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As we are now coming out of (hopefully our last) lockdown I am going to take this opportunity to go back and reflect how this Pandemic has affected my business and my clients’ fitness.
Back in March 2020 I was caught completely off guard. I would have never dreamed that there would ever come a time where I wasn’t allowed to train my clients.
I sort of sensed that indoor training was going to be restricted. As a matter of fact I don’t even use my Personal training studio much during the summer so there I was jet washing my garden, getting ready to use the outdoors.
Next thing it was announced that we need to stay at home and that we are only allowed one our of exercise a day and only by yourself or with other members of your household.
That essentially meant that not only my livelihood was taken away from me but also my clients’ fitness and wellbeing.
Going into the lockdown I was fully booked and I had clients getting amazing results.
What was I to do?
I came up with a plan.
I decided to start training my clients on video calls.
I am not gonna lie. I was clearly out of my comfort zone. The first few sessions I did I was actually so nervous that my knees were shaking.
Things got better with time and as we came out of the first lockdown and I was allowed to train clients in person the zoom classes continued. Some people actually believed that it’s really convenient to get fit in their own living rooms or gardens.
Also back in March 2020 I lost a few clients who weren’t willing to try video calls but since then I have had lots more clients joining me and I am now in a situation where I am so heavily booked that I cannot really take on any more clients.
This winter has been tough. I was only allowed to train clients on on one in public places in the outdoors.
We have had some really cold and wet mornings in the local parks but I believe that it’s all been good for morale.
Really if you can go out and work on your fitness at 5AM in a muddy and dark park then nothing can stop you.
The video calls are still going on. Now the outdoor bootcamps are also there as well as private gardens and in a few days I will be allowed to use my studio again. That might be handy on a rainy day.
If you have got eagle eyes you might actually spot that I am actually holding my hat in my left hand in the photo.
John Hardy is the man on the left.
What about Neural notching?
Now you ask yourself and so did I; what is Neural notching.It doesn’t even exist on google
According to Mr Hardy it is a made up term.
In case you have never heard of Mr John Hardy. He runs a company called Faster Global which is an education provider for the fitness industry.
So why would anyone want to attend a 2 day course about Neural notching? It sounds really nerdy. All I could think of is that it must have something to do with the brain.
Well I got the email from Faster Global about the course and it had a short video of a female tennis player and some drills that she did to make her move better.
Is this course gonna help me in anyway? On top of that, the course was being held in Fulham. I have never even been to Fulham before.
Over the years I have attended a number workshops and courses taught by Mr Hardy and i know that he is a highly intelligent man. I think the first time I came across John Hardy was in FITPRO back in 2009. I attended 2 of his workshops and we were doing press ups with different hand positions and squats with your feet pointing inwards and outwards.
Basically everything that John Hardy has taught me over the years has completely blown my mind and the end product is that it has always given me an edge to my coaching skills. Hard to explain why I always come back for more.
I have also made great use of some exercise videos that Mr John Hardy has generously shared on Youtube. Especially some suspension trainer videos and dumbbell workouts.
These videos have really boasted my programmes that I give my clients. As a matter of fact there was a time that I had really ran out of ideas on the TRX after teaching it for years. I went through Mr Hardy’s videos and I was a reformed coach.
Now Mr Hardy has over recent years spent most of his time in the US and him teaching a course in the UK is rarity so that is the main reason I decided to attend this course.
I said to myself, even if Neural notching sounds totally nerdy if I spend 2 days with Mr Hardy at least some of his genius must rub off on me.
So I signed up for the course.
Some of the stuff Mr Hardy taught us I could relate to straight away and apply already the next day. The exercise generator was brilliant. In a way it is nothing new. I use something similar whenever I make a new programme. The Neural nothing course just organised the process a bit more with skills and variables in a table.
The fatigue management wasn’t anything new. All personal trainers know this and we always try to get that little extra out of our clients even when they are fatigued.
On the course it was just told in a different way.
To be truthful it did actually take at least 2 weeks for all the rest of the knowledge that I gained to click in my head.
He taught us about skill clusters and variables. He even taught us that squats are actually called vertical displacements down.
Doesn’t that sound nerdy?
As I said it did take some time before everything that I had learned came into place. I was in the boxing gym with highly skilled boxer and I was teaching him how to deliver an excellent left hook and boom there it was, skill cluster and in the end I was guiding him through the movement with my hands. It is not like the guy didn’t know how to throw a left hook before this but I felt like I had just taken him to another level by breaking down the whole movement and then putting it all together again. In the end I was actually steering him through the whole movement. When we did the “hands on” thing on the course I was actually very doubtful. Would I really wanna be doing this hands on guiding my clients’ bones through motions?
By now I have started using skill clusters in my everyday personal training on different skills such as squats, sorry vertical placement down.
My clients don’t know what is going on but I can assure you that they are performing and moving much better and it is all down to neural notching.
Mr John Hardy I take my hat off for you, my 2 days in Fulham were well spent and I have now taken my coaching to another level. Sorry I meant to say I have taken my coaching skills to another notch in the belt, another neural notch.