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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15923
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2022 8:11 pm    Post subject: Trainer Woes Reply with quote

This afternoon, I went to the gym. I decided to get me a trainer for 1 hour. Spent about 10 minutes talking with the trainer, who, after speaking to him, he seemed very qualified. I wanted a trainer to teach me how I can work out with my current physical limitations. Perhaps I should've sought out a physical therapist instead.

I stressed to the trainer the condition of my lower and mid back. The trainer agreed that while he might push me, he'll keep my bad back in mind. The right side of my body, arm and leg, are numb and tingling 24/7.

So, the trainer walks me to a Seated Elliptical Trainer. He sets up the machine. He wants me to burn 200 calories. To me, the speed seems fast, but doable. By lap 3, my lower back is screaming to me. I stop, make a few adjustments to the height of the sear and the back rest angle. The back rest angle still had me leaning backwards. At 50 calories, and with my lower back starting to protest, we both went upstairs.

Upstairs, he leads me to a Ropeflex machine; one where you pull down the never-ending rope. Has me doing 5 sets of 2 minutes, and in between sets, he has me doing various trunk twisting exercises for 2 minutes. By now, I'm hurting in both my lower and mid-back. I tell him to that effect.

Next, he has me doing Triceps Rope Pulldowns. 5 sets of 30, with 2 minutes of Bicep Curls with 5lb dumbbells. No back pain improvement, yet no pain increased, but stable in that regards.

Then, Cable and Pulley Machine. He sets the machine and has me grab ahold of a pulley handle in each hand; one machine to my right and the other machine to my left. He wants me to touch the side of my leg, on each side alternating one side to the other, just under my knee. 5 sets of 2 minutes.

Well, 20 seconds into that, I drop both handles and flop over the nearest railing. My lower and mid-back have surrendered; pains excruciating. I hang onto this railing as though it was an innertube that has just saved me from drowning in the ocean.

When able, I slowly, and leaning in a question mark towards my right side, I say nothing as I gather up my stuff, and I hobble towards the elevator, taking many leans against any given wall. Trainer says nothing, but he follows me to the elevators.

Within 15 feet of the closest elevators, I remind him that with my backs current state, oftentimes I can't stand and/or walk long. I told him, I know I might've let you down, and because I ended the workout, you might not think that I'm serious. He assured me the opposite.

He wants me back tomorrow. I tell him, I'll try, all depends on my back when I wake up.

Sure, I could've ended the workout right off the bat, and I could've managed my workout pace. The trainers supposed to be the professionals at any gym. Twisting exercises can not only make the disc worse, but it can be the cause of further problems. Of all of the given exercises known to a trainer, why choose twisting exercises to someone with a bad back?!? Not that it matters much at all, but I'm disabled, for the love of God.

In all of my many decades on the floor, I'd never put a student in harm's way in any shape, way, and/or form. I am always alert to any of my disabled students to the Nth degree. Push me, I need that!! Push me, knowing my physical limitations, I don't need that when my limitations are jumping up and down in distress. Find me something else to do that won't overly task my back or give me nothing else to do. PAY ATTENTION TRAINER!!

Took all that I could to make to my car...but I made it.
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Zaine
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 2017
Location: Dallas, TX
Styles: Matsumura-Seito, Shobayashi-Ryu, Shudokan, Long Fist, American Street Karate, Southern Mantis, HEMA

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2022 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not all of the trainers at the gym are educated professionals. The body is incredibly complex and trainers, who often give medical advice, nutritional advice, and whatever else they find necessary, have no formal training as to what certain conditions are or what the effect of things will be to the body. The prevailing opinion in the trainers that I have spoken to is that if it worked for someone else then it should work for everyone! In this way, you get trainers recommending bad diets (such as Keto, Whole30, Paleo, etc.), exercises that aren't good for the body, and other terrible things. They're not there to consider your health, they are there to make you "jacked."

Take it a little easy the next few days and don't go back to that trainer.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 29539
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE, Police Krav Maga, SPEAR

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2022 10:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If it were me, Bob, I'd see what I could do about getting you to deadlift. If flexibility is an issue, I'd start with sets of high rack pulls, and then progress my way down the rack to get as close to the floor as possible, and then start pulling from there.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15923
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2022 12:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This trainer spoke to me that he's been shot...died twice...while in the military overseas. I of course thanked him for his service. He's a retired nurse, just recently. Spoke how he can't stand trainers that will be on their cell phone when they're with a client. That he'll never yell and/or cuss at a client...that'd be a really smart thing for him because I told him I'd just stuff him in a trash can if he ever did.

I found out this about this trainer...

CERTIFICATIONS:
ISSA Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Nutritionist, Strength and Conditioning


YEARS OF EXPERIENCE:
7 Years

Specialties:

STABILITY AND BALANCE
FUNCTIONAL FITNESS
WEIGHT LOSS/GAIN
FITNESS NUTRITION
STRENGTH AND CONDITIONING
CORE TRAINING
COMPETITION TRAINING
BODYBUILDING
POWERLIFTING
PHYSIQUE BUILDER
GROUP TRAINING AND PARTNER TRAINING
HIIT TRAINING

I may never know his intent as to why he trained me as he did. My back right now on the pain scale of 0-10 right now is at 8; I might have to sleep on my recliner for a bit. I did inform this trainer that my cancer has metastatic into my L4 as well as my T12 of my spine.



