If you’re looking to enter the fitness industry and work as a PT in a gym, you’re going to need to be clued up on personal trainer rent fees in the UK so you’re not met with any surprises. That’s why in this article we are going to discuss everything you need to know, including:
- What Is Personal Trainer Gym Rent And How Does It Work?
- How Much Rent Do Personal Trainers Pay?
- Pros And Cons Of Using The Personal Trainer Gym Rent Structure
- Alternative Solutions To Paying Gym Rent
To take your first step into fitness, OriGym’s industry-leading personal training courses offer fully accredited qualifications, with unlimited 7 days a week support. Alternatively, find progression courses and more in our downloadable course prospectus.
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What Is Personal Trainer Gym Rent And How Does It Work?
As a personal trainer, gym rent is always going to be an expense during your career, so you should get to know what it is, what to expect, and the costs you could be met with.
Paying rent to a gym is just like paying rent for your home - you’re paying to be there and most importantly, operate your business from there. It pays for the space you and your client will take up, and earns your right to use the equipment at your leisure.
Often, the gym rent for personal trainers is paid monthly, or paid via work. We’ll touch more on what you can expect to be paying month on month soon, but you should know that it doesn't matter whether you bring in one client or 30 clients, you will still pay the fixed price once a month.
So you may be wondering, why can't you just pay your gym membership and turn up to the public gym with your client who is also paying a membership fee? This is a rule among most, if not all, gyms that you will often find in their rules and regulations.
Take a look below at what PureGym have in their rulebook about training people in the gym who aren’t employed by them:
This is why you must be in employment and paying rent to the gym in order to train clients - it protects you and your client, and is otherwise strictly forbidden.
Though, you should actually want to pay rent to train your clients as there are a lot of benefits that come with being a part of the team and paying personal training rent fees.
For example, you can get involved with:
- Group fitness classes
- Gym events
- Becoming a part of the team.
Regardless of whether you’re employed by the gym or just paying rent fees you will still be a part of the company and be eligible to get involved with everything that comes along with that.
How Much Rent Do Personal Trainers Pay?
Now, let’s talk about how much rent you can expect to pay, and the structures that make renting gym space for personal training much more accessible.
The big gyms that you may be aware of, and that all offer a similar structure, are:
- JD Gyms
- The Gym Group
These gyms run on a simple rent payment structure. This is a really great approach for new personal trainers who can’t afford to fork out a couple hundred pounds a month for rent before they have built a client base.
For example, take a look below at a job advertisement for a personal training role with PureGym:
We have highlighted the most important aspects that you need to concentrate on as this is how your personal trainer rent will be paid - let’s take a look at this some more.
When you start off, the most popular approach to get into personal training is to be employed. You would be hired as a fitness instructor, where you’ll have the opportunity to work 12 - 15+ hours a week, which you can then choose to pay back to the gym to pay your rent.
It is a simple structure that separates your business from your employment, while the gym still benefits your business.
As you can see, the final note we have highlighted states how you may be encouraged to reduce your employment hours and shift into a fully self-employed personal trainer.
Essentially, this means that your rent payment would be paid from your income made from personal training clients, and not from being employed by the gym. So what can you expect to be paying?
Average gym rent for personal trainers in the UK varies from gym to gym, and are especially different depending on locations, with rent in London being much higher.
With that being said, we will talk about what to expect from PureGym based on research, reviews and job board statistics.
We found a PureGym review from an ex-employee on Indeed that, as of 2021, the rent for PureGym was approximately £550. Though PureGym doesn’t disclose this themselves, it is a number you can take as a ballpark figure, and sits around what is typically expected of large commercial gyms.
However, if working labour hours or paying rent of this amount doesn’t work for you, you could enquire to private studios that could offer less.
This goes on a case by case basis though - there’s no way of knowing what a private studio will ask for in terms of rent without directly asking them.
This is because they are all different sizes and ultimately, some will be worth more than others depending on things like:
- The quality of their facilities
- Membership base
There is nothing wrong with asking though - simply enquire to a local private gym that you want to work in, and ask about their rates.
Advance your Career with OriGym... Keep learning and progress your career by enquiring about a level 4 personal training course!
Advance your Career with OriGym...
Keep learning and progress your career by enquiring about a level 4 personal training course!
Pros and Cons of Using the Personal Trainer Gym Rent Structure
Now we’ve answered your question of how much rent do personal trainers pay, there are of course pros and cons to every decision you make and this is no exception. Below, you can find out how these pros and cons look and decide if this is the career for you.
