Around 2 years ago, I embarked on a personal training course with a company who shall remain unnamed. * The course cost me over £3000 and I have just paid my final installment (although I dropped out of the course over a year ago), hence the inspiration behind this post.
My intention was not to become a PT; my main goal was to gain a lot more knowledge around strength training in order to improve my running, and also to come away with a better understanding of physiology.
Being the eager beaver that I am, I conducted VERY thorough research prior to committing to anything. The course that I selected seemed to incorporate a decent mixture of both online learning and practical workshops, and I truly believed that it would provide me with the skills and knowledge required. HOW WRONG I WAS. These are the 3 main problems I encountered:
- It was BORING and generic
As I have previously mentioned, I would describe myself as self-motivated. However, the online content of this course was presented in the dullest way possible. I felt like I had travelled back in time…the graphics and copy were probably extracted directly from a 1970’s Biology textbook.
I also encountered numerous technical difficulties; video demonstrations not playing, being unable to click through to the next section of a chapter etc.
I genuinely fail to understand how such a fascinating topic can be so boring. I would rather eat my dog’s toenails that sit through that e-learning.
- Hidden costs
Human contact was rather limited, which I struggled with as I enjoy working with and learning from others. Whilst I was presented with opportunities to attend a variety of webinars and events, the majority of these came at an additional cost (sometimes a substantial cost!) which I felt was such a shame.
I began to realise that I was wasting both my money and my time, which leads me on to my final point…
Despite the uninspiring online content, I put a great deal of effort into studying for my Level 2 exams, in the hope that the course would improve. I needn’t have bothered, as the examiner revealed many of the answers during the exam. This is not an exaggeration, and I have been advised that this ‘cheating’ takes place within many PT courses.
I wouldn’t say that my PT course was a complete waste of money, as I successfully completed my Level 2 Gym Instructor course, and I did gain some value from this. I also wouldn’t go as far as to say that I was conned, as I was fully aware of the structure of the course, although I do feel that I was misled.
It may have just been the case that this course was not for me. However, one thing that I cannot fathom is the cheating element. Of course, this in unjust, but the main issue is that it could potentially be unsafe; how can one determine who is a ‘qualified’ PT when so many people simply cheat their way through the exams?!**
Have you had a similar experience? Would you class this as cheating, or am I coming across like a bitter 86 year old woman? Please do let me know your thoughts on this!
*I am more than happy to reveal the name of the company privately.
**This also backs my previous post about some of the dodgy PT’s I have experienced.