Personal Trainer Salary
Job Description for Personal Trainer
Personal trainers are people who work in one-on-one situations with clients who wish to improve their physical fitness and/or athletic abilities. They may work with professional or amateur athletes to help them fine-tune their bodies, but are more often found working with non-athletes who are simply trying to get in better physical condition. Personal trainers may also individualize training procedures for each of their clients.Read More...
It is important that personal trainers assess the wants and needs of their clients, which often involves getting to know their dietary and health history, helping them set realistic short- and long-term goals, and designing specific regimens of exercise. If the trainer is comfortable in the area of nutrition and diet, he/she may also set up parameters in this area or refer the client to a dietitian.
Personal trainers will work with clients by motivating and encouraging them during each session through a designed set of exercises and even weight training. The trainer constantly assesses the client's progress and balances positive encouragement with tough-love motivation as he/she deems applicable. The exercise regimens are typically very client-specific; for example, a client who wants to rehabilitate from an injury after graduating from basic physical therapy may have different goals than a person interested in getting in shape for swimsuit weather.
Personal trainers are typically employed at gyms and private workout clubs, although some may work as freelancers. Generally, they must be certified, which may require post-secondary education in vocational school or even an associate's degree in a relevant field. Trainers must be physically fit themselves in order to lead by example and typically work regular daytime or evening hours in a gym or fitness center. Some trainers may offer at-home training services, the positions for which may require separate education and training.
Personal Trainer Tasks
- Develop rapport with clients to maintain a consistent customer base.
- Provide client fitness evaluations and assessments.
- Design individualized training programs for clients.
- Ensure safe and effective equipment use.
Common Career Paths for Personal Trainer
Many Personal Trainers move into a Physical Therapist role, and folks who currently hold that position report a much higher median income of $67K per year. The most common next step for a Personal Trainer is to become a Fitness Club General Manager or a Director of Fitness & Wellness. The former position pays an additional $3K per year on average, and the latter position pays $2K more per year.
Personal Trainer Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Personal Trainer
Personal Trainers fill the offices of leading firms LA Fitness, YMCA, Anytime Fitness, Inc., 24 Hour Fitness Inc., and Gold's Gym. Employees of Self-Employed can expect to make the most, with the company offering a median salary of $57K; however, pay is widely dispersed from bottom to top, ranging from $30K to $259K. Crunch Fitness, Lifetime Fitness Corporation, and Equinox are a few other companies that offer generous salaries, with Personal Trainers earning around $53K, $52K, or $45K at each firm, respectively.
Relative to other names in the field, compensation is very low at Planet Fitness — the median salary comes to just $23K, less than half of the top paying company's rate. Also approaching the lower end are LA Fitness at $28K, 24Hour Fitness at $31K, and Anytime Fitness, Inc. at $32K.
Popular Skills for Personal Trainer
Personal Trainers report using a large range of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Rehabilitation, Training Program Development, Nutrition, and Sports Nutrition are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 6 percent and 9 percent. Those listing Customer Service as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Sales and Personal Trainer also typically command lower compensation. Most people who know Training also know Health and Wellness.
Pay by Experience Level for Personal Trainer
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Personal Trainers who reported more years of relevant experience also reported higher earnings. Salaries for the relatively untried average out to around $36K, but survey participants with five to 10 years of experience earn a significantly higher median of $47K. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $54K. Personal Trainers who surpass 20 years on the job report pay that isn't as high as one would expect; the median compensation for this crowd sits around $60K.
Pay Difference by Location
For Personal Trainers, busy New York offers a higher-than-average pay rate, 58 percent above the national average. Personal Trainers can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Los Angeles (+30 percent), Houston (+23 percent), San Diego (+20 percent), and Chicago (+9 percent). Falling short of the national average by 19 percent, the area with the worst salaries is Orlando. Below-median salaries also turn up in Phoenix and Indianapolis (19 percent lower and 14 percent lower, respectively).
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