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TRAINFITNESS Personal Trainer & Fitness Blog

The team of personal training and fitness professionals at TRAINFITNESS post regular articles with news and updates about the fitness industry. Our news and articles offer a great resource for all fitness professionals, from Personal Trainers, Group Exercise Instructors, Pilates and Yoga Teachers, or anyone interested in teaching any aspect of fitness.
  • Written By

    Matt Bowen


    Personal Training

    Posted On

    16 July 2018

    We spoke to online personal trainer Dave Smith about what it takes to make a success of online personal training

    While the role of a personal trainer hasn’t changed, the delivery systems and methods by which a PT reaches his clients and helps them to achieve their goals certainly has. Working out of a gym or a dedicated studio is still the preferred choice of most client and PTs, but there is a movement to more online programming and coaching.

    The model is ideal for those clients who can’t make sessions, prefer to train in their own gym or have training experience but just need someone to design a new programme for them.

    For a PT it makes sense, no juggling of clients, no need to try and squeeze an extra hour out of a day. Simply have a consultation (online) build a programme around set goals and then keep tabs. But how do you go about setting up your online business, what are the ins and outs of successfully building an online empire?

    We spoke to Dave Smith, “Canada’s Top Fitness Professional” in 2013, he goes over all the aspects of setting up your online PT delivery and offers some great tips on making it a successful endeavor.

    Here’s what he had to say -

    Ten years ago my fitness business was booming. I owned my own personal training studio; I had a weekly calendar booked with amazing personal training clients; and I was earning more money than I ever had in my lifetime.

    This is what I had worked so hard for, so why didn’t I feel settled?

    Success came with a cost. My schedule was booked and my gym was full, so what was the next step? Open another gym? Open a chain of gyms? Those were options, but managing facilities wasn’t my dream. I wanted to help more clients.

    Then I read a book that opened my eyes to an entirely different type of career. That book was “The 4-Hour Workweek” by Timothy Ferris; and it described a type of business that was the exact opposite of the one I had built. Using the Internet, Ferris explained how an online business can work for you instead of you working for it.

    I was skeptical.

    “The idea sounds great, but how can a personal trainer create an online business? My clients need to see me in the gym. That’s what keeps them coming back.” Still, the message of that book kept gnawing away at me, so I began playing around with ways I could serve my clients online. Little by little my online business grew and within one year I sold my gym and became a full-time online personal trainer.

    How Does Online Personal Training Work?

    Many personal trainers share the same skepticism that I once had: How can I help people exercise if I’m not in the gym with them?

    The truth is, you’re selling yourself short if you think that your most valuable role to a client is being with them in the gym, demonstrating exercises, counting reps, and correcting form. Yes, those services are valuable, but you have something more valuable to offer: Results.

    Think of your most successful clients. What did you provide that helped them make such great life changes?

    I believe that there are 3 things a truly great personal trainer offers and you likely do these without even realizing it: You build confidence. You develop consistency. You show care.

    Those are the 3 Cs that are necessary for successful coaching and you can deliver these as an online personal trainer every bit as easily (perhaps even more so) as you can working with clients face-to-face.

    1. Confidence - An online personal trainer helps clients believe they can succeed and delivers a path for them to follow. When a client is confident that she can transform her body, the likelihood of her taking action to achieve her goals skyrockets. Setting goals, tracking results, and celebrating milestones help build that confidence.

    2. Consistency – An online personal trainer helps clients manage their schedules and stay accountable so that agreed upon healthy actions happen. This could take form in accountability calls, reminder messages, or habit-tracking apps that help build consistent actions needed for results to show.

    3. Care – An online personal trainer ensures that clients feel like they have someone walking the journey with them. The client is not alone. Building supportive coach-client relationships is easy with all of the social tools available online nowadays. It’s amazing how a well-timed motivational text message or video can be a difference-maker in a client’s day.

    When you deliver the 3 Cs, whether in-person or as an online coach, your clients’ lives will be changed.

    Dave Smith online personal training


    Do Clients Really Want to Work with an Online Personal Trainer?

    Think back 10 years ago. Imagine someone suggesting that instead of hailing a cab to get you where you need to go, you instead hop into a complete stranger’s personal car to catch a ride. Or imagine walking into a grocery store, picking up all your items, and then leaving without stopping in a checkout line to pay for anything.

    Today it’s commonplace to grab a ride using Uber, and Amazon has already paved the way for checkout-less grocery stores, but at one time those concepts would have been hard to imagine.

    The fact is, as the pace of life continues to speed up, people are looking for convenient, time-saving services more than ever before. That’s why many of us get our taxes prepared by online accountants; we get prescriptions written in virtual doctor’s visits; and it’s why more people are turning to online fitness coaching than ever before.

