motivated. These can be an easy way for clients to keep a personal trainer in their pocket. This may work with a small cluster of clients with an enormous drive of motivation and an unusually high level of autonomy (e.g., for personal trainers themselves!). For the vast majority of clients, though, the best and most sustainable option is to rely on a personal trainers help in designing an individualised and optimised training programme that is adjusted to their particular needs. Read More

From One-Person Business to a steady company

An important prosperity scenario is expanding a personal training business by employing multiple personal trainers.

This is possible by hiring them as employees or by connecting them to the business as self employed contractors.

Naturally the consequences differ greatly. The risk is significantly higher if an entrepreneur hires one or more personal trainers. However, the income is also higher. The relationship between base salary and commission can be managed. Little specific information is present on the criteria for hiring someone or expanding the team. A good principle is to not grow and mature to soon. It is better to first build on the strategies mentioned previously before switching to having a lot of employees. So, an entrepreneur should first increase turnover per hour and then try to build up continuity with subscriptions for personal training. When working with a team, usually a small team of two to six people, the entrepreneur should make sure to divide the core tasks efficiently, making sure that everyone does the same thing, namely delivering sessions. Specialise the team in terms of two issues. The first concerns content: Make sure that every member has their own speciality, or better yet assemble a team of personal trainers with complimentary specialities. The second concerns the commercial dimension. Hire a few trainers who continuously recruit new clients in addition to delivering sessions. Read More

Presentation and Qualifications in Personal Training

A personal trainer should convey a large quantity of characteristics that ensure the client experiences enough value and continues to follow personal training sessions for a longer period of time.

The following list provides a short overview:

– It is self-evident that a fitness instructor is professional. However, more is demanded of a personal trainer in the area of professional attitude, communication, motivation and follow up with the clients. Generally speaking, personal trainers must adopt a more proactive attitude. They must take the lead in coaching clients in every detail of the exercise programme. Nothing is left to chance. Read More

Professionalism of Personal Trainers in Business

The profession of personal trainer differs from other positions in the fitness industry, including that of fitness instructor, in many ways.

More professional activity and entrepreneurship is demanded of personal trainers, whether they are employed by a club or own a business.

Personal trainers in paid employment often handle clients differently. More flexibility is demanded, and their salary is often variable. The way a fitness professional communicates with clients is substantially different in the job of fitness instructor. The differences between personal trainers and fitness instructors follow: Read More

Informed Consent Process and Form

Informed consent is the process of obtaining the clients signature to confirm that they have read and received a satisfactory explanation of the benefits, limitations and risks of engaging in the services being offered.

Clients must be aware that their consent needs to be given freely and that they have the right to withdraw this consent and stop an exercise test or programme or terminate any other service at any time.

Informed consent must be obtained from a client prior to beginning any process in a professional capacity. This includes when a personal trainer collects a client’s personal information, conducts fitness assessments, provides lifestyle advice, designs an exercise programme or instructs exercise. Read More

Could you train a professional athlete?

With the 2018 FIFA World Cup fast approaching, we decided to look into how footballers go about working with Personal Trainers and fitting it in with their busy schedules.

Personal Training for footballers is a trend which actually hasn’t been around for too long. Only with some of the major players, such as Cristiano Ronaldo taking a lot of pride in their appearance has it become the norm for players to follow. Read More

England’s 2018 World Cup preparation


It’s unbelievable to see how football has changed from just training on the pitch a few times a week, to having a real underpinning of physical and mental health alongside the pitch work. This England training video shows the latest advancements in preparation before the players take part in the biggest footballing competition around. Read More

How does the new GDPR ruling affect fitness professionals?

The European Union’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect on May 25th, 2018. This new law provides specific in-depth information regarding all individuals and organisations who are responsible for day to day data protection. So, how will this new GDPR law affect fitness professionals?

Article 5 of the new GDPR law, states the 5 main aspects relating to data protection which must be followed to ensure you are complying with the new law:

Adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which they are processed; Read More