$560 a week for ‘kids’ personal trainer’
A PAIR of worried parents have taken the controversial step of advertising for a personal trainer to help their two children lose weight.
The unnamed London parents recently took to popular UK parenting platform childcare.co.uk to explain their predicament.
They said they were taking the drastic step because they didn't want their two children, aged six and 11, to be bullied at school.
The parents had been looking for a personal trainer to help keep their kids fit for the last three months, but none of the local gyms in their area would accept people under the age of 15.
"We know that this is a bit of a weird request, but … we need someone to help out as soon as possible," the ad, which was posted last week, states.
"I know there will be parents out there who don't think we should be making sure our children work out at such an early age, but both myself and my husband had a bad time growing up because of our weight, both in and out of school.
"At secondary school in particular I had a tough time with bullying and depression which are things we never want our children to go through."
The parents are particularly concerned about their son, who is due to start high school in September.
They said he had already been the victim of bullying in primary school because of his weight, and explained they want someone to "ideally start immediately to help him gain some confidence over the summer".
"Seeing your child upset because of other people's actions is one of the worst things in the world and I wouldn't wish it on any parent," the ad states.
"We know that child obesity is an issue which is getting increasingly worse and we just want to give our children the foundation to a happy and healthy life, and we think that giving them an opportunity to train at a young age is the best way to do that."
The successful applicant would be required to run one-hour sessions four times a week, with a mixture of cardio and resistance exercise.
They will be paid $140 an hour - although there is "wiggle room" on that offer.
The winning candidate must get on well with the whole family, have a "keen understanding of kinesiology and nutrition" and formulate the children's diet plan and track their progress.
Working hours will be between 4pm and 9.30pm to allow the kids enough time to return home from school, although specific days and times are flexible, as is holiday leave.
Childcare.co.uk founder Richard Conway said the ad was unusual.
"It's clear that this advert has come from a good place, but I'm not sure about enforcing exercise on a child as young as six," he said.
"Obviously, it's great to want to help their kids have a healthy lifestyle and improve their self-confidence, but I hope that the exercise isn't too much for the kids and that they actually enjoy it.
"Bullying at school is every parent's worst nightmare, and I think it's admirable that these parents are giving their children the foundations to be confident, happy and healthy people, even before they've gone to secondary school.
"As much as a 'children's PT' sounds like an odd job role, I think there could be a real basis for it if done right."
Childhood obesity is a growing problem across much of the developed world, with 26 per cent of Aussie kids found to be overweight or obese in 2014-15, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.