Most people think of a qualified personal trainer as someone who trains clients in a gym environment. But in recent years the role has expanded to encompass advice on health, lifestyle and wellbeing, some of which can be delivered in infographics and educational handouts.
The latest Level Three Diploma in Personal Training course that we run at CMS includes assessments on areas such as testing client fitness, analysing nutrition and lifestyle, and programme design and delivery. This can be carried out verbally during a training session, but personal trainers might also provide online or printed resources for clients.
What is an infographic?
An infographic is an image, for example a picture or a chart, that is used to deliver information in a quick and easy-to-follow way. The information conveyed could be statistics, advice or other data.
The most effective infographics will have striking and memorable images that are not too complex. There might be some text to help explain it, but usually only with a small number of words.
Some infographics will focus on statistics, others might describe a process or set out a timeline.
How do I create an infographic?
There are templates online that you can use, but before you start, you need to plan out who and what the infographic is for and how you will find and present the data.
For example, if you want to give your clients a training infographic that will help them to build muscle, you might take the following steps:
- Decide which of your clients the infographic will be aimed at – age, fitness levels, etc.
- Set out what you want to achieve with the infographic – will it be a general overview of building muscle or consist of specific exercises for particular muscle groups?
- Work out how the infographic will be presented – will it be a print out that clients can take away or an online version for a blog on your website, with links to further information?
- Research and draw together all the information you’ll need for the infographic, eg statistics, data and images.
- Think carefully about the design of the infographic, give it more impact by including simple effective images rather than cluttering it with text.
What about educational information handouts?
Handouts will have more detail and more written information than infographics – although you will probably include infographics in your handout.
No one wants to trawl through dense paragraphs and long explanatory sentences, so work on your writing and presentation styles to give your handout the best chance of being read. This could include mixing text with images and including design element to help each section stand out, such as:
- Headings and sub-headings
- Bullet points
- Text boxes
- Section dividing lines
The same stages you used for the infographic can be used for your hand out – ultimately it’s all about designing something that is targeted at the right audience, contains all the relevant and correct information, and is easy to read and understand.
Key points to consider:
- Who is your handout for?
- What sort of language is most appropriate for this audience – fun, simple, technical? Are you going to address the client directly (using “you”) or take a more general approach?
- What is the purpose of the handout? To get across general or specific information; to advise; as a resource for the client to keep; as a one-off for a particular training technique.
- Could you adapt the handout for different clients to provide a bespoke resource?
- How will you make the handout stand out as your own personal creation? Think about your language, tone, branding.
The key to both infographics and handouts is ensuring that you get both the information and the presentation right.
The most beautifully designed handout won’t be any use if the statistics are incorrect or you don’t go into enough detail. Equally, you might have all the data correct, but if the handout has been badly designed it might never get read.