Considering Becoming a Fitness Instructor – Things You Need to Consider

Considering Becoming a Fitness Instructor – Things You Need to Consider

When embarking on a career journey as a fitness instructor there are numerous considerations one must take into account to make sure they have the best chance of success.

Personal Attributes to be a Fitness Instructor

First of all, a fitness instructor job requires certain personal attributes such as an outgoing, friendly personality, a willingness to help, and a passion for helping others. It involves a great deal of patience, responsibility and care to make sure that people are exercising safely and effectively. So, there are lots of personal attributes which are very important for a fitness instructor role.

Fitness Instructor Qualifications

It is obviously very important as well that the instructor has the correct qualification. To be a fitness instructor the minimum qualification needed is Level 2 Gym Instructing. Many gyms however, even for fitness instructor roles, do look for Level 3 Personal Training as an acceptable qualification. This means that even if you are working as a fitness instructor it is always advantageous to have Level 3 Personal Training as well. In terms of professional membership, once qualified a fitness instructor can join CIMPSPA to get the recognition of their skill as a gym instructor practitioner. This could be beneficial as it shows that the instructor has registered with the only professional body for the fitness sector.

Fitness Instructor Working Role

In terms of working hours and conditions, it is important that a fitness instructor understands what they will be doing. A fitness instructor is a different job for a personal trainer. Whilst a personal trainer trains clients one-to-one, a fitness instructor is responsible for showing people how to use equipment safely and effectively, and then being the go-to person in the gym if anyone has any problems or needs any help. It is not about working with clients for sustained periods of time on a one-to-one basis like a personal trainer, but being able to advise, help, and demonstrate equipment accordingly to make sure that everyone in the gym is exercising safely and effectively. A fitness instructor’s job is very much based in a gym, so it is very much a gym-based role that could be inside a sports centre, leisure centre etc.

Working Hours of a Fitness Instructor

In terms of working hours, a fitness instructor’s working hours may not be suitable for everyone so they definitely need to be considered. A fitness instructor essentially will have to cover hours that the gym is open. Usually, a fitness instructor will work in shifts - there is normally a morning shift which could be for example starting at 6:30am and finishing in the early afternoon, and then there is often an evening shift where a fitness instructor might start in the afternoon and then finish at say 10pm at night. There are different working patterns in gyms and that is because gyms are open for sustained periods of time throughout the day. Obviously, all gyms are different, and you may find some gyms which have fixed opening hours such as a Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm basis, however this is rare and most gyms do operate on a much longer timescale with many gyms opening early in the morning and closing late at night. Fitness instructors therefore have to work shifts around these particular patterns. That’s not to say that it would be the only way that shifts are constructed, it would be up to you and your gym manager to agree what your shift is. It doesn’t necessarily have to be an early start or a late finish, it could be hours around that such as part-time hours, and all of that is for negotiation between yourself and your manager once qualified.

Considerations for Becoming a Fitness Instructor – In Conclusion

Above all, being a fitness instructor gives you the opportunity to work with people, make a difference on their life, show them how to use equipment, make sure they understand how to get on in the gym and how to keep themselves fit and healthy using the gym-based equipment. If you feel you have the right attributes for this role and the role is something that you feel would fit in with your lifestyle then the qualification to go for would be the Level 2 Gym Instructor qualification and possibly the Level 3 Personal Training qualification. Remember, many personal trainers start out as fitness instructors so often it is a very useful first step to embark on a future career as a personal trainer. I hope this has been a useful article and I wish you the best of luck in making your career choices.



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