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Working as a Personal Trainer

A personal trainer is a qualified fitness instructor who helps people get fit, gain muscle, or lose weight, and increase their willpower and physical stamina. They make their clients sweat one-on-one, accept no excuses, and give personalized dietary advice, as well.

As a personal trainer, you might work in a gym or take your clients outdoors. But wherever the training takes place, what really matters is creating a trusting relationship with your clients. Setting realistic goals and designing a tailored and effective exercise plan will be crucial as well because nothing is as motivating as seeing your own progress.

This is a currently booming profession that may be rewarding both monetarily and personally because no one decides to become a personal trainer overnight without having experienced the numerous growth opportunities working out can lead to. Not just thinking about your biceps here, obviously.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a personal trainer. For example, did you know that they make an average of $18.65 an hour? That's $38,796 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 13% and produce 45,700 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Personal Trainer Do

There are certain skills that many personal trainers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed customer-service skills, communication skills and listening skills.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a personal trainer, we found that a lot of resumes listed 19.8% of personal trainers included cpr, while 17.5% of resumes included customer service, and 11.9% of resumes included fitness programs. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the personal trainer job title. But what industry to start with? Most personal trainers actually find jobs in the hospitality and education industries.

How To Become a Personal Trainer

If you're interested in becoming a personal trainer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 57.0% of personal trainers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 11.4% of personal trainers have master's degrees. Even though most personal trainers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a personal trainer. When we researched the most common majors for a personal trainer, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on personal trainer resumes include master's degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a personal trainer. In fact, many personal trainer jobs require experience in a role such as internship. Meanwhile, many personal trainers also have previous career experience in roles such as sales associate or cashier.

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Average Salary$38,796
Job Growth Rate13%

Personal Trainer Career Paths

Top Careers Before Personal Trainer

Cashier
5.6 %

Top Careers After Personal Trainer

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Personal Trainer

Personal Trainers in America make an average salary of $38,796 per year or $19 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $63,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $23,000 per year.
Average Salary
$38,796

Best Paying Cities

City
Average Salary
Boston, MA
Salary Range39k - 66k$51k$51,105
San Francisco, CA
Salary Range38k - 64k$50k$49,601
White Plains, NY
Salary Range36k - 61k$47k$47,226
Fort Lee, NJ
Salary Range35k - 60k$46k$46,332
Stamford, CT
Salary Range32k - 55k$43k$42,555
Chicago, IL
Salary Range32k - 55k$42k$42,319
$27k
$66k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Personal Trainer
Personal Trainer
South Suburban Parks and Recreation
South Suburban Parks and Recreation
01/29/2021
01/29/2021
$41,74001/29/2021
$41,740
Personal Trainer
Personal Trainer
South Suburban Park & Recreation
South Suburban Park & Recreation
01/28/2021
01/28/2021
$41,74001/28/2021
$41,740
Personal Trainer
Personal Trainer
Crunch
Crunch
01/27/2021
01/27/2021
$37,56601/27/2021
$37,566
Personal Trainer
Personal Trainer
The Denver Athletic Club
The Denver Athletic Club
01/27/2021
01/27/2021
$31,30501/27/2021
$31,305
Personal Training Sales
Personal Training Sales
Retro Fitness
Retro Fitness
01/26/2021
01/26/2021
$41,74001/26/2021
$41,740
See More Recent Salaries

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Personal Trainer Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Personal Trainer. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Personal Trainer Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Personal Trainer resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Detailed Information

Personal Trainer Demographics

Gender

male

58.0 %

female

34.6 %

unknown

7.4 %

Ethnicity

White

77.1 %

Hispanic or Latino

9.3 %

Black or African American

6.4 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

62.1 %

French

7.5 %

Portuguese

3.7 %
See More Demographics

Personal Trainer Education

Majors

Degrees

Bachelors

57.0 %

Associate

12.7 %

Masters

11.4 %

Top Colleges for Personal Trainers

1. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Public

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

2. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. California State University - Bakersfield

Bakersfield, CA • Public

In-State Tuition
$7,309
Enrollment
9,142

5. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Public

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

6. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

7. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Minneapolis, MN • Public

In-State Tuition
$14,760
Enrollment
31,451

8. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Champaign, IL • Public

In-State Tuition
$15,094
Enrollment
32,974

9. Howard University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition
$26,756
Enrollment
6,166

10. SUNY at Buffalo

Buffalo, NY • Public

In-State Tuition
$10,099
Enrollment
21,404
See More Education Info
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Personal Trainer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 19.8% of personal trainers listed cpr on their resume, but soft skills such as customer-service skills and communication skills are important as well.

Best States For a Personal Trainer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a personal trainer. The best states for people in this position are Massachusetts, Vermont, California, and New York. Personal trainers make the most in Massachusetts with an average salary of $50,975. Whereas in Vermont and California, they would average $50,751 and $47,019, respectively. While personal trainers would only make an average of $46,897 in New York, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Massachusetts

Total Personal Trainer Jobs:
202
Highest 10% Earn:
$83,000
Location Quotient:
1.14
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Rhode Island

Total Personal Trainer Jobs:
35
Highest 10% Earn:
$72,000
Location Quotient:
1.86
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. New Jersey

Total Personal Trainer Jobs:
291
Highest 10% Earn:
$75,000
Location Quotient:
1.77
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Personal Trainer Employers

1. 24 Hour Fitness
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$28,488
Personal Trainers Hired: 
2,063+
2. LA Fitness
4.3
Avg. Salary: 
$27,402
Personal Trainers Hired: 
2,020+
3. Gold's Gym
4.3
Avg. Salary: 
$38,412
Personal Trainers Hired: 
1,786+
4. Anytime Fitness
3.8
Avg. Salary: 
$40,425
Personal Trainers Hired: 
1,129+
5. Bally Total Fitness
3.7
Avg. Salary: 
$27,827
Personal Trainers Hired: 
1,007+
6. YMCA of Greater Indianapolis
3.6
Avg. Salary: 
$31,755
Personal Trainers Hired: 
884+

Personal Trainer Videos

Updated October 2, 2020