Pros of Using the Personal Trainer Rent Fees Structure
#1 - A Personal Trainer Renting Gym Space Has A Good Starting Point
If your ultimate goal is to be a freelance personal trainer, you have to start somewhere that will allow you to be in contact with clients so that you can begin building a loyal client base.
Commercial gyms in particular are a great place to do this especially with the help that comes with employment.
Most gyms will have structure in place to help you grow your business. After all, as we saw earlier from a PureGym job ad, their goal is to get you to a full time role as a self-employed PT paying rent to them.
With this in mind, regardless of the future that you want for your career, this is a really good start to the industry.
In fact, many gyms even offer you the first month or two free of charge so that you have time to build up a client base before you are leaving yourself in a deficit. Take a look below at this job advertisement from The Gym Group:
This is general practice among the big names in the gym industry and it is certainly attractive to newbies to the industry.
As a personal trainer renting gym space is a great start on the right foot, especially when you have time on your side and a particular level of job security. You may find it more difficult to head into a private gym without any help and marketing your business on your own.
More often than not, you will have a profile on the gyms’ website and profile posters on the wall of the gym for potential clients to read. This is the kind of head start that you wouldn’t get if you were doing it alone.
#2 - Personal Trainers Renting Gym Space Have More Access to Potential Clients
Another benefit of taking the route of personal trainer rent fees (UK) is the fact that almost immediately you’re exposed to a pool of potential clients.
Like we mentioned above, the free advertising that often comes with being a part of the gym of your choice is a huge benefit to starting out your career on the right foot.
Not only do you have the likes of your profile on the website and on the walls of the gym, but you’re mixing with gym goers every day.
Below, you can see how your profile can be found if you’re a PureGym personal trainer:
This is where people can find the PT’s that work in their home gym and enquire about sessions with them by having access easily to their contact details.
Similarly, you are bound to become a familiar face around the gym once you start either working and/ or paying rent there.
Even outside of scheduled hours, it is often encouraged that you stick around the gym space, which can be as easy as sitting by the door greeting people while you do some administrative work for your PT business.
This isn’t to work unpaid overtime - it is so that clients get used to seeing you around, and shows that you’re passionate and are willing to go above and beyond to succeed in your business.
The more conversations you spark, the more professional relationships that you can build.
As well as that, you have the chance to teach classes which are widely popular in gyms up and down the UK. With that in mind, the more classes you teach, and teach them well, people will become more and more interested in becoming your client 1-2-1.
#3 - You Can Take Immediate Advantage Of The Reputation You’ve Built Up
As a personal trainer, gym rent pays for many of the aforementioned facilities, but you’re also paying for something that isn’t ‘physical’, but that’s still incredibly valuable.
This is the reputation that comes with working with a well known gym that people trust. This is mostly among commercial gyms rather than smaller private gyms as they have thousands, some millions of memberships so are clearly reputable.
By wearing their personal training uniform, and being a personal trainer that is working for or in their space, there is a level of authority and respect that comes with that.
Potential clients who hear that you work for a big gym name are going to trust the judgement of the company bosses, and respect the knowledge and expertise you’ve built up.
This creates an immediate level of trust which you wouldn’t get if you were working alone right away, and one that would otherwise take a long time to build up organically.
For more resources on how to be a great personal trainer and succeed in the industry, read our articles below:
- How to Stand out as a Personal Trainer
- 6 Additional Personal Training Revenue Streams
- How to Make Money as a Personal Trainer
Become a Personal Trainer with OriGym!
Cons Of Using The Personal Trainer Rent Fees Structure
#1 - Renting Gym Space For Personal Training Can Be Expensive
Like anything, there are some limitations to the personal trainer rent fees (UK) structure, and the main obstacle is the expense.
Though there are two routes for you to take (employed or fully self-employed), it is still an expense that is coming out of your pocket every month which can be hard to upkeep, especially if you’re not getting enough clients needed to make profit or even break even.
At an approximate £500+ a month, it is a huge expense. Of course, the prices vary depending on where you operate from, but whether you’re investing your time or your money, they both amount to the same thing when your focus is personal training clients.
For example, let's refer back to the PureGym example we looked at earlier.
They ask for 12 hours per week, which you can then use to pay for your rent. However, these 12 hours can arguably represent 12 additional clients that you don't have the time to train.
The only way to get around this and make it work in your favour a little more is thinking about it as an investment into your future.
Using £550 as an example figure of personal training rent fees, once you become busy enough to be a full time PT and pay rent to the gym without working hours, it may become more affordable.
