Personal Trainer Business Tips
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Now more than ever we need to be mindful of how we can offer an exceptional personal training to our clients online. Whether you’re considering it as an optional extra for your face to face clients, or as a stand-alone service to remote clients.
Every single business is an online business, even if you only have a basic domain or email contact - it’s simply a matter of how a comprehensive a service you can offer.
How much you can offer your clients when they need to train at home will depend on the tools available to you. In article, we'll go over the top five free and paid option for taking your fitness business online.
The simplest, cheapest and easiest option is to send all your clients their personal training programme written out via e-mail. This gives your clients scope to fill out their weights, reps and set and return it to you via email once it’s complete.
You can review their progress in the session, make any changes they may need - such as alternatives or scaled options, and return these revisions by email too.
In theory, you could conduct all your coaching via email. This might include feedback on a session, motivating clients or discussions on how you’d like them to track their progress and measurements that’s best suited to their goals.
A benefit of this method of training is that everyone has an e-mail address and they already know how to use this technology. It’s more efficient than handwriting programmes and can be delivered instantly to clients all over the world.
It also allows you to create threads of communication for your client to refer back to which is hugely useful for a beginner.
However, this can be a time-consuming method to use and depending on how good the search function in your email provider it could take a while to navigate to the email you’re looking for.
There’s a degree of duplicated work, as you write out the workout and the client replicates it to send back to you. Check ins can take a while, and if you have lots of clients there’s a potential to lose track and double book someone.
2. Google Sheets/Dropbox
Google Drive and Dropbox are both great options for storing and distributing a workout programme, which is stored virtually in the cloud.
This software is available to everyone with an internet connection for free and has the huge benefit of autosaving as you write. No more lost workout plans due to power cuts, or forgetting to save your work as you go. No more client check ins which are missing data because they forgot to save!
The shared document can also be updated instantly so you and a client can be collaborating on a workout programme together. If there are any modifications necessary, or weights need to be recorded during a session; this can all happen immediately, in real time.
The free spreadsheet software that comes with Google Drive is called Google Sheets, and unlike a Microsoft Excel document that you’d attach to an email, this software doesn’t need to be pre-installed onto your clients’ compatible devices. This works for people who you train face to face in the gym as well as online personal training clients.
You can even draft surveys and polls using Google drive and get instant feedback - a powerful tool for a personal trainer who cares about delivering the best possible service.
Giving editing permission to clients can be risky in some situations though. Editing access means they could intentionally or accidentally delete work. Although this is unlikely, for a client with absolutely no experience of using Google Drive to collaborate, there’s a possibility that they may have some trouble learning it so there could be a learning curve to getting them settled into your methods.
3. Zoom/Skype/Facebook Live
Conducting personal training remotely via the internet often has the benefit of allowing your clients to workout at a time which is convenient for them. However, for some client they might need you to be with them during their workout.
Conducting personal training remotely but in real time gives you the best of both worlds where you schedule a time to “book in” a client - and using free live video streaming software such as zoom or skype you can observe their form from anywhere in the world.
This gives clients additional accountability in the circumstances that they need it. It gives you the immediate ability to provide them with corrective feedback - just like you would in person.
You could demonstrate a movement for them, and tell them what the intended stimulus is. You could even host this to multiple clients at the same time, and hold a work out class using minimal equipment and bodyweight movements at home.
If you cater to clients worldwide, you may have an issue with delivering this form of personal training in terms of time zones.
It does require a fast internet connection so that you can transmit real-time video and sound to your client. It may also take a little practice for your clients to get used to having sessions this way if they aren’t used to the technology.
4. Membership Website
In order to train clients through your personal training website, you must first create the domain name and hosting. When you own your own website you have a lot of freedom with what you do with it.
Here's one My Personal Trainer Website put together for The S&C Coach.
You could have a membership section to the site that people can log into where they can access your content, your programming or other personal training options you offer. This option gives you the space to create an exercise library with videos of you personally executing the movements. You can handle all payments through your website with minimal setup.
Set up costs are relatively low, and that makes it an affordable way to stand out in a crowded industry. It’s also an area of the internet that you have total control over, so unlike building your business through social media, you can drive traffic to your website in a way which allows you to build your audience over time.
This is a hugely professional option, but if you’re not the most technically minded trainer in the world, there are professional services to have this type of website built for you.
If you rely on plug-ins which stop being maintained on your site, you might have some security issues that may require a professional coder to sort out.
5. Personal Training Software
This is dedicated software which can be used to powerful effect in building programmes, offering support, messaging integration and even billing options.
There are a number of websites which offer this service, including some to which iPT offers discounted membership rates.
We recommend PT Distinction both because it's amazing and as an iPT member you get a discount.
It’s a similar principle to using Google Drive in as far as the client receives the programme instantly and the personal trainer can update it remotely but as it’s designed specifically for personal trainers it often is much quicker.
The software contains an enormous exercise library which the client can refer to if they are unfamiliar with the movement. You can even make your own videos and upload these in place of the videos offered on the site.
You can save workout templates so you can start from these in future, saving you time while all you have to do is an update for individual client needs.
Some of the more advanced options even integrate with your website, so it’s effectively a membership site with the difficult coding stuff done for you.
It’s a central place to communicate with your clients from so there’s no confusion about where they should contact you.
Although personal training software comes with a free trial, the software won’t be free. How much you pay is usually dependant on how many clients you have, so if you opt for a big package and clients leave, you might be stuck paying for a membership level you no longer need.
Which Option For Online Personal Training Is Right For You?
That depends on a number of factors.
As your willingness to invest financially increases, the amount of time you have to invest generally decreases.
There are plenty of free options out there for the trainer that’s getting started. In a crowded marketplace, though, looking for ways to stand out and offer exceptional, professional service is always something to consider.
Did you find this information useful?