The job interview for a fitness trainer, like in many other professions, consists of several parts. However, remember that the interview itself is already a test of your knowledge and abilities, so before you come to it, you need to thoroughly prepare. Most often, there are only two stages – communication with the interviewer and a written test. In fitness clubs of different levels, the number of stages may differ. The elite-level clubs will evaluate your appearance, ask about your achievements, ask to show your certificates, you will communicate first with the HR manager, then with the fitness manager, and at the end with the fitness director. In a small private fitness club, the owner will communicate directly with you, who can ask just one question – “Is there any experience you got?”. So in this article we will discuss how to get through the interview.
Job interview for a fitness trainer
So, as you might guess, you can only get a job by going through an interview. Directly at the interview, you will first of all need to provide all the necessary documents that are provided for by labor legislation, or which the employer informed you about in advance. In addition to your passport or identification code, you will also be required to provide all diplomas, certificates or other documents confirming your qualifications as a potential fitness trainer. In any case, be that as it may, whether you have certificates or not, the main thing that you need for an interview is your brain, because it often happens that they may not even look at the certificates.
In most cases, the job interview for a fitness trainer will be conducted by either a unit (gym) manager or a fitness director. Keep in mind that the higher the level of the club in which you are interviewing, the more difficult the questions will be, since the requirements for staff in such a club are quite high. At an interview at a mid-range fitness club, it will be easier for you. The essence of the questions or tests that will be given to you, as well as the entire interview as a whole, is to weed out those who clearly do not meet the level of the club at the initial stage. And what kind of questions these will be, it is impossible to say specifically. But for sure, these will be questions from the field of anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, biomechanics and nutritional science.
Also keep in mind that during the job interview for a fitness trainer, the question of proximity to the workplace is often raised. And here you need to understand that if you live close or say that you live close, then most likely you will be asked to appear at work with and without reason at any occasion. Be it on duty shifts, or if someone from the staff forgets the keys to the club or one of the trainers does not come to work, or if a client comes to the club and wants to work with the trainer and there are none of them, etc. In such a situation, no matter what you are doing, you will be called and voluntarily asked to come to the club.
Remember, the interview decides everything. At the interview, you will need to show that you are adequate, positive, team player and good seller. This is essentially all that is required of you. If you demonstrate these qualities, then you may not be asked about any fitness school diplomas and achievements in sports. Often, the employer will make a conclusion about whether to hire you or not by only one answer to the key question for any interview – tell us about yourself. The interview may last an hour, but the employer will get the impression of you in less than 30 seconds.
Something you have to be warned about
So, after a few attempts, and perhaps even after the first one, you have gone through the job interview for a fitness trainer. And before you plunge headlong into the multifaceted and varied profession of a fitness trainer, the employer will most likely explain to you exactly what your working day will look like and what you will be doing while there are no clients in the gym.
So, the initial stage of career of a fitness trainer is a position of a gym instructor. This is essentially a serf, or dumbbell feeder. Its tasks, in addition to those described in the job description, are to collect scattered inventory after the clients, putting the dumbbells and barbells back to the racks, gathering of all kinds of belts, chains, straps and handles left by clients and so on. The instructor also often acts as a loader/lifter when it’s needed to bring into the club or take out any sports equipment or furniture. As a handyman, when it’s needed to adjust the boiler temperature in shower, change the light bulbs in the changing room, hang the shelves at the reception or remove the air conditioner for renovation. The instructor is involved in the most unclaimed events, such as an open day, when you need to conduct personal trainings all day absolutely for free, or a trainer’s day, when you are required to conduct master classes and consultations also absolutely for free. Also, as a rule, all duty shifts are dumped on the gym instructor, when you just need to hang around and keep order in the gym. Regardless of your achievements, titles and medals, you will most likely start your career with such working days. You just need to accept this order of things and go through it, as through the initial stage of career development.
TIP. This article is a logical continuation of a series of articles about the profession of a fitness trainer. For the most complete understanding of the topic, I also recommend you to familiarize yourself with the articles “Who is a fitness trainer“, “Job description of a fitness trainer“, “How to become a fitness trainer“, “Myths about the job of a fitness trainer” and “How to get a job of a fitness trainer“.
It’s not difficult to pass the job interview for a fitness trainer. The main thing that you must have in order to successfully pass it is a strong theoretical base and a well developed soft skills. In my previous articles, you may have learned that an employer values trainers by their selling skills. You don’t need to look like a trainer from the cover. What’s most important is how well your communication skills are developed. So, if you have a certificate of training courses for fitness trainers and you have developed soft skills, this is already enough. Everything else will be just a nice bonus. And I will tell you directly about how a newly minted fitness trainer gets his first client (and then the third, fifth and tenth) in the next article.
Felix Palmer – author of the blog crusfit.com