    Speaking from experience, my clients love the flexibility that online coaching provides. They have a personalized fitness plan to follow, but how they fit that plan into their weekly routine is up to them.

    They never have to jockey for prime time personal training slots in my schedule, and it allows them to work with me, a coach they trust, even if we don’t live in the same city. In fact, most of my current clients don’t even live in Canada, but they would never think twice about it.

    If personal trainers don’t adapt to the evolving needs of consumers, it’s certain that new apps, technologies, and services will enter the market to fill the void. It’s up to you to stay ahead of the curve by exploring new ways that you can serve your clients today and in the future

    How Can You Become an Online Personal Trainer

    Getting started as an online personal trainer is easier than you might expect. Here are the 4 steps I recommend:

    1.  Get Experience – As an online personal trainer, it is very helpful to first gain experience coaching clients in-person. Understanding how to cue exercises, how to troubleshoot common obstacles, and how to keep clients motivated are the types of skills you will develop quickly when working with clients face-to-face. Once you have those skills, translating them into the role of an online coach is fairly simple.
    2.  Check Your Insurance – Since online personal training is still in its relative infancy, some insurance providers aren’t sure how to provide coverage. Double-check to make sure your insurance will cover your online services before you begin.
    3.  Start Slowly – The easiest way to add online coaching to the list of services you offer is to transition clients slowly. For example, if you have been working with a client 3 times per week in the gym, you might offer to see him twice per week instead, with the third session being assigned as homework that you will deliver online. See what works best for you and your clients.
    4.  Build Your Systems – Online training can actually take up more of your time than working with clients in-person if you don’t have the right systems in place. Fortunately, there are apps and online services that can automate much of your work. For example, you can deliver video workout programs with a few clicks on your computer and then set automated follow-up messages to keep your clients on track. The better systems you have, the better service you’ll provide and the less work you’ll actually be doing.

    Above all else, remember why you became a personal trainer in the first place. I suspect you did so because you wanted to help as many people as possible get healthy and fit. Online training is simply another way to achieve that goal, so at least consider if it might be the right step for you. And, if you have questions, feel free to reach out to me at or via our Facebook group for online personal trainers

    Author Bio

    Dave Smith is an online weight-loss coach who was chosen as “Canada’s Top Fitness Professional” in 2013. He shares health and fitness guidance through his blog and helps fitness professionals grow their onlines businesses at

    Further Reading:

    Ike Fallon Personal Training Case Study

    The Next Step in yout Personal Training Career

    Becoming a Personal Trainer

  • Written By

    Matt Bowen


    Personal Training

    Posted On

    12 July 2018

    We Talk to Ike Fallon About His Journey to Becoming a Personal Trainer

    Ike Fallon recently completed his Diploma in Personal Training with us. We sat down and had a chat with him to find out more about him, why he wanted to do his course and what he thought about the course itself.

    Tell us a bit about you

    I’m a professional dancer, singer, actor and choreographer. I’m originally from Worcester/Birmingham but have been living in London for 3 years now.

    As a dancer I have been very lucky to compete on the international stage, competing at the Dance World Cup where I have won gold twice and a silver. At National level I have won silver and bronze.

    Away from dance I have worked in TV and theatre. I’ve been on Children In Need, Jack and the Beanstalk with Dani Harmer, and my most recent and upcoming credit – FAME the UK tour, with the likes of Jorgie Porter and Mica Paris.

    Ike Fallon studies his personal training course with TRAINFITNESS

    Why did you want to do the course?

    I wanted to do this course because I’ve always loved training and teaching other people. I’ve been teaching dance for a few years now and I love building that connection that comes with working with people. Doing a personal training course was the next logical step for me, combining my two passions- dance and fitness.

    Why TRAINFITNESS and tell us a bit about the course?

    TRAINFITNESS was highly recommended by many sporting and dance professionals I know. Through those contacts I was able to make an informed choice and I’m really glad I made it, I had no hesitation in signing up.

    The course is intense, no doubt about it. TRAINFITNESS offer a lot in a short amount of time, but the support and the delivery of the course are fantastic.

    At no point during the course did I have any difficulty staying focussed and that is down to the friendly atmosphere and the motivation generated by the tutors and my fellow students. I’ve made some good friends and connections here.

    The course actually exceeded my expectations as I came away with several qualifications more than I originally intended. This has made my future career prospects much broader. Something I particularly liked about the course was the tutor. Working with someone with that much experience and really connecting with them was a highlight. There was so much knowledge to absorb and they really committed time to us to make sure we understood all the information and knew how to apply it.

    Out of everything, I most enjoyed the balance of theory and practical. Coming into the course I was expecting a lot more practical work, but you get a really good amount of theory which you then apply directly to the practical aspects. I enjoyed studying the process and then applying the learning on the gym floor, breaking it all down with your classmates and the tutors. I’ve also improved my own training with the knowledge I’ve picked up.

