Personal Trainer Career Path


Personal trainers are fitness professionals that are tasked with the designing of and executing customised exercise programs for the various individuals that they recruit (Möller et al., 2012). The personal trainers are part of the fitness industry and play a crucial role in connecting lifestyle management with consumer culture and health management. In recent years, there has been a steady rise in the number of people around the world who are obese, and overweight, an aspect that has led to spirited campaigns aimed at increasing awareness on healthy living (Neibert, Huot, and Sexton 2010). Physical activity has been extolled by various health practitioners, as a sure means through which people can manage their health, extend their natural lifespan, and keep lifestyle diseases, and other problems, such as obesity at bay (Rosado et al., 2014). Considerable evidence exists that suggests the incorporation of regular exercise, can help improve their cardiovascular health, metabolism, and psychological wellbeing.

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The understanding that physical exercise can be a game-changer to many people struggling with obesity, and health conditions associated with lifestyle choices, has helped increase the attention given to fitness training, and personal trainers (Möller et al., 2012). The development of physical exercise as a field has seen more people around the world embrace regular training as a means to remain fit and healthy. Besides, there have been numerous efforts made by different regulatory agencies, and the government with the intention of improving the access of the general public to facilities, such as gyms, which can help improve the wellbeing of this population (Rosado et al., 2014). Personal trainers have become an integral part of the efforts aimed at encouraging the adoption of exercise routine, taking into consideration the crucial role that the personal trainers play in helping the various trainees’ to stick with their fitness schedules, and meet their health goals (Rosado et al., 2014). The essay will examine the crucial role that personal trainers play in the modern-day society, and the various skills required for one to embrace personal trainer as a career path.

Personal Trainer Career Path

Fitness training is a field that has increased in recent years, as more people around the world have started to embrace a healthy lifestyle. Although the personal training field remains highly unstructured, taking into consideration that there is no single body that governs the activities of the different personal trainers that are operating in the health and fitness industry (Möller et al., 2012). The personal trainers have become crucial pillars of health promotion campaigns aimed at helping individuals to change their perception on issues bedevilling the society, such as obesity, and embrace a healthier life (Chiu, Lee, & Lin 2011). The personal trainers are expected to create a one-on-one fitness program aimed at addressing the specific needs of their clients, as well as guide, and motivate them to achieve their fitness goals (Melton, Dail, Katula, and Mustian 2010). The clients who recruit personal trainers might have a wide range of needs, such as weight gain or loss, as well as the strengthening of their core, demands that the personal trainers are expected to meet by developing a training program that suits those particular needs of the client.

In pursuing a career as a personal trainer it is clear that there is a need for the individual to have passion for fitness, and be willing to continuously learn and engage with the full range of clients that they meet in their professional journey (Möller et al., 2012). For instance, the personal trainers, although passionate, they should be prepared to work with customers from all walks of life, such as old, and the young, as well as healthy, and frail. The passion about healthy living, and happy lives, alone is not an inspiration that can help the trainers accomplish their training goals since it is expected that they should have an understanding of the research that links physical activity with positive health outcomes (Melton et al., 2010). The fact that the current health landscape is plagued by growing health concerns on the lifestyle choices that people make does not guarantee the various individuals keen on pursuing a career as a physical trainer that they will succeed in the long-term (Melton et al., 2010). The prospective personal trainers should be willing to navigate the numerous demands of a career in the field and ensure that they receive the right certifications to start their practice.

The modern-day health and fitness consumers demand comprehensive fitness programs from their trainers, an aspect that makes it essential for the fitness trainers to understand how different body types, health issues, and unique desires held by their customers can be successfully managed (Möller et al., 2012). The trainers must acknowledge the fact that the clients must be willing to do the hard work of exercising regularly, be disciplined enough to observe the demands of the training regimen provided, and ready to change their lifestyle habits (Rosado et al., 2014). The personal trainers play a crucial role in helping their clients set up health and fitness goals, which they intend to achieve through the physical activity regimen. In setting this program, the personal trainer must be able to provide a much-needed exercise-related intrinsic motivation, and self-efficacy in the clients they train.

Personal trainers have a wide array of career options from which they can choose from, and which exist in today’s fitness industry (Melton et al., 2010). The prospective personal trainers should be able to decide whether they want to pursue a fulltime and part-time career option, based on whether they wish to pursue additional interests in the industry. The growing health crisis around the world of obesity and inactivity have led to the emergence of preventive measures aimed at solving the crisis, with many stakeholders and policymakers, recommending fitness training as a potential solution (Melton et al., 2010). The attention given to physical activity as a possible remedy to the obesity menace has seen the personal-training industry enjoy steady growth over the last five years, with the sector been driven primarily by the ever-increasing demand for weight-loss services (Melton et al., 2010). In curbing the high incidence of obesity and overweight, many people in different countries, such as the United States, and the United Kingdom, develop a greater interest in personalised workout programs.

