Hi, I have two questions...
1) I am a cert pilates instructor and cert health coach, and I'm starting my own business offering both health coaching and fitness training...in order to privately train individuals beyond pilates (using weights, cardio, etc), am I required to get a Personal Trainer certification? 2) I have registered my business as an LLC...am I required to get additional liability insurance or is the LLC sufficient?
Most definately get your PT certification for liabilty reasons as well. In regards to insurance, check with your insurance company for both your PT certificaction and your business liability insurance.
When in doubt...get adequate insurance and check with your attorney.
As for getting certified to instruct clients in other modalities, it is also a good idea. Not because you are legally required to do so, but because you wish to give your clients the best and safest experience possible. One question that is always asked by the courts is "what would a reasonable and prudent person do?" So ask yourself, is it reasonable and prudent to instruct clients in exercise modalities that you have not demonstrated a competency in?
Basically, I'm saying let your conscious be your guide. Ask yourself, would you want to be trained by someone who didn't really know what they were doing? Do you really have a passion to lead others to a healthier, more active lifestyle or are you just after a quick buck?
What are your thoughts on reputable CPT associations out there? I have been told it's important to go with an NCAA-accredited program...do you agree? Specifically, I have been directed to check out NASM, ACE, NSCA, or ASCM...any thoughts on these?
Lastly, if you have helpful information on where I can get a good liability policy, I am definitely interested. Thanks!
As for your second question. While I (and other trainers on this site) may have our opinions, I would caution you that it is best to seek out your own professional legal and accounting advice on such an important issue involving your business and liability. Each individual trainer's situation is unique to them, and while one answer or way may be best for one person, it may not work well at all for another. Just by example, I have an LLC for my training business, and I also have liability coverage for both my LLC and myself personally. This works best for me, and I'm able to sleep better at night :-)
Good luck, and I hope that this has helped a bit.
Getting a personal trainer certification is necessary so that you can instruct within your scope of practice. No matter how well you know the Pilates world, in my opinion it is only one modality of many, and you will be a better trainer if you branch out into a wider range of possibilities. You will then have the luxury to decide whether Pilates is the best approach or traditional strength training or maybe even a fusion of boht.
Incorporating as an LLC only limits your liability, but who will pay it if push comes to shove? I have my own business and have liability insurance. Double-check as LaRue suggests but I am pretty sure that it is necessary.
2) LLC usually has a lot to take into account. You may want to consider how large your business is/will be. Usually when partnered with a gym you wont need a LLC, but if you're going out alone you may want to look into it.
Also, continuing education credits will be at your disposal along with other benefits as well.