3 tips for becoming a personal trainer

Becoming a personal trainer is a natural step for many fitness enthusiasts who want to use their knowledge to help others. It’s a wonderfully rewarding career and one that’s extremely flexible. Personal trainers work for themselves, sourcing clients or collaborating with gyms. They also make a tangible difference in their clients’ lives. If this sounds appealing, these tips should help you get started.

#1 Decide how you’ll operate

First and foremost, you need to decide exactly what type of personal trainer you want to be. It sounds simple, but this is a more nuanced decision than it seems. Some personal trainers focus entirely on building muscle mass with bodybuilders. Others help athletes to develop endurance. Some are focused purely on physical health; others will branch out into nutrition and diet. Decide on your niche early because it’s difficult to change course when you’ve already established a market presence.

You’ll also need to determine exactly how and where you’ll train people. Some trainers have attached to gyms on a semi-permeant basis. They’ll train gym members one on one. This model provides more job security, but other trainers prefer freedom and operate in a totally freelance capacity. The source and work with clients on a private basis, taking them on runs or visiting them at home to help with workouts. 

#2 Budget carefully

Although it might not seem like the case initially, costs can stack up fast for personal trainers. You’ll need fitness equipment, medical supplies, and that’s not to mention the marketing budget and any money spent traveling to clients. Starting any business is costly, and launching yourself as a personal trainer is no exception. Fortunately, there are some ways to keep costs low. Nearly all fitness equipment can be purchased used, which is substantially cheaper. If you buy from the right supplier, there’s no compromise on quality. 

Medical supplies are also important, including monitors for blood pressure, blood sugar, and certain first aid equipment. Some personal trainers make a point of carrying defibrillators should the worst happen. While these devices are sometimes costly, you can keep medical supply costs down by using a site like medical-supermarket.com to compare products between suppliers. This information should be used to inform your wider budget as you gradually build the business.

#3 Use social media

Social media is nowadays the best way for a personal trainers to market their services and attract new customers. Photo and video mediums are perfect for showcasing your workout methods and sharing your and your client’s fitness journeys. As social media platforms diversify (adding features like reels and short, looping videos), so too can you vary your content to reach the largest possible audience.

You’ve probably seen countless marketing posts on Instagram and YouTube from personal trainers, but many of these are so subtle that they don’t appear immediately “salesy.” In fact, the most successful personal trainers double as fitness influencers, posting their dietary advice, fitness routines and lifestyle tips over social media. Rather than aggressively selling your services, think of social media as a way to showcase your personality, lifestyle and offer tips. Clients will naturally follow.