Here’s the thing about fitness business ideas…
Something that might have been a huge success two or three years ago, might not necessarily work today.
The fitness industry, perhaps more than any other industry, moves fast. That means that fitness business ideas have to keep up. If you take a look at some of the most popular fitness businesses out there, you’ll be able to identify constant re-branding, a willingness to change, and the ability to be flexible.
Hell, just look how CrossFit has transformed itself from a niche method of keeping fit, to a multi-national brand with competitions, sponsored athletes, and franchises.
So the big question is, what are the next big fitness business ideas, and how can you capitalise on them to kick-start your fitness enterprise today?
In this article, we’re going to take you through the five big movements in personal training, and how you might capitalise on these shifts in the industry to topple your competitors and rise to the top of a saturated market.
1. Mobile Personal Training
Over the last five years in particular, there has been a definite shift in popularity towards working out at home.
While budget gyms have soared in popularity, another huge market is to be found in office and corporate personal training, and personal trainers who travel to their clients.
As such, mobile personal training is one of the fastest growing areas of the fitness sector, and also one that, as of yet, is not being properly capitalised on. This makes it one of the most exciting fitness business ideas around!
Essentially, a mobile personal trainer is a PT who spends most of their time visiting clients in home and office settings, rather than waiting for clients to come to them in the gym.
Now, if you want a full rundown of what mobile personal training is, the pros and cons of choosing this as your career path, and examples of successful mobile personal trainers, check out our Ultimate Guide to Mobile Personal Training.
What we’re going to cover here is what you’ll need to become a mobile personal trainer, and some ideas of how you might go about turning this trend into your next killer fitness business idea.
What You’ll Need
The great thing about mobile personal training as a fitness business idea is that, in terms of requirements, it doesn’t differ too much from regular personal training.
Probably the most important thing to consider is that you’ll be working as an independent trainer (that is, you won’t have an affiliation with a gym or larger organisation behind you), so you need to cover yourself in terms of insurance.
This is much easier than it sounds. There are loads of insurance providers out there catering exactly for personal trainers with these kinds of fitness business ideas. Really, the only thing you need to remember is that you need to have public liability insurance and (ideally) professional indemnity insurance included in whatever policy you take out.
After that, try to look at the practicality of becoming a mobile personal trainer…
Making sure that you have a presence on the gym floor is one of the key aspects of personal trainer marketing. As such, you need to give yourself time to build up a local reputation, so that when you start operating on a mobile basis, you have enough clients to sustain your business.
This is why we only suggest considering mobile personal training as a fitness business idea, when you have 8-12 months experience.
The benefits to mobile personal training are fairly clear.
Getting out and about in your local community expands the reach of your marketing to those hard-to-reach clients.
Think about it…
Everyone who was once reluctant to train with you because they were intimidated by the gym is now a potential client. As long as you have effective marketing channels, and good word of mouth reputation in your local community, you can really expand your client list in the first few months of mobile personal training.
Another benefit is that time is now your own. Yes, you’ll be busy with clients in order to make good money, but you can start discounting all the hours spent doing tasks on the gym floor for your manager.
No more cleaning the gym! Hallelujah!
And now the bad news (What? You didn’t think all our business ideas would be sunshine and roses, did you?).
The good thing about the drawbacks for mobile personal training is that you can predict them and accommodate for them.
Things like travel expenses, taxes, and admin tasks can be factored into your timetabling and, as long as your organised, need not detract from mobile personal training as a potentially lucrative fitness business idea.
From Fitness Trend to Fitness Business Idea: How to capitalise on Mobile Personal Training
As a fitness business idea, mobile personal training is unique in that your future success is predicated upon the local setting you find yourself in.
Or, let’s put that differently…
How much money you can earn as a mobile personal trainer, depends on your ability to identify “hard-to-reach” clients.
In our experience as a leading provider of personal trainer courses, those of our students who have successfully managed to carve out successful mobile personal training careers have all – in broad terms – followed the same process…
2. Outdoor Personal Training
As far as fitness business ideas go, there’s nothing that comes close to the track record of success that outdoor personal training has.
But outdoor personal training doesn’t just mean running and cycling…
Over the past few years, fitness sessions like British Military Fitness and park circuits have exploded in popularity.
As an outdoor personal trainer then, you’ll be entering a competitive market. But a market where there is endless scope for creativity, and with the correct branding, huge potential to increase your earnings multiple times over!
While your role can be anything from a military style group class leader, or a relaxing outdoor yoga instructor, the general gist of becoming an outdoor personal trainer is to find a specialist niche, and form an outdoor workout around it.
Want more details? Check out our recent article on everything you need to know about becoming an outdoor personal trainer.
What you’ll need
The key here is in the experience…
In what we’ve established is an ultra-competitive area of the fitness industry, probably more competitive than all the other fitness business ideas in this list combined, it’s your experience and your ideas that will ensure success.