    Any advice for anyone looking to do a Personal Training Course?

    My two bits of advice are –

    1. Keep on top of paper work!
    2. And for anyone interested in a career change, don’t stress too much or feel overwhelmed by the intensity of the course, the tutors know their stuff and your fellow students will be supporting you all the way.

    Last Word

    Now I have completed my course I can combine dance and fitness together in my career, two things I’m very passionate about and I couldn’t be happier! Overall, studying at TRAINFITNESS was a great experience and I wouldn’t hesitate to complete my Level 4 and 5 with them.

    Further Reading

    Read our interview with former student and founder of Right Path Fitness, Keith McNiven

    How to make a good income as a personal trainer

  • Written By



    Personal Training

    Posted On

    5 June 2018

    Interview with Personal Training Graduate Keith McNiven

    Former student and founder of Right Path Fitness made some time to chat with us about the industry, his PT course and what he gets up to in a day.

    When did you first start your fitness adventure?

    I grew up in an inner-city area of Leeds with my younger sister and my mum. I’ve got a lot to thank my mum for because she not only kept everything together but really encouraged me to try out different sports. The one that stuck was freestyle wrestling and I competed for England and Great Britain right though my teen years. So yes, that was definitely where my love of fitness started and once I got the bug it’s something that has never left me. It’s a part of my identity now, and I could never imagine not being involved in fitness in some way.

    When did you realise you wanted to become a PT and why?

    Like a lot of young men, I had no idea what I wanted to do when I was at school. I suppose I didn’t think any further than the wrestling at that time. I’d worked as a fitness instructor in a family run gym near Leeds for years when I was competing, so developing and moving down the PT route should have been the natural progression. As it was, I actually moved into the social care profession and worked with young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. Social care actually has a lot in common with personal training in that you’re helping people with their demons and pushing them to achieve their dreams. When I was 29, I felt the time had come to get qualified as a PT. With my experience both with the wrestling and the social care, being a PT was something I truly believed I’d be good at and would enjoy too.

    Interview with our recent personal training course graduate Keith McNiven

    What did you think about TRAINFITNESS and your time on the course?

    I spent quite a bit of time researching different courses and decided that I wanted to do the course full time so that I could really focus. I’d been living in London for a few years by then and saw that TRAINFITNESS offered the intensive PT course full time at Fitness First in Clapham Junction, which was a brilliant location for me. I took leave from my job at the time, got my head down and got qualified in four weeks! Obviously, being 29 I was keen to get started in my new career as soon as possible and I preferred the more hands on, practical nature of the course compared to distance learning. My experience was really positive, everyone was very helpful, supportive and you could see that they knew their industry inside out.

    Want to become a personal trainer? Find out more about TRAINFITNESS PT Courses

    What do you think makes a great PT?

    Clients look to you as the expert, so they need to know you have the knowledge to help them to achieve their aims. You need to be confident and assured which in turn helps clients to trust you. Obviously you need to be a great motivator and be a determined person. But to be a great PT I think you also need to have compassion for others. For some people, working with a PT is a major step. Not everyone that walks through the door has experience with exercise, or they might even have poor experiences with exercise. You really need to have excellent people skills to engage clients in conversation, build rapport and get to know them so that you can better understand how to help. It’s a relationship built on trust and respect.

    Tell us about Right Path Fitness, how did it come about and how did you make it happen?

    From the start, it was about building a personal training/fitness brand that reflected me as a personal trainer and aligned with my beliefs about fitness. After qualifying with TRAINFITNESS at almost 30 years old, I felt I was finally on my right path and my goal was to help as many people as possible to get onto their own right path to fitness. So, the name for the company just made sense to me and was perfect for the brand I was trying to build. I started out by networking and developing partnerships with East London studios were I could train clients, and I invested a lot in developing a brand that could grow with me. Since then, I’ve taken many personal trainers on board and things are growing nicely!

    What does the future look like for you and the team?

    We’ll be opening our first Right Path Fitness studio next year which we’re very excited about. It means we’ll have a dedicated space to train clients, and can offer a greater range of services and more of them. Our goal is to keep growing and making a positive impact on the people we work with.

    What’s a typical day in the life?

    I like to wake up to a good breakfast, brown toast with scrambled eggs and smoked salmon is a favourite. I live in East London so I might head to London Fields for a run, which really clears my head for the day. First thing, I will check in on emails and catch up with the team before meeting PT clients myself. When I started Right Path Fitness, I had to learn a lot about pretty much every aspect of running a business like marketing, HR and accounting. I mean, the last 5 years has been one huge learning curve! So, a typical day involves working on my Mac and phone dealing with the day to day business stuff, alongside PT sessions. I try and keep weekends free, where possible.

