What does a fitness director do?
Fitness directors are responsible for overseeing all of the fitness activities, programs, and operations of a fitness center or health club. They develop and supervise programs that strive to meet the needs of facility members. They plan workout incentive programs, fitness assessments, and new-member orientations. They hire, train, and supervise fitness staff and perform administrative tasks such as creating a budget and collecting member dues. They are also responsible for choosing fitness equipment, scheduling staff, and organizing group exercise and personal training programs. Fitness directors often set up routine and necessary maintenance of the facility and related equipment. They also coordinate special fitness related events to promote membership.
What kind of training does a fitness director need?
Fitness directors must have at least a high school diploma, but most employers prefer candidates with at least a bachelor degree and sufficient work experience. Many fitness directors have a master degree in physical education, health management, or other related field. Many fitness directors begin their career in entry-level fitness positions and advance to higher-level positions as they gain the essential skills and experience. Many employers provide some on the job training to enable new fitness directors to learn the policies and procedures of the fitness facility. Many fitness directors gain professional certification to demonstrate their competence and remain competitive in the field. Fitness directors must complete continuing education to maintain their certifications and keep their skills up to date.
What are the prospects for a career as a fitness director?
Employment of fitness directors is expected to grow much faster than average for all professions, increasing 22% from 2006 to 2016 (1). The aging and growing population and increased demand for fitness facilities will drive job growth.
Job prospects should be excellent especially for fitness directors with advanced education and extensive experience. Many job openings will arise from the need to replace fitness directors that retire, transfer, or leave the profession for other reasons.
How much do fitness directors make?
As of December 2009, the middle 50% of fitness directors earn annual salaries between $63,998 and $93,801. The top 10% earn annual salaries of more than $107,980 (2).
A career as a fitness director is a great choice for people with a strong interest in managing the operations of a fitness facility. Fitness directors must have a solid understanding of physical fitness and excellent management skills to successfully run a fitness facility. Detail orientation, self-confidence, critical thinking, strong leadership skills, and good problem solving skills are essential. Fitness directors must also be outgoing, have excellent communication, and be able to motivate a variety of people from fitness staff to members of the facility.