Many trainers enter the fitness industry excited to help people change their lives for the better.
However, in Australia something like 90% of new trainers leave the industry in the first year and I wonder how many of that remaining 10% survive the next few years after that.
It’s certainly possible to make a great living in this industry and impact hundreds, if not thousands, of lives in the process. But it is at times, really tough.
You’ve probably had some really low moments yourself in your journey so far.
Things like clients not showing up, hard earned money spent on marketing that doesn’t work, trainers leaving you, clients moving away, feeling like you don’t have enough time and the list goes on. They are completely normal things to happen in any business but at the time it can seem personal and deflating.
If you’re committed to staying in this game for the long haul, I wanted to help you today by sharing the 3 big traits that I see in trainers that stick around:
1. Passion for fitness
Full time employment isn’t an option for most trainers in the fitness industry simply because there aren’t many of those jobs going around.
Most trainers will end up as contractors and small businesses which personally I love because it means trainers are in control of how much they do or don’t work. It also gives them the freedom to fully bring to life a great fitness solution for people.
On the other hand being self-employed isn’t for everyone. It comes with a set of challenges that most schooling in our lives doesn’t do a good job preparing us for. When you reach these initial challenges either your passion for fitness and helping others will get you through that steep learning curve, or it won’t and you’ll end up leaving to find something else.
I’m guessing that if you’re reading this though that you’re probably in the former group and that a lack of passion is not your problem.
2. Patience when things are slow
The second reason I see trainers leave the industry is because things don’t happen fast enough for them.
For example: It takes too long to get new clients or they’re not making enough money for the hours they are working and they can’t seem to get any momentum in their business.
Usually there is a solution to these frustrations but usually that solution takes 2 things:
- Some grit to stay with the problem long enough to find a solution
- Doing something you haven’t tried yet that’s probably outside of your comfort zone
Which brings me to reason number 3 because what happens when we step outside of our comfort zone?
3. People to talk to when you’re feeling overwhelmed and scared
Running your own business, finding your own clients and teaching people how to do something, each of these is a scary thing by itself and as a trainer with a fitness business you are doing all three.
Because of this you will constantly be bumping up against your own beliefs about what you can and think you can’t do. What is and isn’t possible. What is and what isn’t safe.
When this happens, fear will try to keep you safe by getting in your ear and telling you to just keep doing things the same.
In that moment, the best thing to do is to talk to someone else who you trust and who gets what you’re going through. Brené Brown calls them other people in the arena. ie. other people also doing scary sh!t.
I would not be in business today if it wasn’t for my wife, friends who run businesses and mentors because when I’ve felt shaky, they’ve helped me see my strength.
What to do?
If you’ve read this far then I’m guess that despite the frustration and fear that you’re still hanging in there. That’s great! Please give yourself a quick pat on the back. Here’s something I’d like to invite you to:
Next week I’m running a free masterclass to help you find success with your fitness passion.
In the 1 hour class I’ll go through how to build up numbers in your sessions and a create a business you’re proud of. Plus, I’ll teach you how to make sure you stay in the game long enough to get to where you want to be.
Again, it’s completely free. Just bring a notepad and pen because you’ll want to take a lot of notes!
Register here so I know you’re coming: Fitness Is My Passion Masterclass
Kyle Wood created Bootcamp Ideas in 2010 when he was hunting around on the internet for workout ideas. He ran a successful bootcamp in Victoria, Australia and spends his spare time managing this site, adventuring (or lazying) with his wife and find new ways to make bootcamps even better.
Kate Cairnduff says
Great article thankyou
I can proudly say I’m happily into my 10th year as a small business personal trainer. Everything you have said I have been through… and yes mentors are the golden ticket!!!!
Kyle Wood says
So much experience Kate! Any mentors you’d like to give a shout out to?