I am very interested on a personal level in fitness and nutrition, however I have no certifications or background in either field. I am 55, in good shape physically, workout out regularly but do have some “normal” issues like arthritis that can come with age. It seems that there are so many PT’s out there and most/all seem to be young and in super shape. With these resources for clients to choose from, would it make any sense to pursue an education in either/both fields with an eye towards trying to it for a living some day?
Yes! Few years back while I was in Dallas and I was working in a gym, one of the best trainers there was a 65-year-old retiree. He decided he wanted to do something more than just sitting around after the end of his previous career and not let the years get the best of him. So, he got certified and along with his previous experience in life and fitness he started to train clients. He said it was the best decision he ever made.
Age has nothing to do when becoming a trainer. I think that with your life experiences and wisdom you can be a very effective trainer. You don’t have to outperform your clients, just guide them to the correct path and help them achieve their goals. Just choose a certification which you are comfortable with (or not) and decide what type of clients you would like to train. It’s a fun job and you are always making a change for the better in someone’s life.
I wish you the best and remember there are many people here who can help you with any questions you might have.
I’d like to thank all of you for your detailed and inspiring answers! I feel in my heart you are right…I saw a quote recently that said, “if you want to know where your heart is, look to where your mind goes when it wanders…”, and this is so true! I know where my mind wanders when I am doing the accounting work that I have been doing for the last 30 years:). So, I guess I need to start comparing certification programs and deciding what is the best investment of my time. I am sure I can get alot of info on that from searching this forum. Thanks again for all your encouragement!
As a gym owner, age of a personal trainer would never hinder me from hiring… and as someone who understands how important fitness is to those who suffer from the chronic illness of arthritis (because I witness the daily effects from someone close to me), having a PT who personally empathizes with the pain during the sessions can be such a game changer for the client… this includes the younger clientele that suffers from rheumatoid arthritis. I know this can one of the biggest concerns of a young person suffering from this disease. They are already so limited with what they can do without additional pain level, that taking instruction from someone who lives with it too can truly give them motivation to stay the course and not give up.
Pursue your passion. It is never too late for fitness.
I completely agree with all of the answers above, and think you should do what you are truly passionate about. You will be well received by the people who seek personal trainers. Those people are real people, who need someone they can relate to.
I hope to be a personal trainer until the age of retirement, hopefully well into my 60’s!
if you were looking to hire a personal trainer which one would you be drawn to? The young and super-fit one or somebody closer to your own age who actually ‘gets’ it that some days you wake up, and there’s a twinge in a new place that wasn’t there the day before?
The clients with the discretionary money to hire a personal trainer tend to be in the older age bracket, and my age of 58 has been a bonus, not a hindrance.
I would focus on the fitness field and maybe weight management. The nutrition certifications are all very nice and well but most states have strict rules as to what information you may dispense without being a licensed dietitian.
I wish you good luck. Go for it.