    We have lots of people training for their PT qualification, what’s your top tip/s for when they qualify and begin their careers?

    If you’re setting up on your own, you have to be both determined and patient. Determined to make it work, but patient enough to realise that it won’t happen overnight. I’d recommend spending time to establish your product- what it is that you are offering. Do your research and see what’s out there so that you can offer something different. Also, don’t think that just because you’re qualified, that you don’t need to learn anymore. Things are constantly changing and you need to be refreshing your skills and learning new ones too.

    Do you think the health and fitness industry has changed since you started out, do you see more changes coming, how can fresh PTs adapt/be prepared?

    Yes, it has changed even in the last 5 years. People are becoming both more aware of the need to take care of their health and more strapped for time all at once. So for the PT, it’s about trying to meet the needs of clients by being as flexible as you can with services that are built around the client. This might mean offering early morning or late night sessions. Online coaching has also really increased in popularity, and I think it will continue to do so. The fitness industry is constantly evolving, and you need to believe in what you are bringing to the industry, and be ready to adapt with it.

    You’re a busy man, what does your training look like currently?

    It can be difficult sometimes to get my training in but that only makes me have more empathy for my clients who are also struggling to do the same! That said, as a PT I feel it’s important to practise what you preach and be the best version of yourself that you can be. At the moment, I train 4 times per week with weights and do some cardio too.

    Salmon or Beef?

    I love seafood so it has to be salmon!

    Never leaves the house with?

    My iPhone, I couldn’t run my business without it.

    Follow Right Path Fitness on Instagram Facebook and Twitter,

  • Written By

    Matt Bowen


    Personal Training

    Posted On

    22 March 2018

    Why you should consider becoming a course tutor

    A qualification in education and training is a fantastic way to increase your earnings, stay up to date on fitness training and trends, add skills to your CV and enjoy a rewarding progression in your career.

    As we all know, the fitness industry is growing. People are more in tune with what it means to train, to be fit, to have goals, perform well and eat well. There is also a greater understanding and acceptance in the general population that to achieve these goals and make positive changes, using a qualified personal trainer is almost essential. In turn, this means there is a huge demand for qualified personal trainers.

    A day does not pass when our team at TRAINFITNESS is contacted from a health club or leisure centre asking for CV’s from our newly qualified PTs. The huge demand for PTs means there is an even greater demand to educate and train more personal trainers. Becoming a tutor to deliver personal training courses could therefore be extremely lucrative and fulfilling role.

    Here are some reasons why it might be worth considering getting your qualification in education & training.

    1. Supplement your income
    2. It’s a rewarding career
    3. Provides intellectual satisfaction
    4. Offers flexibility & variety in your career

    Supplement your income

    One of the main attractions of becoming a course tutor is that it can be a fantastic way to supplement your income and earn a little (or a lot) extra on the side. It is relatively easy to find a balance between your own clients and taking a lead role on a course. Perhaps weekends are quiet, maybe delivering a part time Saturday or Sunday course would fit with your schedule. See the bulk of your clients before or after work? Then dropping the occasional course into your plans might add extra income. Tutoring roles can be very flexible if it’s a secondary income. You can deliver courses regularly or occasionally to suit your schedule.

    Become a course tutor for personal trainers

    It's a rewarding career

    Another excellent reason to consider getting your tutoring qualification is how rewarding an experience working with students can be.  Your influence can have a real impact on students with your first-hand experience on delivering PT sessions helping students grow in confidence and flourish not only on the course but also once they start their own personal training business. Watching a student ace an exam or crush an assessment will fill you with pride and satisfaction in your work. Let' not forget either, that when your students go on to become a success you will have the knowledge that you helped make that happen.

    It provides intellectual satisfaction

    Full time or part time tutoring will develop your own skills and abilities as you'll be working with a variety of people from very different backgrounds whilst also targeting different learning styles. Your communication and teaching skills will be challenged, and you will have to learn to adapt to a variety of different situations in order to meet different learner needs. Developing the level of adaptability required to deliver a great course will not only help you educate learners, but will assist in other aspects of your working life such as your interactions with private PT clients.

    Tutoring will also keep you at the leading edge of the fitness industry. Through lecturing, you will have to maintain a high level of knowledge of the industry and its developments, be they teaching practices, National Occupational Standards, fitness coaching techniques, trends and exercise protocols. All of this will impact how you teach, so you’ll constantly learn to stay ahead.

    Adding tutoring to your skill set will make your CV more impressive; having that experience will open doors and opportunities that may not have existed before.

    Offers flexibility & variety in your career

    This is certainly more for the freelancers out there, but being a tutor can be an extremely flexible job. While there are standard hours you will have to work to fulfil course obligations, you can determine when you will or won’t teach on a course.

