How to Make a Prescription

A woman looking over her shoulder in front of an empty sunlit-filled gym

In this series, I’m telling you how to get better results for your clients.

A coach’s value is determined first by clients’ results. And this is also incredibly valuable for gym owners, because if your clients aren’t getting the results they want, they won’t stay long. They won’t refer their friends. And they won’t brag about you.

We call our process of goal-setting, review and refinement the “Prescriptive Model.” Here’s a broad overview.

The Prescriptive Model

Good fitness coaches know how to help clients reach their goals.
They start with the goal. Let’s call that “Point B.”

Then they measure the starting point. Let’s call that “Point A.”

Slowly, they map the path backward from Point B to Point A.

I created a video to help you map the process for your clients:

After they’ve mapped the process, great coaches prescribe the fastest path to their clients. Like this:

“Well, Alice, here are the steps you’ll need to take to reach your goal. To get there quickly, you’ll need to exercise five times per week and follow a clear nutrition plan. How does that sound?”

Then they overcome barriers, such as price objections or injuries. Like this:

“No problem. If you can’t afford to move that quickly, we’ll take it a bit slower. With the budget you just gave me, I’d say we should train twice per week and really focus on that nutrition plan.”

Or like this:

“No problem. Your back is tight from work. We’ll take it a bit slower at first. With the limitation you just gave me, I’d say we should train three times per week and have one specific mobility session per week instead of four workouts.”

Then they motivate clients by reminding them of their wins, showing them their progress and calling them when they don’t show up.

Along the way, they track progress, and adjust the plan—because no plan survives first contact with the enemy. And the enemies (Big Sugar, Netflix and cortisol) are pretty good at this game. So Two-Brain gyms meet with their clients every quarter to adjust their plans.

But no one loses sight of the goal. The coach can’t afford to because the client never stops thinking about it. Clients don’t do your workouts for the sake of being good at your workouts; they do them because they want to achieve their real goals. And they’re willing to trade short-term pain to get there—if they trust their coach.

And gym owners can’t afford to lose sight of clients’ goals, either—because clients who get results are the first step to getting more clients.

Here’s a podcast on the Prescriptive Model, step by step: Two-Brain Radio.

Creating Relationships for Long-Term Success

Every client will require a different prescription. That prescription should include sleep, nutrition, exercise and self-management. When we train coaches at Two-Brain Coaching, we call this “SEMM”—short for “sleep, eat, move and manage.”

But your clients can still exercise in a group. Your prescription for Al might include workouts that are broad, general and inclusive. They might feature constantly varied functional movements performed at high intensity. You might pair a client up with another client to provide more accountability or you might recommend that he or she attends a group class.

But great coaches don’t just sell group programming. Great coaches sell 1:1 relationships, sometimes delivered in a group.

Other Media in This Series

“How to Get Better Results for Your Clients”
“Benefits-Based Programming”
“Assessments: A Linchpin to Long-Term Success”
“Assessing Clients With Nathan Holiday of Level Method”
“Getting Clients Results: Your Priorities”


One more thing!

Did you know gym owners can earn $100,000 a year with no more than 150 clients? We wrote a guide showing you exactly how.