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Do you love working out? Do you have a passion for helping people? Would you like to earn a good living and have some flexibility in your career? Why not consider becoming a certified personal trainer?
There are so many benefits to being a personal trainer. You get to make a real and positive difference in people's lives. You enjoy regular access to the gym, and much more. What makes this career for you is personal. But you have a lot of reasons to choose training others as a lifelong career.
Before you get started, it's important to understand one thing. For a career in personal training, certification and continuing education are critical. This is the foundation of your skills. It is also proof to employers and clients that you are a professional.
Also, know that to succeed as a trainer, you have to be self-motivated and driven. You have to be dedicated to helping others and able to adjust, learn, and grow as you work with clients.
If you've been curious about becoming a personal trainer, consider these compelling benefits that come with having a career as a fitness professional:
Do what you love and you'll never work a day in your life, so the saying goes. There is some definite truth to this statement. If you love working out and being in the gym, can you imagine doing that every day for your career?
Picture yourself guiding clients through training sessions. Imagine yourself developing workouts, demonstrating form, and leading group fitness classes. All of this could be your day-to-day as a personal trainer.
You also get continual access to the latest in fitness via continuing education courses. These are courses you take to keep your personal training certification current. You choose which continuing education classes you'll take. So, you can select the ones that interest you most.
Modern life is so unhealthy, mostly because most people are sedentary for hours every day. Work is largely to blame. Most workers sit all day on the job, in offices, at desks, in trucks or cars. Even people who are active outside of work suffer from being forced to sit and be sedentary for so long every day, day after day.
But as a trainer, you'll have the opposite experience. You won't be stuck behind a desk, you'll be active most of the day, and as a result, you'll enjoy better overall health than you would in an office job.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the median pay for fitness trainers and instructors is $40,700 per year. According to ZipRecruiter, the average annual salary for a personal trainer is $51,389 (about $25/hour). Though ultimately, the salary a personal trainer may earn varies by the individual.
This is because the career allows for a lot of flexibility. You can make this a full-time commitment, working in a gym for a regular salary, or you can work part-time or even for yourself, determining your own hours, rates, and earnings.
This flexibility not only allows you to determine your income, but it also gives you space to craft the kind of career you want. Do you want to be your own boss? You can do that. Do you prefer the stability of being an employee? There are plenty of gyms ready to hire qualified, certified trainers.
You can also earn extra cash by adding group fitness instruction to your list of offerings.
That flexibility also extends to the actual career you have with a certification in personal training. You can choose to be a traditional personal trainer, but even then, you have options: work in a gym full or part-time, start a personal training business and be your own boss, or be a freelance trainer working part-time.
You can also choose other types of jobs that require the expertise and knowledge a certified personal trainer will have. Some of the many other options you'll have with trainer certification include:
Group fitness instructor
Boot camp leader
Weight management consultant
Corporate trainer and consultant
Online trainer or coach
Fitness professionals have a variety of options. Unlike other industries, you don't need an associate's degree, bachelor's, or your master's degree to work in this role. All you need is your personal training certification.
As people across the country become more aware of the benefits of getting fit, careers in personal training have soared. This is the kind of career that you can literally do anywhere. From the smallest towns to big cities and suburbs, trainers are needed everywhere to help people meet their health goals.
And demand is truly high all over the U.S. According to the BLS, careers in fitness training and instruction are growing much faster than average job growth. Trainer jobs are increasing at a rate of 19 percent. That makes this a good time to join the fitness industry.
Working anywhere includes working remotely. Offering online personal trainer services allows you to provide effective training sessions right from your home.
You probably have thought about this career in part because you are personally passionate about working out and staying fit. As a personal trainer you'll be working on training clients, but at the same time, expect to be on your feet, being active and exercising constantly.
During your personal training sessions, you'll be demonstrating form and exercises. You'll also be working out alongside clients and groups of clients for motivation, accessing gym equipment whenever you want.
Ultimately this is a meaningful and fulfilling career because it allows you to make a positive difference in the lives of real people. This is the true benefit of working in health and fitness. You'll get to know and like your clients, working with them to improve their lives. They won't always love you, but when they hit their weight, fitness, athletic, and body composition goals, they will thank and appreciate you.
Training does so much more for people than change their physical appearances and fitness levels. What you really get to do that feels so good is to empower clients, help them realize their own potential and their inner athletes, and guide them to build their own sense of self-confidence and self-esteem. These are powerful changes, and you get to lead people to them. Starting with your first personal training client.
Yes, you definitely need to obtain your trainer certification. Most states don't have specific requirements about certification for trainers, but few clients or employers will hire a trainer without certification.
Having your personal training certification means you have learned the fundamentals of fitness, movement, exercise science, training, and coaching. Trainer certification also proves you have the knowledge base necessary to help clients meet their goals safely and effectively.
The good news is that certification isn't hard or time-consuming. You can learn online and get certified by completing the online program and passing an exam. In addition to general certification, you'll find courses for all kinds of specialties like nutrition, senior fitness, and strength and conditioning.
Are you inspired to get started in a career as a personal trainer? If so, start with the ISSA's Certified Personal Trainer Course. In this certification program, you will learn how to create customized exercise programs for your clients. You'll also learn how to motivate them to better reach their personal fitness goals.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2022, September 8). Fitness trainers and instructors : Occupational Outlook Handbook. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retrieved February 20, 2023, from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/personal-care-and-service/fitness-trainers-and-instructors.htm
Personal Trainer Salary. ZipRecruiter. (2023, February 13). Retrieved February 20, 2023, from https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Salaries/Personal-Trainer-Salary