Why get into health & fitness training?
Health and fitness training has come a long way from the days of tight Lycra shorts. These days, health and fitness training can involve anything from large group training exercises, to one-to-one personal training sessions.
It’s no longer the haunt of ex-army types or mums trying to earn a little extra cash; today’s health and fitness trainers are professionals who have an in-depth knowledge of the human body and constantly have to keep up with the latest research, training and nutrition techniques. Check out this article for more information on what you need to do to get into health and fitness training.
What does health & fitness training involve?
Health and fitness training is a fairly broad term, but generally it’s incredibly important for helping to combat the poor levels of health and fitness that people develop through the pursuit of increasingly sedentary lifestyles and bad food choices.
Additionally, as people become more ‘time poor’, the public requires the fastest and most efficient route to their goals. Consequently, trainers need to understand how people work as individuals and tailor training methods to get those results quickly.
If you are training individuals, it allows you to make the training programme very personalised. You should always do a full health and fitness screening before starting a programme. This involves understanding a client’s medical and fitness history, what they are like now and where they want to be.
That means you need the ability to observe, to think on your feet, to help the client see if their goals are realistic, to educate and, most importantly, to listen. Once you get started, you will become a mentor, an educator and a friend to your client (though it’s always best to maintain a professional client-trainer relationship).
It is more difficult to individualise programmes when you are training groups. However, you should still be aware of different clients’ strengths and weaknesses and make sure that you are increasing the former, whilst working to improve the latter.
Health and fitness trainers can, and often do, offer both group and individual sessions. Individual clients enable you to focus and individualise the programme, whereas group sessions tend to have more of a party atmosphere. If you’re good at what you do, there’s scope to earn more money per hour with group training than with an individual client.
Who will employ me as a health & fitness trainer?
Some health and fitness trainers work as freelancers, whilst others will work for a particular gym or health studio.
Freelancing certainly has its advantages, as all the money you earn will go straight in your pocket. However, it also means that you are solely responsible for your income and you will need to earn enough money to allow you to take time off. Furthermore, if you get sick, then you generally don’t earn anything. Freelancers also quite often do their sessions at people’s homes, which can limit programme variety.
Working for a gym quite often gives you the security of a basic wage and benefits, but the majority of your earnings will come from commission. Consequently, what you earn is based on the effort you put in. You will also usually be set targets and be in direct competition with your colleagues for business. However, there are also other extra advantages of working for a specific gym. You will benefit from more available equipment and a database of potential clients at your fingertips.
Finally, it is worth saying that the best trainers are not necessarily those who enjoy going to the gym themselves, but those who have a natural desire to help others.
If you’re interested in a career in health and fitness training, check out this career video with a real-life personal trainer!
Written by Chris Miller
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