I know that most of you cannot help answer this question, since it would be based on my location, etc. However, I see that my local YMCA is hiring as well as a place that is just like the Y but I would have to drive every day. I am curious if anyone knows what the average pay is for a community center such as the Y for Personal Trainers. I am currently employed, and even though I like my job I also know that I make at least a few dollars less an hour than an average personal trainer. I am curious. Have you ever worked for the Y or a community center?
It truly depends on where you live and your experience: in NYC metro area, I made $50/hour to teach group fitness and $45/hour to privately train – which I always thought was ironic. In the DC area, I make $28/per class and $35/hour for PT or specialty fitness classes. I know that in rural areas you do make much less.
Ys join together in associations, so you may find a half dozen within a geographic area that have similar policies, and another y or group of ys in a different association that are somewhat different. I work for a Y, and could tell you about some of the pay rates there, but the specifics will vary. The Y does not seem to me to be very transparent about its pay scales. However, there seem to be some general trends.
The Y will generally pay on the lower end of the market for its particular area. So if you know what you would make at another health club it is likely that the Y rate will be less. I make a minimum of a third of what I would make at a yoga studio when I teach at the Y.
Part of why the Y can get the lower pay is associated with the fact that Ys have their own training programs. Thus, someone who takes classes could decide to teach for the Y, and instead of taking a costly national certification could do a series of trainings through the Y. Interestingly it looks like the Y just (I do mean I heard about this a couple of weeks ago) started to offer trainings with some sort of connection to ACE. Not sure how this affects things.
Also a number of people I have known who teach for the Y (myself included) do so as a way to serve their community. A lot of the people who use at least my Y would not be able to afford a lot of other options.
But, as I said, Ys differ and it would do no harm to see what is being offered at your Y. It is always great to have options.