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How (and where) can personal trainers make the most money?

4-minute read

Sam Bromley

Sam Bromley

13 September 2019

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There are lots of factors that affect how much you can make as a personal trainer. These include location, employment status and the level of experience you have.

We wanted to find out whether some areas in the UK have more earning potential for personal trainers than others. So, we delved into our data to find out the top 10 regions for the profession by turnover.

We’ve also put together a list of top tips for self-employed personal trainers looking to get more clients – and make more money.

Where are the highest paid personal trainers?

The figures below are based on anonymised data for self-employed personal trainers and fitness instructors we insure across the UK. The data covers the whole of 2018.


Average turnover per person





















There’s a strong Northern theme to our top 10. Warrington in Cheshire leads the way – Cheshire’s known for being home to rich entrepreneurs, famous footballers and big TV stars.

Other Northern cities fill out the list, with Sheffield in third, followed by Liverpool and Leeds in sixth and seventh respectively.

Going further north and passing the border, the last place on our list is Glasgow.

But if you’re drawn to the coast and living by the sea, perhaps Southampton, in second place, is where you should be?

When we ask businesses to enter their turnover they choose it in bands, for example £25,000-£49,999, £50,000-£74,999, and so on. When calculating the average turnover, we’ve used the lower figure of these bands. Each of these regions had more than 30 requests for an online quote in 2018.

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When was the last time you researched personal trainer salary?

Whether you’re just starting out or are an experienced personal trainer, it’s important to stay up to date with the sort of money you can earn.

PayScale lists the average personal trainer salary in the UK as £19,601. But if you’re self-employed, there’s no cap on what you can make. And as you can see above, a self-employed personal trainer’s turnover differs depending on location.

It’s always a good idea to research what competitors in your area are charging for their sessions. Insure4Sport say that one-to-one sessions in wealthy parts of London can cost £80 to £100 an hour, but in other parts of the UK £25 to £45 an hour is the norm.

Keep in mind that turnover doesn’t mean profit, though – it’s likely that your costs will be higher in big cities like London.

How to make money as a personal trainer

We’ve identified five ways to promote your business. Can you put any of these into action today, helping you make more money?

How to get personal training clients

1. Referrals and word-of-mouth

After you’ve built a strong, personal relationship with existing clients, they can be amazing ambassadors for you and your brand.

If you create fans who rave about you and your sessions to their friends and family, you have a powerful way to win new business. Let your clients know you’re taking on new clients and you’d appreciate their referral.

Are there any programmes or discounts you can offer that will help you win new customers, while rewarding your existing ones? One idea is a ‘bring a friend’ scheme. A client could bring someone along to their session with you and they both get it for half the price.

2. Boost your marketing

Being creative and planning and implementing new marketing strategies should help you grow your business.

Have a look at what you’re offering. Are you casting your net too widely – and is there a gap in the market you can capitalise on? This might turn out to be a new niche for you.

And using social media platforms effectively is key for personal trainers. People expect to see how your training will benefit them, so planning content for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube can help you strengthen your relationship with your current clients – and widen your reach.

3. Show your existing clients love

This means having great conversations with clients beyond their sessions, giving them the motivation they need to continue their fitness journey and reach their goals. This can make it all the more likely for them to refer friends and family.

What’s more, consider the areas where you can add value for clients. Is there anything they’d like to see that you’re not offering already, like home workouts? Talk to them to identify new services to promote. You might even pull in new clients looking for these services in the process.

4. Get active in your community

Networking events are a great way to build professional contacts – you might be offered opportunities you’ve never considered before, like speaking gigs, which should increase your profile.

You could also research businesses and other organisations in your local area to see which ones are a good fit for partnerships. Aligning your business with others in the same field, like healthy food firms, should help you both out.

And if there are organisations you can get involved with, be it in education or business, charity or health, word-of-mouth should spread. With any luck, it will help your core business win clients.

5. Reward commitment

It can be difficult for clients to keep up early momentum. Of course, your job is to give your clients that motivation, but you should also think about ways to get people to stick with their goals – and with you as their trainer.

While it’s not always easy to be selective about who you take on as clients, it’s good to make sure you’re interviewing new clients before they come on board. Ask the right questions to gauge their commitment.

This can help potential clients narrow down and strengthen their ‘why’ (beyond simply ‘losing weight’ or ‘building muscle’), making their goals all the more achievable.

And it’s great if you can reward an initial commitment to your sessions. Can you offer a discount or add extra value if someone signs up to working with you for 12 weeks?

Do you have any tips on how to make money as a personal trainer? Let us know in the comments below.

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Sam Bromley

Written by

Sam Bromley

Sam has more than 10 years of experience in writing for financial services. He specialises in illuminating complicated topics, from IR35 to ISAs, and identifying emerging trends that audiences want to know about. Sam spent five years at Simply Business, where he was Senior Copywriter.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always take professional advice. Read our full disclaimer

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