The worsening nationwide health trends have seen more people start enrolling in gyms and other workout clubs spread around the country (Chiu et al., 2011). The surge in demand for personal trainers is one of the factors that have motivated me to consider personal training as a career through which I can be able to pursue a job that will see me do what it is that I enjoy most. The high demand for fitness trainers will see me choose a career as a trainer working as a self-employed person in a health club, or working as an online trainer. According to Rosado et al., (2014), the industry is projected to grow by a rate of 13% over the next decade, with the forecasted growth been attributable to factors such as the rising number of baby boomers that are keen on staying healthy. The increasing concern on childhood obesity around the world and an ageing population that is seeking in-home trainers to help ease the burden of diseases, such as arthritis are also contributing to the high demand for personal trainers.

The decades of research that validate the crucial role that physical activity plays in optimal health and well-being are factors motivating me to pursue a career as a qualified personal trainer (Möller et al., 2012). The ability to become a qualified fitness trainer will help me take up a role in the patient-centred model of care, and help me play an integral part in efforts aimed at addressing the growing health crisis. The training as a fitness professional will help me become poised to offer practical, science-based solutions aimed at treating lifestyle diseases (Chiu et al., 2011). The role of the personal trainers varies from one undertaking to another, but their mandate encompasses: working with a small group, or a single customer, training in a gym or the client’s home, advise their clients on how to change their lifestyle choices and help their clients improve their exercise techniques (Möller et al., 2012). The focus of fitness professionals should be guided by the desire to develop and implement a safe and effective training program that helps improve the lifestyle choices of their clients.

Role and Responsibilities of Personal Trainers

The responsibilities that the personal trainers take upon themselves vary significantly from one work setting to another, although their primary mandate is to make sure that they develop an effective training program for their clients (Möller et al., 2012). In the case, the personal trainer is operating from a gym, or a given facility where they will be carrying out their training exercises, the personal trainers have a responsibility to manage and maintain the fitness floors. Besides, it is also their responsibility to be responsive to the various members enrolled at the site and ensure that they promptly offer assistance if the need arises (Chiu et al., 2011). The overarching goal of a career in fitness training is for individuals to be able to offer safe and correct use of cardiovascular and weight training equipment’s. Therefore, every personal trainer is expected to establish a working relationship with their colleagues and the various clients who enrol into their fitness programs.

The member services who seek the expertise of the personal trainers, expect them to be able to get orientation from their trainers when they start their training program (Möller et al., 2012). The personal trainers have a responsibility to ensure that they communicate to the different clients who seek their input and support on how they can effectively manage their weight and effectively meet their specific training needs. For instance, it is the mandate of the personal trainer to give fitness orientation to all their customers, with the introduction exercise been based on aspects, such as the conducting of client assessment to evaluate their health history, as well as a demonstration of the usage of the different equipment’s available (Neibert et al., 2010). The ability of the personal trainers to give the orientation makes it possible for them to connect with the clients at an individual level, get to know whether they have specific needs, the training regimen they should get, and whether the workout plan should be refined to meet their needs.

The personal trainers also have a responsibility to their clients to maintain an up-to-date workout appointment schedule (Rosado et al., 2014). The advancement in technology has made it possible for the training schedule to be developed and stored electronically, with the fitness trainers receiving timely alerts on which clients they should see at a particular period. The maintenance of this rigorous rime schedule helps ensure that the personal trainers give their clients value for their money, and professionalism is maintained all through their engagement since there is respect, and timeliness (Chiu et al., 2011). The personal trainers have a responsibility to encourage the various members enlisted into their training package to participate in the different health programs available (Rosado et al., 2014). For instance, the personal trainers have a responsibility to recommend group training, or youth recreation activities to their clients if they are available, and they think that their customers might be interested in such undertakings (Neibert et al., 2010). Therefore, the personal trainer has to keep up-to-date with the JCC program offerings, and always communicate the benefits of the different programs to the clients.

The personal trainers have a responsibility to ensure that they attract new clients and maintain their existing customer base, their working environment notwithstanding (Chiu et al., 2011). For instance, it is the responsibility of the personal trainer to develop and sell new packages to their customers, as a means of encouraging them to continue with the regimen and attracting unique individuals to join the program. The personal trainers also have to develop safe and effective training programs that utilise concepts, such as progression and are consistent with the specific goals set by the individual client (Neibert et al., 2010). In setting these goals, it is expected that the personal trainers will only focus on giving training and development programs that are aligned with their education, and expertise, ensuring that the risk of injuries is minimised (Melton et al., 2010). Besides, the ability to only train in specialised areas ensures that the fitness trainer can give their best to the client, and he or she does not feel overwhelmed by the expectations set. Lastly, it is the responsibility of the personal trainer to attend all professional engagements with their clients and meet the set targets.

