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Starting Your Own Business in the Fitness Industry–A Guide

In the past decade, people’s attitude towards fitness has changed. Almost everyone these days is involved in some form of fitness to keep themselves in top shape. As a result, the fitness industry has grown quite a lot. Many new businesses are thriving and offering custom services to clients. Despite COVID, the global health industry is projected to grow steadily in the coming years.

This gives perspective to certified personal trainers who wish to start their own fitness business. But starting a business is easier said than done. There are a lot of key factors that need consideration to build a successful business. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

Do Your Research

As an entrepreneur, you’ll need to do a lot more work than regular businesses to get your idea off the ground. This means lots of extensive research, looking up niches, and predicting the next popular trends. Luckily for you, a lot of information will be available on the internet. You can look up business reports of already established companies to understand the industry trends.

Aside from that, you’ll need to figure out the legal stuff that needs to be taken care of before you can start your business—for example, registration, bank accounts, and investments. If you’ve got the finance, you can hire a financial advisor to help you set aside budgets and plan your business.

If not, you can make use of the countless free sources on the internet to help you out. Keep in mind that the free sources are usually generic. If you want a customized plan, you’ll need to spend some money.

Identify Your Target Market And Get Certifications

The first thing you need to do is figure out your target market. Even in the fitness industry, there are a lot of specific certifications and services that clients look for. This is why it’s important to determine where the majority of your clients would come from. You’ll need to take your qualifications into considerations as well because you can’t offer medical fitness services if you’re only registered as a personal trainer.

If you want to make your mark in an upcoming niche, you’ll need to enroll in courses and get the relevant certifications. On the other hand, you can hire people if you want to capture an upcoming niche. Another thing to keep in mind is the licenses. A lot of fitness niches these days require licenses in addition to proper certifications. For example, in the field of medical fitness and senior fitness, you’ll need the Medical Fitness Facility Certification before you operate your own facility.

Identify Your Competition

This is the most important thing a lot of new entrepreneurs forget is to research their competitors. For wellness and fitness businesses, the one main advantage is that if the competition isn’t in your area, you can somewhat ignore them. If you’re going to be an in-person business, your competition will be the businesses operating in your area that cover the same niche as you. But as we all know, after Covid, everyone is rushing to gain a dedicated online presence. AS a result, your competition can come from anywhere in the country.

You’ll need to study their business model and understand how you can compete against them and create a better service. For example, if your business will offer hybrid training sessions while the competition only has online sessions, you can gain leverage by marketing to the local customers. Or you can offer personalized services that will give clients better results at the same time. The options are many, but it all depends on your approach and business plan.

Create A Business Plan

After doing your market and competitor research, the next step is to develop a business plan to put your findings into action. Business plans essentially follow the same pattern regardless of the nature of the business. These plans are extensive and involve in-depth market research, competitor’s services and analysis, plan for marketing your services, plan for deriving sales, and financial projections. You need to describe all of the mentioned things in great detail so that potential investors will take you seriously.

This is especially important if this is your first business venture and you don’t have any prior experience in setting up or running a business. Because investors only invest their money when they find someone serious and credible, which is difficult if you’re starting out. These metrics and in-depth industry research would strengthen your case, and the financial projections would ensure the investors that your business will thrive in the long run.

Invest In A Good Insurance Policy

Now that you’ve got the basic things done, you’ll need to start worrying about how you’ll offer the services and where you would offer them. For example, if your business provides offline training, you’ll need a facility that can accommodate clients and has the relevant equipment. As an entrepreneur, you won’t be able to purchase such a facility unless you’ve got a lot of money. Instead, you’ll need to lease it for a period of time. Even with the lease, you’ll need a financial guarantor that’ll take responsibility if you’re late on your payments.

For that, you’ll need liability insurance. This insurance will help you protect your personal assets from the business ones in case your business runs into issues. It’ll keep you from going into debt and losing your personal assets. Many companies offer liability insurance plans at an affordable rate. But don’t go for the one that’s the cheapest; contact a few companies and go through their quotes. Figure out which one’s the best option for you, even if it’s a bit pricey.

