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4 Biggest Mistakes Personal Trainers Make

Personal Trainer

Already training with a personal trainer in Singapore or thinking of hiring one? Make sure he/she is not making these mistakes when coaching you.


1. Changing up exercises or training programs too often. 

Some personal trainers, especially in big gyms in Singapore with lots of equipment, fall into the trap of using too many exercises, thinking that sticking to a few good exercises will shortchange their clients.

Imagine going to the gym week 1 doing dumbbell bench press, week 2 doing incline barbell press, week 3 doing dips and week 4 doing push-ups. Every time you’re back to the gym it’s like you’re using a new exercise and almost back to square one. It will be almost impossible to achieve progressive overload, ie. to get stronger over time, if you keep switching up exercises. Identify a list of the best exercises for yourself and get really strong and proficient in doing them.

That’s a much better way to get good results with training and also get you stronger over time. Once you hit a plateau then you can start thinking of doing a deload to come back stronger or switch exercises. Same thing with programs. It takes some time for programs to work so switch them up only if you need to. If you’re continuously seeing results, why fix something that’s not broken?


2. Not measuring results

Your personal trainer should always use some methods of measuring training results with you. That way, everyone is taking your program seriously and nothing is left to guesswork or subjective assessments (“oh yes you look like you’re lost weight”).

Useful tools include scales for weight (but take note of fluctuations that are normal), body fat calipers for body fat measurement (make sure your trainer is skilled at taking measurements for better accuracy), before/after pictures (this is useful to see improvements in body posture too), for general health/mental well-being, blood tests (measuring cholesterol, triglycerides, blood sugar), blood pressure, resting heart rate, simple scales of 1-10 rating your happiness, energy levels can be used to measure your state of health.

All of these can mostly be improved with an effective personal training program.


3. Ignoring pain, tightness and stiffness

Many people suffer from musculoskeletal injuries, it should be an old chronic injury or something more acute. Even though personal trainers are not rehab specialists (we didn’t go through 4 years of medical/physiotherapy education), we should have some fundamental knowledge on injury management and prevention. As well, always follow some simple rules when it comes to training, that pain should be avoided during training, especially when it comes to joints. When there’s pain, switch up exercises, reduce load, clean up techniques, do more warmups to avoid pain.

If that doesn’t work or the pain is chronic, personal trainers should refer their clients to see a rehab specialist. This person can be a physiotherapist, sport doctor, osteopath, chiropractor or even a TCM or masseur. Someone whom you know does good work. Get properly rehabilitated then return to the gym and get better results. Surely in the meantime you can train unaffected body parts to maintain your fitness levels.

Never brush off pain and in some cases, no pain no gain is not the way to go. Similarly, with tightness and stiffness, these problems can lead to injuries or postural issues. Do proper assessments and proceed to stretch, foam roll for trigger points and do mobility drills to improve flexibility and mobility overtime. If you train your muscles hard, take good care of your soft tissues too. Then you can do this fitness thing for a long time.


4. Focusing mainly on cardio to lose weight and neglecting diet/nutrition

News flash! Cardio isn’t the most efficient way to lose weight. And for people who hate exercise, forcing them to do too much cardio is surely not a long term solution. The activity itself is great for health, your hearts and lungs etc but when it comes to burning calories, you’d have to do long durations of it, high frequency or at high intensities on a regular basis in order to see appreciable results.

Worse still, many cardio exercises like running or jumping might hurt a person’s joints, so do proceed with caution. Instead, pay more attention to your diet and listen to what a sensible  trainer will say about creating a deficit in your diet program to yield fat loss. Make it a lifestyle change, and long term, sustainable weight loss will be achieved. You will simply not see good results if your personal trainer doesn’t alter your diet, period.


I hope your personal trainer is not making these mistakes! If you’re looking to hire an experienced personal trainer to provide house call services, we are here to help!

Personal Trainer Singapore Khit
About Tze Khit
Tze Khit is a distinguished personal trainer with a Bachelor’s Degree in Sports & Exercise Science from Edith Cowan University. Passionate about optimizing human potential, he offers expertise in weight loss, toning, and rehabilitating injuries. His holistic methodology integrates human anatomy, physiology, and bespoke training plans, rooted in initial functional movement screening. Certified by the Singapore Sports Council and holding multiple National Council on Strength & Fitness accreditations, he masterfully employs techniques like myofascial release and neuromuscular activation, ensuring clients achieve their fitness aspirations swiftly and safely.


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