How To Become A Personal Trainer

Becoming a personal trainer is an ideal career for many fitness advocates and for men and women who aspire to help others live healthier, more productive lives. With more Americans engaging physical and emotional wellness than at any other time, the prospects for a career as an instructor or as an independent entrepreneur are far ranging and can be quite lucrative.

Are You Committed

Becoming a personal trainer requires certification and licensing in most states. The investment is only about $500 - $800 and some fitness centers may offer to pay your training for the testing. However, along with the certification comes a good deal of responsibility. The National Commission of Certifying Agencies (NCCA) suggests that prospective fitness trainers ask themselves three critical questions that can help determine your interest.

Are you in your optimal shape? Fitness trainers must be models for the discipline.

Do you believe in the health benefits of fitness? You cannot be an effective instructor unless you have faith in what you are teaching.

Do you understand or can you learn everything about the human anatomy? Fitness trainers help clients deal with symptoms, conditions and challenges. They must understand how the human body functions so they can provide meaningful instruction.

If you answered yes to these three questions, read on!

The Process

The process begins be selecting a certification program that is recognized by the state in which you intend to practice. Be sure the program is accredited by the NCCA. Familiarize yourself with the state requirements and match them with an NCCA recognized program. As an example of what training may be expected, consider that the National Personal Training Institute requires students to be 18 years of age, have CPR and AED certifications and pass an internal exam before preparing for certification.

Read about programs offered by the National Academy of Sports Medicine, the American Academy of Exercise, the National Federation of Professional Trainers and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America. Any of these designations will boost your resume.

Determine you specialty. In order to compete for the best jobs at the busiest fitness centers, choose a specialty and obtain additional certifications in your field.

Build your business plan. Even if you are a fitness fanatic, jobs in the field are competitive. If you intend to own and operate your own business, the demands are multi-dimensional. Build a business plan that lists your certification goals, sets your budget and outlines how you will obtain a job in the field. It is never too early to start networking.

Observe a good, qualified trainer. One of the best ways to gain an understanding of the life of a personal trainer is to enlist the services of a trainer or attend aerobics classes. You will quickly learn the physical, social and emotional skills needed to succeed. Be a good observer and give trainers credit for what they do right and make note of what they could do better.

Start building a client base. There are any great and qualified trainers out there who struggle to earn their full potential. Your business model can always be adjusted as your career unfolds but you can never have too many clients. Treat every client with respect, let them know you are looking for other clients and attend industry conferences and seminars. Soon your business will grow. To succeed, you not only need to be a qualified trainer but an excellent marketer.