Decades ago – or for that matter, just a few years ago – you needed to join a gym or hire a private individual in order to access a personal trainer. This person would supervise your workouts, make recommendations to help you achieve your goals, motivate you, correct your form, and more. Many people found this guidance invaluable in helping them construct an effective exercise regimen.

These days, you can obtain the same service, but via a “virtual coach”. This person doesn’t attend your workouts in person, and in fact you might never meet them in person, but the objectives are the same.

So, you might be wondering whether virtual coaches can be effective… The answer is, it depends upon your situation and the goals you’re trying to address.

The major perk of virtual coaching is flexibility and convenience. Without the burden of in-person appointments, you can work out anywhere, any time. He or she can create a workout plan that you follow at midnight from the comfort of your living room, if you prefer. You can even access your coach when you’re traveling.

Pricing might also be more budget-friendly with this service. Many virtual trainers charge by the month, and one month of services might be approximately equal to a single training session in a gym.

As for the service itself, many people find virtual coaches to be just as motivating as in-person coaches. And you will still access workouts that are tailored to your goals.

The down side is that without in-person coaching, you lose a few of the benefits. Unless you’re using Skype or FaceTime sessions (typically only offered by the more expensive virtual coaching services), then you won’t receive guidance on your form, which can prevent injury. You won’t have a spotter with heavy weights, either. Plus, if you’re the type to need in-person accountability and encouragement, it can be too easy to “cheat” and lie about your workout!

Knowing yourself, and your strengths and weaknesses, is important when evaluating any life choice. If you think virtual coaching is a good fit for your needs, and you can deal with the “down sides”, then it might be a good fit for you.

Just remember to check in with us, to ensure that your exercise plans are safe for your level of health. And if you need nutritional advice, we can help with that. Together we can review your goals and create an eating plan that provides you the nourishment your body needs, while helping with weight loss or maintenance, as the case may be.