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Building Success in the Fitness Industry

If we are evolving, we are growing. Exercise trends come and go, and they certainly have in the fitness industry, but even trends spark something in people.

Sometimes, a passing trend of mini-trampolines or bouncing boots might just inspire a couch potato to get up and try something new. If the trend dies, at least they’ve been exposed to a gym setting, group classes, and a friendly culture. It’s all about getting people from the couch to the gym. Once they’re there, we hope to win them over and make them lifers of the gym or whatever program comes out next.

Building Success in the Fitness Industry

The deciding factor in your success in this industry rests on one question: Are you good, or are you great? Full classes, your name filling the schedule, happy members, and a joyful experience rely on your greatness. The difference between the two often comes down to passion, personality, practice, and perseverance.


Even though fitness is a career cultivated from passion. In an industry that focuses on prevention, we even need to prevent the death of our own career. The reality though, even with all the perks and the awesomeness of getting to change a life, being a personal trainer, consultant, or coaching professional is very demanding on your mind, body, and soul.

Think back on what made you choose this profession in the first place. What made you feel excited when you first started? It’s likely that you still feel the same way you did at first, it’s just that you’ve grown used to these aspects of your career or business.

It’s easy to fall into this trap of tedium and mediocrity– even as a trainer or coach. In the beginning, you are excited about starting to help people reach their goals and change their lives. But after some time, you may fall into a routine, and then one day you wake up and feel like you’re sleepwalking through each day.

When you are burnt out, your productivity can drop dramatically, and this not only impacts your career, but it negatively impacts your team and organization as well. Your creativity will also be affected, so you’re less likely to spot opportunities, and you may find excuses to miss work or take days off sick.


We all come to the table—or in this case, the stage—with our own unique personalities. It’s important to know yours! Are you an extrovert or an introvert?

You can be a successful instructor, even as an introvert, so don’t let your self-realization scare you away from your passion. Just get to know yourself, and then remember to BE YOURSELF. Copycats aren’t authentic; people see right through mimicking. If you’re a bit shy, hone in on other traits that’ll make you shine.

Maybe your empathy and warmth are your key strengths. Members will love that! If you’re loud and crazy, be aware of that energy too. Some people respond well to that, and others feel overwhelmed. It’s important to be yourself while considering things like maintaining a good volume (too quiet or too loud are both problems), use of language (offensive language or jokes are just as problematic as shy commands that don’t convey authority).

Are you there for the members and not yourself? People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care! Showing off your knowledge of muscles or how many perfect burpees you can do won’t win people over. But if you notice a member who did 5 regular pushups after a week of modified, you’ve got a fan for life.

It’s important to note that you won’t always be everyone’s cup of tea, no matter how much you try. Don’t get hung up on that! Variety is the spice of life, so don’t try to win everyone over or take it personally. If you are refining the best parts of yourself and focusing on your strengths in front of each class, your personality will get you far.


Do you know how Jerry Rice got the reputation as the hardest working football player in the NFL? Work ethic! He showed up before everyone, stayed later, and ran his plays so that he could do them in his sleep.

Much of what we do in the fitness industry is muscle memory, from the movements themselves to choreography, to rhythmic timing. It can all be learned if you’re willing to practice.

Do you have the discipline to outwork others? Nothing frustrates clients and classes more than an unprepared trainer, or an instructor who doesn’t cue properly. There’s really no excuse for either. It simply comes down to practice.


Not unlike practice, perseverance is available to us all. How willing are you to stick with challenging choreography or memorizing a routine? How much time are you willing to invest in finding the perfect playlist for your class? Will you stick with your new career through bumps like low class attendance or constructive feedback?

Great trainers, coaches and instructors welcome criticism to improve. Some even videotape themselves to hear words they might overuse or come up with more concise ways to cue. Every training session and class is an opportunity to get better doing what you love, so stick to it, knowing that this is a marathon, not a sprint.

Getting Started

Check out what it takes to start a career in personal fitness training. This is your most affordable and fastest way to become a highly qualified personal trainer.

Is your recertification coming up? Learn more about earning your CEU credits. You can find the full list of CEU courses here.

One of the most popular and fastest ways to get started working with clients while you travel is to coach/train online. You will want to learn more about GymGo. GymGo lets you work with clients and make money in different ways: online, live-streaming virtual training & on-demand training. Use our link to get yourself a free 14-day trial >>>

If you are ready to start your online personal training or coaching business, don’t forget to learn more about our online coaching course. You will also really enjoy this very comprehensive training course called Online Expert Empire.

There is always something exciting about earning a new training or coaching certification and applying that new knowledge of how you train your clients. This also helps you hit the reset button.

NESTA and Spencer Institute coaching programs are open to anyone with a desire to learn and help others. There are no prerequisites.

That’s it for now.

Take action!

NESTA | Spencer Institute

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