Are you considering making the leap from your desk job to a more interactive lifestyle of becoming a personal trainer? If this has been your dream, there’s nothing stopping you!
The struggle for many is that they don’t know how to approach this career change. As luck would have it, below is an outline of important considerations for your career change to personal training. Read on to discover how to make the transition and thrive while doing it!
Jumping Into The Fitness Industry
Countless individuals dream of making this type of career change every single day, but only a small portion of them will take the steps necessary to make it a reality. Do you have the proper motivation to push yourself into the personal training field?
Here are two routes you can take to get started:
- Head back to school: Earning a degree and the knowledge that comes with it will help you to easily land a personal training job. Your educational background will set you apart from the field and demonstrates a deeper understanding of biomechanics. Relevant fields of study include anatomy, biochemistry, kinesiology and exercise physiology.
The downside to this is that it can take between 2-4+ years to earn a degree, could cost tens of thousands of dollars, and may not necessarily prepare you for the intimate one-on-one relationship between personal trainer and client.
- Get certified as a personal trainer: Becoming a Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) is a much quicker option compared to going back to school and allows you to go your own pace while self-studying. This is incredibly important if you’re already working a job and have limited time to devote to studying. A CPT certification costs significantly less money, and you will learn enough about physiology and anatomy to get started. A personal training certificate is the bare minimum you’ll need to land a job in the industry.
Although certificates may not seem as “credible” as degrees, you can learn a ton and you’ll be specializing specifically within personal training. Beyond this, there are many different specializations and advanced credentials you can earn once you’ve gotten your foot in the door.
Whichever route you decide to take, landing a job in a gym shouldn’t be too challenging with basic credentialing. And, if you have the funds and the right business acumen, you can even consider opening up your own studio or gym. This is a big step but it provides all the benefits of training from your very own facility. For more info on opening a fitness center, check out these helpful tips.
Are You A “People Person”?
When first getting started, you’ll need to assess your people skills and decide whether you truly enjoy working with people one on one. This is critical and important to figure out early on before leaving your current career.
If you’re not the type that likes to motivate and inspire others even when your own energy levels are low, personal training simply might not be for you. It doesn’t matter if you’re working with a client, a friend, or a family member, you need to be able to connect with other people. You don’t have to be the most outgoing person in the room, but it is important to relate to people so they want to continue seeking your advice.
Get Some Business Training
It’s been said over and over that being a personal trainer is just like running your own business. Even while employed for a gym, you’ll need the skill set to identify and bring on new clients, run the marketing, get insurance, track your finances and pay the bills.
If these are new skills for you, connect with other personal trainers in the industry to see if they will mentor you or allow you to shadow them for a few days. You don’t need to know everything about the industry to get started, but more knowledge means you have that much of an advantage.
Moreover, understanding how to run a business is critical if you plan on opening your own studio or gym. Check out this great article about the 5 key stages of a successful fitness business. You will be able to make more money and gain more clients when you get better at promoting yourself and running a well-oiled business.
Final Thoughts – Is It Doable?
Short answer – changing careers to be a personal trainer is very doable! In this day and age, with technology and social media at your disposal, you can start up your business virtually anywhere and anytime.
Be sure to have a plan in place and don’t quit your job right away unless you’re financially stable. Otherwise, go full out and pursue your dream without stopping until you achieve it. Get your degree or your certification and begin honing your people skills, learning how to promote yourself and study the human body! If your goal is to become a personal trainer, you have plenty of opportunities to get started – you just have to have the motivation.
You don’t need “permission” to start your personal training career, so what are you waiting for? Get started today!