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How to Keep Your Fitness Business Running When You Cannot Be There

May 14, 2021
tim saye

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Personal trainers who've been in the industry a while eventually get to the point where they work long hours, either training clients or creating training plans. They might feel they have no time for anything else, including fun, family or holiday.

Getting away for a few weeks as a freelance personal trainer might not be too much of a challenge if your relationship with your clients is solid and you provide them something for the time being. Problems can start when you become ill, get injured or, for instance, if you're a woman and decide to have a baby.

Most trainers don't think about whether their business can run without them until they have to navigate a challenging situation. In this article, we list steps that every personal trainer can take to move away from managing every little part of their business and allow themselves the freedom of a true entrepreneur.

Step 1. Document Your Processes

You probably perform many tasks daily you could delegate, but the process and the how-to only exist in your head. Ask yourself this: If someone you trust were to take over tomorrow, even just temporarily, would they know where to start?

It's best to document all those tasks, including how you keep in touch with clients, every access to your business tools, personal trainer insurance, your website, marketing channels, etc., and how you conduct consultations, sort payments and so on. Ideally, you'd do this before even considering hiring someone, so by the time you need to educate a new team member, you'll be able to hand them instructions besides explaining everything.

Step 2. Create a Contingency Plan

If this is the first time you hear about the idea of a business contingency plan, you might want to tune in and do some research. Likely, after the crises COVID-19 caused in the industry, you might now understand why being prepared for unfortunate events could be a good policy.

That's precisely what a business contingency plan does. It considers all the possible risks that could affect your personal training business negatively and creates a plan of actions for them all.

Personal trainers might want a plan for injuries, insurance claims, damages to property if you own a fitness facility, data security issues and many others that personal circumstances could drive.

Step 3. Automate As Many Tasks As You Can

Automating business processes and workflows come in handy in multiple ways. If you're a freelance personal trainer and are not yet ready to hire an employee, you might find that employing systems to take over much of the repetitive tasks you need to do regularly can be a great way to take some weight off your shoulders.

You can automate your program delivery with personal training software like PT Distinction, your bookings, email campaigns and even accounting. Tech can come in handy to save you time and money even before you're ready to hire talent.

Step 4. Add an Online Component to Your Fitness Services

Adding an online component to your personal training services will teach your current clients how they can start taking responsibility for their progress while you're not with them and also attract a different audience who are ready and willing to work towards their fitness goals on their own following your expert devised fitness programs and coaching.

Going online can mean you work less, earn more and have more freedom. With PT Distinction you can easily create a scalable business model while you keep the personal touch in your online personal training services.

Step 5. Hire People You Trust

We know that relationships and trust aren't built in a day, so this step might take some time and trial error until you find the right people. Even if you are a one-trainer-band, you might want to find at least a side-kick who'll be able to look after your fitness business in case of an emergency or even planned withdrawal from the day-to-day business on your part. This person can be a family member, another personal trainer, or a partner.

Managing your business might be a challenge if you have to do all of it yourself, so hiring the right employees will be essential if you'd like to grow, but especially if you'd like to move away from the daily running of your fitness business.


There comes the point in every personal trainer's life where they feel they want to choose to spend their time how they want. If that's you, these steps can help you start the process of going from working in and on your business to removing yourself from the daily running of it when you wish to.

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