A lot of people enter the fitness industry as a Personal Trainer due to the seemingly appealing lifestyle and the fact it looks like an easy job. I’ll be honest, that's what attracted me in becoming a PT when I was younger.
It isn’t until you’ve entered the PT world that you realise that there’s a lot more to being a PT, or a good PT at least, and it’s harder than it looks – at least to begin with.
It’s a diverse job that requires a lot of skills across a lot of different disciplines. Obviously you’re a trainer, an exercise and fitness expert, that can help people achieve their body goals. Alongside this, you should have a good understanding of nutrition and the way in which food works in fuelling the body. This knowledge is going to be the foundation to your career.
That’s as far as personal training goes in a lot of people’s minds, including some trainers, but there is so much more to it.
As well as being knowledgeable in these areas, you must be keen to develop your skills as a trainer and nutrition advisor. Failure to do so will leave you stuck fighting for clients and walking the gym floor, begging people to try your free session. The goal is to be the go-to guy or girl when it comes to training.
This job puts you face-to-face with a lot of people every single day. You are in the service industry and your job is to serve people and provide a good level of service in the process. Without a good level of service you won’t last very long - clients will soon see that there is no value for money in what you are offering and move on.
You’re also a salesperson and in charge of your own business - if you chose to go solo. Being able to sell yourself and your service is vital in order to gain clients, if you can’t sell, you don’t earn. You also need to have a good idea about your business and how you are going to operate – this includes putting systems into place that help things run smoothly and helps you maintain your service with minimal effort.
Once you are a fitness expert, have fine-tuned your service and have sold this service to people, to be a top personal trainer you need to be aware of human psychology. In order to get results you need to be able to understand how a person’s mind works in order to get the best out of that person and move them swiftly towards their goals. A lot of trainers underestimate the importance of psychology, and do fine without it, but to be at the top of your field and to get the best results, understanding human psychology is a priceless skill to have.
If you are thinking of becoming a personal trainer, it’s not always as easy as it seems. But with the right attitude, and the hunger to learn and succeed, it’s a wonderful industry to be in, and industry in which the possibilities are literally endless!