How to Make It Big as a Personal Trainer in Less Time
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What goals do you have as a fitness professional? What would it take for you to consider yourself a successful personal trainer? If your answer is to “make it big,” there are a few things you can do to achieve this goal within a relatively short period of time.
Establish Your Expertise as a Personal Trainer
There is one thing that all top exercise professionals have in common. They are experts in their field. They have the knowledge required to work with a variety of personal training clients. They also know how to combine a workout and meal plan that delivers results.
Establishing your own expertise can help you improve your status as a personal trainer. One way to do this is to obtain your certification.
When you can market yourself as a certified personal trainer, this says that you have the knowledge to back up your claims. It tells a potential client that you’ve been trained in areas related to health and fitness. That you can help them reach their fitness goals.
Being a certified trainer increases your credibility because it’s not just you saying that you understand how to create a safe and effective exercise plan. You have the power of certifying organizations behind you. This makes it easier to take you at your word.
Certification is also beneficial if you want to show that you have advanced training in a particular area of fitness. For instance, you can obtain your certification as a yoga instructor, making clients who prefer this type of exercise more comfortable with you as a teacher. Or you could obtain your certification in powerlifting, making you more appealing to this set of clients.
Collect Compelling Testimonials (Preferably with Pictures)
Of course, earning your certification isn’t enough to make it big as a personal trainer. You also have to be able to prove that you deliver results. This can be accomplished by collecting testimonials from clients that have had amazing weight loss or muscle gain transformations.
In addition to having these individuals write out how your workout program changed their lives, ask them if you can take before and after photos. Nothing says that you can help clients transform their bodies more than pictures. Plus, this makes it easier for potential clients to envision what you can do for them.
Before conducting your first personal training session with a client, take a picture of them in the corner of the gym. Once they reach their goal weight or muscle mass, take another photo. This lets others see the changes in their fitness level without having to spell it out. Placing these on your website and social media pages is a great way to capture—and keep—your viewer’s attention.
Should you decide to take this route, it is extremely important to get your client’s permission before using either their words or their photos to promote your personal training business. An attorney can create this form for you. Alternatively, many online sites offer the ability to create your own photo use permission form. Do a search and you’ll come up with all your options.
Create A Unique Workout Routine or Style
Another way to work your way to the top of the fitness industry is to develop an exercise routine or style of working out that is fresh and new. This sets you apart from other personal training professionals. It makes you more appealing to clients who are sick of doing the same workout regimen over and over again.
Admittedly, creating a whole new style of exercise isn’t exactly easy. But maybe you have a different way of working out that is more appealing to your clients. Or perhaps it’s the way you interact with them that differentiates you from other fitness trainers.
The more you can show how your training session or method is different from others on the market, the more you’ll pique potential clients’ interest. They come to view you as an independent trainer—someone who isn’t afraid to make their own path.
If you work for a big box gym (or some other type of commercial gym), you may not have a lot of leeway in the workout programs you’re able to offer. They may have strict rules about the types of exercise you can do with people who have a gym membership.
You can work around this by creating your own business on the side as an online personal trainer. First, you’ll want to make sure this is allowed by the gym where you are an employee. As long as you aren’t prohibited by providing personal training services elsewhere, this is an option to consider.
Establishing your own fitness business provides maximum flexibility and creativity with your workouts. You aren’t bound by rules as to what you can and cannot do when training clients. Of course, your workouts still need to be safe and effective. But as long as you can hit these two goals, the rest is up to you.
If you struggle with coming up with a unique routine or workout style, think about what makes you different as a fitness trainer. What sets you apart? Do you offer a different form of exercise that isn’t mainstream? Do you have a particular sequence that, if followed, offers stellar results?
You don’t always have to come up with some new and crazy way to lose weight, gain muscle, or improve fitness to be unique. Sometimes it is more a matter of how you do things or your own personal style that differentiates you from other personal training professionals. Highlight these attributes and you’ll grow your name in the exercise world.
Offer Both In-Person and Online Personal Training
No two clients are the same. Not only do they each have their own fitness goals, but they also have their own preferences when it comes to working out. Some prefer in-person training whereas others want a personal trainer who is willing to work with them online. Offer both types of training and you can increase your client base.
This also increases your personal trainer salary because you’re drawing revenues from two different sources: local clients you can train in the gym and those that may live halfway around the world who found you online.
Being able to lead both types of sessions is also beneficial if you start working with a client in person, but then something prohibits them from getting to the gym. The coronavirus pandemic is a large-scale example of this type of occurrence. But sometimes it is everyday life happenings that get in the way. Maybe one of their kids is home sick so they can’t leave. Clients that travel a lot for business can also benefit from having access to their personal trainer when they’re out of town.
You can meet with online personal training clients one-on-one or schedule group training sessions. To keep them motivated in between your workouts, create a private social media group where they can go to connect with other clients who have similar fitness goals.
When creating your online personal training business, think about how you can best help clients who either can’t or don’t want to exercise in a fitness facility. Consider how you can effectively help them when you can’t be in the same room.
One Final Tip for How to Make It Big as a Personal Trainer
It is often said that it’s not what you know, but who you know that matters most when it comes to achieving higher levels of success. Applying this lesson to the personal training world, think about the people you can connect with who can help you level up.
Do some research and come up with a few fitness mentors who may be willing to share tips and tricks for creating a stronger business that brings in more personal training revenue. Mentors who will teach you what it takes to be not just a good personal trainer, but a fitness professional that rises above the rest.
This person may be someone who works in a local gym or health club—think gym owner, fitness manager, or a sought-after personal trainer—or someone you find online who is a frontrunner in the fitness industry. Any of these individuals can help teach you what you need to know to catapult your personal training career.
Ask them questions such as:
- What steps did you take to get where you are today?
- What worked best for advancing your personal training career?
- What would you do differently if you could?
If you still need your certification, the ISSA offers a self-guided Personal Trainer certification program. This helps establish you as an expert in the fitness industry. It also teaches you what you need to know to become a top personal trainer.
Certified Personal Trainer
The Certified Fitness Trainer program is designed to equip graduates with the practical day-to-day skills necessary, as well as the theoretical knowledge needed to excel as a personal trainer serving the general public. Along with the necessary exercise science foundation, the distance education program covers client assessment, program design, basic nutrition, and sports medicine along with business and marketing skills.