How much does a fitness trainer earn? This is the most popular question among applicants for the vacancy of a trainer in a fitness club, both among newcomers and even more experienced trainers. Often it’s the question of financial security that is decisive in choosing this profession. At the same time, even an experienced trainer always strives to increase his monthly income as much as possible. So we will talk about how to do this and how much money he can make.
This article is a logical continuation of the two previous ones: “How does a fitness trainer earn” and “Which way does a fitness trainer earn”, in which I talked about what a value proposition is, what a target market is and how you can meet the needs of the market with your goods or services. In this article, I will propose a basic empirical formula in which you can put your numbers and determine how much you specifically in your city, in your club and under your own working conditions can earn in a month.
In order to find out how much a fitness trainer earns, first of all, it is necessary to divide his ways of earning in two categories: active income and passive income. Literally, they mean the following. Active income is a way of earning in which the trainer is involved constantly, for example, every day or every other day, from morning to evening, or in some part of the day. For most trainers, this way of earning is the one and only. Passive income is a way of earning that brings you money even without your direct participation. You can invest money somewhere, make an online store, sell advertising, time or place on your website or channel and not only. To create a passive source of income, you need the desire, time, effort, money and people who will help to run all this. Since this process is long, multifaceted and more difficult to implement, very few trainers have such a source of income. A passive source of income can be created on the basis of almost any of the eight forms of value that I’ve mentioned in the article “Which way does a fitness trainer earn” (link above). Today we will talk about what interests everyone – how much does a fitness trainer earns directly from coaching activities.
How much does a fitness trainer earn
Rather, let’s reformulate a bit – how much a fitness trainer can earn. So it will be more correct. The main income of a trainer is sales of his personal trainings. We don’t take income from sales of training programs and nutrition plans, because these numbers are always very inconstant. Let us first derive an empirical formula and carry out basic calculations of monthly earnings under specific working conditions. Let’s take the trainer “X”, who lives and works in a certain city of about a million inhabitants, and this is not the capital, but at the same time this region is not too distant from it. He works in a mid-range fitness club and sharing shifts with other trainers. His shift is Mon / Wed / Fri from 8 am to 3 pm. The cost of one personal training, for example, $10. The cost of one hour of the shift – $1. He works with the club according to the 50/50 scheme, that is, he divides the profit from all conducted trainings by half.
On average, one personal training takes +/- 1 hour of time. And this means that with a successful scenario, that is, with full employment, for 7 hours of a work shift, you will have to conduct about seven workouts and earn 7 * 10 = 70/2 = $35 + $7 for the duty shift = $42 per day. Three shifts per week = 42 * 3 = 126 dollars * 4 weeks = 504 dollars per month. And I repeat that this happens only in the ideal case, when the trainer busy all the hours, he spends his shift with seven different clients without the break and within a month no client ever misses a single workout.
Now let’s imagine that our trainer got a second job at another club, more expensive (high-end) or cheaper (low-end), in shifts at Tue / Thu / Sat from 15 to 22. In the first case, if the cost of his training is, say, $20, and the cost of 1 hour of duty shift, for example $2, then in the same ideal case, with full employment and a 50/50 scheme, he will earn 7 * 20 = 140/2 + 14 = 84 dollars * 3 shifts per week = 252 dollars * 4 weeks = $1008 per month. In the second case, if the cost of his training will be equal to, say, $5, and the cost of 1 hour of duty shift is $0.5, then ideally it will look like this: 7 * 5 = 35/2 + 3.5 = 21 * 3 per week = 63 * 4 weeks = 252 dollars per month. If we add up the income from two jobs, then by the end of the month, in the first case (average + high-end club), the trainer will earn 504 + 1008 = 1512 dollars. In the second case (average + low-end club), his income will be equal to 504 + 252 = 756 dollars. This is the income only from trainings, excluding sold training programs, nutrition plans, as well as all sorts of bonuses and percents from the sales of additional club goods or services.
Keep in mind that the more or less populated your region is, the more expensive or cheaper are personal trainings with a trainer. And in the capital prices may differ dramatically from the distant regions. Also a big role in earnings is played by the level of the club: low-end, mid-range or high-end. If you want to know how much does a fitness trainer earns, your task is to find or select the club in which you want to work, go there and as a visitor just ask the administrator at the reception, or better directly from one of the trainers – how many shifts per week he works, how long this shift lasts, how much one personal training costs and how much his duty hours costs. These are the four parameters that you need to calculate the empirical formula for your “ideal” income. Knowing these parameters, you can estimate how much at least approximately you can earn in a month, due to the conditions described above. Moreover, this formula is good because you can put in it any number of clients: one, three, five or ten or even more. With it, you can calculate how much you can earn in a month if you have only one customer. Who knows, maybe from these humble numbers you will have to start your career.
