How You Setup a Personal Training Business

My intension was never to become a personal trainer when I become qualified.  I studied health and fitness because it was my passion.  I was a gym junky, training 6 days a week for two hours a day and I wanted to learn my about the human body.  Originally a Pastry Chef by trade, the job paid the bills, the hours got longer and there was less time for the fitness training in the gym.  That’s when I decided to take my passion and teach it to others.

Many Personal Trainers become qualified and don’t have a business plan, a lot don’t see it as a future, and some might see it as a quick way to earn money.  After all, the average amount a client pays in London per hour is between £50-£80, times that by a 40 hour week and “WOW”, what an income.  A lot of new Personal Trainers also fail.

Well its not that simple.  I am going to help guide you though a few simple steps you need to follow to help you achieve what I have achieved for FitFastTrainers.


Step 1: Become Qualified

Do your research and make sure you use a company that’s going to give you a National recognized qualification.  If you are going to work in a gym as a Personal Trainer you will most probably need a level 3 qualification recognized by REPs, most gyms will ask for this.  You will also need to have your own public liability and professional indemnity insurance in case something goes wrong.

Step 2: Business Plan

Decide what you want to achieve, have a goal and stick to it, just like your own training.  Decide whether you want to work outside, in a gym, or open up your own studio, how much money are you willing to invest in the new business.   Some people will say that you need to target a certain audience.  I don’t believe this is the case when you first start out.  It’s better to be flexible and train anyone who wants to be trained, be more specific later on down the road when you’re busier and you will have a better idea what pathway you want to take.  You might start of in a gym and then decide that’s not for you.

Step 3: Marketing

The best form of marketing that will cost you nothing is word of mouth.  Tell your friends and ask them tell theirs.   Use facebook and other social networking sites to spread the word about your new business.  If you are good at what you do, your current clients will spread the word for you.  Set up a website.  Back when I started out, no one had a website, it’s a must now.  Go for something on a budget to start with.  It doesn’t need to be too fancy, it just needs some basic info, It will make your business look more professional.  Try building your own with wordpress or buy a template with a company that specializers in fitness based templates like wix, and then you just add your own content, very simple.  I started off with a template, now I have decided to build my own.  There is more flexibility having a website built as opposed to a template.

Step 4: Get some Experience

No newly qualified Personal Trainer is going to have a handful of clients to start with.  Don’t give up your day job until you believe you have enough clients to survive on.  I worked for nearly two years part-time for various gyms and Personal Training companies before taking it on fulltime.  Get some experience under your belt with a reputable Gym or Personal Training company like Fitness First, LA fitness or Fit Fast Trainers.

Finally last of all, be yourself.  If you are positive, full of energy and have a unique type of training that gives your new clients great satisfaction, then you will succeed.

Peter Sleight is originally from Australia and has been working as a Personal Trainer since 1996.  Now living in London, he is the managing Director of Fit Fast Trainers, an Advanced Level 4 Personal Trainer and Exercise Specialist.

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