5 Promotion Ideas to Get More Personal Training Clients During the Holiday Season


Dec 2, 2021

By Tim Saye

December and January often highlight the boom and bust nature of personal training, January can become incredibly busy as many people need your help to shed those holiday pounds or work towards their New Year's resolutions. 

Although, it's vital to remember that being busy in the first month of the new year will depend on how effective your marketing and recruitment efforts are in the time leading up to it. 

In December however, things can feel as if they're starting to wind down too early due to festive parties and holidays, leading to a lack of clients and income in the run-up to Christmas.

The good news is that there are some tactics you can use to both keep your December diary full and make sure you're lining up new customers for the coming year. So, let's examine 5 promotion ideas you might find suitable for your personal training services to provide a steady cash flow.

#1. Run a Holiday Fitness Challenge

Example: ymcali.org/Fitmas

Seen in gyms and personal training venues across the country, many of you will already know the massive value of a fitness challenge. However, Christmas is one of the best times of the year to invite your current and new clients to partake in such an activity. 

After all, Christmas is a time of giving and love, but it's also a time famous for indulgence, and many people worry about the impact they could be having on their health during the festive period. 

With that in mind, there are several holiday challenges that you may like to consider. The first is a workout challenge, including specific exercises you set each day. People can record themselves while completing them each and win points for themselves or their team with each submission. You might want to use the new group leader board feature in PT Distinction to help motivate people and see whom they must beat if they want to get in the top three. 

Alternatively, you may wish to run a weight loss challenge, which can work very well in the lead-up to Christmas for some people. This is because the entire month of December can be challenging when it comes to eating well with all the Christmas parties with yummy food and drinks that are involved. However, by offering a weight loss challenge, you can help people keep focused during most of December, which means they can have a slightly more relaxed and enjoyable Christmas week before getting back to it in the New Year. 

The way to maximise the number of personal training clients you get from a challenge like this is to market it to current clients and prospects. Offer existing customers a discount for recruiting new people and be sure to have a grand prize to award the winner at the end. You might even wish to share festive-themed workout videos on social media and encourage your clients to do the same in their best Xmas hat! 

#2. Offer Special Giveaways

Example: www.jumpsport.com/12-days-of-fitness-giveaway

For most people, Christmas is a time of spending vast amounts of money on others for gifts, celebrations, and good food. However, you can ensure your personal training business stands out by offering people a free prize during the festive season. 

Of course, to successfully use this strategy, you will need to go about things in the right way. Many people will tell you that this means offering something for free on the proviso that a client signs up for something with you like a membership, a programme, or a nutrition assessment session. 

However, it's far more effective to provide something of value for free to potential clients, with no strings attached. This is because by behaving in this way, you will demonstrate two important things. The first is that you are trustworthy and aren't looking to con anyone into anything. While the second is that you get to show potential clients how good you are at what you do. Both of which are much more likely to convert into paying clients on the long run. 

If you're wondering what to offer your customers for free during the festive period there are many options. A fun Christmas-themed session could do the trick, complete with Christmas music and even festive theme outfits. This could be done 1-2-1 or even in a class setting for in-person trainers. Alternatively, offering a free recipe book or workout plan from your can work just as well. Just make sure that you first identify your ideal clients and then find something you know will appeal specifically to that group. 

#3. Solve Holiday Problems for Your Clients

Example: vasafitness.com/blog/six-ways-to-reduce-holiday-stress

The holidays can be fun, but as we all know, they can also be super stressful. In fact, for many, the festive season means a carousel of shopping in crowded stores, sweating over a turkey in the kitchen, and running around after demanding house guests. 

If you can offer support that helps alleviate some of the stress that comes along with the holidays, you can attract plenty of new clients. For example, a course of stress-busting cardio that runs up to the holidays and ends with one final fun Christmas session can be just the thing busy parents need to get some me-time. 

Market your Christmas stress-busting classes on social media, by text, and by email. Also, feel free to limit the numbers that can attend to encourage people to sign up quickly. 

You can also offer helpful guides and resources like blog articles or downloadable lead magnets that solve specific issues, like the one in the example.

A festive-themed nutrition plan template stuffed with high protein foods like turkey and antioxidant-rich brussel sprouts could work well for online personal training clients. All of which can help your clients take care of their health in the run-up to the big day while getting them in the spirit! 

#4. Appeal to the Corporate Market

Example: clubfiftyone.co.uk/corporate-fitness

Businesses traditionally provide gifts to their employees during the festive period, but instead of the usual bottles of wine and boxes of chocolate, how about encouraging them to offer the gift of your personal training or online coaching services instead? You can go further if you have the capacity and design an offering specifically with corporate wellness in mind.

Indeed, there are benefits on offer for everyone involved as you get clients and employees get a gift with real value that they will use. Businesses win too because they get to encourage their workers to be healthier and happier, which can help them take fewer sick days! 

Of course, the key to appealing to the corporate market successfully during the holiday season is to make them crystal clear on the benefits involved. Luckily, wellness is a big deal in the corporate world right now, so when contacting local businesses' HR departments, you won't have to go in with the hard sell. 

Instead, emphasise any discounts you offer for corporate memberships that could save companies money, as well as the services you can offer such as group workout sessions, training for events (like charity runs - popular in the workplace), and even more meditative activities like yoga which are great for busting stress!

#5. Offer Gift Cards

Example: outlawfitcamp.com

Last of all, if you are looking to sign up more personal training clients during the holiday season, it can be hugely beneficial to provide gift cards for your services. After all, there are only so many pairs of socks and boxes of chocolates that a person can receive until they are utterly fed up! 

On the flip side, gift cards are a super easy and convenient option for those buying the gifts, too, as they don't have to spend hours tramping through winter weather, enter crowded stores, offering the same old stuff they had in stock last year! 

As a personal trainer, you could offer gift cards at a range of price points. Even a low-value gift card can encourage a new client because they will get a chance to meet you and see what you can do for them. 

With that in mind, be sure to have a range of services that customers can redeem cards for, and where possible, make sure these include some face time with you, whether in person or via video call, so you can establish a robust connection and encourage them to come back for more. 

Lastly, when it comes to gift cards, offering physical versions in gift envelopes is essential, as many people like to gift an actual item on Christmas day. 

However, it's also vital to tap the online market by offering the cards via your website and social media, both as physical cards that can be posted to the recipient's address and as e-vouchers that can be emailed and printed off. The latter are ideal gifts for those buying at the last minute, who live a long way from their recipient or are currently under restrictions due to the pandemic. 


December and January don't have to be problematic for personal trainers. Instead, you can pack your classes, fill your schedule with new client consultations and maximise your income by offering additional festive-themed services and recruiting new clients simultaneously. 

Indeed, with a bit of festive innovation and marketing, you can keep your diary full until Christmas and start the new year with a whole host of new clients.