How to become a successful personal trainer

You studied hard, and you passed your test. You’re committed to fitness not just professionally, but also as a personal lifestyle goal. You’re ready to pass on your enthusiasm and hard-earned knowledge to your clients. Now what?

Be a people person. The trainer-client relationship is all about interpersonal skills. Your clients pay for your full attention during workouts, so give it cheerfully. Stay focused and professional, but friendly.

Demonstrate interest. You already know how important nutrition is to achieving fitness goals, so ask your clients to keep a food diary — and check in on it.

Pay attention. Remember that clients have different goals. Don’t train every client to one standard, or train every client as you train yourself. Guide your client through every step with proper form, because once form fails, injury becomes more likely.

Establish realistic goals. Your client may want to achieve a specific goal, such as losing 20 pounds or simply firming up. Measure progress by recording inches and body weight monthly, and repetitions and resistance at every session.

Give homework. Since your clients may not meet with you every day, give homework your client can work on in between sessions. Make sure you note important adjustments and techniques.

How to become an expert personal trainer

If you want to become an elite personal trainer, start by following these tips:

  • Walk the talk. Good trainers are knowledgeable and approachable. But expert trainers are great teachers and they’re extremely fit. Eat right. Exercise smart. Live a healthy, balanced lifestyle. Clients want motivation, and an out-of-shape trainer is not a good role model.
  • Continue your education. Secure new certifications, try new workouts, and pay attention to health and fitness news. There’s always something new to achieve in fitness. If you’re into powerlifting, try yoga. If you’re a Pilate’s enthusiast, try running. Set a high bar for yourself, and then jump over it.
  • Pay attention to your business. Stay organized with a calendar, and stick to your cancellation policy. Behave professionally at all times — even when you’re not in the gym. Remember, your reputation is your business.

The biggest tip on becoming a great personal trainer

The biggest tip? Determination. Keep trying, and accept you’ll hear “no” more often than you’d like. Stay persistent, and just like in the gym, you’ll get results.