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crash
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 143

Styles: karate,

PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2022 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Personal Trainers get certifications in a variety of methods and training. from bodybuilding to nutrition and diet and everything in between, sports training and conditioning etc..... back in the day, I was a certified trainer and also had a senior trainer certification, along with staying current on red cross cert's and CPR. it is actually helpful as a martial arts instructor to stay on top of some certifications. search for a trainer who also has a senior certification or exp. with training seniors.
sure a trainer is supposed to push you beyond what you would or could do as an individual or by your self, but your safety and current condition is first and foremost the most important cosideration. most trainers work with people in their 20's through the early 40's. senior training is a completely differant game due to health and age related conditions. just find a trainer who specializes in this.... Good luck with your search. you will find someone you are comfortable with.
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JazzKicker
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 07 Aug 2017
Posts: 164
Location: NJ
Styles: JKD, TSD, MMA

PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2022 10:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

when your back heals, run away from that guy!

You need to see a physical therapist- but if you have metastatic cancer in your spine, you should talk to your oncologist first.

BTW I got an ISSA cert 20 years ago, plus SMAC cert (specialist in martial arts conditioning).

It's effectively a mail-order course that in no way prepares you for the kind of client needs you have.
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15923
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2022 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JazzKicker wrote:
when your back heals, run away from that guy!

You need to see a physical therapist- but if you have metastatic cancer in your spine, you should talk to your oncologist first.

BTW I got an ISSA cert 20 years ago, plus SMAC cert (specialist in martial arts conditioning).

It's effectively a mail-order course that in no way prepares you for the kind of client needs you have.

My Medical Oncologist ordered several X-Rays concentrating around where my T12 is located. Waiting for results.

Mid-Back spasms are the worse. Can't laugh, God help me if I sneeze because my wife can hear my back snap and crackle from the other side of the couch, can't breathe in deeply, bending over is an exercise in itself, getting up isn't fun anymore, and sitting on the couch relaxing is a wonder when the next spasms will occur at its schedule, and not mine.

Yet, I can sleep and roll over and whatever else while sleeping with NO spasms. Can't figure that out at all. Getting out of the bed for my many trips to the bathroom is another matter and laying down.



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tatsujin
Orange Belt
Orange Belt

Joined: 12 Oct 2021
Posts: 162

Styles: Ryusei-ha Ryukyu Kempo Karate-jutsu

PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2022 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With the issues that you currently have due to your medical situation, have you considered something that would generate less stress and strain in that area?

I don't mean to get all "woo-woo" on you, but something like Yiquan or standing stake might be better suited for you. Granted, it is not weight training, but as a neigong practice it can bring other benefits.

Additionally, if you'd like to give it a shot, I can get you access to an easy medical qigong set (easy as in stress and strain to the body) that you might get benefit from. This set is taught in China and one of the main uses for it in modern times is for those undergoing cancer treatments and is used right along with western medicine and medical treatments. It's a 10 week course that you can go through at your own pace. To be clear, I am not the teacher of this and there would be not cost to you if you are interested. Just drop me a line privately and I can set this up for you.

Best of luck!
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DarthPenguin
Blue Belt
Blue Belt

Joined: 03 Dec 2021
Posts: 316
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Styles: Shotokan, Judo, BJJ

PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2022 8:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

From reading that there are a few immediate red flags that jump out, namely that you had disclosed an existing back injury and he had you perform several exercises that either directly work the back or involve it as a significant stabiliser

I would have assumed that he would have had you perform some unweighted exercises that may stress your back first to ascertain what you could do.

Working up to deadlifts etc would be the ideal but if you can't do it currently then you get the person to very very gradually work up to it!

Personal trainers are a total bugbear of mine - there are far too many bogus ones with smart sounding certifications that are utterly useless running around. As a personal example i got an extremely bad arm injury a few years ago that necessitated 18mths off the mats (a complete dislocation of the elbow with other issues) and was told by physios and the medical people that i would never regain full range of motion. I read up on it and self rehabbed it - have full range now.

To paraphrase you directly : you usually sign off with "proof is on the floor" in this instance, factoring in your pain, you should apply the same maxim. This trainer (regardless of how nice an individual and how credentialed they appear) caused you to finish a session injured and in pain. I'd 100% suggest finding a new one

Best of luck with the routine though - sounds like you have the two most important parts nailed down already : commitment and willingness to work!
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 15923
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2022 3:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DarthPenguin wrote:
From reading that there are a few immediate red flags that jump out, namely that you had disclosed an existing back injury and he had you perform several exercises that either directly work the back or involve it as a significant stabiliser

I would have assumed that he would have had you perform some unweighted exercises that may stress your back first to ascertain what you could do.

Working up to deadlifts etc would be the ideal but if you can't do it currently then you get the person to very very gradually work up to it!

Personal trainers are a total bugbear of mine - there are far too many bogus ones with smart sounding certifications that are utterly useless running around. As a personal example i got an extremely bad arm injury a few years ago that necessitated 18mths off the mats (a complete dislocation of the elbow with other issues) and was told by physios and the medical people that i would never regain full range of motion. I read up on it and self rehabbed it - have full range now.

To paraphrase you directly : you usually sign off with "proof is on the floor" in this instance, factoring in your pain, you should apply the same maxim. This trainer (regardless of how nice an individual and how credentialed they appear) caused you to finish a session injured and in pain. I'd 100% suggest finding a new one

Best of luck with the routine though - sounds like you have the two most important parts nailed down already : commitment and willingness to work!

Solid post!!

As far as getting another trainer is concerned, I'll not be searching another trainer because I can't trust them at all.



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