It’s a good question, and one that many of us would have a answer to. We are constantly bombarded with what the media considers a perfect body, and we try everything form cremes, make-up fad diets and cosmetic procedures to attain it and yet it is ephemeral and mercurial. If the standards keep changing how do we keep up with them? Once it was a gloriously honorable thing to have a few extra pounds lingering after having a baby, now we are not only expected to get back to our pre-pregnancy weight after delivery but we are expected to not look pregnant while carrying.
There is also an expectation for trainers, and yoga instructors to look a certain way. Personally I do like for my trainer, yoga instructor to look like they subscribe to the regime that they are torturing me with! However I have had plenty of dance instructors who have had a wealth of information and have been awesome teachers who didn’t look like they had been dancers. So quite honestly I am somewhere on the fence with this issue.
What it boils down to for me is discipline, as a dancer/teacher I can look at a body and tell straight away if that body is trained, and how it works (the work works). The body looks as thought it has been disciplined, trained. That having been said dance is an art as much as a “sport” therefore it is not merely about execution, but the way in which you do so. Though the body ages the, muscles remembers, thus elder dancers though unable to execute the movement, (or even look like they ever did) can pass that information on to their students. IF that is how I feel about dance, then the same could be said of trainers (not the art part, but the knowledge aspect). I suppose the only difference is that often we look to our trainers and yoga instructors for body inspiration… That is the conundrum, we want the information, but we want the inSPIRATION … That is fair.
What is unfair is to judge, or prejudge someone from their appearance before we experience them. The shape of your body is not always an indicator of the type of shape you are in or the knowledge you possess. We have a right to an opinion about who we want to be instructed by, but we might well be doing ourselves a disservice by not experiencing what they have to offer before we make a judgement as to whether or not they are “fit” to do their job. I have had some pointless, directionless yoga classes instructed by a tight bodied flexible instructors, and some very thoughtful and informative classes by people who are zaftig and full figured. The reality is, sometimes those who have to battle for their bodies have greater insight to the information, and have a broader knowledge of working with diverse body types, and “problem” areas, (after all they had to master their own) . Here is a video from trainer Cassey Ho that might make you rethink your perception of fitness professionals.