How to start a successful personal training business?


Do you love fitness? Do you get inspired by the idea of physical transformation in other people? Are you passionate about training the physical body? With more people taking an interest in health and fitness, starting a personal training business sounds like a great idea. Running your own business is a brilliant choice where you can get paid to do what you love. Don't know where to start? Don't sweat it. We've got you covered with this complete guide to starting a successful personal training business.

Know what type of personal training you will give

Four basic categories of personal training businesses exist:

  • Train clients at a gym you have a relationship with: You might be able to work out an arrangement with a gym to allow you to train your clients there. You can charge your clients as you please, but you may have to pay the gym a regular fee to use their facilities.
  • Train clients at their own homes: Another business model to consider is training clients at their own homes. You may need to consider the availability of equipment and space at their home.
  • Train clients at your home: If you have invested in a decked-out home gym, training clients at your own house is a great way to defray some of that cost. Even if you do not have a gym, having some space in your house can be effectively used for your personal training business.
  • Train clients online – Online personal training is an exciting new business model. Online trainers can create as much impact as an in-person trainer, sometimes more. The medium is versatile and offers lots of formats to play with.

Set your price

Since you are your own boss, you can charge and take home whatever you like. When setting your price, there are some things you should consider:

  • Target audience – Understand who you are aiming to reach. We’ll cover this in detail in the next section, but your price should tie in with your audience’s ability to pay.
  • Cost of training the client – Travel expenses, gym equipment, software, and other expenses that are incurred directly in connection with your client also need to factor into your price.
  • Economy – The state of the economy affects your pricing. Personal trainers used to be considered a luxury. However, with the pandemic, many trainers have moved their routines online. More competition means rates may have reduced. Do your research into what other people charge and what you can offer alongside the competition.
  • Location – Trainers in certain areas may be able to command a higher price than others.

Start marketing yourself online

As a businessperson, you need to get comfortable with sales. People need to know you are open for business, and that responsibility rests on your shoulders alone. Your unique branding will play a pivotal role in setting you apart in the uber-competitive personal trainer industry. Brand strategists can be hired upon searching for them on Google.

There are thousands of ways you can go about advertising your service. Between paper ads, Facebook ads, and Google Ads, a good consultant will be able to help you understand which model is best for you.

Get certified

Regulations will require you to get certified as a fitness trainer. The benefit of getting certified is that it adds a layer of trust to your services. You may also need to get certified in certain safety aspects, such as CPR.


Know your audience niche

When it comes to physical fitness, women who want to lose baby weight will get different training from senior citizens. Knowing and defining your niche will help you bring them the best value. It will also minimise confusion in your sales efforts. Without defining your target audience, your efforts will be all over the place without giving any meaningful results.

Get insured

Personal trainers can buy combined cover for Public Liability* and Professional Indemnity* insurance.  These types of insurance can be required to join professional industry associations. Both Public Liability and Professional Indemnity insurance for personal trainers can be found with BizCover.

Budget your business

Personal training businesses are not always lucrative, and it may take some time before you figure out a formula to increase your returns. Do not hire someone straight away. In the beginning, be prepared to be both the boss and the employee for a few months at least.

Go for it

This guide is to get you started. At some point, you will need to hire people and open a business bank account. But first, focus on branding, getting testimonials you can use, and cash flow. Personal fitness training can be extremely rewarding if you love what you do. Learn from mistakes, keep going, and do not give up.

*As with any insurance, cover will be subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions contained in the policy wording. The information contained on this web page is general only and should not be relied upon as advice.

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