I am new to personal training
I am NASM certified. I am thinking of starting an In home business. What are your thoughts of starting with out prior personal training experience. Do you think I should do the gym trainer route first? I have been a professional horse trainer for 20+ years, so working with people at their goals is comfortable for me. I can not however say, I have helped x people achieve their weight loss or body muscle goals.
Thanks in advance
Talking from personal experience, there are pro's and con's either way you go. I'm currently doing a little of both and can give information regarding my experience. I've been personal training for over 8 years, primarily doing corporate fitness. I've been personal training in a commercial gym for over 1 year and my own mobile/in-home business for less than a year. Here are my thoughts:
Commercial gyms are good because most provide you with clients, you just provide the training. Downfall is you do all the work and get maybe a 1/3 of the total session cost. With your own business you get all the session cost but have to gain and keep clients coming, and if you’re traveling to their homes, you have to account for travel cost.
Commercial gyms have all the equipment you will need, with having your own business you or your clients must purchase/have equipment.
Having your own business takes a lot of work, especially just starting off. You have to have some type of business plan, marketing plan, equipment, clients, etc.... Working in a commercial gym just requires you to show up and train but one big downfall is the pay can be inconsistent, but that's on both ends. In the commercial gym you have to produce, once you don't most gyms will let you go.
One thing is to be confident in your training, be prepared for clients of all kinds, and continue to better your skills, staying on top of the ever so changing fitness industry.
Just a little of my input from experience, hope this helps.
Congratulations on your new business adventure! Personally, I would get your feet wet in a health club environment. This will give you access to a great number of clientele and you can inquire about your home training ideas with them for feedback.
As you know the expense of home training can outwiegh training in a club.
Definately something to think about. A business plan should answer those questions.
Wishing You Great Success!
Personally, I do small-group personal training at a large gym where I get client leads and a small private gym where I have to create my own leads. It's easier to get clients at the gym where I'm fed leads, but I get paid more at the smaller facility for an actual class session. But when you factor in the time I spend generating my own leads, I think it might work out to getting paid a little less. But I love both jobs, they're far enough apart that neither is competing with the other, and neither is exclusive. So it works well for me.
I have been out of horse training for quite some time, otherwise that would be a great jump start training my horse clients in fitness!
I can definatly see the trade off of time spent getting leads and having them given to you.
After I got certified I spent a lot of time with some well-seasoned trainers at my local gym. They allowed me to shadow them, talk to their clients and role play. It was very helpful! Good luck!
I think that given your long history of working with clients in the past, given your business history, and given the fact that you've already honed your 'people skills,' it MAY not be necessary to go the gym route before starting your own practice. Some of the reasons many new trainers start in gyms are 1. to learn the ropes of dealing with people, 2. become more proficient in programming and training for fitness, 3. costs (it's much cheaper to work in an already equipped gym than purchasing your own equipment) and more. It sounds like you're already beyond #1, and perhaps #3 if in your previous career you've been able to sock away some funds to help you now. The type of equipment you will want/need for a home-training business is NOT as costly as if you were opening your own studio, so that's a good thing. Where you may need help is with #2! What if any previous exercise and programming experience do you have? You say that you cannot say that you've helped x number of people in the past, but do you have ANY experience in this area? In-home training requires more creativity in the way of programming (in my opinion) because you have less equipment to rely upon. I've done a lot of in-home and outdoor training, and while I LOVE both, it's definitely not for everyone since some trainers are more comfortable working with actual machines. What's your preference/
I hope that some of my answer, and some of my questions will be helpful to you.
As a horse trainer, I did have my own business where I oversaw the whole business end and taught lessons and trained people. I have dealt with many types, personalities, wants and needs of people, so I feel comfortable dealing with people and what is involved in running a business.
I am leaning towards my own place. I have looked around a bit at rents and the going rates. The equipment part will be the biggest nut.
I do not have ANY experience with training in the fitness world. I just received my certification and before that I was doing graphic design.
My thoughts were to do some in home training, then build up a clientele and then open my own place.
I have alot of info from NASM about exercises routines and what would be good for what type of person. I know that is just book info and not real life info. But I figure between NASM and you guys here. I have a good support system.
I remember starting out my horse business and learning the ropes. Im sure it wont be too different.
Congratulations and good luck with whatever route you choose.
I like to do a little of everything but mostly train clients in their own environment. LaRue is right about needing a creative mind to train clients at home; but that keeps things from getting boring and is rewarding.
The gym I was working in closed; now, I am trying to work in another gym. It is nice not to have to haul all the equipment around with me; but, then I just look at it as another workout for me.
If you are leaning towards your own facility, it can't hurt to look into it. You definitely have the business background and are comfortable with people. This is a great place for you to lean on since the personal trainers are professionally well trained and educated with extensive backgrounds.
Good luck to you, and go with your gut.
Also, in a gym you get to interact with many different types of trainers - not just NASM trainers. What do they do that you like - and dont like. NASM is a fine organization but there is valuable lessons to be learned from other professionals. you wont learn this if you go directly to being self employed.
Also, it sounds like you have only trained horses so far. Yes, you have worked with the horses owners but that is still different than working with the people themselves.
I understand a lot of new trainers may not like working in big box gyms -because of the pressure to sell - so if that is you, then apply at a YMCA or JCC as these are less sales-oriented.
I hope some of this helps Lisa.
congratulations on your certification! I am NASM certified myself and know that you had to study pretty hard to pass.
Getting started is not easy, and it will take a while to get a business going. Since you describe yourself as inexperienced in training, having an association at a gym is usually a great way to get exposure to potential clients. At the same time, you really do not yet have to make any investments and will be able to get your feet wet in somebody else's water. It will also give you an opportunity to decide which population is drawn to you as a trainer, so you can begin to hone your skills towards that.
I would definitely caution against opening a studio until you have more experience and more people know about you. I saw in your previous answer that you are used to run a business so I do not need to tell you that bills have a way of continuing to come whether your income does so or not.
Training people in home is another way to start but for that you will at least have to have a business registered, and you will also need professional liability insurance.
I wish you success and happiness in your new endeavor.
Sounds like what you really need is a client base. Personally I developed my clientele by teaching group exercise classes, today I am totally independent and have a solid in home personal training business
You may want to offer "sample" sessions and build from there. Join your Chamber of Commerce, get the word out to everyone you know that you are starting a new business and develop it from there
Either at home or at a gym- it will take a little time to actually build up a clientele. After that point you should be pretty much home free.
I also agree with the above views. I started as a trainer at the YMCA 20years ago and then I worked at different gyms and personal training studios. The last 4 years I have my own business and I'm still learning new things every day. The one thing I've learned, is that joining networking groups is the best way of meeting people and getting access to new clients.
Good luck and congrats in becoming a Personal Trainer.
Congrats on your certification by NASM. I takes a lot of effort and dedication.
The downside of the gym is competition from other trainers can be fierce with many clubs having way too many personal trainers, meaning there's not always enough work to go around. You should therefore check out the club first that you're thinking of working for.
However all this is valuable experience and most trainers go down this route before becoming an in-home trainer. Setting up a business requires a great deal more work and you have to have great time-management and marketing skills to bring in new business and manage your clients successfully. Once you have some experience of being a personal trainer though at a gym, it does make the process easier and will give you more confidence. I work in a gym and do in-home visits, so I have income coming from both, which keeps my options open.