How to Become a Personal Trainer

How to Become a Personal Trainer

Good physical fitness is an essential part of overall good health and well being. Personal trainers are specially trained fitness professionals that provide one-on-one exercise assistance to a variety of clients with varying levels of physical fitness and ability.

What does a personal trainer do?

Personal trainers work with clients on an individual basis and help them evaluate their level of physical fitness and create and achieve goals. They help the client develop a plan that includes a variety of exercises to help meet the fitness goals and achieve optimal fitness. They often provide training in the client’s home or in a fitness facility. They demonstrate a variety of exercises and help clients improve their techniques. Personal trainers often keep records of the training sessions and assess each client’s progress by monitoring heart rate levels and measuring weight and body fat. They also provide advice to clients on how to change their lifestyle outside of training to help improve their physical fitness.

What kind of training does a personal trainer need?

Personal trainers must have at least a high school diploma and some have bachelor degrees in fitness or health. They typically complete courses in anatomy, exercise physiology, sports nutrition, kinesiology, and motivational techniques. They must also be certified in CPR and first aid. Many personal trainers participate in internships with experienced professionals to gain practical experience. Most employers provide brief on the job training to new personal trainers so they can learn the operations of the facility.

Most employers require personal trainers to be certified. The top certifying organizations include the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America and the American Council on Exercise. Requirements vary, but typically include at least a high school diploma, CPR certification, and passing an examination. Continuing education courses are required to maintain certification.

What are the prospects for a career as a personal trainer?

Employment of personal trainers is expected to increase much faster than average for all professions, increasing 27% from 2006 to 2016 (1). The rapid increase in health clubs and fitness facilities will drive job growth.

Job prospects are expected to be good especially for personal trainers with extensive experience. Many job openings will also arise from the need to replace personal trainers that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.

How much do personal trainers make?

As of October 2009, the middle 50% of personal trainers earn annual salaries between $38,013 and $64,680. The top 10% earn annual salaries of more than $75,620(2).

A career as a personal trainer is an excellent choice for individuals who have a strong passion for fitness and enjoy helping other people. Personal trainers must be physically fit and be able to motivate their clients. They should be outgoing, sensitive to different needs and abilities, and excellent communicators. Personal trainers should also have strong sales skills and be able to attract and retain a variety of clients.

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