So, the thing about being a PT ok so over the last few weeks I’ve had 5 people ask me for advice on becoming a PT.
Which, BTW, I take as a huge compliment, but when people ask for advice I have one rule- I’m 100% honest.
And here’s the thing out of the 5 only 1 of them did I honestly see doing the job.
I get how easy and quick it is to qualify because the truth is told nearly 7 years ago when I qualified, I did a course that was weekends only, took 10 weeks then 10 days residential course.
I left with a Personal Trainer Master Trainer (LOLS) status.
I got into the local Fitness First to start as a PT and I was a terrible PT, I know this now, but at the time I didn’t, but here’s the thing, for me this wasn’t a quick way to take people’s money, it was a passion.
I have always had a strong interest in all things health and fitness and I knew I would succeed I just had to be patient so I kept my 2 other jobs whilst I built my client base up.
But in my opinion, if you’re going to do a PT course and don’t have a clue on any of the topics already, you are going to the wrong course and reading the wrong blog…
2 of the peeps I said I didn’t think were suited to being a PT weren’t in shape themselves and looking back over their timeline quickly, they lack consistency, seriously, if you can’t stick to a diet and training routine yourself for more than 5 minutes how can you seriously expect clients to do it. Both of these would be better off being a PT client than one themselves.
Another one of them had only used a gym a handful of time, so I said would be better getting some experience in the gym before doing the course, not because they wouldn’t pass it, but because even after passing they’d not be a good PT until they gained the experience and the course would be easier if they gained the experience first.
Then the last one was just down to how well I know them, and being honest they’re not going to be the type to put themselves out there and express their opinion so I’d get them to do a confidence building course beforehand so they can attract and serve clients better.
So if you fall into one of the above do that then come back to this…..
Still here/Back here?
Ok, great work now here’s the reality of the industry which BTW I absolutely love, however, I wish I knew this before I started out because I felt like a failure when I struggled.
1- Be prepared to work for Free, in fact, if I was starting as a PT I would offer to pay people to train with me, but here’s the thing when I first started I was in the gym every waking minute when I wasn’t at my other 2 jobs. I’d offer anyone and everyone 3 free sessions to try me out. Got a lot of freebie seekers out for what they can get but had to service them as reputation is important.
2- Be prepared to work unsociable hours, That’s right, early mornings, late evenings, weekends, basically when your mates who have the ‘normal’ job you’re thinking of quitting are off work, you’re working or at least in the gym in case a potential client comes in, because a potential client wants a PT who’s in the gym at busy times, not one in bed.
3- Know that work doesn’t stop at the gym, you’ll get clients contacting you at all times fo day and they need help so a good PT or coach will reply ASAP, after all you’re doing this to help people. Oh and you’ll be organizing your diary, sorting accounts and much more.
4- Know you are a walking billboard EVERYWHERE YOU GO, keep yourself in at least half decent shape, because if someone walks into a gym looking for a PT they want one that’s in shape, think of it like if you’re in shape, are you going to take advice from someone who isn’t? probably not. You don’t need to worry about fancy websites until you get your personal social media pages showing the lifestyle you live. People will be more attracted to a PT who is real and looks after themselves that a fancy website that has shiny stock images and progress photos that have poor lighting and no story besides them.
5- Stay in your lane- I’ve seen many PT’s put their reputation at risk by taking on clients that aren’t the right client for them, which I get at first you have bills to pay, but seriously if you don’t feel you’re the right PT and there are any doubts I would refer them to a better-suited PT they will respect it so much. Also because someone disagrees with you or you disagree doesn’t mean you have to argue, clients see things and no one wants a PT who wants to argue with everyone as part of a penis (or boob if female) measuring contest.
6- Invest in yourself, that’s right to me I’ve lost count of how much I’ve spent furthering my education. Additional courses, trips up and down the Uk and to the states, equipment, and coaching, all have played a huge part in me becoming a better coach. I believe a PT has no right to expect a person to invest in themselves if they wouldn’t invest in themselves.
7- ENJOY IT- I’ve had a variety of roles in the industry, I’ve done gym classes, 1-1 PT face to face coaching, Bootcamp and Pt business with staff and online coaching and I took time to find my passion that was online coaching people with a holistic style. Truth be told when I started I thought the 1-1 face to face would be me for life. But if you don’t enjoy it, don’t stick at it, try different things. There are so many scopes to the fitness industry.
8- BE nice- Stupidly simple, but the fitness world is one of them where we all like to look after ourselves and better ourselves, be nice to others doing it, it goes a long way to make connections with people in the industry. Support people, if someone chooses another option instead of you, be nice, if someone follows a method you don’t like or agree be nice, support life’s too short to be a negative nancy and no one wants another negative nancy.
9- keep personal stuff to yourself – seriously your clients or potential clients have enough going on in their life without having to listen to how you’ve fallen out with your partner AGAIN or how you’re getting a cold or tired etc.. Seriously some things keep to yourself good PT or coach does more listening than talking.
But please my Number 1 most important tip is ASK FOR HELP-
The world is full of help and not being afraid to ask for help is key.
Ive seen many good quality PT’s go back to jobs they hate because they were too proud to ask for what they needed.