After that, you’ll need to figure out the insurance of your equipment in case there’s an accident. Gym equipment costs a lot, especially if they’re some specialized medical equipment, and often clients are not careful with their usage and can damage such equipment. You can’t blame the clients as it will show poorly on your business ethics. The next best thing is to get the equipment insured. That way, if there’s an accident, the insurance company will pay for the damages.

Get An Employer Identification Number (ENI)

In order to file taxes and avoid penalties, you’ll need an ENI. ENI is also useful in opening a bank account in your business’s name, taking out loans, speeding up the process, and establishing credit for the business. The ENI can be obtained online by registering through the IRS. After registration, you’ll get your Employer Identification Number within minutes. Keep in mind that if your business is owned solely by you, you won’t be required to get the ENI.

However, if you’re opening your business with partnerships, then you’re legally required to obtain an ENI. Even if your business is operating as a sole proprietorship, it’s a good idea to get an ENI number for the benefits mentioned above. It’ll also help you establish your business as a separate entity and make it easier for you to expand it.

Have An Interactive Website

The first step in giving your business a face has a website. Many new business owners go through all the legal stuff and don’t pay much attention to having an online presence. Everything these days is online; if potential clients want to find a fitness training service, the first thing they’ll do is look online.

If you don’t have a website, chances are you’ll lose good business. An important thing in creating a website is to make it interactive and user-friendly. Many businesses fail to get customers because their website is cluttered, and there’s no proper information regarding their services. These businesses only focus on getting their contact information out so clients can reach them.

You have to understand the dynamic of how things work these days; people want to know as much as they can about a business before they set up an appointment. Meaning, putting out your contact information won’t do your business any good. Instead, try showing your services with descriptions, pictures, and videos to give the clients an understanding of your business. That way, clients will be compelled to get in touch with you, and you’re more likely to get business.

Install The Right Equipment

If you decide to market yourself as an in-person or hybrid trainer, you’ll need to invest in some workout equipment to facilitate your clients. The equipment you’ll need will depend on your services. For example, if you’re offering yoga classes in the park, you’ll need to make sure that all your clients have a yoga mat and relevant yoga equipment like an exercise ball or a resistance band. Having equipment will also make a good impression on the clients, and they’ll consider your services more credible, which is what you need to spread word of mouth to other potential customers.

Similarly, if you’re gearing up to launch a full-blown gym service, you’ll need proper weights, treadmills, stationary bicycles and other exercise equipment that satisfies the needs of all of your clients. Besides getting the equipment, you’ll need to get it insured. Be sure to look up different insurance policies for different pieces of equipment. If the equipment is for medical use, it’ll be a lot harder to repair in case of any damages. So you’ll need to select the policy carefully.

Invest In Online Training Platforms

Being an in-person only or online only trainer will limit your clients. What you need is to offer both services so you can reach local as well as out-of-city clients. But with online programs, you’ll need to do extra research. How will your programs run? Will you offer a bundled-up program for a fixed price, or will your sessions be interactive and delivered through an online learning system?

If you choose the latter, you’ll need to invest in a Learning Management System (LMS) to deliver your lessons and track your client’s progress. On top of that, you’ll need to develop a proper interface so your clients can signup and use the LMS easily.

Brand Image And Marketing

For an online business, brand image is the most important thing. You may have noticed that many brands have great products and services, yet they fail to gain many customers. While some have mediocre services but a high influx of clients. That’s all in the brand image. The more your market your service, the more audience you’ll reach. But it isn’t just about marketing; you’ll need the audience to relate with you. For that, you’ll need to make demographic-specific campaigns to get the attention of the audience.

Social media is a great way to reach youngsters and young adults, but what about the older population? Well, some of them use social media, while some of them don’t. So, you’ll need to employ new and old-school marketing tactics to reach them. This means extensive social media marketing as well as email marketing.

