For people who love exercise, physical fitness, healthy living, and teaching, becoming a personal trainer is a great career choice. Personal trainers need to be enthusiastic, persuasive, and persistent; it's not enough to want to look great yourself, you have to motivate others to do so, too.
Personal trainers can work in a variety of employment situations and environments. Some personal trainers are paid a salary by a gym or health club while others take on individual clients and make home visits. Some personal trainers are employed by companies that offer wellness services to their employees and work under the supervision of a wellness nurse. If you crave variety and flexibility, working as a personal trainer can be very rewarding.
The daily activities of a personal trainer can include any of the following:
Teaching an aerobics class
Developing a weight training program for a client
Showing a client how to perform an exercise correctly
Accompanying a client on a training run and motivating him or her to excel
Helping a client determine daily caloric requirements and helping develop a training menu
Showing a client how to make a healthy breakfast smoothie
The activities of a personal trainer depend mostly on their work environment and the clientele they acquire. Some trainers work exclusively with body builders while others prefer to work with nutrition educators to help clients manage their weight.
Personal Training Job Education Requirements
The field of personal training isn't regulated by a particular body, so the education requirements for personal trainers aren't codified anywhere. At a bare minimum, personal trainers should be certified in CPR. Those who want to work with a health club or corporate wellness center should consider an associate or bachelor's degree in exercise science, physical education, or other health-related field. Certification by one of the main certifying bodies such as the American Council on Exercise or the American College of Sports Medicine is a good idea as well.
Personal Training Job Market
The job market for personal trainers is expected to grow 13 percent over the next decade according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is about average for all careers in the United States.
Personal Trainer Job Salary Information
The salary range for personal trainers is extremely varied. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary is $15.25 per hour, while the pay scale in 2012 according to CNN Money was between $56,000 and $120,000 for certified, full-time trainers.