Have you ever had a coach shout at you to put more effort in and try harder?

I have and I still remember it vividly because it made me want to cry. Right in the middle of the class. I never went back.

When I founded the MTW community I was clear that my style as a personal trainer and the coaching phrases I used would never be like this. 

At the end of the day, we’re adults choosing to spend time and exercise with each other; who needs screaming at to squat or run faster?! Certainly not me.

If you’ve met me already you’ll know I’m loud. One of my nicknames in an old workplace was NLB – northern loud bird – which kind of says it all.

So I’m not going to lie and say that I’m a meek coach. If you imagine getting yourself heard over 30 chatty women in run club you’ll understand why!

Volume aside, I know what I say has a massive impact on both the session environment and the experience of each woman on my programmes. Over the years I’ve developed the habit of using certain coaching phrases; take a read of what I believe are the 8 best ones below.

1. “Listen to your body”

We’re humans not machines so how we’re feeling affects our ability to exercise. Whether it’s the amount of sleep we’ve had, where we are on our cycle, what we’ve eaten (or not) or menopausal symptoms; if we’re not running on full charge we need to manage our expectations of our bodies and move at a pace right for us on that day. That’s why this is right up there on my favourite coaching phrases.

2. “You’re doing great”

It’s easy when we’re exercising to convince ourselves we’re failing and can’t do it. Once doubt creeps into the mind, the body follows and before we know it we’re convinced we shouldn’t be there as we’re not fit enough. Having someone alongside you who has belief in you and makes sure you know by telling you that you’re “doing great” helps massively.

3. “Rest when you need it”

Sure workouts have set rest periods but is there a law to say they can’t be broken? Definitely not in my sessions! It’s so important to give our body rest if that’s what we need and there absolutely no shame nor need for apology. No one needs to push through a workout feeling dizzy, sick and hating life. So yes, “rest when you need it” is definitely one of the coaching phrases you’ll hear me say!

4. “I’m proud of you”

When I started coaching I felt uncomfortable with this coaching phrase as I worried it sounded patronising. But you know what, I am bloody proud of every single woman in our community! I know it’s no mean feat to get a session. That they’re there, doing their best and encouraging everyone else makes me so proud I want to cry – good tears this time though!

5. “Have fun”

I’m pretty sure that this isn’t a common coaching phrase for many personal trainers but it’s an important one for me. Yes exercise can be F.U.N. and it’s becoming my life’s mission to make this happen for as many women as possible! With all the responsibilities we juggle; surely we deserve to have time for ourselves and enjoy it?! If you’re not convinced that I really can make a session fun; wait till you get to experience my ‘fun exercise songs’ playlist!

6. “Brilliant”

I just love the ‘brilliant’ and all it stands for. OK so it’s technically a word rather than a coaching phrase but it’s being included in here!  It’s so bright and signifies how exceptional something is. I find myself pausing sometimes in session and soaking up the environment – everyone chatting, laughing, supporting each other and of course exercising together. It is simply brilliant and I want every woman there to know they are too!

7. “Well done”

I love recognising women’s efforts and achievements. I’ve just created monthly PT and running superstar awards as I felt it wasn’t enough to only have our annual awards ceremony! However, awards aside, a heartfelt “well done” goes a long way and I love how this is a frequently said not only by myself but others in sessions.

8. “Lovely”

Again a sneaky word rather than coaching phrase; but I’m a massive fan of saying “lovely” in sessions! I look around, see how well everyone is doing and want them to know. Admittedly it sometimes creates confusion if I say it whilst everyone is doing planks and they think the time has finished! No one’s perfect right?!

Do you like my best coaching phrases?

So there they are – 8 of my best and favourite coaching phrases! Do you like the sound of them? Many women do, as shown in my recent testimonials.

If so, I’d love to be able to motivate and support you too with them.

Click here for details of my personal training and running programmes to find out how we could be in session together.

It’d be brilliant to have you there!

Emma x

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