How to keep your PT business going through the Covid pandemic

How to keep your personal training business going through COVID-19

Posted on 6th April 2020 by

Despite gyms across the country temporarily closing, it doesn’t mean your work needs to grind to a halt if you’re a personal trainer.

Now is the perfect time for you to share your expertise and help others stay healthy from their homes, during COVID-19.

With the UK on lockdown, home workouts are more important than ever in keeping the population both physically and mentally healthy.

Some of the world’s most famous PT’s including Kayla Itsines, Kelsey Wells and Joe Wicks primarily offer their services online over video, so don’t fool yourself by thinking that working from home means no business.

While you’re training online, you’ll have no gym fees to pay and distance between you and the client will place no limits on who you can reach.

Video sessions over Skype

First and foremost, make sure you keep in touch with your regular clients. Let them know you’ll be providing tailored video PT sessions that will allow you to carry on as usual, helping them work towards their fitness goals. It’ll be nice for your clients to maintain some normality and will give them something positive to focus on while they’re spending a lot of time at home.

Promote your new online service on social media and through email marketing, if you have an email database. Don’t worry if not – instead focus on social media and sending private messages to your regular clients. Offer your video sessions at a discounted price and provide an offer that’ll entice clients to book more sessions e.g. book four online PT sessions and get the fifth one free.

If they already have equipment at home, that’s great – you can incorporate that into the workout but if not, you can focus instead on functional training using their own body weight. At least with live training over Skype from home, there will be fewer excuses as to why a client can’t make it to the gym.

For any enquires you receive from new clients, let them know you offer a consultation before you begin training together, just as you would in the gym. This is good practice and gives you an opportunity to measure your new clients’ current level of fitness and mobility, and what equipment they have available to them at their home.


Lady with red laptop chatting to her PT via Skype after a workout sessions

Video content on your social media channels

With more free time, this is a great opportunity to up your marketing, engage with more of your followers and attract new followers.

More of us are going to be spending more time on social media, checking for news updates and connecting with our communities. In the UK, Facebook alone has facilitated around 300 local Coronavirus support groups, servicing over a million people 1.

Utilise Instagram stories by sharing free workout plans with your followers. Obviously, these won’t be as detailed or as personalised as your Skype PT sessions but by providing this free content, you’ll be building your brand and trust among new prospective clients.

People of all fitness abilities will be looking for workouts plans to try at home. Firstly, you could do The Body Coach style workout videos where you actually film yourself doing the whole workout which you can then upload online.

With this style of content, why not post your video as a live IGTV workout? That way you’ll see your audience engage in real-time. You can build up momentum by sharing posts to your Instagram story and social feeds, letting people know when you’ll be hosting a live workout.

The second way of creating content, is to share exercise plans. You could do this by creating an easy, intermediate and difficult exercise plan for your audience’s varying levels of fitness.

Create the timetable on Word and share a screenshot of this on your Instagram story or on an Instagram post. With the exercise plan, share video snippets demonstrating how to do each exercise e.g. a squat or a burpee.

Create a home workout Story Highlight on your Instagram page so people can see all of your content and refer back to it. 

Question and answer

Offer your followers the chance to message in with any fitness questions they have and talk through your answers over your Instagram or Facebook story. Ask them for feedback on how you can improve your workouts.

Personal training from home - Hands in the air and question marks above the hands.

Marketing your personal training business

If it’s financially doable for you, it might be worth putting a little bit of money into making a sponsored post to promote your online training programmes. You can do this on a small budget using Instagram ads and advertising locally.

There are many freelance marketers available online who could create a well edited graphic or video that you can use for your advertising.

If you’d prefer to save money and create some free graphics yourself, try using Canva or Crello.

Ask your clients or people who join in with your workouts to take pictures and tag you in them so you can re-share their content. Don’t forget to post pictures of yourself either. Let you followers see what exercise you’re doing and the meals you’re eating. This way you can become an influencer in your market-space.

Encourage email sign up

If you have a website, don’t forget to direct people to your newsletter sign up page. If you don’t currently provide newsletters, maybe now is a good time to plan some ideas.

Include a link at the end of your video content. This will be another way you can reach your audience and with the current economic situation, there’s more chance that people will actually have the time to read their emails.

A hand holding a piece of paper with an email @ sign in the middle

Plan for your future

Use this extra time you have to plan for your future. Break your plan down into milestones mapping what you want to achieve and by when. Think of how you are going to get there and what you need to start doing now to make this happen.

Having long term plans will keep you focused and ready to spring back into action once things get back to normal.

Putting the time in now to grow your online presence will also hugely help. Think of offers and competitions you can run over the next few months to keep the momentum running.

Specialise the service you offer

This might not work for all PT’s, but if you already serve a specific audience in the gym e.g. body builders or marathon runners, carry on providing specialised content for this audience.

If you don’t already have a speciality, now might be the time to think about how you can reach a new audience. Creating workouts for seniors could be great to provide, especially now when many are stuck at home – some of which on their own. This could be something as simple as a chair workout or a workout they can do, sat on the sofa.

You could even try creating child-friendly exercise videos for the whole family, that require little space.

Personal training from home - Mother and daughter exercising together at home.

Nutritional advice

If your expertise stretches to nutrition, make the most of your knowledge and offer meal plans that’ll keep people on track and give them the nutrition they need to keep their immune system strong.

People will have more time to cook and will be keen to keep themselves healthy, in case they do need to fight off illness. You could practice cooking some new recipes and share this content on social media.

A healthy bowl of strawberries, seeds, muesli, mint leaves, blueberries, banana and cinnamon on a bed of yoghurt.

We wish you the best of luck with your business during these challenging times. If this article helps you in anyway or there’s some more tips you think we can add, you can reach out to us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. 

If you’d like to find out more about freelance insurance for personal trainers, contact our award-winning team on 0333 321 1403, or click to get a quick online quote in minutes!

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Caunce O’Hara & Co Ltd have been awarded the Feefo Gold customer service award in 2018 and 2019. In 2020 the company was awarded Feefo’s highest accolade, the Platinum customer service award.

The company was the winner of the General Broker of the Year award in 2009 and 2010 at the Manchester Insurance Awards.

Caunce O’Hara won the Most Effective Use of E-business in 2007 at the UK Broker Awards.


Author Katherine Ducie, Marketing Executive

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