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The Fitness Zone

Starting a Career in Personal Training at Any Age
January 15, 2010

Are you sick of your normal day job? Always wanted to be a personal trainer? No matter what career you choose, many people still have the belief that there are certain careers you can only pursue at a certain age. As well as this, fulfilling a dream to become a personal fitness trainer may seem like an unreachable goal after a certain age, due to its high levels of required activity. However, it's totally possible and an admirable ambition, no matter what age you get started. It’s never too late!

You don’t need to look any further than the great Jack La Lanne, the great-great grandfather of modern exercise techniques, to realize that age need not be a liability when it comes to staying fit and teaching others to become strong and healthy. An older trainer is an inspiration, proving to clients of all age groups that growing older doesn't necessarily also mean growing old. Age, in any career, can certainly mean you have more life experiences to offer in order to become more successful. A younger person may not have the life experiences and knowledge to fulfill a role as well as someone who is a little older. In fact, there are a few more benefits to taking on the challenge of a career change at an older age.

Becoming certified as a personal trainer

Starting a new career in midlife as a fitness trainer is just as attainable for women as it is for men. The first step a potential trainer must take is to become certified through a reputable educational institution. In most cases, the certification examination studies may be done at home, which is ideal if you are already established in a job or business during the day, or if you are busy raising children. Being able to get certified whilst you take care of other responsibilities is the perfect solution for a lot of people. Becoming certified can help you to gain contacts and get to know people within the fitness industry, which is particularly helpful if your current career has nothing to do with health and fitness. Once you are qualified, you have a few different options in regards to your qualification within your career.

You don’t have to quit your current career!

Personal fitness training can be done on a part-time basis, so quitting your day job isn't a necessity. This is ideal for those who may not be sure of the career change, or who are wanting to build up their new business reputation before taking up personal training full time. Many trainers take clients early in the morning or in the evening, before and after work. Increasingly, offices are providing gyms for their employees, so you may find that your first clients are your own co-workers. This is also an ideal opportunity to gain brand awareness and build your reputation as a business.

You can train your clients online

Internet training is also becoming increasingly popular, and is an ideal base for a trainer who may not be able to leave an established career. An internet trainer works with their clients in the same way as an on-location trainer, conducting fitness tests and establishing exercise and flexibility programs. For accountability purposes, internet trainers usually require that their clients stay in contact during the week via email and the trainer website. This has the advantage of making the clients feel connected to their trainer in a way that a face-to-face session might not. It’s also an ideal solution for those who are time-poor or are still working their ‘day job’.

Personal training, part-time

If you’re at a stage in life where part-time work seems to be your goal, then this is a perfect opportunity for you to get into the fitness industry, as it’s easy to work as a personal trainer on a part-time basis. If you’re running your own business, you can choose the amount of clients and hours you work each week, which may be the easiest way to retire part-time. Because of your age, you may be more approachable to older clients who don’t feel as comfortable with younger personal trainers, which could offer you your own niche market of clients to work with.

A rewarding personal training career at any age

Changing your career can be a big step. The longer you leave it, the more daunting it may feel. But, there’s no need to feel threatened by your age and the change itself. There are plenty of great reasons to change your career mid-life and with that, there are many benefits to be had. By changing careers later in life, you can have more life experience behind you to help you on your path. You may also be able to benefit by working part-time, choosing your own hours and even keeping your normal day job whilst you get started on your new career and build your client base. If you’re thinking about changing careers and getting involved in the fitness industry, getting qualified is your first step to getting into your new career.

This content is not intended to be used as individual health or fitness advice divorced from that imparted by medical, health or fitness professionals. Medical clearance should always be sought before commencing an exercise regime. The Institute and the authors do no take any responsibility for accident or injury caused as a result of this information.

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