Skills Audit

The fitness trainers are expected to be certified by different health and fitness regulatory agencies. The failure to meet these qualifications by organisations, such as ACSM, NASM, ACE, and NSCA, means that the fitness trainer might be apprehended and tried in the courts because of violating set regulations and risking the lives of their clients, and theirs (Neibert et al., 2010). Therefore, the personal trainers should get a qualification in the form of a health and fitness degree, or pursue a short professional course that will help give them extensive knowledge and understanding of the industry dynamics. Besides, the educational qualifications, and tests, it is expected that the personal trainer is proficient in the use of latest technologies, such as Microsoft Suite, and have an understanding of the different essential software in the field (Chiu et al., 2011). The ability to understand these technologies ensures that they can keep an up-to-date record of what is happening at their fitness centre, and effectively maintain client schedules.

The personal trainer should also have an up-to-date understanding of the fitness protocols set by the regulatory agencies, and the different violations that might occur. The knowledge of these provisions is essential since it ensures that the trainer does not suffer legal liability, and minimises the risk incidence of engaging in illegal activities that might harm their reputation, and their clients, during the training process (Neibert et al., 2010). Taking into consideration the fact that training is a physical and psychological exercise, it is clear that the personal trainer must be willing to work in a competitive and busy environment, routinely carry, and lift weights of varying sizes, and maintain exceptional physical condition (Chiu et al., 2011). The ability of the physical trainer to meet the demands of their clients necessitates that they be in good shape, and willing to demonstrate some of the training exercises recommended, an aspect that requires a fit person.

Critical Evaluation of Skills

In becoming a personal trainer, it is clear that I should be able to provide my clients with safe and effective physical activities that will encourage the establishment of lifelong healthy behaviour (Neibert et al., 2010). In developing the different training regimen, it is my responsibility as a personal trainer to connect with the client, understand their needs, and ensure that I stimulate a positive change in their exercise perspective. In accomplishing this, I have to gain skills and knowledge about the industry and what makes a given trainer stand out against the others (Chiu et al., 2011). The health and fitness program I am currently undertaking is giving me an in-depth view of what is needed in the industry and how I can align my skills with the needs of the clients.

Besides, the fact that I have exceptional communication skills, get along well with others, and I have high emotional intelligence, makes it possible for me to become an effective trainer (Möller et al., 2012). The ability to communicate, connect, and decipher what others might think, will enable me to educate the clients on what programs to undertake, familiarise myself with the clients, and ensure that I can get along with the customers. The above requirements are crucial in a fitness training landscape since they determine whether one can attract and retain customers (Möller et al., 2012). My understanding of Microsoft programs and the various fitness applications will ensure that I can maintain up-to-date schedules, and recommend the best-suited plan for the different clients I come across.

Summary of Steps to Ensure Success in the Profession

In making sure that I become a qualified personal trainer who can land jobs and clients in the health and fitness industry, there is a need for me to complete the current degree program I am undertaking (Neibert et al., 2010). Besides, there is a need to familiarise myself with professional fitness training requirements, which means I have to take a short course, such as International Fitness Professionals Association program which is certified by NCCA to understand the different training programs that are available and how to implement them satisfactorily (Chiu et al., 2011). The ability to undertake the professional courses on issues, such as first aid, as well as safety, and risk management, will enable me to protect the clients, the stakeholders, and my reputation as a personal trainer in the industry. The fact that the health and fitness industry is growing means that I have to continuously advance my skills and knowledge to reflect the changing market tastes, and preferences (Neibert et al., 2010). Lastly, there is a need to ensure I market myself, which means I have to develop a profile through activities, such as blogging, and networking, an aspect that will ensure I get clients and establish myself in the industry.



Chiu, W. Y., Lee, Y. D., & Lin, T. Y. 2011. Innovative services in fitness clubs: personal trainer competency needs analysis. International Journal of Organizational Innovation (Online)3(3), 317.

Melton, D.I., Dail, T.K., Katula, J.A. and Mustian, K.M., 2010. The current state of personal training: managers’ perspectives. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research24(11), pp.3173-3179.

Möller, A., Roalter, L., Diewald, S., Scherr, J., Kranz, M., Hammerla, N., Olivier, P. and Plötz, T., 2012, March. Gymskill: a personal trainer for physical exercises. In 2012 IEEE International Conference on Pervasive Computing and Communications (pp. 213-220). IEEE.

Neibert, P., Huot, C. and Sexton, P., 2010. Career decisions of senior athletic training students and recent graduates of accredited athletic training education programs. Athletic Training Education Journal5(3), pp.101-108.

Rosado, A., Araújo, D., Mesquita, I., Correia, A., Mendes, F. and Guillén García, F., 2014. Perceptions of fitness professionals regarding fitness occupations and careers: a phenomenological analysis. Revista de Psicología del Deporte23(1), pp.0023-31.