The concept of “pay for performance” has been a favorite in human resources for some years. Within pay for performance, staff members receive financial bonuses or incentives based on the results they produce. Pay for performance, while it is not called that, is often used with personal trainers. The “split” of a client’s fee is an example of paying the trainer for revenue produced.

Has this concept been used with other staff positions? To find out, this year—for the first time—we asked business owners and managers responding to the IDEA Fitness Industry Salary Survey 2004. They reported that “compensation . . . is directly related to income produced” for

> 60% of personal trainers

> 29% of Pilates or yoga instructors

> 23% of managers

> 19% of group fitness instructors

It is relatively easy to measure direct revenue for personal training because clients pay per session; the same is true for Pilates and yoga classes that are charged for separately from membership dues. It is more difficult to attribute revenue to the group fitness program, which is usually included in either monthly or annual membership.

Managers in the survey were full-time employees who received benefits.

About the Survey

The IDEA Salary Survey 2004 was conducted in October 2004 and answered by 517 owners and managers of personal training businesses, health clubs and wellness programs in the United States and Canada. See the special report on page 43 of this issue. Complete results with additional information are available through IDEA Professional Education (; 800-999-4332, ext. 7; or 858-535-8979, ext. 7).