Technology has changed the way we live.  Activities that once did not involve a computer, such as flirting, shopping, or seeking medical advice, can now be done with the click of a mouse, and the world continues to get smaller.  Technology has certainly changed the fitness industry, with new smartphone apps, blogs, and websites offering the latest fitness advice.  One of the most exciting trends in the fitness industry is the emergence of the online fitness coach, web-based personal training services designed to give you the guidance you need to reach your goals.

How It Works

Hiring a personal trainer is the number one way to gain motivation, stay on track with a program, and reach your goals.  No matter your age or fitness level, there is a trainer whose coaching style can help you achieve faster, safer results than if you were working out on your own.  An online coach is a cost effective and convenient alternative to hiring a personal trainer.  If you like the “do it yourself” approach, but are frustrated with the endless sources of advice on the web, an online coach can help you put the pieces together.  You can still work out on your own, but with the guidance and support of a professional who knows your history and can design a personalized program that fits your needs. 

Finding Your Coach

A quick internet search for an online fitness coach will provide you with a list of possible services available.  The personal training industry is largely unregulated, so it is up to you to verify a coaches’ credentials before hiring them.   Ask if they are certified by a nationally recognized institution, such as the American College of Sports Medicine, and make sure they are professionally insured.  Even though the coach is not providing in-person training, they are still liable for the advice they give, and must carry proper insurance to do so.  Inquire about the length of time they have been a trainer, how many clients they have worked with, and what testimonials they can offer about their service. 

Getting Started

A coach will assess your medical history, current fitness habits, and work with you to design a program that suits you.  It is important to be open and honest with your coach about any limitations you may have, or life changes that may happen along the way while you are working together.  No matter what your workout preferences are, an online coach can give you support, measure your progress, and make any needed adjustments to your routine based upon your feedback.  Many online coaches offer online community forums, video tutorials, and helpful hints on maintaining a healthy lifestyle as part of your training package, giving you added support throughout the week. 

Final Words

Choose a coach who is experienced, informative, and offers support in a format that you feel supports your fitness goals.  Working with an online coach can offer many benefits a personal trainer cannot, and the advice they give can be accessed anywhere in the world from your computer or smart phone.  If you are traveling for pleasure, relocating for business, or simply switching gyms, an online coach can offer support every step of the way.  If you already have a basic understanding of proper technique when exercising, an online coach can help you bust through plateaus and boredom with exciting new routines and advice. 



Sarah Dalton is the founder of Able Mind Able Body, a Las Vegas based company offering motivational lifestyle coaching and personal training services.  She takes a holistic approach to healthy living, and educates others on the benefits of nutrition, exercise, and emotional health.  Visit for more info.