For example, if you charge £40 a session due to growing demand, you could work just approximately 13.5 hours a month (approx. 3.5 hours a week) to pay for your rent.
Plus, these hours would be personal training meaning you’re growing your business instead of cleaning or any other jobs that you would typically do in the gym.
This is a huge positive change to your business and though the fees may seem daunting at the start, they will soon become much easier to manage as your business grows.
#2 - You Have To Abide By Gym Rules & Regulations
Since you’re operating your business out of a gym that is not owned by yourself, you have no choice but to abide by the rules that the gym lays out.
This for the most part won't be a problem, but there are some obstacles that could arise from gym to gym.
For example, if you want to train a client who is a powerlifter and the gym that you operate from doesn’t have an Olympic lifting area or any facilities to accommodate this, you may have to turn this client down, or refer that client to another professional.
It is important that you consider these situations when you choose your gym as you never know what kind of client you’re going to have enquiring about your services.
Some gyms may insist on only members being eligible to train in the gym too, this isn’t seen so often but it isn’t unheard of for gyms to ask for this.
Though these are often small minorities, they are factors that you should be thinking about and questions you should be asking before signing up to rent a space.
#3 - Personal Trainers Renting Gym Space Have A Level Of Competition
One thing that can deter some personal trainers from working in a gym filled with other PTs is the level of competition that can come with this dynamic.
In a gym, there can be anywhere from 5 - 25 personal trainers, and this saturation of PTs all with the same end goal can become daunting for any newcomers heading into this environment.
Though this can be intimidating at first, there is no animosity between a team of players on the same team. The energy is comfortable and you shouldn’t feel scared. In fact, you can use this to your advantage for some motivation to push yourself to grow your business.
Many personal trainers will help a newcomer out, everyone has been in that position and you are all trying to build businesses of your own - you’re all a part of an employment team who look after one another.
Essentially, it can become an advantage to have other fitness professionals around you, it becomes a form of networking and the importance of building professional relationships at the very start of your career is a luxury that many other careers don’t have the opportunity to do.
Alternative Solutions to Paying Gym Rent
Apart from wondering how much rent gyms charge personal trainers, you may want to consider if there are any total alternatives that can still bring prospects of a successful career.
Below are two other personal training career options and structures that can do just that.
Working Solely As An Employee For The Gym
One popular approach is to work as an employed personal trainer, which means you can avoid personal trainer gym rent all together.
One big company that uses a structure similar to this Virgin Active. They do not charge rent - you’re employed by the gym on a zero hour contract, with the first 12 weeks offering you 110 paid hours of work as a starting point to help you build a client base.
You can see the highlighted areas of the main aspects of the job description from Virgin Active:
As you can see, they work on a tier system, in which your pay increases as you continue to develop. It is a good way of starting out in personal training if you are concerned about being in a deficit due to rent payments and a lack of clients.
This approach of being employed can be incredibly beneficial, especially from a prestigious gym like Virgin Active. Plus, there is certainly good money to be made within this kind of role, take a look below at the projected salary from Virgin Active:
Even if you’re starting from the lowest tier, you’re still earning much more than the national hourly minimum wage and with the opportunity to advance, it is just a stepping stone.
Ultimately, it is a great starting point for anybody who is worried about finances and the speed of which they can build a client base.
Allow The Gym You Work In To Take A Payment Cut Of Each Client
Another approach is for the gym that you pay rent to and is allowed to take a percentage of your earnings from each client.
Depending on the percentage split, it can be a more expensive form of personal trainer rent fees (UK), but it is essentially a way to make sure that you never pay out unless you’re earning.
This kind of security is attractive for newcomers to the industry and rightfully so, but take into consideration that once you’ve built your client base and are earning more and more, you’re going to lose out on more, too.
Try to negotiate on a fair percentage at first and propose the idea of setting a cap, so that when you’re earning more, the percentage doesn’t shift into their favour.
Keep your focus and goal in sight and do everything in your power to avoid being put at a disadvantage in earnings of your own career.
Before You Go!
We hope that you now feel confident at how many possibilities there truly are for the career of a personal trainer.
There are ways for you to have complete control over your PT business while still benefiting from the factors that come along with PT rent fees, and it’s a huge investment into your future as a successful fitness professional.
If you’re ready to take the next step, get qualified or take an advancement course with OriGym’s accredited personal training courses.
Alternatively, find this and many more in our downloadable course prospectus.
Internationally Recognised Qualifications
Download Your FREE Course Prospectus
Internationally Recognised Qualifications