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How To Become A Personal Trainer In Dubai: 6 Simple Steps

become a personal trainer in dubai

Learning how to become a personal trainer in Dubai requires you need to consider what qualifications, experience, insurance, travel arrangements and visas you’ll need. In this article, we cover exactly that!

Before we get started, take the first step towards a career as a PT by enquiring about our internationally recognised Personal Trainer Diploma.

Alternatively, download a free prospectus here to learn more about our qualifications!

Step 1 - Secure An Internationally Recognised Qualification

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If you're based in the UK and researching how to become a personal trainer in Dubai, it’s essential to get the right qualifications. 

The easiest way to get fully qualified is by completing a regulated Personal Trainer Diploma, which trains you to industry standards and fully equips you for the career.

Having a regulated qualification is an absolute necessity when applying for positions in Dubai as this allows you to seek to become a member of REPs UAE. 

Registering with REPs UAE is an important part of becoming a personal trainer in Dubai, and so we strongly suggest asking a training provider if their course will allow you to seek this membership before enrolment

How to Find The Best Personal Trainer Course

When it comes to looking for the best personal trainer course, the first thing to look for is a Personal Training Diploma. This is a course that combines both of the essential qualifications needed to work as a PT: the Level 2 Gym Instructor and Level 3 Personal Training qualifications.

By completing your Level 2 & 3 qualifications as part of a diploma rather than enrolling on each course individually, you can save both time and money it's a no-brainer!

 

Get Qualified With OriGym!

Enquire OriGym's Personal Training Diploma and take the first step towards becoming a Personal Trainer!

Once that's decided, the next step is choosing a study method. At OriGym, we offer three different study methods for our PT diploma. Those are:

  • Full Time - this allows you to attend the course at one of our classrooms, and become qualified in 4 weeks through tuition from our experienced staff 
  • Part-Time - this study method means you’ll attend workshops and assessments whilst completing the online course material in your own time. This takes an average of 8 weeks to complete
  • Online Study - allows you to complete the course online and attend relevant assessments to complete your course in, on average, 12 weeks

The 'best' option depends on your circumstances and you should make this decision based on factors such as how you learn best, how quickly you want to qualify, and whether you need to juggle your studies with other commitments. 

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Once you’ve identified a study method that suits you, you need to look into the level of tutor support that a course provider offers. Trust us, good tutor support will make all the difference in your qualification experience!

At OriGym, for example, all of our students have unlimited access to expert tutor support, 7 days a week. Our students can get in touch over the phone, via email, or through our live chat feature! 

While you might assume tutor support comes as standard, some providers offer students very limited opportunities to actually speak to a tutor.

A Nutrition Qualification Can Improve Your Chances Of Securing A Personal Trainer Licence In Dubai 

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Once you’ve secured your Level 3 personal trainer diploma, you will benefit from undertaking a nutritionist qualification.

On the REPS UAE website, this is listed as a skill they expect personal trainers to carry out with their clients:

dubai personal trainer

OriGym’s nutrition qualification gives you an advantage in the Emirates job market because, once you’ve become a trained nutrition coach, you’ll be able to:

  • Identify the sources and functions of macro and micronutrients
  • Understanding the purpose of food legislation
  • Understanding the function of nutrition during physical activity
  • How to meal prep and plan

Having a nutrition qualification will help you give a foundation to give clients nutritional advice when you start working in Dubai. 

Possessing a nutrition qualification is often a highly sought-after quality in personal training positions in the UAE. Check out this one from Embody Fitness UK & Dubai:

becoming a pt in dubai

Once you’re qualified as a nutrition expert, you’re more likely to attract clients which increases your chance of success in the freelance market but equally, an attractive prospect to employers. 

Employers In Dubai Are Looking For Applicants With First Aid Qualifications

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You may ask, do you need to take a first-aid course as a personal trainer? In Dubai, it’s often a qualification that jobs at gyms and health clubs require.

Fitness Center in Dubai, for instance, are looking for a personal trainer with first-aid training in their job description below: 

can you become a pt in dubai

There are first-aid courses for personal trainers you can take to become first-aid trained. St John's Ambulance, for example, provides different courses that you could undertake:

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This will provide you with the ability to carry out life-saving care for clients who require it, which will give you a cutting edge in the Emirates job market when applying for PT positions.

You’ll also be viewed as a more well-rounded fitness professional which is ideal in the budding exercise industry of the UAE.

Step 2 - Gain Practical Experience Before Heading Out To Be A Personal Trainer In Dubai

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Whilst researching how to be a personal trainer in Dubai, you must possess the relevant skills for the position you’re applying for.

On the UAE REPs website, some requirements have to be met to successfully register with them. This includes your ability to:  

  • Conduct client consultations and fitness assessments
  • Apply the principles of exercise science to programme design
  • Apply the principles of nutrition and weight management within an exercise programme

This will help you increase your employment prospects as your registration with REPs UAE will demonstrate your professional status as a personal trainer to potential employers.

Alongside your qualifications, gaining practical experience within the industry will help your chances of success when applying for positions in Dubai.

Getting personal trainer work experience is an essential factor to your success abroad as it will be used by employers to determine whether to invite you to interview during the recruitment process.

You should gain experience in your home country (we’ll use the UK as an example) before heading abroad, as many gyms and fitness centres in Dubai will expect you to have that.

Lals Group on Glassdoor, for example, are looking for a personal trainer with 1 year's experience and the ability to teach group classes in Dubai:

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Alternatively, you could find entry-level work in the United Arab Emirates as long as you have the right to work and retain residency there, which we’ll touch more on shortly.

This is something that Ultimate Performance offers applicants who may not have enough experience, as long as they have the correct attitude to get results on the job:

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This will allow you to gain an insight into the industry and understand a fitness company's competitors, as well as build a network with your peers and clients you train. 

 

Get Qualified With OriGym!

Enquire OriGym's Personal Training Diploma and take the first step towards becoming a Personal Trainer!

Step 3 - Research & Meet The Entry Requirements To Work As A Dubai PT

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When you’re looking into how to become a personal trainer in Dubai, you should consider the visa, passport and medical documentation you require to enter the United Arab Emirates.

This will make sure you meet the legal standards to safely operate within the fitness industry abroad.

We’ll break down exactly what you’ll need here. 

Visa And Work Permits Are Needed To Enter The United Arab Emirates As A PT

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There are a few different visas and permits you’ll need to obtain before travelling to ensure your experience is as smooth as possible, and that you’re able to hit the ground running as a personal trainer in Dubai.

Let’s look at these in more detail.

Personal Trainers Will Need To Obtain A Travelling Visa To Visit Dubai

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There are many different visa types that you can apply for when entering the UAE. These include:

  • A visitors visa
  • Temporary working visas
  • Visas for exploring work and business opportunities
  • Studying abroad visa
  • Visas for medical treatments
  • Visas for emergencies only

When travelling to Dubai, you'll need to obtain a visitor visa. This will help you enter and stay in the country for 40 days.

The gov. uk website, states that you’ll be able to receive a visitor/tourist visa free of charge, which will be stamped upon your arrival in UAE: 

quals for dubai personal trainer

This is the first visa you’ll need, but there are one or two others which are necessary for becoming a PT in Dubai.

You’ll Need To Secure A Work Visa To Work As A Personal Trainer In Dubai

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Next, you’ll need to secure a work visa. This permits you to be employed within the country for a set period. To obtain this visa type, you must complete the relevant paperwork.

Your employer in Dubai would have to submit work-related visas and permits to the Ministry of Labour. They will also be responsible for paying fees for these applications to be processed.

An entry permit, for example, allows you to stay for 30 days, alongside this, you’ll have 60 days to secure a residence visa which can last anywhere between 1-3 years.

Before your entry permit is about to expire, your employer will need to secure a work visa which can last anywhere between up to 2 years, depending on the length of your contract.

When you first move to Dubai, you’ll also need to secure a labour card from your nearest service centre, using your entry visa and passport to prove your identity.

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During this time you’ll also need to complete a medical examination to test you for any diseases. 

Once you’ve completed this step, you’ll need to apply for a residence visa through the UAE’s immigration department. This can be completed with the following documentation: 

  • A completed application form
  • Your original passport and copy
  • Several passport photos
  • Copy of valid company card
  • Health certificate
  • Entry permit
  • Payment receipt for an application fee

Finally, you’ll need to present your identity, work and residency documents to the Department of Naturalisation and Residency Dubai, which will stamp your passport with a residence visa.

After you’ve obtained all the necessary documentation, you’ll have the legal right to begin working in Dubai. 

Working As A Freelance PT In Dubai Comes With Its Challenges

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Alternatively, if you’re looking to become a personal trainer in Dubai, you can apply for a freelance visa. 

This will give you greater work flexibility, and the potential to work with a diverse client base, as well as better allow your business to grow exponentially as you understand the competition in the area.

To achieve this, you’ll need to follow these 6 steps which include:

  • Working with a setup agency to help you understand legal formalities and business requirements
  • Deciding on your business model 
  • Registering your business name with the UAE’s Registry Office
  • Authenticating your business documents
  • Applying for a business licence
  • Getting your personal trainer licence

Independent companies like Connect Resources can help provide you with the right services you’ll need to start up your freelance personal training business, especially given the complexity of the process: 

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Using a service like this can not only help you receive your visa when you need it but also connect you with potential employers in Dubai.

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If learning how to become a PT in Dubai has sparked your interest, why not give these a try?

You Need To Make Sure You Have A Valid Passport Before Travelling To Dubai

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When researching how to be a personal trainer in Dubai, it’s essential to make sure that you have a valid passport. 

If you hold a full British passport, you’ll need to have at least 6 months on your passport from the date you enter the country. 

If you hold a residence permit, then you need to have at least 3 months on your passport from the day of arrival in Dubai.

It’s important to understand that there are serious consequences to arriving in the UAE without the relevant work permits and visas, including financial penalties and legal complications.

You Need To Complete Medical History Forms Before Entering Dubai

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When considering how to become a personal trainer in Dubai, you need to complete a mandatory health check. 

This is to determine whether people entering the country are carrying any diseases. Foreign nationals who are known to have diseases such as HIV and Tuberculosis can be detained and deported. 

This will involve you completing blood tests and X-rays to test your health. Once you’ve been given the all-clear by medical professionals, you’ll be able to secure a resident visa in the UAE.

You’ll also need to complete a medical information form before you fly to Dubai, which needs to be submitted 48 hours before the flight is scheduled.

This can be emailed to the address provided by the airliner, as highlighted by the information provided by the Emirates airline:

become fitness trainer in dubai

So before you fly, make sure you’ve checked with your flight provider what documentation you need to complete before flying.

 

Get Qualified With OriGym!

Enquire OriGym's Personal Training Diploma and take the first step towards becoming a Personal Trainer!

Step 4 - Plan For Your Travel & Accommodation When Looking To Be A PT In Dubai

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If you want to become a personal trainer in Dubai, it’s essential to make sure you have a workable budget.

This will help you secure your flights, and a place to rent and cover provisions whilst you work on securing your dream personal trainer job in Dubai.

If you’re looking for flights from a recognised flight provider, for example, you could purchase them through the Emirates, the main provider for flights to Dubai:

exercise training in dubai

You can also find bargain flights with budget-friendly sites like Cheapflights, which can help you find airlines that offer low prices for flights the day you plan to fly out to Dubai. 

During your time in Dubai, you'll also want to make sure that you have a place to live. Dubai, like any modern city, has a wide range of properties to cater to your budget. 

A useful website that you can visit is Bayut, which displays properties to rent in the city: 

become a fitness trainer in dubai

You may have noticed that they are asking for AED 18,000 (approximately £3,960) yearly. This is because some landlords may request payment upfront to secure a place to rent.  

So when looking for a place to rent, factor in the length of time you plan to stay if you’re staying for a short period, you may need to find alternative accommodation such as a hotel apartment. 

Finally, you will also need to factor in transport between your places of stay and the airports you’re travelling between, along with any equipment you’re transporting.

Step 5 - Ensure You’ve Got The Right Legal Coverage Before Working As A Personal Trainer In Dubai

become an exercise trainer in dubai

When you’re working on how to become a personal trainer in Dubai, you’ll need to make sure you’ve got the correct insurance coverage. 

Let's look at the key insurances you'll need to have.

Health Insurance Is A Necessity When Working As A PT In Dubai

become a pt in the uae

Health insurance is compulsory for anyone who is a resident of Dubai. If you’re employed by a company, they’re responsible for securing your coverage. 

When suffering from a medical condition requiring medical treatment, your insurance company should be able to help you with medical bills, depending on the type of coverage you’ve been provided.

If you want extra protection whilst working in Dubai, you can take out private insurance that reflects your physical health and profession. 

There are insurance companies that can provide you with private health insurance such as Globality Health:

become a personal trainer in the uae

If you need to claim your insurers because your employer's insurance doesn't cover you, you'd have extra coverage.

These coverages, as demonstrated by the example above, could allow you to receive surgery, anaesthetics and cancer treatment should you require it. 

Public Liability Insurance Is Crucial For Protecting Yourself As A PT In Dubai

uae personal trainer

Public Liability Insurance is a useful piece of insurance to have as you can use this to make a claim should a client decide to take legal action against you. 

There are insurance providers in the UAE, such as those found in the Insurance Market who can:

  • Cover you whilst working with clients at your place of business 
  • A client’s home 
  • If your property is damaged

become a uae personal trainer

When you’re searching for public liability insurance as a personal trainer, don’t be afraid to shop around to find a quote that covers all aspects of your working day as a personal trainer. 

If you’re working for a company, they’ll likely provide you with cover. However, if you’re freelancing outside your contracted hours, having your public liability insurance would be a wise investment to protect yourself. 

It’s important to make sure you understand the cover you receive whilst working your contracted hours with a company. 

 

Get Qualified With OriGym!

Enquire OriGym's Personal Training Diploma and take the first step towards becoming a Personal Trainer!

You’ll Need To Purchase Travel Insurance Before Travelling To Dubai

visas for personal trainer dubai

When travelling to a foreign country, it’s important to have travel insurance coverage. It’s advisable to have this secured before your health insurance begins in the UAE.

The Post Office can provide you with this cover, offering you flight protection, no limit on medical coverage, along with coverage for baggage that is lost or stolen: 

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This will likely cover all eventualities whilst you make your journey over to the United Arab Emirates.

Step 6 - Securing Your Dream Role As A Personal Trainer In Dubai

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If you're looking for a job to become a personal trainer in Dubai, be sure to look for positions that match your skill set.

One website that can help you secure that dream role is Naukri Golf, which advertises personal trainer jobs available in Dubai:

how to personal train in dubai

You can apply for these jobs as long as you have the relevant qualifications and experience and like many other job-based websites, you have an active account on their site.

Confidential Company, for example, is advertising for a personal trainer on the site who is:

  • 1 year minimum experience in personal training
  • First aid/CPR qualification

It’s also essential to know how to write a personal trainer CV, so you can upload it onto the profile you create to make you visible to potential employers. 

This will help increase your employment prospects because when you’re not applying for jobs, you might be contacted by a gym or health club that discovered your CV themselves.

You Could Work As A Freelance PT In Dubai But You Need To Check Your Eligibility

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Another possibility for you to gain experience in the industry is to work as a freelance PT in Dubai. 

To succeed in this role, you’ll need to make sure you have a workable budget and can secure the correct visas and licences to operate as a freelance PT in Dubai.

You may find it challenging to become a freelance PT in Dubai, but it’s entirely possible if you secure the correct permissions and visas we outlined earlier in this article. 

Once you’ve calculated that freelancing is a viable career path in Dubai, then you can advertise your services on websites such as Upwork:

be a pt in dubai

UAE Personal Trainers is another great website where you can advertise your services as a personal trainer:

dubai personal training certificate

Websites like this can allow users to find a personal trainer based on their training goals, such as bodybuilding, CrossFit and strength. 

If you specialise in different areas of fitness, this will help you gain the relevant experience you require and also help you find a niche market to maximise your earning potential.

Before You Go!

After reading this article, you'll have more information to prepare for life as a personal trainer in Dubai! Remember to secure your Personal Trainer Diploma to pursue this career path.

You can also download our course prospectus to see the range of additional qualifications you can enrol on.

Written by Liam Donohoe

Content Writer and Fitness Enthusiast

Liam graduated from Liverpool John Moores University with a 2:1 in BA (Hons) English and Creative Writing. He has also co-written a short film that has been featured in several film festivals. In October 2023, he ran and completed his first half marathon and for 2024, he's now training to complete his first metric marathon.

In his spare time, Liam likes to teach himself German, read books, lift weights and listen to metal music that only passionate fans of the genre will understand.

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