“Make a client self-sufficient? Are you crazy? I’ll be out of a job!”
This reaction often follows the suggestion to make clients more self-sufficient and hence, less dependent on a coach. Yes, if clients can do more by themselves, maybe they will need you less. On the other hand, if, as a result of increased knowledge, your client has less “trivial” questions, you will have more time for other tasks. In turn, you could devote the additional time to providing higher-value services to that client and growing your business.
Here are three ways to make clients more self-sufficient to free up your time to focus on coaching.
Focus on raising your client’s fitness IQ, that is, their combination of physical, mental, and emotional competency. Raising their fitness IQ will mean that they will no longer need your assistance on day to day training.
You can develop a client’s fitness IQ through progressive movement patterns and training pieces. As they gain experience they will know how and why to perform and progress their own training. In time, the goal is to have a client that knows their squats from presses and understands what it takes to move the performance needle in all modalities of their training.
After multiple phases of training, your client should require less guidance on specific movements and instead look to you for guidance towards their long-term goals. Learn how to create personalized training programs that will help raise your client’s fitness IQ in this free course.
The second way to make a client more self-sufficient is to let them take the wheel. If you find yourself repeating the same cues, seeing the same outcomes to movements and repeating bad habits, the client is most likely on autopilot. The best way to catalyze long-term change with this client is to give them the wheel and have them experiment on their own.
Open a dialogue and discuss what they feel is working for them. When you see that they need guidance, provide it, but also allow them to identify problems and propose solutions. A client gains nothing from listening to the guidance they cannot embody and take ownership of. Letting the client take the wheel is a great way to help those who are struggling to make a change.
The best way for a client to grow outside of reps and sets is through learning. Knowledge sharing plays a very vital role in creating awareness among your clients.
If resources like books, podcasts, or an informative article are shared in the right context, clients can obtain more awareness in areas you have been trying to develop, such as tempo, TDEE, or absolute strength. Sharing information can help clients understand that they need to play an active role in their own fitness journey and raise their fitness IQ, ultimately leading to better results.
Remote coaching can produce great results for clients and build a sustainable business for coaches. But to do so you have to have a service that is rock solid and meets the needs of your target market very effectively.
Get an introduction to the coaching skills you need to offer a successful remote coaching service in our free coaching course, The Coach’s Toolkit. Sign up today and start building a successful career.