Entering the fitness industry - what career options are available?
If you love being around people who are enthused about fitness, then why not consider a job in the fitness industry?There are almost as many roles in the fitness industry as there are exercises, so don’t limit yourself to thinking you have to teach classes or sell memberships to be part of this vibrant industry. Though sole traders in this industry do a bit of everything, large fitness chains have lots of people working behind the scenes in management, administration, accounts, marketing, and event organisation.If you already have skills in another industry then a move to the fitness industry may be easier than you think.Front of houseGood customer service skills are essential for anyone wanting to work with the public, but especially so in the fitness industry because you want people to keep coming back to your business. Everyone working in reception, sales, and instruction needs to have great customer service skills and a positive attitude.Fitness instructionDepending on the type job you’re doing, for this role you’ll need a Certificate III or IV in Fitness before you teach a class or take on personal training clients. For some classes you’ll also need added training, such as in trademarked classes or for working with special populations. You will also need a current first aid certificate, and have relevant insurance coverage.Membership salesFitness centres rely on effective marketing and sales teams. If you’re passionate about fitness and know how to sell, then you won’t have much trouble finding rewarding work in the fitness industry.Member retentionCustomer service skills are highly regarded in this role. You’ll be responsible for maintaining relationships with clients, and keeping them informed of changes, promotions, and general activities.Program coordinatorBehind the scenes of every well-run fitness centre is an ace coordinator. This person balances staff, budgets, and customer trends to present innovative programs that meet business and customer objectives.EducatorsThe fitness industry also includes physical education teachers in schools, and those who deliver courses to fitness professionals. Both these roles require specific training, but if you’re looking at a career in the fitness industry then these roles are something you might be interested in aiming towards.ManagementEvery area of the fitness industry from the sole operator to the large multinational needs management at some level. Fitness centre managers oversee the general running of a centre and must also look ahead navigate a centre’s future direction.Health scienceHealth scientists specialise in particular areas of human biology and movement, and may work with individuals or add to the body of knowledge by continuing research. These roles include exercise scientists, exercise physiologists, rehabilitation physiologists, physiotherapists, and sports medicine doctors.This list is not exhaustive. Do a SWOT analysis of your current skills and experience to discover what kind of role in the fitness industry would suit you best.What Strengths or skills do you already have?What are your Weaknesses and what do you need to work on?What are the Opportunities available to you to help you achieve your ambitions?What Threats do you need to overcome to reach your goals?Author BioDarren Round introduced the international fitness brand, Gymstick to Australia in 2005. Darren has more than 10 years’ experience in supplying fitness equipment and working with health and fitness enthusiasts and professionals.