    You can choose what courses to add to your schedule as well as where you want to work, as many training providers have courses all-round the country. If you have the means and desire to travel, you can pick and choose courses that suit.

    If you have private PT clients and business starts to pick up, you aren’t tied to a full time tutoring job, but you are secure in the knowledge your Education and Training Qualification means you can pick up tutoring roles should things go quiet.

    There is a high demand for tutors and with the continued growth of our industry, the demand will certainly continue. If you have a passion for health and fitness, a desire to educate new and upcoming personal trainers as well as a want to maximise your earning potential, you should consider a Teaching and Tutoring Qualification. Click here for more information about our Level 3 Award in Education & Training.

    Further Reading

    What’s on in Fitness Throughout 2018

    How to start a Career in the Fitness Industry

    New Professional Standards for Personal Trainers

  • Written By

    Matt Bowen


    Personal Training

    Posted On

    9 March 2018

    Here's what Chessie had to say!

    Not too long ago, fitness influencer Chessie King studied to become a personal trainer with us. We caught up with her, chewed the fat and found out what makes her tick.

    What made you want to become a personal trainer?

    I wanted to develop my knowledge, especially how to work with different clients. I love learning and the more I know the more people I can help. I also wanted to have something to support what I say on social media so people have more trust in what you are saying.

    What do you think you bring as a personal trainer that is different/makes you stand out?

    I try & work with a client more on what's going on inside. To me, feeling good within yourself and learning to love exercise and eat without guilt is the most important thing. Working out should be something you love and a way of thanking your body. I learn about their past, their lifestyle and the relationship they have with food and their body. I take them on a journey to body confidence. I would like to think I'm more of a coach, a mentor that will be there with you every step of the way.

    Find out more about TRAINFITNESS PT courses

    What do you think makes a great personal trainer?

    A caring person that you can trust and listens to you. They adapt to how you feel every session and they get to know yourself and your body. Someone who's there for you outside of your personal training sessions. A friend who is going to stick by your side for the long run.

    Chessie King studied her Personal Training Course with TRAINFITNESS

    How did you get into the world of health and fitness?

    My parents have bought me up the healthiest way possible. My mum is a yoga teacher and absolute goddess. From the moment I could walk, I was full of energy, I did every activity after school you could think of. I only really started understanding my body and going to the gym for the right reasons about 2/3 years ago. I have learnt so much and developed my own training style and method.

    What would your advice be to someone considering becoming a personal trainer?

    Understand why you want to do it. Ask yourself, have you seen someone on Instagram that is a PT and you want to be like them, or do you want to help people get stronger and healthier? If it's the first one then I don't think it’s right for you, but if you are on a mission to help people, AMAZING... go for it.

    Who’s your fitspiration and why?

    My Mumma. She gets stronger every year she gets older, it's incredible. She is just a machine! She trains with me and doesn't ever stop in the middle of a session she just keeps on going! Every year, she beats her triathlon personal best and has come first in her age group at the London Triathlon which got her into the Team GB qualifying race. She is the reason why I'm looking after myself now, so hopefully after 3 children like her, I feel and look that healthy.

    What’s your favourite type of workout?

    A fun one where you don't even feel like you're working out. Like trampolining, skiing, hiking... I also love a Crossfit style workout, challenging yourself in different areas of strength. I just need constant change and love mixing up my workouts. I also love being outside, in the fresh air.

    Final thought on the course and your time at TRAINFITNESS

    It was incredible. The mix of the theory and practical was perfect. The support was amazing and I loved doing the intensive course.

    Further Reading

    New Professional Standards for personal trainers

    How to make a good income as a personal trainer

    5 reasons to become a personal trainer





  • Written By

    Matt Bowen


    General Fitness

    Posted On

    1 March 2018

    The Best Health, Fitness and Well-being Conventions, Shows and Festivals of 2018

    We’ve identified some of the UKs hottest fitness events. Whether you want to get your zen on, work up a sweat or party with like-minded individuals, we have something for you!

    The fitness scene in the UK has never been healthier. Today we have access to the best equipment, we have loads of low cost gyms to join and if we fancy it, a whole host of boutique classes that we can jump in on.

    On top of this, training and nutrition are no longer mysteries that can only be interpreted by the professionals. There has never been so much information available to us via the internet and social media influencers. Yes, some of the information might be bogus but, a little bit of research usually gets you the right information.

    On top of influencers and the internet in general, we’re also experiencing a growth in events dedicated to health, fitness and wellbeing. These events are great as they offer a chance for like-minded individuals to come together and celebrate the things that excite them the most. It’s also a fantastic opportunity for companies to meet consumers and be part of their “fitness journey”. 