Expand Your Expertise

This step comes a little later. Once you’ve established a sizable clientele, you’ll need to expand your services to get more clients and keep the existing ones interested. There is two way to do this; one, you can enroll in other certifications like a medical or senior fitness course, like the ones offered by W.I.T.S. Education and become a certified instructor in these fields. Or you can hire more crew members to give more personalized training. For an online business, it’s easy for you to get further certifications and expand your services.

However, for in-person training, that’s next to impossible. You’ll have new clients and existing ones coming in expecting personal training. You won’t be able to do this alone, so in this scenario, it’s better to hire more experts.

Are you looking for a certification that’ll help you manage your fitness training business? Take a look at W.I.T.S. Education’s Fitness Management Course. This course is specifically designed for people who wish to run their own business in the fitness industry. Besides that, at W.I.T.S., we offer many courses related to fitness training such as Personal Training Course, Health Management Course, and Senior Fitness Course. Each of our courses is designed keeping in mind the latest developments in the industry. Check out our top courses.

Apart from that, college students can take advantage of our NCCA accreditation system and earn credits for their courses toward their college degrees. If you want to learn more, feel free to contact us.

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4 Ways to Attract New Clients

Here are four ways you can attract new clients

Clients come and go – as a certified fitness trainer, the trick in keeping your business going strong and your client list high to make consistent efforts to attract new clients. You must expand your skill set to attract new clients, from continuing education online fitness trainer programs to specialized personal health training programs.

If you put in a great deal of effort, it will become easier to have clients lining up for your services. Learn how to market yourself effectively. Here are four ways to attract new clients and use your passion for fitness to improve the lives of others.

 

Invest In Social Media

Digital is the best way to go. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter linked with your website will allow you to target the right type of audience. Email campaigns or social media campaigns work best to build a higher client ratio but make sure you have contact info or chat windows for them to engage you.

If you’re just beginning your journey as a personal trainer, then W.I.T.S offers in-person and online options for all learning best practices. You can explore multiple personal trainer certification options and sign up for webinars as per your need.

 

Prove Your Value As A Certified Personal Trainer

World Instructor Training Schools, W.I.T.S., Personal Trainer is the only organization to receive NCCA accreditation in the health trainer programs’ with practical skills and theoretical knowledge. There is no replacing hands on skills and mastering them to have long time success

Start your health and fitness career with the industry’s most comprehensive certifications. Through W.I.T.S, you can become certified as a personal trainer, group fitness trainer, older adult trainer, and much more.

 

Offers Courses in Universities and Colleges

Seeking out to offer courses in universities and colleges is a great opportunity to network and build your professional resume. W.I.T.S. teaches health, fitness, and overall wellness in educational institutions because this is a health occupation where you change people’s lives.

W.I.T.S offer fitness certification courses and certification testing locations all over North America. Gain knowledge at the largest college and university-partnering network in the fitness industry.

 

More Than Certification: Education/ Training Courses

Attract your clients based on the other services you offer apart from fitness. Establish expectations of what customers will experience from your variety of services.

W.I.T.S offers much more than just certifications to its clients. A higher learning standard is maintained and followed to ensure your career skills are effective and safe for clients and long term success.

If you’re looking for a personal fitness trainer certification or a group exercise instructor certification, W.I.T.S has got you covered. Contact us today to start your journey into the fitness industry!

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3 Fitness Industry Technology Trends Fitness Trainers Should Incorporate

Fitness technology is transforming the industry

If you wish to keep up with the fitness industry, you have to be aware of the latest trends in technology. Ever since COVID-19, people have become curious about their fitness routines and overall wellness.

The combination of fitness technology and digital fitness has been reshaping our industry for some time now. This is not just from the consumer (gym-goer) but also the supplier (gyms/ personal trainers). Gym-goers now are more interested in their workouts, eating habits, mindfulness, and quality.

Here we look at top three fitness technology trends that fitness trainers should incorporate in their programs.

 

Wearables All The Way!

