Personal trainers work with clients to improve their health and fitness.
Salary range: £14,000 to £22,000
How to become a personal trainer
You can get into this job through:
- a college course
- an apprenticeship
- applying directly
You could take a college course to help you get into this career. Courses include:
- Level 2 Diploma in Instructing Exercise and Fitness
- Level 3 Certificate in Personal Training
- 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
You could do a personal trainer advanced apprenticeship.
You’ll usually need:
- 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship
You can apply to become a personal trainer or set up your business, if you’ve got qualifications and experience as a fitness coach or gym instructor.
It’s usual to have a certificate in first aid that includes cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
You can find out more about careers in exercise and fitness from the National Register of Personal Trainers.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- sensitivity and understanding
- the ability to work well with others
- to enjoy working with other people
- the ability to work on your own
- customer service skills
- knowledge of teaching and the ability to design courses
- physical fitness and endurance
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
Restrictions and requirements
You’ll need to:
- pass enhanced background checks, as you may be working with children and vulnerable adults
What you’ll do
On a daily basis you might be:
- setting short-term and long-term goals and planning programmes to reach them
- educating, motivating and coaching clients to help them follow their programmes safely and effectively
- giving advice on health, nutrition and lifestyle changes
- helping clients with their workouts
- checking and recording clients’ progress, using methods like measuring heart rate and levels of body fat
You could work at a fitness centre or at a client’s home.
Your working environment may be outdoors some of the time.
Career path and progression
You could take further instructor courses to learn new skills to offer clients, like yoga, pilates, nutrition or aerobics.
With further training, you could also work with people recovering from illness or who have medical conditions.