Challenges of Starting a Personal Training Business [2020]

Challenges of Starting a Personal Training Business [2020]

Starting a personal training business is one of the hardest yet most rewarding situations a personal trainer can strive to. Besides having the opportunity to help others, it’s a chance to make a living by doing one of the things you like the most. However, like with any other business, it requires a significant amount of knowledge about the business world.

It’s one thing to work hard to achieve enough profit to make it self-sustainable. But, it’s completely another to learn to manage a business that will survive the initial period of one year. You will need to dive deeper into all aspects of business management if you plan to overcome all the challenges that lie ahead.

Starting a personal training business – what to consider

There are more than a few challenges that await every personal trainer hoping to start its business. From the ability to manage your finance to successfully communicating with your client, many necessities will arise. Usually, you will need to develop an entire set of new skills if you plan to be successful. So, here we’ll address some of the most common challenges of starting a personal training business.

  • Finance management
  • Growth and expansion planning
  • Equipment
  • Location
  • Choosing a niche or not
  • Competition and marketing

You need to learn how to manage your finances

The first and the most fundamental factor when starting your own business is to learn to manage your finance. Even though it’s really important, it’s not just about the starting investment. You also need to know how to find and allocate your funds on the go. Whether it’s investing in further expansion and development, or upgrading current services and equipment.

People often make a mistake of underestimating factors like marketing, for example. Without enough investing in starting marketing, you won’t have a good initial response among clients. You need to reach out and make everyone know you are here. If it’s necessary to pay professionals, do it. If you consider joining one of the quality networks like, the results will definitely justify it.

Another thing is that you never start your business with the exact sum or pour everything in, right away. You will need something as a back up until your business starts making enough profit.

Planning growth and expansion in advance

Many personal trainers fail to see the importance of this when starting their business. Even though you will make plans and procedures ahead, not everything is set in stone. Sometimes, you might even need to implement some colossal changes if things start going south. Plan in advance and be ready to upgrade those plans regularly. Always research, always follow trends, and try to always provide top-quality service to your clients.

Also, scaling your business as a personal trainer is difficult. At first, many trainers don’t need to hire additional help. But, as time goes on, and the number of clients is rising, you will need to consider this option. You can only fit a certain number of clients in a day.

Since that number will probably rise, you will need additional help. Not only because of the profit but to pay enough attention to each client, so your service retains the same level of quality.

Personal trainer giving instructions to one of the clients. - Starting a personal training business
As a personal trainer, you need to pay enough attention to each of your clients.

Challenge with the equipment

There is also a challenge with exercise equipment and other vital components. It’s necessary to evaluate the space and gears equally. If you were working in a chain gym, but now want to start your own business, you need to know them. For the first time, you will need to consider how to completely equip and adjust the designated space.

You need to research how to set flooring, insulation, ventilation, cooling, and similar. Also, where and how to find the right supplier that will give you the best price without compromising quality. Fortunately, besides advice you can get from other colleagues, there are many online resources to start your research.

Customized black and white training studio.
The ambiance is equally important as the equipment.

Finding the right location

When you are working in a chain gym, you don’t need to bother yourself with the location – unless it’s for your preference and convenience. But, once you are starting a personal training business, this becomes crucial. If you are planning to capitalize on personal training, you will need an outstanding location. Your studio needs to be easily accessible, visible, and you will need proper marketing.

However, such locations can be unreasonably expensive, so sometimes you will have to compromise. While the available location may not be perfect, you can make your studio appealing enough so people don’t mind the extra effort needed to get there. Also, having enough parking spaces or a bar nearby can be helpful too. Just be creative when exploring the surroundings, you might save the money.

Choosing a niche or not

This one can be tricky for your startup studio. While in the beginning, you might consider getting as many clients as you can, it might change sooner than you expect. As a starter, you will grow your client base no matter their preferences. But as the business is growing, it might be impossible to progress in all directions at once. You can try with expansion and hiring more staff, a nutritionist, or a doctor and see how it goes.

But, you should be willing to change or even specialize. Of course, that is not easy either because you will need to be careful with demographic groups you are targeting. So, get yourself ready for constant learning and personal development. The entire point is wellbeing and healthy life. You just need to bring it to another level by being aware of health problems, body limitations, various diets, and other requirements of particular groups.

A guy exercising on a bike with a gas mask.
You need knowledge when implementing new techniques.

Competition and marketing

Competition in this branch is, to say at least, fierce. You will need both quality and marketing to succeed. Get your social media sorted out and use them as much as you can. In general, people appreciate recommendations so start growing your contact network. Be ready to always stay on track, constantly learn new things, and try to implement them properly. Simply put, you need to stand out, one way or another.

There are a few strategies that can help you:

  • find a mentor who can help you develop your business
  • join forces with other personal trainers
  • consider using the internet for options like online training
  • join existing networks
  • use a reward system with your clients by providing small gifts and other ways of affirmations for their accomplishments
  • join courses that will expand your set of skills
  • provide additional services like nutrition coaching or massage therapies

Despite the challenges of starting a personal training business, don’t lose your passion and motivation. Don’t expect everything to be smooth and easy because it will not. But if you are persistent and have enough will, the reward is beyond measure. Assisting other people and giving them guidance about how to accomplish something you already did, is hard but a noble cause.

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