Tuesday, June 30, 2015

PT Chronicles: Personal Training at a Corporate Gym



A little different than what I usually write about, but figured you may be interested.

"Where do trainers come from, what is there background, what the hell are they, how can I become a one???"

In case you're interested in one day training, you should know some things first.

Gyms treat trainers like their bitch. Especially the big ones.

They typically pay you 11% of what the client is being charged.

$65 session, trainer get's 11% plus a minimum wage. You do the math....because I'm bad at it.

They believe since they got you the client, and you're using their gym, they deserve almost all the money, despite it being you doing all the work.

Even if you're the one that sold the client, they only give you a selling bonus during the first payout, It ends there.

And believe me, they want you to sell, sell, sell. Constant meetings rah, rah, meetings trying to pump you up. Constant telling you to cold call people, approach people on the floor.

I was a number one salesguy, not on purpose, just how it came to be, and they still wanted more. I sold a big package one time, they told me to use that high and go approach the people on the eliptical machines.....?

Want to know how they taught me to sell?

They told me when I take peoples body fat with calipers to "Make sure and get big pinches". That way their body fat would be extremely high and they'd feel guilty and want to buy a large training package.

And they want you to push all their supplement products, sell future training way ahead of time, sell any fad type of calorie counting gimick, etc.

So I passed a test to be certified that said supplements were basically bull shit. The gym that wants me certified now wants me to go against that and sell them.  Sorry, I just can't do that. But I know someone that can.

And you get to do this, all while barely making any money.

And if you don't have clients you're not being payed. So you need to go clean equipment or be cold calling constantly to at least get that low hourly wage.

Some gyms won't pay you at all if you're not training.

Hmmm, cold call and approach random people to get my own clients....I could've done that on my own.

Want more?

If you get 3 certifications, which is a lot of money (some reimburse you, so they get a pass), and a lot of time studying, they'll pay you possibly 24% on top of the minimum wage they're paying you. All the while you're working your ass off to make 11% to pay the bills.

It's definitely easy to get hired there, got my cert., applied to two of the same franchise (their name is similar to AROUND THE CLOCK fitness) and they both tried to hire me within the next hour.

The reason it's so easy is they're always losing trainers, because the trainers WANT OUT!

So you instantly obtain a former trainers' clients, who may have been with a trainer before that, who are of the mind you'll be leaving soon, so aren't inclined to re-sign with someone who may not be there in a week or 2.

Within 2 months, I WAS THE 2nd OLDEST TRAINER THERE!

They also forced me to get a certification there that allows me to push their APEX supplement products.

And when I tried to quit they told me about this trainer (the one who had been there the longest) was making a whopping $3000 a month, if I stuck around, I could be like him!!!!

I was making the most sales in training and supplements. And I wasn't even trying. But I worked all day, was burned out on my new job occupation in only a month, had barely any money, and was always being pushed to do more.

While I did sell a lot of training, most of it was small packages. They told me to sell bigger packages. 6 sessions wasn't enough, they wanted 30 session packages sold.

While I realize sales is important in this field and many others, I like the product to sell itself. I will never pressure anyone to buy more than necessary. Not a popular attitude to have at this low wage job.

A trainer told me that it took about 6 years of doing the corporate thing before you could think of leaving and succeeding on your own. 6 years of this?! I'd rather go back to teaching high school!

They a friend spoke to another friend who was friends with a trainer. Who encouraged me to leave now. And even though I'd have few clients, I wouldn't be giving the gym all my money, I'm making in 1 session what I used to make in 3-4.

So I decided to quit.

The gym told me I would probably fail if I left, they couldn't see me doing well in my own business, then freaked out at me possibly taking the clients I was training (even though I was basing my business far away from there).

All the fake smiling faces instantly turned to frowning, and brooding. I'd never felt more hated in my life.

But I held me ground and decided to leave.

But it doesn't mean to not do corporate training. Some people like working in that environment.

You can
a) Become some sort of manager
b) Always have a steady flow of clients coming in,but 40-60 hours a week will burn most people out quickly when it comes to personal training.

My question is,
a) Why go corporate to work in a gym, if you're going to go corporate go big time and make big money. Wear a suit, not sweatpants.
b) If you use your brain and are good, the clients will come, and you won't work endlessly.

As for me, leaving was the best thing I could've done

The only reason to train there in my mind, EXPERIENCE.

Then leave when you got it.

But you can use your own EXPERIENCE to make that decision.

If you like this I may tell more Personal Training stories.


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