An effective fitness trainer understands the need for personalized programming for clients, but it can be time consuming. On another side, a good workout plan template frees up time for other things, like marketing your services, building your personal training business, and working with clients. You can even find time for yourself there, because the balance between work and private life is just as important as the development of your activity.
Why use a template to create a bodybuilding program
Strength training can help improve bone health, make aerobic activity more productive, reduce the risk of injury and promote healthy aging. However, no two customers are the same. Physical trainers must therefore take the time to understand the needs of their clients and develop a bodybuilding program depending on their goals. One might think that working from a model interferes with the individualization of these programs. That’s why I call this method the “plug-and-play” method. You streamline the process by using a standard framework for each client, then customize it as needed. This training program design template, created and stored in Excel or Google Sheets, is flexible enough to individualize the programs of hundreds of athletes. It’s one of my most important personal trainer tools. I don’t need to write a new program for each client from scratch. This allows personal trainers to spend more time doing the up-front work.
The Strongman Competitors
It is a practical choice for the field athlete or the average office worker who doesn’t need fancy periodization schemes. It also works great if you’re trying to figure out how to create workout programs for newbie clients. Using a workout program design template allows you to effectively develop each of them while making changes as needed.
This first step dates back to the teachings of Australian coach Ian King, who was way ahead of his time in the 90s. While everyone was talking about body part splits and isolation exercises, Ian King approached the design of strength training programs by dividing exercises into functional movement patterns. When you categorize exercises this way, it’s easy to tell when a program is out of balance. So, for example, if you have programmed three upper body pushing movements in a row, you can easily add pulling exercises to balance out the program.
What are functional movements?
Functional fitness exercises train the muscles to perform everyday activities effectively. Using functional movement exercise programming allows you to break down each activity. New neural pathways form each time the human body coordinates muscles to perform these movements. The more your customers perform these actions, the more the neural pathways become anchored and efficient, and the greater the benefits. Working within these functional movement patterns ensures the body is committed to building optimal, usable strength.
Next, take the exercises you use in your strength training programs and insert them into the applicable categories. For example, activities in the power category would consist of:
- Medicine ball throws
- Variations of Olympic lifts
As for the horizontal upper body push, it includes all variations of the bench press, push-ups and dives. You’ll notice that isolation exercises like curls or tricep extensions don’t fit into any of these eight categories, but we’ll get to that in a minute.
Create your training session
I approach my training program design templates with a few preconceptions in mind: Practice sessions must be completed within 60 minutes of the start of the first set of work for the first exercise. Every workout begins with a powerful or explosive movement. It doesn’t matter whether you train sportsmen or office workers, power training is mandatory. As we age, the ability to express power is the physical quality that first diminishes. Actually, we lose it even faster than strength. This is why improving an athlete’s ability to express their power should be of the utmost importance and carried out at the beginning of the session, when their nervous system is fresh. Heavy strength lifts come next, because keeping them after high-repetition work means your client has to do them when tired.
Choose a Simple Strength Training Sequence
The objective is to start your workouts with a power exercise that targets the nervous systemmoving on to heavy multi-joint exercises where you can stack weights to build strengthand end with a hypertrophy work with high repetitiveness which makes it possible to obtain a beautiful pump it up and keep joints healthy. This training model is ideal for a beginner, meaning someone who has done less than a year of progressive strength training or two years of less focused training. You can create as many models as you want and use whatever training techniques you think are best for your clients.
Establish rest periods
We know that the nervous system may take longer than the muscles to recover between sets. With that in mind, you’ll want to keep rest periods longer on blocks one and two (explosive and heavy strength moves) and then decrease the rest periods as you move into block three (hypertrophy work at high repeatability). Also keep in mind that not all power/explosive exercises challenge the nervous system in the same way. For example, two minutes of rest after eight beats of the med ball on the ground would be excessive, as it is not a very neural demanding activity.