More and more people are turning to personal trainers as guides through the journey of improving health.
"Your personal trainer can track your progress. They can reassess on the regular to make sure that you're reaching your goals," said certified personal trainer Jamie Semien. "The trainer can also provide more education on strength training, cardio, flexibility."
A personal trainer can also push you further, and help you reach goals more effectively than just working on your own. Many people seek out a personal trainer when they are preparing for an athletic event, or just need some help fine tuning their workout.
However, not every trainer is the same.
Before handing over your exercise routine, Semien says check for credentials. Make sure that your trainer is certified, and a part of a nationally accredited personal trainer association. While extra education, like exercise science or kinesiology, is not required it can provide for a more comprehensive workout.
"The more education that your personal trainer has, the better your workouts will be," said Semien.
Trainers aren't just for those looking to take their fitness to the next level. Many people with health challenges can benefit from a medical personal trainer.
"Exercise is medicine, and finding the right dose is so important. Whether you're a cancer survivor, whether you're post rehab, you really need to include exercise in your activity," said medical personal trainer Alanna Williams.
Someone with an injury, or even heart disease or diabetes, may have a limited ability to exercise. A personal trainer that specializes in medical needs can help patients overcome those challenges, and work within a doctor's guidelines to improve overall health and quality of life.
"Clients that have pain, have injuries, they need to exercise. But someone with an injury, they don't want to do exercise because it doesn't feel good," said Williams. "So, finding the right balance with meeting the exercise that helps them health wise as well as enjoy doing really makes a huge impact on reaching their goals."
Williams says it is important for anyone to consult a doctor before beginning any new exercise routine, and to discuss that with your trainer or gym facility to make sure that your medical needs are taken care of.
The cost of a personal trainer varies by location, but the national average is around $50 per hour. Many facility offer discounts or extra packages to help with the price.