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?
Well, you ask 2 very good questions. Here is my personal take on both. I just recently went into business for myself also. I also incorporated into an LLC but I also took out a Professional/Commercial liability policy just to be on the safe side.
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?
Bradford, thanks for your quick response. My gut tells me to go ahead and get the CPT, so I’m going to do it…it will only benefit me and my future clients and I could use the refresher since I’ve been so single-track with pilates instruction and knee-deep in nutrition/health info.
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!
Hi Morgan. In my opinion one way to determine whether an additional certification in ‘whatever’ field is necessary is to ask yourself “is there a recognized and accepted certification in this particular field/specialty?” If the answer is ‘yes’ then I would say it’s probably best to become certified to teach or train in that specific area. While this isn’t a perfect analysis, I think that it’s a good guideline to use. So, for example, as a Certified Personal Trainer, I’m not really certified/qualified to teach true pilates, whereas you are. That same analysis should apply in your situation looking at personal training. I hope that this helps clarify things for you.
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.
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.