This fitness leadership post was originally featured as my guest post over at Thoroughly Thriving
Hey friends, I’m here to share another guest post of mine! Last week I wrote a guest post for coach Henness over at Thoroughly Thriving about something that I have thought a lot about over the years as a personal trainer and group fitness instructor. What makes a good fitness leader (or a good leader in general)?
As influencers and professionals in the fitness field, it’s really important to take a step back from time to time and reevaluate our leadership. Are we lifting up those we lead? Do we set aside our pride to bring out the best in others?
I got to thinking today about what makes a great fitness leader. This has been a recurring thought of mine over the years since I’m an introvert and it took a lot of time and courage for me to feel confident as a fitness instructor and trainer. Is it charisma, perfect workout plans, creativity, or attention to detail? Or maybe it’s continuing to learn, being the best in your area of expertise, or being a good teacher.
All of those things are wonderful and really great things to have as a trainer, instructor, and coach, but they don’t make the best leader.
The best fitness leaders have a servant’s heart. They have the best interest of others at heart and aren’t in it to glorify themselves.
Making money is great, enjoying your time teaching fitness classes is awesome, but at the end of the day what really makes a great fitness leader is someone who can put their pride aside and lift others up. Taking the time to set aside the glory of personal success and reaching out to help others.
Teaching a class, training clients, or coaching aren’t times to show off your amazing skills, it’s a time to serve others by helping them reach a place where they are healthy and accepting of themselves. Sometimes that means slowing down in Zumba so people can see the steps, or modifying a yoga routine so everyone in my class can do the poses and feel accomplished.
With our acquisition of knowledge, we can’t forget the wisdom: that to lead we must serve others. We must set aside our pride and shine the spotlight on those around us so we can build them up.
This is something that I have to remind myself a lot it seems. Sometimes I get hung up on what other trainers or instructors are doing, and I start to think about where I fall short and what I can do to be competitive in the fitness marketplace. But my thoughts are brought back to the importance of creating genuine relationships with the people I lead and helping them reach their goals.
When I start to compare myself to others or get prideful, I have to readjust my focus on the things that really matter: serving others and leading them to better places through my gifts. All the comparisons slip away and I’m filled with peace knowing that I don’t have to be the best, I just have to do my best to serve others and He will help with the rest.
Embrace your flaws, they make you relatable and keep you humble. Don’t pretend to be perfect. In the fitness world, it’s so easy to hide our imperfections and say “look at me!” when we should be saying “look at what God is doing”.
Genuinely love those who you connect with and find ways to serve them. It’s often just a simple shift in our mindset, but it makes all the difference.
Sarah Jane Parker is the founder, recipe creator, and photographer behind The Fit Cookie. She’s a food allergy mom and healthy living blogger based in Wyoming. Sarah is also an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, ACE Certified Health Coach, Revolution Running certified running coach, and an ACE Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist