Many freelance personal trainers struggle to find the balance that will allow them to take time off from work and still have a lucrative fitness business. The challenge itself is in the name "personal". While working with your clients, you are aiming to establish a personal bond that will keep your clients coming back to you.
The downside of that is when you want to take a break, they are left without you and will likely miss you. When they are going on holiday, you accommodate them and help them stay on track if they wish. But what happens when you want to go away?
The same principle can be applied there too. In this article, I'll discuss a couple of strategies that can help you build a business that allows you to take time off while looking after your clients and gettting paid for it.
Strategy 1. - Become an Online or a Hybrid TrainerOne of the most popular motivations behind launching an online fitness business among trainers is precisely this: having the flexibility to travel and work from wherever and whenever. Online training gives you freedom to work from anywhere but if you truly want to relax on your break pre scheduling your clients workouts, coaching, messages and check-ins before you go away will ensure your clients are completely taken care of while you enjoy your holiday time. Of course you can easily do all of this using PT Distinction.
If you're a face to face trainer setting up your clients on hybrid programs will ensure they are taken care of while you're away and you still get some income. Hybrid training is a mix of face to face training with online coaching on top, it tends to give clients the best of both and gets incredible results. Many trainers use our personal trainer software to provide hybrid services; training clients in person regularly and providing support online.
Before your holiday you can set up your clients tasks, workouts, reminders and check-in requests and they can be scheduled ahead to run on autopilot while your away. If you want to include regular check-ins, you can time those all onto the same day and take out a few hours once a week or every two weeks to deal with them. Alternatively, you could launch programs that are self-managed for the time you're away.
Strategy 2. – OutsourceYou can outsource some or all the work you usually do.
If you run a facility and employ trainers, get them to cover your client sessions and hire a PA or a VA to manage your emails, client contacts, lead generation system and marketing campaigns.
Understand that you need to give it time to find the right person, to build the rapport so you can trust them and to train them, so they are comfortable doing it on their own. Look after your employees, and they will look after your clients. It’s a simple principle, but true.
If you're a lone wolf, this strategy may be less suitable unless you have a few other freelance PTs you trust who are happy to look after your clients while you’re away. They remain your clients, they pay you, and you pay the trainers. Hiring a VA to keep the admin and marketing running is also still a good idea.
Managing ExpectationsManaging expectations is one of the most important aspects of client care. If you are planning a long trip that will have an effect on your clients’ schedule, inform them as early as you can and where possible involve them in setting them up on the strategy that best suits them.
If they are already on a hybrid plan, for instance, it will be easier to change their subscription to one of your online programs temporarily. They will still receive workouts, content, support and a system that keeps them on their toes.
If you're upfront and show readiness to find the best solution for your clients, they will appreciate it. They understand that you are only human and that you need your break too, so give them the best you can, help them come up with a strategy that they are happy with, the rest will follow.