    With this in mind and, because we are fitness fanatics ourselves (naturally), we have highlighted some of our favourite shows, events and conventions being held in the UK throughtout 2018.

    What's on in fitness throughout 2018

    Move Fit: 10-12 March, Excel London

    Move Fit is three days dedicated to health, fitness and healthy living. There is a focus on movement and group exercise, which means that fans of group exercise will be able to participate in in over 100 fitness classes as well as grabbing some of the latest training kit. Attendees will also benefit from a bunch of presentations and talks from leading fitness experts.

    Be:Fit: 4-6 May, Business Design Centre London

    Be:Fit is the UKs only health and fitness festival for women and is a great place to try out the latest gear, participate in the latest fitness classes and find out about health, fitness, nutrition and well-being. If you love training and fitness in general, then this is the event for you. It’s a chance to train with your favourite influencers, hear from your favourite experts and learn more about all the fantastic things happening in the industry.

    We’re working with Be:Fit this year, with one of the team training with us to become a PT, you can see their progress and find out more about how we work here

    Balance Festival: 11-13 May, The Old Truman Brewery London

    This show is all about…balance, hardly surprising given its name. And it really is a festival of balance with a blend of over 200 workouts from boutique studios, evidence based talks on nutrition and wellness, yoga led by well know yogis and highly nutritious food available from a variety of companies. If you are looking for a one stop health, fitness and wellness event and the chance to see your favourite health and fitness influencers Balance is the place to be.

    BodyPower: 11-13 May, NEC Birmingham

    This is a big one at the NEC with a much greater focus on body building, although that is changing with the introduction of new zones aimed at weekend warriors.  Zones such as Back to Basics, The Academy, Girl Power, Nutrition and Strongman will cater to most tastes. Just be prepared to queue, a lot!

    SFN Expo 29-30 September, SEC Glasgow

    With some big-name experts and exhibitors already signed up, a packed timetable of events and some interesting talks lined up, SFN is shaping up to be a very interesting date in the diary. Ideal for Scottish locals, the show is also worth attending for anyone outside of Scotland

    Excitingly, there are many more events, festivals and expos throughout the year. Which is great for the industry and fans of fitness. A quick google search will throw up many more that are worth checking out, but for now, these are our pick of the bunch.

    Further Reading

    Virtual Open Day, find out more about how we work

    Interview with Charlie King

    Going the Extra Mile

  • Written By



    General Fitness

    Posted On

    25 February 2018

    With so much information and so many providers to choose from it is very easy to become quickly overwhelmed when looking at where to start your personal training career.  Starting on the path to becoming a PT shouldn’t be complicated and it certainly shouldn’t leave you confused and frustrated.

    Avoiding frustration and confusion is why we run a monthly Virtual Open Day or VOD. The VOD is an opportunity for you to plug in, from the comfort of your own home and meet our team. In thirty minutes, we go over how we work, what you can expect from your time at TRAINFITNESS, what we offer, how we support you during the course and how we continue that support long after you have finished with us.  We also answer any questions you might have.

    We feel this is a far more digestible way of finding out the facts and the information that is important to you than reading through hundreds of search results, mind boggling amounts of sales talk and conflicting information. At the end of the VOD you are free to make up your mind about training with us; there is no pressure and no obligation. If you have further questions our team are on hand to answer questions, be it on the phone or through email

    If you want to join us in our next VOD, then all you need to do is click here to book your free place.

    If you want to see how a VOD works, feel free to watch the video below. If you still have questions, give us a call or send us an email, we’re a friendly bunch and we love to talk.

    Related Material: What to look out for in a personal training course provider

    Related Material: Thinking of becoming a personal trainer

  • Written By

    Matt Bowen


    Personal Training

    Posted On

    21 February 2018

    What is Exercise Referral?

    We’re often asked, “what is exercise referral” and “how will it help me as a personal trainer”. Our answers are:

    1. It will help increase your client base
    2. It will give you a variety of clients to train
    3. It will challenge you in a good way
    4. Exercise referral will make you a better PT
    5. Qualifying in it can improve your prospects

    The National Institute for Health & Care Excellence (NICE) define the process of exercise referral as “schemes seeking to increase someone's physical activity levels on the basis that physical activity has a range of positive health benefits”[1]

    Exercise referral is a way for medical professionals to refer someone with a specific medical condition to a specialist in exercise who can give precise advice on training to help the patient lead a more active and healthier lifestyle.

    Personal trainers design a suitable programme to help these individuals exercise safely, make lifestyle changes and make physical activity an enjoyable experience. Any sort of physical activity can help boost recovery, help with weight issues, improve mental state and can help manage certain medical conditions.

    Why consider a course in exercise referral?