The fitness sector’s top trend of 2020 that has made its way into 2021 has been wearables. Fitness freaks and gym-goers are more inclined towards these because of the detailed health information collected by these devices.

In addition, these devices give fitness explorers a chance to design their workouts so that they address certain concerns and meet their wisely identified fitness goals. There has been a large emphasis on at-home fitness where the users pair their virtual workouts with several devices such as smartwatches, fitness trackers, etc. When paired with artificial intelligence, the data collected from these fitness wearables opens up a world of possibilities for the industry.

If you have a passion for fitness, you can have the perfect opportunity to turn it into your dream career with W.I.T.S.

 

Virtual Fitness Is Indeed A Reality!

Virtual reality is not just a way to navigate the challenges presented by COVID-19 but is one of the best trends of the post-COVID world. Several mobile apps and social media platforms provide records of virtual workouts and remote coaching services.

Virtual fitness opens up a range of opportunities for fitness enthusiasts, such as planning training programs and encouraging people to stay fit at their pace at economical prices. It is without a doubt an exciting dimension in the fitness industry. This has helped people with their workouts immensely and allows them to work out for longer periods.

If you’re a fitness professional looking to improve your capabilities, at W.I.T.S, you get to experience high-quality health and fitness education workshops to improve your capabilities.

 

Smart Equipment

Wearables aren’t the only devices that can track your progress; say hello to smart fitness exercise machines that can provide clients a never experienced before work out.

Having this technology in your gym is a plus as it gives real-time feedback to the client, boosts their workout regime along with increasing a positive word about your gym or studio. It will give the clients a new reason to visit your studio.

These cloud-connected pieces of equipment enable the trainer to keep track of their client’s training progress and keep the staff updated about the maintenance of the machines. Become a certified exercise instructor with W.I.T.S.

W.I.T.S is the first fitness industry to get NCCA Accreditation in testing the written core knowledge and practical skill competencies. Turn your passion into your dream profession and start your health and fitness career today! Contact us.

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Why Fitness Certifications Matter, and how to get the most out of yours

Every year, thousands of college-bound high school seniors compete for a limited number of spots at prestigious schools, hoping to leverage that prestige to get a high-paying job upon graduation. Similarly, thousands of aspiring personal trainers and group exercise instructors become certified each year, hoping their credentials will open doors to a gratifying and lucrative fitness career.

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But in both cases, the name of your accredited institution only takes you so far. Once you land your dream job, you had better hope that your education prepared you to perform the day to day tasks your position requires.

Bridging the Experience Gap

One of the biggest challenges to beginning a new fitness career is the experience gap. Employers are rarely willing to take a chance on a new hire who needs hours of training before they can step into their work role. In the case of fitness jobs like personal trainer or group exercise instructor, it is not enough to be passionate about fitness. You need to be able to translate that passion into useful skills that help your clients and students safely reach their goals.

Most online certifications, even those whose reputations hold some clout, provide you with plenty of head knowledge, but when it comes to practical skills, you are on your own.

Practical skills needed to be an effective fitness professional include:

  • Experience conducting health history interviews and needs assessments
  • Experience conducting fitness assessments
  • Knowledge about fitness equipment and how to adjust it for each client
  • Ability to assess and correct alignment and exercise mechanics for a variety of fitness levels and body types
  • Knowledge of programming, to create effective balanced exercise sessions or group exercise classes
  • Communication skills for group exercise and personal training

If your fitness certification does not provide you with practical skills training, you will face a huge learning curve when it comes to job performance, and most fitness employers do not provide on-the-job training. They are looking for confident experienced employees who can step into the job on day one and perform like pros.

