Why ‘Client’ is a Dirty Word IMO

Posted: January 21, 2014 in My Take
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“I am waiting for a client.”

“My 12 o’clock client cancelled.”

“I give some of my clients a free session with every new purchase.”

“Making new clients is what the game is all about.”

I am wondering if the quotes above are being said by a trainer or a an escort. Which leads into why I feel personal trainers and coaches should refrain from using this word. First off, if you are a trainer or coach, the person you are TRAINING is a TRAINEE. Just because money may be exchanged that does not change the fact that the person you are training is a trainee. The use of the word client really depersonalizes the relationship between the coach and the person being trained. I am sure most of you reading this have worked retail, how often do you call people who frequent your establishment a client? Probably never. We call them customers. Which sounds a little better than the word client. And in the fitness world, if you are going to call your trainees clients, you might as well call them customers. Because it just sounds like you only care about their money.

The point is this…. if you are looking to make a difference in people lives, referring to people as clients IMO is just disgusting. Essentially you are saying you are a prostitute and that your  johns do nothing except provide you with cash in exchange for cheap and low quality sex. Maybe this is an exaggeration….. but just think about it. Or how about this…. how about trying to use the persons NAME in place of client or trainee, especially if you KNOW their name. Be PERSONAL. Learn to really know the people you train and SHOULD care about.

Here are the definitions of the words I am referring to and maybe you will see what I am talking about.

Personal Trainer – a person who works one-on-one with a CLIENT to plan or implement an exercise or fitness regimen. *horrible*

Coach – to give instruction or advice to in the capacity of a coach; instruct

Trainee – a person being trained, especially in a vocation; apprentice.

Client – a person or group that uses the professional advice or services of a lawyer, accountant, advertising agency, architect, etc.

Train – to develop or form the habits, thoughts, or behavior of (a child or other person) by discipline and instruction: to train an unruly boy.


That is all. Going to eat some yogurt.


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