If you want to be a great personal trainer, it’s important that you get to know your clients. Although this will happen naturally over time as you work together, there are other tools you can use to gather information that will help you tailor your programs to each client. Your most valuable one is the personal training client questionnaire.
Learning how to effectively screen clients will ensure you can keep them safe during training, as well as design programs that produce the results they’re looking for, which keeps them around for the long haul. In this article, we’ve put together some pro tips and example questions to help you write the best personal training client questionnaire!
Why Personal Training Client Questionnaires Are Important
One-size-fits-all services do not work for personal trainers. After all, if your clients wanted a generic workout to follow, they could find thousands to choose from online. The reason they’re paying you is to customize a program to their specific needs, abilities, and goals. Hence the personal in personal trainer. That’s where client questionnaires come in.
Personal training client questionnaires allow you to gather all the information you need to create the perfect training program for an individual client. Here are a few reasons why having your clients fill them out is important for your business:
Assess Risks & Abilities
First and foremost, questionnaires allow you to identify any medical risk factors your clients may have. This is important so that you can ensure they aren’t at risk of injury during your workouts, and to see if they’re a good fit for your experience and certifications. The only way to know if you’re capable of training a client safely and if they will be physically able to complete your workouts is to ask.
Either way, you should always have clients sign a liability waiver to make sure you’re not responsible in case they suffer an injury or medical event under your supervision. Here’s a template you can use to create your own.
Gain Insight into Needs & Goals
Another purpose a new client personal training questionnaire serves is to help you get to know where your client is in their fitness journey, what they need to move forward, and where they’re trying to go. The more you know about them, the better and more realistic the program you’ll be able to create.
When you learn about a client’s goals and lifestyle, you also gain an understanding of what motivates them. You can use this to determine how to best hold them accountable and keep them inspired through their workout.
Asking a client about their health, needs, and fitness goals shows them right away that you care about their safety, progress, and success. Building this rapport and positive relationship will help them feel more connected to you — and boost your retention rates.
Clients who feel that you care about them are more likely to trust you and be honest throughout their training journey. When they’re transparent about their progress, you can better assess them at each stage. Then, you can adjust your program when necessary to ensure they reach their goals and remain happy with your services.
Client questionnaires are a standard in the personal training industry. Having your clients fill one out signals to them that you’re a professional who knows what they’re doing. It also shows that you take their safety and results seriously.
5 Tips for Writing the Best Client Questionnaires
Writing a good personal training client questionnaire boils down to asking the right questions and asking them the right way. We’ll go over the right questions in a little bit. First, we want to give you some tips for how to write your questionnaire.
- Collect as much information as possible. As we said before, the more you can learn about your client, the more value you can offer them. And the more you can learn from the form, the less time you have to waste gathering those details in person, and the faster you can start working.
- Include a variety of question types to maximize insight. To get the best insight into your clients, you must ask the right questions (more on that later). Your questions should cover multiple different categories — medical, fitness experience, lifestyle, expectations, goals, and so on — rather than limiting it to one area.
- Don’t make them write an essay. The questions on your questionnaire should be simple and to the point. You want to make it as clear and easy as possible for the client to fill out, otherwise, they might not finish it. Giving answer selections for some questions, such as listing common fitness goals and medical conditions they can check off instead of writing them out, can help speed up the process.
- Read their responses. The whole point of a personal training client questionnaire is for you to use the information you get! If you don’t take the time to thoroughly read the form, you’re wasting your time and your client’s. You can use My PT Hub’s Client Management features to help you organize forms and corresponding notes for each client.
- Plan for some time to review a few questions in person. While you don’t need to review every question on the form with your clients, it is a good idea to go over certain questions together. There’s not as much room to expand on paper, so discussing things like fitness goals and interests in person can help you gain deeper insight. Getting your client talking about their goals can also help them feel more motivated.
New Client Personal Training Questionnaire Examples
As we’ve said, if you want to create a killer workout program tailored to your clients, you must ask the right questions on your client questionnaire. To help you gather the right information we’ve made a list of questions you should include on your form for new personal training clients!
*A PAR-Q or physical activity readiness questionnaire is a set of questions used to screen whether a client can safely participate in exercise. In this section, we’ve included the seven questions typically used in a PAR-Q, as well as some additional medical questions you should ask.
- Has your doctor ever said that you have a heart condition and should only do physical activity recommended by a doctor? (PAR-Q)
- Do you feel chest pain when you do physical activity? (PAR-Q)
- In the past month, have you had any chest pain at rest? (PAR-Q)
- Do you ever lose your balance because of dizziness or lose consciousness? (PAR-Q)
- Do you have a bone or joint problem that could be made worse by physical activity? (PAR-Q)
- Is your doctor currently prescribing anything for your blood pressure or heart condition? (PAR-Q)
- Do you know of any other reason why you should not do physical activity? (PAR-Q)
- Do you have or have you ever had any diagnosed medical conditions? If yes, please list.
- Have you suffered any injuries? If yes, please explain.
- Have you ever had physical therapy? If yes, please explain.
- Are you currently on any medications? If yes, please list them and any side effects.
- Are you pregnant now, or have you given birth in the last six months?
- Have you had a recent surgery? If yes, please explain.
- What is your current level of exercise? (Please include how often and what type of exercise you currently do).
- How many hours of sleep do you get in a typical night?
- How much water do you drink in a day, on average?
- What is your daily nutrition like?
- What do you do for a living?
- Do you smoke or drink excessively?
- How would you rate your stress levels on a scale of 1-10?
- What are some of your short and long-term fitness goals?
- What type of exercise do you enjoy, or what exercise are you interested in trying?
- Why did you decide to try personal training?
- How many days per week can you commit to training?
- What type of fitness equipment do you have access to?
- Have you worked with a personal trainer before? If so, what were the results?
- What do you expect/hope to get out of training?
- What are some obstacles, behaviors, or activities that could slow your progress in reaching your fitness goals?
Current Client Check-In Personal Training Questionnaire Examples
Client questionnaires are useful and important not just for new clients, but for your current clients too. Having clients answer questions about their progress every week, two weeks, or even monthly will help you assess whether their program is working, needs to be tweaked, or if they’re not putting in the work. It also shows that you care about them reaching their goals. Here are some examples of valuable check-in questions:
- What were your goals for this week? Did you achieve them?
- How would you describe your mental state over the last week?
- How much sleep did you get this week, on average?
- Are you happy with your progress this week?
Download our free fitness client check-in worksheet for more examples of what to ask on your questionnaire!
How My PT Hub Can Help You Manage Your Personal Training Clients
Personal training client questionnaires are an invaluable tool for collecting important information about your clients that allows you to create customized workout programs. As your client load increases though, it can be challenging to remember all that information and keep it organized. That’s where My PT Hub’s software and app for personal trainers can help.
With our Client Management features, tracking your clients’ progress and staying connected is simple. Add an unlimited number of clients and attach specific notes, progress photos, direct messages, and forms to their profiles. When your client creates their My PT Hub account, we even have them complete a PAR-Q, so you have all their medical information right from the get-go. All of this is to help you save time, increase efficiency, and become a successful personal trainer.
See the difference our software can make for your personal training business and sign up for your free 30-day trial today!