And guess what… you only get those ideas once you’ve spent a few months training clients and identifying your target audience.
A pre-established template for group classes is also essential. Firstly, it means you don’t stutter in the early months of setting up your new outdoor training programme, and secondly, it’ll mean that you’ll already have some eager clients willing to join you on your new fitness venture.
Aside from being potentially lucrative, outdoor classes have the major benefit of being able to increase the number of clients in one session.
This is really important for busy trainers…
If we compare outdoor personal training to mobile personal training, you can see the advantage of spending an hour with 25 paying clients, rather than an hour with 1 client in their home.
Many trainers also find themselves gravitating towards outdoor training because it allows them to express themselves as an individual, in a professional capacity.
Do you love planning outdoor sessions around gymnastics-style exercises, or yoga exercises? Go ahead and do it!
Once you take your training outside, you remove the gadgets and equipment found in gyms, which forces you to be more creative with your session planning.
Creativity, however, is also a drawback.
Even if you have a speciality that you are passionate about, and that is easily transferrable to an outdoor training session, you still need to put thought and effort in to making it engaging for your clients.
That can be a time consuming task.
Even worse, when you get drop-offs in attendance during bad weather and the winter months, you might find that your combined planning and group class time is actually detrimental to your overall fitness business.
As such, many outdoor clients also keep a handful of one-to-one clients on their books, just in case attendance drops off from their group class sessions.
From Fitness Trend to Fitness Business Idea: How to capitalise on Outdoor Personal Training
The easy answer is, starting drafting interesting and unique group class ideas now.
Without knowing how you’ll perform in a group class setting, you’ll never be able to say for certain how successful you’ll be as an outdoor personal trainer.
In our experience, after prospective PTs have earned their qualifications, necessary CPDs, and have been in the industry for 8-12 months, the process of becoming a succesfful outdoor personal trainer looks something like…
3. Strength and Conditioning Coaching
The industry surrounding strength and conditioning coaching marks a departure from the various strands of personal training, be it mobile or outdoor personal training.
In the past, strength and conditioning coaches have been specialist positions, only found in universities or professional athletic organisations.
Now however, strength and conditioning training and strength and conditioning-style classes have proliferated in the fitness market, making it one of the fastest growing fitness business ideas out there right now.
But what is a strength and conditioning coach?
As far as fitness business ideas go, think of strength and conditioning coaching like personal training, but in a more industry setting.
So, rather than working in a commercial gym with hobbyist fitness fanatics, you’ll tend to work with professional or semi-professional athletes, student athletes, or with whole teams. Your job will mainly comprise of tweaking programmes to ensure that athletes and team members can achieve maximum performance in their training, and towards a specific goal.
But of that all sounds a bit long-winded, check out our ultimate guide to strength and conditioning coaching, which breaks down the industry, the role, and all the pros and cons you need to know!
What you’ll need
There is a small caveat here, in that you don’t have to choose the Level 2 and Level 3 route in terms of your qualifications.
Many strength and conditioning coaches opt for university degrees in areas like Sport science. However, we chose the suggested path for a couple of reasons:
Firstly, degrees are expensive and lengthy. In an area that might not guarantee you immediate work following your studies, it can be a big risk to embark on a degree. The Level 2 and Level 3 pathway therefore gives you a condensed learning experience, while also allowing you plenty of options outside of strength and conditioning coaching once you’ve qualified.
In this sense, experience is also essential, in order to ensure that once you are given an opportunity or an interview, you are adequately prepared to make the most of it.
Because of where you’ll likely be working as a strength and conditioning coach, one of the major benefits of this fitness business idea is the earning potential.
Strength and conditioning coaches for prestigious universities and sports teams can earn big money…
And the good thing about the industry as a whole is that it’s growing. Increased uptake in fitness means more funding for fitness institutions, which can only improve job prospects for prospective strength and conditioning coaches in the future.
You guessed it.
The main drawback is that, at the time of writing, the jobs market for strength and conditioning coaches is super competitive.
While that looks to change, it does mean that, perhaps more than any of the other fitness business ideas on this list, becoming a strength and conditioning coach – whether for a club or independently – requires a lot of skill and experience.
From Fitness Trend to Fitness Business Idea: How to capitalise on Strength and Conditioning Coaching
Given the current jobs market, and given the competitiveness of this niche compared to other fitness business ideas, we would suggest starting out as an independent strength and conditioning coach.
Now, there’s a few ways to do this in order to ensure long-term success in the early stages of your strength and conditioning career…
4. Sports Massage Therapy
Another left turn as we go through the best fitness business ideas for 2019...this time we concentrate on rehabilitation.
Now that there are more people than ever taking their commitment to sports seriously, there has opened up a huge market for sports massage therapists, and perhaps more interestingly, personal trainers who are qualified to offer sports massage therapy services.
Did you know, for example, that in a recent survey, almost half of UK fitness hobbyists sustained an injury while trying to get fit.
As a sports massage therapist your role will focus almost solely on dealing with sports injuries. Now, in terms of working hours and salaries, this kind of work has a lot of implications for fitness professionals.
For a full rundown check out our 2019 guide for how to become a sports massage therapist.
What you’ll need
While you don’t need a Level 2 and Level 3 qualification in order to become a sports massage therapist, we’d highly advise this.
Think about it logically…
If you’re already a successful personal trainer with a large client list, you can better maintain clients in the long-term if you go on to achieve your sports massage therapy qualification, The two professions directly feed in to one another: injured clients need therapy, and those seeking therapy will eventually want to be trained again.
By combining this fitness business idea, with personal training in general, you can ensure that you are successful in the long run.
Choosing a qualification can also be difficult. If you’re seriously considering sports massage therapy, we highly suggest checking out our ultimate guide, and finding out all about wages, average hours, and accrediting bodies for massage therapists, before making any hasty decisions!
If you read what we just wrote, then you’ll kind of know the benefits.
As far as fitness business ideas for 2019 go, sports massage therapy allows for the most cross pollination between other professions.
Everyone needs recovery, and if you’re qualified to offer those services you’ll put yourself well ahead of the competition!
There is also a great deal of potential in terms of advertising yourself as a specialist for marathon runners and triathletes, both of whom need intense periods of recovery, and both exist in large numbers.
The major setback of sports massage therapy, compared to other fitness business ideas, is the amount of time it takes to become one.
If you want to be a personal trainer with a sports massage therapy qualification, that could be as many as four different qualifications, all with exams and periods of study attached to them.
From Fitness Trend to Fitness Business Idea: How to capitalise on Outdoor Personal Training
Compared to other fitness business ideas in this list, becoming a sports massage therapist probably involves the most research and preparation.
The career path and opportunity for success is fairly clear, but in the period before that, there is a lot of study and hard work involved.
However, if you’re willing to put in the hours, the hard work is definitely worth it, and here’s what we’d advise putting in place if you’re to succeed as a sports massage therapist in 2019.
5. Online Nutrition and Fitness Coaching
Last but certainly not least in our list of the best fitness business ideas for 2019 is online nutrition and fitness coaching.
Now, if you’re not already planning some kind of online venture – whether it’s a simple matter of Facebook ads and engaging in online marketing, or launching an all-singing, all-dancing online platform for your clients – then you’re missing out.
With more people than ever engaging in fitness pursuits, the online fitness sector and use of technology have concurrently grown, and are now a booming industries in its own right.
So, what is online fitness coaching?
Like personal training, you’ll need to be qualified, you need experience, and a great USP and brand will go along way in ensuring quick success. As far as new fitness business ideas go, online personal training basically involves expanding your client reach and offering programmes and nutritional coaching through either apps or web-platforms.
But why might you want to consider it, and what do you need if you do?
What You’ll Need
As you can see, as far as fitness business ideas go, online fitness coaching is no shortcut into the industry.
You still need qualifications, experience, and knowledge of the industry to succeed. In fact, to be a successful online personal trainer, you’re going to have to show off your qualifications and success stories, as your clients aren’t going to meet you before parting with their hard-earned money.
In addition to this, there’s the small matter of website and app development…
Obviously, if you’re not a developer, you’re going to have to hire someone to do this, and web developers don’t come cheap. This, however, is not necessarily a bad thing. Investing in the beginning on an aesthetically pleasing website and / or app will be the difference between you and a less committed online trainer trying to make some quick cash.
Well, get it right in the early stages and online personal training can make you more money than all the other fitness business ideas put together!
You have to spend less time with online clients, often for similar amounts of money to face to face training, and there’s no limit to the number of clients you can sign up tp your online programme.
Online training can also supplement your face-to-face business – so if you don’t want to give up your training programmes on the gym floor, you don’t have to!
Think about how easy it is to set up a website or social media profile in 2019…
This means one thing: anyone can claim to be a fitness professional.
Your competing with thousands of other online trainers, not just for clients, but for credibility.
As such, you need to be able to effectively show you’re the real deal. This is going to require some serious marketing experience, and a creative flair.
Don’t be surprised then, if you find yourself spending more time on marketing than anything else in the early days of your online personal training career.
From Fitness Trend to Fitness Business Idea: How to capitalise on Online Fitness and Nutrition Coaching
Like the sound of online personal training as a fitness business idea?
Then listen up…
Below we’ve got the three step process of turning your Facebook ads, into an online empire.
Of course, more than anything else, online personal training requires patience and dedication. While it is possible to make quick money in this sector, there’s no way you can sustain a long-term career unless you have a plan, and the knowledge of the industry to stay ahead of the game.
And that’s that!
As far as fitness business ideas for 2019 go, that’s your lot.
But let us know how you’re getting on!
And remember, if you’re ready to start your fitness career, we’re here to answer your questions. Simply get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a quick call on 0800 002 9599!