T Nation

Trainer Image: Poll

Just taking an informal poll. This relates to a discussion I was having the other day.

If you walked into a gym, what would you be more impressed with, a PT with less overall size but a good six pack or a PT that obviously knew his way around a squat rack and the big lifts, lots of mass but not ripped?

Please do not add another variable like “big AND ripped”.

Big

This? (Jesse Marunde)

Or this? (unknown)

[quote]derek wrote:
This? (Jesse Marunde)[/quote]

Marunde actually looked quite a bit leaner then this at the Arnold

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[quote]WS4JB wrote:
derek wrote:
This? (Jesse Marunde)

Marunde actually looked quite a bit leaner then this at the Arnold

end hijack[/quote]

Hijack re-start…

You’re right. I had to look for the right picture of him. Most pictures are much leaner than this but I was trying to find a certain “look”.

The big guy.

[quote]derek wrote:
Or this? (unknown)[/quote]

I would say the huge guy over the guy with the 6 pack, but it’s hard to say because the second guy seems like he has a very good strong looking physique with a good amount of size IMO. So really I’d say it depends on my goals which I’d find more impressive.

The first obviously if I were looking to become strong as hell. The second if I wanted to have a great looking body as my primary goal, since he obviously knew how to put a fair amount of muscle on his frame, and also knows how to stay lean.

[quote]derek wrote:
Or this? (unknown)[/quote]

Let’s play a game of word association. Honestly, when I saw that pic, the first words to come to my mind were “Swiss ball.”

When I see a trainer like that at the gym, I imagine he has his clients doing an entire workout based on weightless walking lunges and Swiss balls.

How about the guy that has the ability to help me reach my goals or at least can tell me what I should be doing to get there?

I’m not sure that appearance is a good indicator of this…

[quote]CaliforniaLaw wrote:
derek wrote:
Or this? (unknown)

Let’s play a game of word association. Honestly, when I saw that pic, the first words to come to my mind were “Swiss ball.”

When I see a trainer like that at the gym, I imagine he has his clients doing an entire workout based on weightless walking lunges and Swiss balls.
[/quote]

I’m not sure that pic was the best representation but you got my exact point nonetheless.

I was trying not to sway answers one way or the other but my type is more #1 pic (I am NOT comparing myself to Jesse, just the type).

Sometimes I wonder if the effort it takes to get and stay quite lean like pic #2 is worth it. Especially when being much bigger yet not so lean seems to be much less complicated (not EASIER, just simpler).

Either that or I’m justifying my lack of rippedness and lower volume training and almost total avoidance of cardio!

Do you expect anyone on this website to not answer big?

If you did a poll with the general public at your gym I am sure the response would be diffrent.

Of course I would have to say big.

[quote]vroom wrote:
How about the guy that has the ability to help me reach my goals or at least can tell me what I should be doing to get there?

I’m not sure that appearance is a good indicator of this…[/quote]

It may very well not be but when there is competition close by and the existance of first impressions many times being of appearance only, one can see why I asked a very specific question.

[quote]KO421 wrote:
Do you expect anyone on this website to not answer big?

If you did a poll with the general public at your gym I am sure the response would be diffrent.

Of course I would have to say big.[/quote]

Keep in mind that I have my own opinion about this and it’s unlikely to change any time soon.

I kind of expected 50/50 or close to it. Opinions on matters of size vs. low bf% seem to be all over the place here.

Thats an interesting question. I would train with the big guy.

Reason being is that I have been asked by a lot of people who want to “get in shape” how I did it.

I answer honestly by telling them that I don’t know. Body comp has never been a problem, and I can’t say with any true knowledge how to lose weight.

Looks can be decieving.

[quote]derek wrote:
It may very well not be but when there is competition close by and the existance of first impressions many times being of appearance only, one can see why I asked a very specific question.[/quote]

Bingo. The other day at the gym I thought for sure I saw Mike Boyle - who, as you know, is not a big guy at all. If it had been him (it might have been; I felt too awkward to ask), I would have gladly shelled out some change to pick his brain and have him watch me do my lifts/critique my form.

But if I go into a gym and see a small-but-lean guy and a big guy, I would know right away whom I would want to deal with. My assumption would be that the big guy would have me lifting. The little guy would have me fucking around on bosu balls.

It takes a plan and a lot of time under a bar to build a lot of muscle. It takes a little will power to get a sixpack. Personally I want someone that knows what it takes to get big. I want someone who is also willing to do what it takes to get big.

[quote]derek wrote:
Just taking an informal poll. This relates to a discussion I was having the other day.

If you walked into a gym, what would you be more impressed with, a PT with less overall size but a good six pack or a PT that obviously knew his way around a squat rack and the big lifts, lots of mass but not ripped?

Please do not add another variable like “big AND ripped”.[/quote]

Big, are you kidding me? No contest

[quote]derek wrote:
If you walked into a gym, what would you be more impressed with, a PT with less overall size but a good six pack or a PT that obviously knew his way around a squat rack and the big lifts, lots of mass but not ripped?[/quote]

If I walked into a gym, and I decided to judge a book by it’s cover, I’d be more impressed with the leaner guy because the odds are that in the standard issue “Staff Trainer” shirt he’s probably wearing, he’d look more “athletic*” while the larger dude would look more “musclehead-ish*.”

This is just my experience from working in commercial gyms. The trainers who were BAF and SAS looked like goons (and often acted the part, but that’s another story), while the 44-year old trainer who taught the power abs boot camp class twice a week was built like a gymnast (in a good way.)

But like Vroom touched on, it depends on the client’s goals. The larger, more built trainers generally worked with college kids, while the leaner trainers drew the middle-aged crowd and most of the women clients.

Now, if I didn’t have any prior knowledge and I was Average Joe walking in off the street, I’d probably see a “huge, mass monster personal trainer” and think ‘Wow, roids work. Go figure.’ Again, that’s my perception of the public’s view on the profession.

*: Yeah, sorry. I hate those terms as adjectives too.

I don’t care about big, I don’t care about ripped, I care about strength. I want to talk to the guys who are actually getting the job done, not some pencil necked geek who’s only knowledge about strength comes from a book and not any practical experience. If I go into a gym and see a guy bench 500 lbs I’ll be asking him some questions. If I see another guy deadlift 700 lbs I’ll be asking him questions too. I won’t be asking some ACE certified dipshit, who thinks a 315 bench is STRONG, a damn thing.

It just so happens that in most cases, the guys that are benching 500 lbs without a bench shirt and deadlifting 700 lbs are big guys. But if I see some small guy moving those kinds of weights I’ll be asking him questions too.