    1 - Increase your client base

    If you add a qualification in exercise referral to your skill set you automatically open the door to new clients. You will still maintain those PT clients you’ve secured through your hard work in the gym or through your online profile, but with exercise referral you have a stream of new clients sent to you from medical professionals. This will keep you busy whilst improving your bank balance.

    2 - Variety of clients

    As a PT you will eventually find yourself in the situation where, although you are dealing with individual client concerns, you will find sessions becoming very similar. You will have “go to” moves that illicit the best response, standard nutrition plans that only need tweaking depending on the desired outcome and a list of clients that generally all want the same outcome – lose weight, build muscle.

    Having these clients is fine, it’s what you have chosen to do, but throw in some exercise referral clients and your daily routine will become much more interesting and challenging. With exercise referral you might find yourself working with someone who is clinically obese, is diabetic, has had joint replacement, suffers with anxiety. Your standard, “go to” moves might work in the long term, but in the short term you’re going to have to study the issue and devise a plan that actually tackles the health issues your client presents.

    5 Reasons why you should train to be an exercise referral personal trainer

    3 - Challenging but rewarding

    Working in exercise referral can be a very challenging but rewarding job. You’ll be working with people who have real issues and find motivating themselves extremely difficult. But there is no better feeling for a personal trainer than giving a person the motivation, skills and above all the self-belief to have a more active lifestyle. This positive outlook and change can have a drastic effect on improving an individual’s quality of life and the risks associated with their condition.

    4 - Exercise Referral will make you a better PT

    Working with clients that have a medical condition or are recovering from a procedure are different to clients who might have some training background who are looking for a more common goal (lose weight, build muscle, sport specific training). Certain conditions will force you into more in-depth thought about your approach to training.

    Dependant on the condition of the person you are working with, you may find your perception of what makes a good session and what makes a bad session will change. You might find yourself using equipment and machines you wouldn’t usually use, you will likely become more patient and aware of what constitutes real progress in a client.

    Your communication skills will inevitably improve as you have to speak to these clients differently. If you are used to your usual 25-35 year old clients, with a reasonable training background, imagine the difference when you start working with a 62 year old client, post hip surgery client. Your conversation will change, you approach will change, your experience will be different.

    5 - Improve your prospects

    With exercise referral you may see an improvement in your situation in two ways.  Firstly, you could end up with more regular clients. After the prescribed course of training, your referred clients may wish to continue their training. These additional clients are always good to have when building/extending your business.

    Secondly, even if you don’t manage to convert your referred clients to long term clients you will be able to get some amazing reviews and/or testimonials from them. You should never underestimate the power of a review. How many times have you gone to buy something and have been swayed by the review? If you have a website/Facebook page flush with 5 star reviews and great comments you are more likely to pick up new clients.

    How to start out in exercise referral

    If exercise referral is an option you have been exploring you will need a Level 3 Personal Training qualification as a pre-requisite for the more specific training courses available. In terms of the specific qualifications for this role, a Level 3 Diploma in Exercise Referral would be considered an entry-level qualification. This very broad qualification covers the background to the exercise referral system and then outlines a number of key conditions that you will regularly come across.

    If you wish to progress to a level 4 specialist trainer, you will need to have the Level 3 Diploma in Exercise Referral as it is the pre-requisite for all level 4 qualifications. Level 4 qualifications tend to look at singular conditions or a group of conditions in much more detail. Examples of qualification titles may include obesity and diabetes management, low back pain management, stroke, falls prevention, etc.

    These courses offer a much deeper understanding of groups or individual conditions. A full list of these qualifications can be found on the REPs website.

    Further Reading

    How to start a career in the fitness industry

    New Professional Standards for Personal Trainers

    SMART goals – What are they and how to use them

  • Written By

    Matt Bowen


    General Fitness, General Group Exercise

    Posted On

    16 February 2018

    Why Circuit Training is Good for You!

    Circuit training is a form of training where participants rotate through a number of stations, performing different exercises to time or repetitions, back to back, with minimum rest until the circuit is completed. There are various ways of constructing a circuit, but they would normally contain several movements including body weight, weighted and dynamic exercises.

    The great thing about circuits is the adaptability available. They can be developed for cardiovascular improvement, strength, mobility, sport specific…virtually anything. They also don’t need a lot of space or time and don’t need to be overly complicated (unless you want them to be)

    Benefits of circuit training include:

    1. Improvements in cardiovascular fitness
    2. Improvements in muscular strength
    3.  Improvements in muscular endurance
    4. Increased social interaction during a workout
    5. Increased adherence to exercise

    From a practical point of view, circuits are very easy to set up and they need minimum space and equipment. They can be used with weights, kettlebells, boxes, TRX and various other bits of equipment, but in many cases, bodyweight is more than adequate.

