As a self-employed personal trainer, I’m always trying to find common threads in my clientele so I can better understand the demographic groups that I appeal to. One surprising commonality in many of my clients is being a caregiver, especially for elderly parents. Many of my personal training clients are dealing with parents who are considering a move to a nursing home, parents with early stages of dementia or parents who are very ill.
When I noticed this common thread, I asked myself, what is it that brings these women to me and my training?
Statistics on the Female Caregiver
- An estimated 66% of caregivers are female.
- The average caregiver is a 49 year old woman, caring for her 60 year old mother who does not live with her. She is married and employed.
- Although men also provide assistance, female caregivers may spend as much as 50% more time providing care than male caregivers.
Since GirlPower Fitness focuses on providing tailored personal training to women, it makes sense that I’m seeing a high number of caregivers amongst my clients. Females make up the vast majority of people taking care of someone else.
A Woman’s Priority List
Most of my clients – not just those who are caregivers – have come to the realization that they put themselves last on their priority list. They know it’s time to take care of themselves.
However, when you add to the mix that the client is also a caregiver, stress increases and self care decreases.
The toll that caregiving takes is not just financial. Higher levels of depression, anxiety, and other mental health challenges are common among women who care for an older relative or friend. Studies find that men respond to caregiving responsibilities in a fundamentally different way. Women tend to stay home to provide time-consuming care to one or more ill or disabled friends or family members, while men respond to loved one’s needs for support by delaying retirement, in part to shoulder the financial burden associated with long-term care.30 The impact of the women’s intensive caregiving can be substantial.
My clients in this situation are weary. They are emotionally and physically worn out.
Why Personal Training and Why GirlPower Fitness?
I believe that the reason female caregivers seek personal training is because they don’t have the energy to figure out a fitness regimen for themselves. They know they need to take better care of themselves but don’t know where to start. They need someone who will hold their hand and guide them through their fitness journey.
And why GirlPower Fitness? One of our greatest differences from typical gyms is the way we approach each client: with gentleness, respect and humor. We believe that every woman is amazing and sometimes just needs someone to hold the mirror to show her. We build each woman up and help her to be the best version of herself. We offer a safe haven — to sweat, laugh, cry and vent.
The fact that GirlPower Fitness appeals to women who need an extra boost tells me that we are absolutely doing something right.