TIP. Such detailed information about the hours, shifts and their cost that you need may not be given out right away, that’s why in the article “How to become a fitness trainer”, I told you how to get this information. Either find among your friends a trainer who will share this information, or buy a membership in the particular club, get acquainted with the trainers and gradually get the information that you are interested in. This is actually not such a big secret, as many people think.
Ways to increase your income
Now let’s see how much a fitness trainer earns, if he can’t or doesn’t want to look for a second job. Below I will give five ways to increase your income as soon as possible.
- Method number 1. Take special courses. It can be said in another way – invest money in your development. The more you learn and educate, the more your value as a specialist and this in turn gives you the opportunity to increase the cost of your personal trainings. The fact that the cost of your personal trainings now is 10 dollars doesn’t mean at all that this price will always be the same. Once in half a year, take advanced training courses and after receiving the next certificate, increase the cost of your services. So you will earn more.
- Method number 2. Take additional clients with whom you will work, even after the end of your shift, or on other days. Among the trainers there is an unspoken rule: “On the shift of one trainer, another shouldn’t hook the clients”. However, if on your shift you met a client who’s willing to buy personal trainings from you, but only after 6 pm, and your shift ends at 3 pm, there is nothing to worry about. You just come to the club on the agreed day and time and work with “your” client. Which trainer is now on the duty shift doesn’t play a role.
- Method number 3. Take extra shifts. This option is only possible if there are not enough trainers in the club. Either one of them went to the hospital, or asked to be replaced, or was fired and the manager hasn’t yet found a replacement for him. Everything is simple here, additional shifts means additional clients and additional paid hours. Both on the main and on the additional shifts, your task is not to stand still – but to approach clients and communicate with them. Clients are generally shy and prefer the trainer to approach them first.
- Method number 4. Promote additional goods or services of the club. It can be literally anything you want your fitness club to sell. Agree with the management the amount of interest that you will receive from each sale and earn extra money on it. Most often, this principle operates a fitness bar. From each sold unit of sports nutrition trainer receives a percentage. So earns both the club and the trainer. In the same way, on a percentage of sales, you can promote the services of a massage room, solarium, sauna, and even other trainers.
- Method number 5. Create some kind of your own product or offer and sell it within the club. It can be the fitness trainer training courses (but only experienced trainers should do this). Recently, fitness tours combined with a trip to the sea have been very popular. It can also be for example a 3-month program of mass gain or weight loss. You can also organize a “bench press tournament” or “pull-up contest” with membership fees and prizes. But just remember that in each of these options should always be included your profits.
The main principle of working with clients
Since the trainer’s job is to train people, no matter how trite it may sound, the main source of income for him is the clients, and the main thing on which any trainer earns is sales of his personal trainings. All five ways to earn more from the previous paragraph bring you income only through the clients. Thus, how much a fitness trainer earns depends on his ability to find and retain clients, and here’s why.
In marketing, there is such a thing as CLTV (Client lifetime value) – it denotes the cumulative earnings received during the entire period of cooperation with the client. Lifetime literally translates as “lifelong”. By this we understand how much you can earn from one client, if he uses your services for the rest of his life. This term clearly demonstrates why retaining clients is much more efficient than finding new ones every single time. Let’s take an example.
The trainer has a client who buys personal trainings three times a week. If one training costs 10 dollars, then it is 30/2 = 15 dollars a week * 4 = 60 dollars a month. If you can keep a client for a year, then with a rough calculation, he will bring you a total of 60 * 12 = 720 dollars. Now imagine that he spent only a month with you and either went to another trainer or stopped trainings altogether under any pretext. Firstly, you have missed the source of income in the long term, secondly, you need to urgently look for a new client to replace the old one, and this may take time during which you will actually lose money. For such a case, there is also a special term. It is called – loss of profits. In this case, this is what you could earn if you kept the client. It brings us to the conclusion, that if you want to earn more, then don’t scatter your clients, but on the contrary – keep them, be friends with them, get acquainted with their families and they will become your finest admirers.
Summing up, it is absolutely possible to say the following. How much does a fitness trainer earn, depends primarily on his ability to work. As they say – when you have a desire, both time and strength will be found. Even if you have the desire, and there’s no time or strength – pay attention to passive ways of earning that don’t require your participation or presence. Spend once your efforts, time and money to create some value that will generate income without your active participation, and then only reap the benefits of your work. Ultimately, if passive income becomes more profitable than the active income, it will be possible to retire from work altogether and take up some other favorite business. But it will be later, and in the beginning in any case, you will have to work hard a lot. Your earnings always depend on you.
Author – Felix Palmer