    From a PT perspective, circuits can be a fantastic way to get multiple people involved (read more money) Assuming you have the space; a studio, park, garden, you could set up a circuit for any number of clients. Longer term, these clients could be converted into 1-1 clients, but even if they aren’t, a good PT will still have sessions running with several clients across the week, bringing in additional income.

    Why circuit training is good for you

    Find out more about circuit training

    Circuits are very versatile. Whether you are working with one client or a group of clients, they can be adapted to any situation and physical need. Circuits can tackle weight loss, strength, athletic performance and core training. A good PT will be capable of devising the circuit, engaging those taking part, creating weekly/daily challenges and most importantly, will be able to make them fun. If the circuit has multiple participants, a PT can foster a friendly competitive edge, which would naturally push participants a little further each session, some competition can make a lot of difference.

    The biggest takeaway of circuit training is the adaptability as a training system. They can be done anywhere, with or without equipment, can cover a range of specific needs, can be done as a group or on a 1-1 basis. They can be an entire session or a tough finisher. Circuits are a valuable tool for any PT

    How to construct the perfect circuit

    This is a quick and easy way to construct a circuit, remember there are many variations which can be adapted to any goal/need, but the following circuit is a good template to use:

    • Upper body Exercise, think; pull ups, push ups, shoulder press
    • Lower body Exercise, think; Squats, lunges, step ups
    • Core Exercise, think; plank, v sit, bicycle crunches
    • Cardio, think; shuttle sprints, jump rope
    • Full body exercise, think; Burpee, thruster, bear crawl

    Further Reading

    Five reasons to become a personal trainer

    What is VIIT? The Benefits & Why it Matters

    How to deliver a great group exercise class

  • Written By

    Keith McNiven


    Personal Training

    Posted On

    10 January 2018

    It’s the New Year and that means that many people will be kicking off their January resolutions to get fit. But January is also a time for another kind of fitness resolution- to get into the industry and become a PT. Now this I know, because it was my resolution a few years back. I’m now running my own PT business based in Shoreditch, East London with a team of personal trainers working with me to help clients meet their goals. You might be thinking, that’s easy for you Keith, but I have no fitness qualifications, I’m not even working in the industry. Neither was I. Yet I did it, and here’s how you can too.

    Find your fitness passion

    The majority of people want a career in fitness because they are passionate about fitness, and this alongside the desire to help others is the very best reason to decide to train as a PT. When I was younger I competed for England in freestyle wrestling so that’s where my passion for fitness came from. If you’re thinking about training as a PT, it’s probably because you too have a love of keeping fit and healthy and want to encourage others to do the same.

    Make the decision

    Like with a client who finally decides that enough is enough and this is the year that they are going to get fit, actually making the decision to become a PT can take time. I know it did for me anyway. As a teenager I worked in a family run gym in Shipley near Leeds and I really liked it, but after school was finished I ended up going into social care. I enjoyed it but there was this niggling feeling that I wasn’t doing what I was meant to do. Eventually, I decided I’d go with my gut and train as a PT. If you think the fitness industry could be for you, then January is a good time to explore your options.

    Personal Training Courses

    Get qualified

    One of the first things to investigate is how to get qualified. As a minimum you’d need the level 2 fitness instructor qualification, and the level 3 PT qualification too. Then before you work with clients, you’ll need first aid training and insurance too. There are loads of providers out there, but I decided on TRAINFITNESS for my level 2 and 3 and had a really positive experience. Think about how you best learn (in a group or on your own, more practical based or theoretical), what your other commitments are (like if you want to work alongside your current job) and other benefits offered (like support after you qualify). Also ensure that any course you undertake is fully accredited, as you won’t get insurance without this.

    Find out more about personal training courses at TRAINFITNESS

    Find your preferred setting

    It’s best to try and get practical experience as soon as possible whilst you are getting qualified or once you are qualified. I started out as a freelance PT at a chain of gyms, but I also had experience of working in a gym setting so I had a good understanding of the set-up and what a PT’s role would be in that environment. I also gained experience as a mobile PT, training clients at local parks or their home. But after starting working with clients at private studios, I realised I preferred that setting and that’s when I started Right Path Fitness. Make it a priority to get as much experience as you can in as many settings as possible, even for your own personal training, as this will help you to decide where you want to be once you qualify.

    Enjoy it

    There’s no doubt that becoming a PT can mean a huge change in your life. For me, it meant a move to London and starting up a business as well as getting to know a new place. But what I can say is that being a PT is one of the most rewarding careers you can have. Your clients will look to you to be their personal cheerleader, their motivator and their inspiration. You’ll be doing a job that you love, and helping people to feel better about themselves, and be healthier and stronger. Who could ask for more than that?

    Follow Right Path Fitness on Instagram Facebook and Twitter 

    Further reading

    How to become a fitness instructor

    How to make a good income as a personal trainer

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