Exercise versus Training and Hybrid Memberships

Jeroen van Duijn

There are two types of people at the gym: People who want to exercise, and people who come to train (And I suspect a great number of people who don’t really see the difference between the two).

 Training: The action of teaching a person a particular skill or type of behavior.

 Exercise: Activity requiring physical effort, carried out especially to sustain or improve health and fitness.

Those who show up to exercise love the way it makes their body and mind feel. The gym is a positive emotional experience for them. They don’t often have huge performance goals, and sometimes they aren’t even sure what they’re physically capable of, and that’s OK. Their gym routine makes their life better; that’s why they keep coming.

Those who want to train, on the other hand, tend to have more defined skill, strength and performance goals. Often they feel like the group class isn’t enough for them, as they know more time must be devoted to improving their snatch technique or gaining enough upper body strength to be able to do a strict chest-to-bar pull-up.

If you’re in the exercise group and are getting everything you need and want, keep on doing what you’re doing.

But if you think you’re more of a “trainer,” maybe it’s time to consider a hybrid membership.

 This means you will continue with your regular group class routine, and you will also meet with your coach once a week, twice a week, once a month, once a cycle—whatever your wants, needs, goals and budget allows.

In these sessions, your coach will address your specific needs, provide technical feedback, and will likely provide additional homework to be completed before or after class, or possibly an individual program (depending on the situation) to help your reach your goals. It’s also a great time to address any of your restrictions, limitations or weaknesses.


Three other types of people who can benefit from Hybrid memberships:


 1. The commitment-challenged

You’re the person who wants to show up, who intends to show up, who sets your alarm for 5:30 a.m. three days a week, but somehow life gets the best of you and you find you can’t get into a consistent gym rhythm. Meeting you coach once a week will help you get into the rhythm as it helps keep you accountable. Before you know it, showing up three times a week will be second-nature.


 2. The injured

It’s so easy to avoid coming to the gym if you’re injured or to show up and work around the injury in class. One-on-one sessions will allow your coach to address your injury, provide you with some helpful rehab tools, and give you direction as to how you can modify class workouts to make sure you’re getting the most out of the gym as you heal up.


3. The technically-challenged

 Some people are power athletes who lack stamina, others excel at endurance events but can’t move fast, and others still lack the coordination gene. If you’re this person, technical movements probably scare you, and sometimes it just seems like you’re never going to be able to do a pretty clean and jerk.

 What you really probably need is just some more one-on-one coaching to bring you up to speed and make you a technical master.

 If any of the above sounds like you, talk to you coach about upgrading to a hybrid membership.

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