According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, from 2010 to 2020 the hiring of fitness trainers and instructors is expected to grow by 24 percent. This rate of growth is faster than the average for all employment. However, becoming a personal trainer does entail upfront costs you should consider.
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Employment generally requires certification by an accredited organization. American Council on Exercise, National Academy of Sports Medicine and American College of Sports Medicine are widely considered the three most reputable. As of 2013, the certification packages for these programs range from around $500 to $1000. NASM offers additional options with a-60 day employment guarantee from $1200 to $2000. All of these organizations require that you are CPR/AED certified before you take exams. You may also find additional certification options at colleges and universities that are not affiliated with these three organizations.
Personal trainers who are independent contractors or self employed should seriously consider professional liability insurance. In 2013, a typical policy will cost you about $170 to $260 each year depending on the liability limits. Many also offer two year policies at a discounted rate. To build your client base, you may also want to include costs for business cards, flyers and general advertising of your training business.