What Gym Managers Say About Fitness Certifications

To get the employers’ perspective on hiring and certification, we spoke to some managers and business owners of local fitness clubs and studios. We asked them about what they look for in a new hire, and the importance of certification, Here is what they had to say:

“Certification in general is important, but we also look at the certifying body. There are certain certifications that demand in-depth knowledge, and others that are basically diploma mills. Even if you have an exercise science degree, your choice of certification says a lot about your commitment to your profession.” -Tiffany, Fitness Director

“We have been hiring W.I.T.S. certified trainers for years, because they not only know about the science of fitness, but they have been trained to perform on the job. That saves us money in the long run, because the employee is more likely to succeed on the job and become a long-term staff member. Training and turnover are two big costs for any employer, so we are very selective when it comes to new hires.” -Scott, General Manager

“It’s one thing to be into fitness and know how to put together a workout for your friends. It’s another thing to be able to work with unfit clients of any age and any body type, and help them reach their goals. A lot of new trainers do okay with younger clients who just have a few pounds to lose, but they don’t know what to do with, say, an older person or someone with serious health issues or disabilities. We love W.I.T.S. trainers and instructors because they come from diverse backgrounds, and they know how to work with a broad range of clients.”-Stacey, Fitness Studio Owner

Getting the Most from Your Fitness Certification

If you are thinking about becoming a certified fitness professional, ask yourself these questions before selecting your certification program:

  • Does the certification program include lectures and workshops taught by qualified instructors, or is it all self-study?
  • What subjects does the certification course cover? Does it include foundational science, programming, injury prevention, special populations and communications skills?
  • Is there a hands-on practical skills element that teaches hard job skills?
  • Is the certification program accredited by educational bodies like NCCA, American Counsel on Education, IACET and other recognized organizations?
  • Does the certification program provide opportunities for internship and job placement?
  • Does the certification program offer relevant continuing education?

If you are already certified, think about how you can leverage your certification to make the most of your fitness career:

No More Excuses

Getting W.I.T.S. certified is one of the best career decisions you can make for a bright and lucrative future as a fitness professional. Our easy payment plans and options for live or online learning eliminate time and money constraints, and our friendly staff is here to support you every step of the way. So what are you waiting for? Stop making excuses and step into your future as a W.I.T.S. certified fitness professional TODAY!

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Successful Sales Strategies! Share Your Secrets!

Each year, W.I.T.S. conducts surveys with all of our alumni and in particular, students who have completed our Personal Trainer Certification. It’s great to find out how they are doing in their career and to see so many being successful. However, we started to notice that some were leaving the profession. When we investigated further, we found that some of the most dedicated fitness professionals had to leave the industry because they were unable to earn a living. More specifically, they were uncomfortable with “sales” and asking clients for money, contracts, and business.

So, for July, we are going to focus on Successful Sales Strategies. After reviewing our Introduction to Sales Fundamentals, Lead Generation and Prospecting Strategies, and Managing the Buying Cycle courses from our Sales Institute, I came up with key themes and tips that are essential to successful sales.

Strategy #1: Sales requires follow-up and follow through! One isolated conversation, phone call, or email is not going to get you clients. Regardless of whether a prospect shows interest in the first conversation, it is important to keep in touch, check-in, and stay on their radar. Who knows when they may change their mind? Perhaps you can help them do so!

Strategy #2: Ask the right questions and LISTEN to the answers! Too often we are so eager to tell prospective clients about ourselves and what we do, that we fail to find out about them and their needs! Ask questions—listen to the answers—and then show how you can help them achieve their goals.

Strategy #3: Show EMPATHY! When a prospect expresses interest in your services, they have some sort of need or concern and need your help. Lifestyle change and behavior change are difficult. Health issues can be challenging. The fitness club may be comfortable for you, but others may be intimidated, scared, or uncomfortable. Demonstrating empathy for your prospective client will help build a relationship and show that you genuinely care about them!

Sales are really about relationships and most of us pursued a career in fitness because we value relationships and genuinely want to help people! But, like anything else, there’s a right way and a wrong way to “sell.”

So, what successful sales strategies do you follow? Please share YOUR tips and ideas!

I look forward to hearing from you!

Amy

Is your certification getting ready to expire? Do you need your CECs for your renewal? Email us at ogray@witseducation.com to find out about our new online courses and FREE course promotion.