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  1. #1
    Registered User ChessGuy's Avatar
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    What's the best chain type gym to start off at for new PTs?

    I know, I know, best find a smaller one. If one had to choose a large chain, which one?
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  2. #2
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    Originally Posted by ChessGuy View Post
    I know, I know, best find a smaller one. If one had to choose a large chain, which one?
    What are you grading them on?
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  3. #3
    Registered User ChessGuy's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Endevorforever View Post
    What are you grading them on?
    Hours, pay, income potential, treatment..
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  4. #4
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    Originally Posted by ChessGuy View Post
    Hours, pay, income potential, treatment..
    Golds Gym or Anytime fitness.
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    Snap fitness.
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  6. #6
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    Hours: N/A
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    Income Potential: Used to be 24Hr
    Treatment: Depends on the management

    I really wish I could tell you which gym would be the best, but if one existed would you be asking? Chain gyms suck to work at, because you will not get paid a decent wage. (at least in U.S.).

    TL;DR: If you are just working there for experience then go for any. They all pay reasonably the same.
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  7. #7
    Registered User ChessGuy's Avatar
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    I guess I should have been more specific. When you recommend one, I would like to ask why? Is it better pay(how much), more hours?

    I'm hoping to start at $10./hr at least with 8 hrs/day. 40 hours/week. Is that realistic?

    Thanks

    John
    Last edited by ChessGuy; 02-13-2013 at 07:29 PM.
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  8. #8
    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    i cannot imagine a situation where they would have 8 one hour sessions or 16 half hour sessions available for you... 5 days a week.. it just doesn't work that way... unless they are firing someone.. and chances are that someone would only have about 20 hrs of work a week anyways
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  9. #9
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    Spend a couple days driving around town to various gyms. Ask if they are hiring PTs, tell them you are interested and give them your resume, ask if they have some time to go over the details of the job such as pay, hours, etc. And then create a list of all the info for the various gyms, compare the advantages and disadvantages of each, and come to an informed decision.

    That seems like the simplest and most effective way of doing it. Not all gyms are the same across the country, even if its a franchise.
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  10. #10
    Registered User WoofieNugget's Avatar
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    It really depends on where you live. What you're looking for is a chain gym, relatively newly opened if possible close to an upper-middle class area of whatever city you live in. If you want to get hired easily and fill up as a PT very fast then you can actually look to see if each chain has a new branch opening in an area that is accessible to you and get hired there - the simple volume of new PT sales at a new gym opening guarantees you will be busy.

    You don't want to PT 40 hours a week though. Trust me on that one. It can easily be done, but session quality and focus greatly suffers.
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  11. #11
    Registered User ChessGuy's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by WoofieNugget View Post
    It really depends on where you live. What you're looking for is a chain gym, relatively newly opened if possible close to an upper-middle class area of whatever city you live in. If you want to get hired easily and fill up as a PT very fast then you can actually look to see if each chain has a new branch opening in an area that is accessible to you and get hired there - the simple volume of new PT sales at a new gym opening guarantees you will be busy.

    You don't want to PT 40 hours a week though. Trust me on that one. It can easily be done, but session quality and focus greatly suffers.
    I got you. I have no idea how the pay system works. I need to make at least $400./week to start off. Whether it's actual training or floor time..
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  12. #12
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    400 a week isnt realistic starting off at all much less 400 every 2 weeks even. Give yourself at least several months to start building up clients.
    Obssession is a word lazy people use to describe dedication.

    If your not nervous before going to the gym your probably not working out hard enough (my new favorite quote)

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  13. #13
    Registered User ericzimmerman34's Avatar
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    400 a week isnt realistic starting off at all much less 400 every 2 weeks even. Give yourself at least several months to start building up clients.
    Obssession is a word lazy people use to describe dedication.

    If your not nervous before going to the gym your probably not working out hard enough (my new favorite quote)

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  14. #14
    Registered User ChessGuy's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ericzimmerman34 View Post
    400 a week isnt realistic starting off at all much less 400 every 2 weeks even. Give yourself at least several months to start building up clients.
    So you're saying all PTs work on commission?
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  15. #15
    Fitness Proprietor SageFit's Avatar
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    Hey Chess I have a suggestion for you. Take this only as trying to be helpful, not a dick, as I only mean it as that. You're 61 so you're going to have trouble finding yourself clients who are 18-40, especially since you're new to training. If you had an existing business and popularity it wouldn't matter but starting out it will be hard.

    "Which gym is best?" No longer applies to you because you are a very specific kind of trainer. Your best clients are going to be 45-80+. Now, that may seem like it's cutting your potential but if anything it creates a really nice niche for you. Go find the gym that has the highest amount of clients in that age range and you'll be golden. I can go into a lot of detail as to why this would work better for you in the beginning but I think it's pretty self-explanatory. Marketing is marketing and right now that's your target market for obvious reasons.

    I say things like this in all recommendation threads. Personal training, when trying to find clients, is all marketing. Learn your market and know what they need. The 60+ crowd? They need a guy like you.
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  16. #16
    Registered User ericzimmerman34's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ChessGuy View Post
    So you're saying all PTs work on commission?
    On the most part yes. When your not training your not getting paid. Some gyms will give you floor hours and some will be more giving as you just start out. But if your not training the gym isnt going to pay you to sit around. Its a business and its about making money. The more clients you have, the more hours you work, the more money you make. Its challenging and even a little intimidating just starting off especially but its a very enjoyable and fun career. I would recommend it. Just put in the first few months of being poor as it pays off in the long run.
    Obssession is a word lazy people use to describe dedication.

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  17. #17
    Registered User ChessGuy's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SageFit View Post
    Hey Chess I have a suggestion for you. Take this only as trying to be helpful, not a dick, as I only mean it as that. You're 61 so you're going to have trouble finding yourself clients who are 18-40, especially since you're new to training. If you had an existing business and popularity it wouldn't matter but starting out it will be hard.

    "Which gym is best?" No longer applies to you because you are a very specific kind of trainer. Your best clients are going to be 45-80+. Now, that may seem like it's cutting your potential but if anything it creates a really nice niche for you. Go find the gym that has the highest amount of clients in that age range and you'll be golden. I can go into a lot of detail as to why this would work better for you in the beginning but I think it's pretty self-explanatory. Marketing is marketing and right now that's your target market for obvious reasons.

    I say things like this in all recommendation threads. Personal training, when trying to find clients, is all marketing. Learn your market and know what they need. The 60+ crowd? They need a guy like you.
    I'm so hurt. You mean I won't get to train those 18-25 yo hot chicks? lol

    I'm not going to limit myself to any age group. I already have a specialty in mind.

    My last two visits to the gym has resulted in two potential customers.... one was a budding young BB whom I told that I could potentially train but don't have knowledge of contest preparation...the other a 30+ something housewife who saw how I was training, asked for advice, and thought it would be cool to get some lessons from me.

    I guess it helps when one is the only person..young or old..who squats and deadlifts in a gym...
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  18. #18
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    Going off sagefits suggestion I think hes on to something. You know first hand what people go through as they age and how to deal with it. Also that age group is the main age who purchases training as they see/have the need for it and are becoming more concerned with their health, and most of all they are able to afford it.
    Obssession is a word lazy people use to describe dedication.

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    for a steady paycheck, you're better of finding a fitness center that has trainer on duty sort of thing. Where you work the floor as an attendant basically. Like a hotel/army depot/corporate weight room fitness trainer. At the chain gyms, they usually give you 10-20 hours at minimum wage for a few weeks where you are expected to find clients and be a salesman. Good luck finding a steady stream of people coming into the gym that want to pay $50 or so for a session. There are also fitness suites that find and book clientele then you show up and train, like Fitness Together, if they're still around.
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  20. #20
    Registered User ChessGuy's Avatar
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    Having lost around 90lbs and being type 2 diabetic gives me a 'been there' advantage over many. I can get the clients if given the opportunity. Have lots of sales experience and training.

    My main concern is the first few weeks......

    Just an example...I love to approach folks...I used to sell the encyclopaedia Britannica door to door and was successful at it. That's much harder than anything I see in a gym.

    Keep the suggestions coming. All are appreciated!
    Last edited by ChessGuy; 02-14-2013 at 10:10 PM.
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  21. #21
    Omega Level RyouBakua's Avatar
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    I think youll have an easy time making $10 an hour at almost any chain
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    Registered User Teethatyourfeet's Avatar
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    I work at GoodLife (in Canada), and it's decent I guess. I get 20.00 for an hour session, 12.00 for a half hour session which are prebooked for me. I don't get an hourly wage and I have to find my own clients... so the hours are long. But it works. I work a split shift and spend my time in the gym... it's fun, but down the road I will need more.
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  23. #23
    Registered User yuncker's Avatar
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    Whoever said SnapFitness...... Really has no Idea.
    A difference that is no difference, makes no difference.

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  24. #24
    Registered User yuncker's Avatar
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    Hard to build Clients and hard to have clients how really want to change anything, (old ladies) you are mandated to do Fitness consultation ($10 for the hr appointment, if the people show) and Orientations ($10 if the people show) your wages are cut 60-40 and you are an independent contractor. I am in the business to help people that really want to make a lifestyle change not to waste my time with old ladies who cant do push-ups and have no desire to be able to.
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  25. #25
    Registered User Brendansmetal's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ChessGuy View Post

    I'm hoping to start at $10./hr at least with 8 hrs/day. 40 hours/week. Is that realistic?

    Thanks

    John
    Planet fitness comes to mind, they pay ~$12 hr with steady hours. In terms of a training job it is pretty crappy though, you are basically just "on duty" and show people how to use machines.
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  26. #26
    Registered User Endevorforever's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Brendansmetal View Post
    Planet fitness comes to mind, they pay ~$12 hr with steady hours. In terms of a training job it is pretty crappy though, you are basically just "on duty" and show people how to use machines.
    LOL! That is so sad. I guess its where trainers go to die...
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  27. #27
    Mundis Ex Igne Factus Ex txapn's Avatar
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    it depends on your sales experience also!

    LA fitness sales for you and (even though they are very corrupt) they are good at sales. pay is on the low end but they give you clients!

    24 hour fitness sales for you as well but only to an extent and honestly most are not good at the sales side so you mostly have to find your own clientele. but they pay you an hourly wage plus a commission and session rate

    Golds for the most part is decent pay but they don't sale at all for you! the ones I've been at in the past just release you and give you a phone list!

    these are the big chains so imo i would steer you towards 24 hour fitness to start out! but honestly get ur clientele built up and run with everyone that will follow!
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  28. #28
    Registered User ericzimmerman34's Avatar
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    I work for 24 and love it. However if your worried about the first 2 weeks i hear lifetime fitness will pay 9-10 an hour for you for a while as you build up clients. However over time you have to pay back all the hourly pay they gave you through deductions from each pay check so i guess its more like a loan to help you as you start out. Pretty good idea actually.
    Obssession is a word lazy people use to describe dedication.

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  29. #29
    Ever Forward zj95maxx's Avatar
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    I start at Gold's Gym in 2 weeks.

    floor hour rate is 8 dollars, you get 2 hours of those a week I think.
    level 1 trainer (me) will make 17 an hour while training

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