How do you negotiate your rates with local gyms?
I've recently been certified through NASM and want to train my clients at a local gym, but I want to remain an independent contractor. I've been teaching fitness classes in the area for almost three years, so I already have a client base to draw from.
I would like to know how you negotiate rates with local gyms. Do you pay a percentage? If so, what is a fair percentage? If not, how much is too much per month?
Do the gyms allow your clients to work out without having a membership?
What other details should I be thinking about? I already carry insurance. Thanks for your help
I would visit the gyms you are interested to work. Strike up a conversation with trainers or staff and ask them some of those questions
Determine what distinguishes you from the other trainer/s in the gym ie: years expierence, specific training methods, fresh new ideas, marketing etc.
*Not all gyms allow independent contractors...but, employees with a percentage of fees back to the club.
Show confidence, make eye contact, listen to you interviewer and good luck!
Wishing You Great Success!
Michael has some great points. My question to you is since you already have some clients around your area, why do you want to train them at a gym? It makes more sense to train them at their own place or outdoors and keep all the income for you. This way you won't have to deal with any of the gyms you are thinking of contacting. Invest a small amount to buy some more equipment (unless you already have all that you need) and go that route.
For example, if they sign up for a class see if the gym will offer them discounted memberships.
Harris, in answer to your question about why I want to work in a gym if I already have clients ... there are a few reasons.
1.) I want to be in a venue that gives me access to a variety of equipment and a full fitness studio. This will give me the ability to draw clients from those classes.
2.) I don't want to run from place to place (my clients are all over).
3.) I will have lower overhead and more access to clients within a gym environment.
Currently, I teach my fitness classes in non-traditional facilities, but I can only use those facilities during class time.
I'm looking for the best of both worlds.
Bryant, I think you hit the nail on the head in terms of making a proposal that would benefit both me and the gym owner.
many gyms have their rules and will give you little room for negotiation. Having said that, that does not mean that you cannot try.
What I would highlight is the benefit that you can bring to a gym and what sets you apart from the other trainers. If you have loyal clients that will become members, that would be one. If you can attract new members because of your style of training, that could be a selling point.
Do not be disappointed if gyms will give you the 'take it or leave it' treatment. They understand the benefits to you as well as you yourself as you have listed them here. Once you are established in a place, you can always try to re-negotiate.
I wish you good luck.
In that case I would make sure you are bringing something new to the table and present it in a way that the owners would benefit from having you in their location and negotiate a rate to your favor. A flat rate might be better for you and also for the owners of the gym, but it all depends on what their rules are and how flexible they are with independent trainers. I agree with Michael and Karin that you will need to bring up your experience and unique style of training as well as fresh ideas to them so not only they will be happy to have you, but also send some new clients towards your direction.
I wish you good luck!
Before you go to the gyms, have your resume ready and your conversation memorized to the point that you will not forget a highlight about yourself if distracted through other topics during the meeting.
Good luck to you.
Here is a similar question asked by another trainer in the past: