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  1. #1
    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    How bad do my trainers have it? or do they?

    I'm the Personal Training Director at my gym and I was curious if any other trainers have it as bad as mine. Of course I suffer from all the below except the session rate, i actually have to train for free

    1. They are hired as independent contractors.. so they get hit with all the business taxes and what not
    2. their insurance is not paid by the gym
    3. they are paid $8/session (30 minute sessions)
    4. Their required uniform that they HAVE to have embroidered is payed for BY the trainer
    5. Things like stop watches are required that the Trainer has to pay for.
    6. I can't find it in the contract, but I'm pretty sure they are not allowed to train elsewhere

    so it seems to me like they are getting the bad parts of being a commercial trainer (set session rates regardless of session prices, gym loyalty) and the bad of an independent contractor (paying for supplies, insurance, taxes)

    oh and of course none of use have any type of benefits beyond free gym access.. that none of us use
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    lol What a joke. At least McDonalds gives you a uniform to wear. I've never heard of a gym being so ****ty to their trainers.
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    I guess if you can find people who are willing to work under those conditions, then what's the issue?

    Things like uniform, stopwatch (who would ask to have that paid for?), not training at other gyms is pretty standard, but your per session compensation sucks. Insurance is usually covered by whomever certified them.
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    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    One day I'm hoping to branch off and start something of my own, and I'm just curious as to what the "norm" is. I knew it couldn't be this bad
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    Originally Posted by WoofieNugget View Post
    I guess if you can find people who are willing to work under those conditions, then what's the issue?

    Things like uniform, stopwatch (who would ask to have that paid for?), not training at other gyms is pretty standard, but your per session compensation sucks. Insurance is usually covered by whomever certified them.
    The issue is the people you find to work under these conditions are going to be ****ty trainers. Best case scenario, the clients realize this and the system fails. Worst case scenario, people continue to pay and other gyms adopt these "standards", and the quality of our industry goes down severely, leading to the industry getting a bad rep.

    This is ****ing pathetic.
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    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    yeah.. i mean some clients see their trainer every other week.. (i try to avoid selling those packages because yes sales are important to my bosses.. but i'd like for the person to experience results) but anyways.. you have a client that sees a trainer 2x a month. the trainer has made 12 dollars after taxes from that person for the month. And that person not only expects amazing results, but expects written out programs, continuous changes, and constant help.. all for 12 dollars? it's pretty bad.. i dont require my trainers to go that extra mile for 12 bucks..

    i have given them permission to claim it's against the rules unless you're seeing them at least 1x a week. of course none of them pull that card because they are nice guys, i wouldn't either. the trainers are good, and i've learned quite a bit from them, but it's hard for them to stay motivated and really put everything into their clients when they are making nothing.
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    It's the exact same for me except I get ~$20/1 hour session
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    Originally Posted by ericmackcarter View Post
    The issue is the people you find to work under these conditions are going to be ****ty trainers. Best case scenario, the clients realize this and the system fails. Worst case scenario, people continue to pay and other gyms adopt these "standards", and the quality of our industry goes down severely, leading to the industry getting a bad rep.

    This is ****ing pathetic.
    I totally agree, but it is a chicken and egg thing. As long as you have companies who own gyms saying it's okay to have unqualified, uneducated trainers selling and doing training to their members for profit, then you will have your worst case scenario (which we already have in this industry btw). Gyms adopt the standards because they can get away with it and it makes them money.

    There is also a problem when I can do a 150 question multiple choice exam online with no practical application and call myself a "certified trainer" after about 15 minutes. Trainers need to be educated and have proper accreditation, just like any other health professionals.

    When the public gets educated about what good training really is and stops paying for crappy trainers and marketing gimmicks, they will go away. It's really a fitness industry as a whole problem, not simply a trainer problem.
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    tumtum: I think your joking about this post. What kind of trainers do you have for eight dollars.
    Also make real sure that making the trainer pay for the thigns listed is legal, if your in Ca uniforms must be provided for by the company and the cleaning of the uniform is to be provided for by the company or they have to rembuse the worker for cleaning.
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    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by carl.c View Post
    tumtum: I think your joking about this post. What kind of trainers do you have for eight dollars.
    Also make real sure that making the trainer pay for the thigns listed is legal, if your in Ca uniforms must be provided for by the company and the cleaning of the uniform is to be provided for by the company or they have to rembuse the worker for cleaning.
    Why am i joking about this post? because they make $8 they are suddenly not good trainers? you've got to start somewhere. I know making them buy things is legal, i'm not questioning legality, just normality
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    It reads as though your gym hires people who possess no negotiation skills, and have little sense of themselves as a business. As independent contractors these trainers are working for themselves, so it is unusual they all have the same per session rate. However, the gym may provide enough volume that, after some time, $8 per 1/2 hour begins to cover individual operational costs and constitutes a profit.

    You may want to compare the rate with what you estimate the average independent in your area makes. Not charges, makes; they are two different things. If there is a wide gap between what they are being paid and what someone who pays rent at a gym takes home, then your trainers 'have it bad'. (Since you want to strike out on your own, this will actually be part of one of the tasks you'll need to complete to develop a business plan.)
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  12. #12
    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    after a year they earn dollar raises..my trainers are making anything from 22% to 26% of what the session costs.. so the gym is pullin in over 70%.. ouch

    which is the exact amount i was offered at another gym.. they said i could set my rates and they'd take 30%.. of course this place didn't get much traffic at all so it would be completely stupid for any of my trainers to go there
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    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    I'm the Personal Training Director at my gym and I was curious if any other trainers have it as bad as mine. Of course I suffer from all the below except the session rate, i actually have to train for free

    1. They are hired as independent contractors.. so they get hit with all the business taxes and what not
    2. their insurance is not paid by the gym
    3. they are paid $8/session (30 minute sessions)
    4. Their required uniform that they HAVE to have embroidered is payed for BY the trainer
    5. Things like stop watches are required that the Trainer has to pay for.
    6. I can't find it in the contract, but I'm pretty sure they are not allowed to train elsewhere

    so it seems to me like they are getting the bad parts of being a commercial trainer (set session rates regardless of session prices, gym loyalty) and the bad of an independent contractor (paying for supplies, insurance, taxes)

    oh and of course none of use have any type of benefits beyond free gym access.. that none of us use
    That's precisely the **** deal I got at the globo-gym I used to work at. I could deal with that... I couldn't deal with the management being incompetent and hostile, telling people my class times had been moved or canceled when they hadn't, and taking away the stereo I used to teach spin classes.

    Your trainers will leave if they know what's good for them.
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  14. #14
    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    well i definitely wont be taking away any stereos for spin classes.. we dont have room for spin classes.. or anything at that matter.. you have to get pretty creative at my gym
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    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    well i definitely wont be taking away any stereos for spin classes.. we dont have room for spin classes.. or anything at that matter.. you have to get pretty creative at my gym
    The point is that low wage, no benefits, heavy pressure to sell rather than train, huge workload to keep low-paying clients happy, and lack of opportunity for meaningful advancement will all conspire to attract incompetent, inexperienced, selfish and stupid employees. It's a terrible business model for the trainers and the clients, but greenback is greenback as far as management's concerned.
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    tumtum, you're basically running a mill and your gym is the prototypical disgrace of an operation that hurts personal training as a career choice.
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    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    Why am i joking about this post? because they make $8 they are suddenly not good trainers? you've got to start somewhere. I know making them buy things is legal, i'm not questioning legality, just normality
    Unfortunately it is legal, based on that they are contractors and not employees. If they were employees of the gym, then much of this would be highly illegal. While you may have to start somewhere, i would not work there, and anyone with half the education and experince i had would not work like that either.
    Where i worked was the opposite, no uniform, insurance paid by the company for all contractors, and the company only took 20% giving the trainer 80%, though the company did set the rates for training. I would say your company suks big time compared to that.
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    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    i would say you're correct. I believe all gyms should make their money with membership.. and personal training should be the cherry on top. and you should make that cherry good.. DAMN good. seems like a simple concept. the guys that run mine seem to have it backwards and try to make all the money in PT..

    the gym is $15 a month with NO CONTRACT.. and they want me to right 20-30k in PT sales PER month.. hows that for a business plan
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    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    I'm the Personal Training Director at my gym and I was curious if any other trainers have it as bad as mine.
    You're the director, yes? Direct! Change it.
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    At the gym that I will be potentially be working for is saying Ill be making 14-20 an hour with 30 minute sessions. I haven't started any training but if its as bad as your gym then it wont be worth my time.
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    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    i would say you're correct. I believe all gyms should make their money with membership.. and personal training should be the cherry on top. and you should make that cherry good.. DAMN good. seems like a simple concept. the guys that run mine seem to have it backwards and try to make all the money in PT..

    the gym is $15 a month with NO CONTRACT.. and they want me to right 20-30k in PT sales PER month.. hows that for a business plan
    Wow that is a bit backwards - why do they not charge more for memberships? That's the bread and butter of any gym, especially since 60% of people sign up and then never use it. Whomever is running the place obviously should work on their business model.
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    Originally Posted by KyleAaron View Post
    You're the director, yes? Direct! Change it.
    I wish.. I work for a 3rd party consulting firm. They state the rules, i simply enforce, sales, customer service, etc.
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    I SOOOOOO no you aren't joking with this post. Lemme guess...LA Fitness right.

    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    Why am i joking about this post? because they make $8 they are suddenly not good trainers? you've got to start somewhere. I know making them buy things is legal, i'm not questioning legality, just normality
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    TumTum: I was jsut needlign you a little. If you read my post you will see I said in CA it is illegal independent or not to where a uniform if you don't pay for it or its matinians. You do not lsit a location so its imposable what the rules are in your area that is why I said in CA.
    I agree you workin a mill that is only interested in numbers for their bottom line. If you want to learn the buisness like that then you are in the right job. If you want to learn the art of training then yo are in the wrong place.
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    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    I wish.. I work for a 3rd party consulting firm. They state the rules, i simply enforce, sales, customer service, etc.
    Then consult with the consulting firm.
    "This is what we're doing. These are the results. If we did this different thing, the results would be different - and better."

    An essential part of weight training and career success is a spine.
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    the milk king tumtum's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by alfredofatale View Post
    I SOOOOOO no you aren't joking with this post. Lemme guess...LA Fitness right.
    Nope not LA Fitness.. i feel like i shouldn't post the franchise. It's actually not the franchise's fault. It's the consulting firm. They work within a LOT of different chains including Gold's, LA, Anytime, etc.

    Originally Posted by carl.c View Post
    TumTum: I was jsut needlign you a little. If you read my post you will see I said in CA it is illegal independent or not to where a uniform if you don't pay for it or its matinians. You do not lsit a location so its imposable what the rules are in your area that is why I said in CA.
    I agree you workin a mill that is only interested in numbers for their bottom line. If you want to learn the buisness like that then you are in the right job. If you want to learn the art of training then yo are in the wrong place.
    we're located in TN. I'm learning some aspects of training here, definitely not the art of training. and i wasn't expected to have my mind blown with personal training. was hoping to use my skills in the field along with a little sales experience to make some good money, and i can during hot times. but it drives me crazy how the place is run. i know that no place is perfect it's just frustrating.

    Originally Posted by KyleAaron View Post
    Then consult with the consulting firm.
    "This is what we're doing. These are the results. If we did this different thing, the results would be different - and better."

    An essential part of weight training and career success is a spine.
    sadly these guys work with a number of gyms and they sale themselves on numbers. honestly the only reason they want results for a resign. but with the way the training program is designed tough.. sadly they wont listen to me... i've tried.
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    tumtum I was going to ask if you were from the St. Louis Metro Area (MO and IL sides of the river) as this sounds EXACTLY like a third party company that is established in a franchise of gyms all over the area, but I see you're in TN. I looked into getting a job at one of the gyms (as I'm studying for my NASM-CPT), but when I found out pretty much all those things you said at this place I figured I'd rather take the tough road of starting out independent and being competitive than make such a pitiful small amount an hour (first few were less than the $8 you list, they were like $6!!). Apparently not unheard of business tactics, and people will start off at them I suppose.
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    Originally Posted by tumtum View Post
    I'm the Personal Training Director at my gym and I was curious if any other trainers have it as bad as mine. Of course I suffer from all the below except the session rate, i actually have to train for free

    1. They are hired as independent contractors.. so they get hit with all the business taxes and what not
    2. their insurance is not paid by the gym
    3. they are paid $8/session (30 minute sessions)
    4. Their required uniform that they HAVE to have embroidered is payed for BY the trainer
    5. Things like stop watches are required that the Trainer has to pay for.
    6. I can't find it in the contract, but I'm pretty sure they are not allowed to train elsewhere

    so it seems to me like they are getting the bad parts of being a commercial trainer (set session rates regardless of session prices, gym loyalty) and the bad of an independent contractor (paying for supplies, insurance, taxes)

    oh and of course none of use have any type of benefits beyond free gym access.. that none of us use
    In response to item #4..Not legal,,call the labor dept..if they are employees, uniforms must be provided,,,,,if they are ind contractors they do not have to wear a uniform..The rules that control whats and employee and whats a contractor are clear..The labor dept should have them posted. if you tell them when they can work, what they can do, and what they have to wear, they are employees...
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    Sounds like The Rush to me. Absolutely pathetic, and exactly what I expect from that place.
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