How to become a personal trainer

Becoming a personal trainer can be your career choice if you love fitness and helping others achieve their goals. As a fitness enthusiast, you’ve probably already done unofficial personal training over the years for your fitness and health. There are more steps to take to get certified as a personal trainer, find employment, or set up your independent business. Here is a detailed guide to what you should know about this career to decide if it is the right one for you.

What are the characteristics of a good personal trainer?

Personal trainers need to have a multitude of skills. Just some of the characteristics that will help you include being;

  • Analytical
  • Patient
  • Nurturing
  • Persistent
  • Organized
  • An effective motivator
  • A good listener
  • You should enjoy working with different kinds of people and be a self-motivator.

All of those are helpful, but it’s also helpful to know what it’s like to train clients day in and day out. That’s something you can learn when you get certified, but the experience is always the best teacher. Training may seem like a breeze, but it’s tougher than you may realise.

What type of clients will you have to work with;

  • Have injuries other conditions
  • Blame you if they don’t reach their fitness or weight loss goals
  • Cancel with little or no notice
  • Are afraid to push too hard, want to push harder than they should
  • Are not compliant with the workouts you give them
  • Have never exercised and need good cueing for even the most basic of exercises
  • Show up with workout shoes other necessary gear
  • Have all kinds of excuses for why they can’t or don’t exercise

Each person is different, and you need to be able to determine how hard you can push that client, what that client needs, and what they want. You also have to be very flexible and be ready to change on a dime if a workout isn’t going well.


If you’ve decided personal training is for you, your first step is to get certified. The most important factor is whether the certifying organization has been accredited. Certifying organisations have their certification procedures and protocols accredited by an independent third party that is recognised both in the UK and outside. If there is a specific employer you want to work for, find out what certifications they require or recognise.

Research these questions when you want to get certified

  • Is it a national/international certification? Is it universally recognised?
  • What are the prerequisites for the exam? Most require, at a minimum, a high school diploma, a CPR certification, and that you’re at least 18 years of age.
  • Does the exam require attendance at a workshop or seminar, and where are these offered? Is it a home study programme?
  • Can the exam be taken online, or must you attend an on-site examination? If on-site, where and when are the exams offered?
  • How much does it cost? Do these include study materials?
  • What are the continuing education requirements to renew the certificate? Completing a certain number of continuing education hours is a requirement of most certifications and will be an extra expense to consider.

At Study365 we offer accredited fitness programmes that will help you get the recognition that you need and help you progress in your career as well.


The course in Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing will allow you to explore fitness training on an in-depth scale and gain the skills and knowledge to be effective in your job role as a fitness instructor. You will learn how to take children and adults under your guidance and conduct a fitness-based exercise, water-based exercise, and physical activity for children. Once you complete this course, it will give you access to the Register of Access Professionals. You can attain employment in the fitness sector and the opportunity to enhance your status as a recognised fitness instructor. You will gain a complete understanding of set principles and values in the industry, learn team-building skills, understand reflective learning, learn how to have a positive attitude, and apply self-discipline in your day to day lifestyle.

The course will explore key topics such as anatomy and physiology, understanding health and safety, supporting clients and learning about exercise fitness and health.

The course will explore how to plan fitness instructing sessions, work with groups and clients in specific locations. Getting certified in this course will make you a recognised candidate with immense potential in the health and fitness sector, and open the door to gaining exciting employment opportunities across a broad spectrum.

Once you complete the course in Level 2 NCFE Fitness Instructing, you will gain an accredited qualification that will demonstrate your interest in fitness training. You can use this certification to demonstrate your expertise in the fitness industry. You can have a career pathway in sports, public services and the travel sectors. Learners who complete this course can progress to the Level 3 Certificate in Personal Training. You will benefit from increased opportunities in the fitness industry.

  • A Fitness Instructor can earn £13,000 to £20,000 per year
  • Freelance Instructors can earn up to £20 per hour


The Level 3 Certificate in Personal Training will allow you to explore personal training on an in-depth scale. It is a comprehensive course that will teach you to focus on your client’s health and fitness, understand how to help them make a real difference to their lifestyle and improve their confidence. You will learn to assist and guide your clients on effective training exercise routines and techniques. Learn to create personalised exercise plans and strategies, raise awareness on the importance of fitness and health and kick-start your career as a personal trainer.

The course will explore key topics such as how to support your clients, principles of fitness and health, delivering personal training sessions and applying the principles of nutrition.  If you are already qualified in Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing, you can take the Level 3 Certificate in Personal Training to Personal Trainer Status. You have the opportunity to change your membership status on the REPs to Personal Trainer.

The Level 3 Certificate in Personal Training course will offer bright prospects for employment. It is a rewarding and fulfilling job role that gives you opportunities for employment across a broad spectrum such as your own personal training service, gyms and fitness clubs, swimming complexes, sports clubs and outdoor fitness.

So why not get started on your certifications with us without further delay? Contact our team at [email protected] for more information.

September 1, 2023

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