Navigating the fitness industry is like embarking on a marathon – it’s a dynamic, exhilarating journey that rewards perseverance, strategy, and a healthy dose of passion. As of 2024, the personal training landscape has seen shifts in not just fitness trends, but how trainers approach their careers and earnings. Determining how much personal trainers make in such a vibrant market is crucial and, more so, understanding how they can maximize their earning potential is key to financial growth in the industry. 

So, whether you’re a fitness buff contemplating a career change, a fresher considering the rewarding yet often tumultuous path of personal training, or an experienced PT yearning for new strategies, this deep dive into personal trainer salaries and growth opportunities is tailor-made for you. 

Understanding the Average Personal Trainer Salary 

Gauging the financial waters is the first step for any aspiring personal trainer. As per the latest insights from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for fitness trainers and instructors has surged alongside the growing health consciousness, standing at approximately $40,390 in 2024. This uptick is indicative of the profession’s growing importance and the market’s willingness to financially appreciate the positive impact personal trainers have on people’s lives. 

This figure, while encouraging, is only part of the story. The personal training industry has high performers who command salaries well into six figures, and there are regions and niches within the market that can skew these averages significantly. Furthermore, new data sources such as the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and IDEA Health & Fitness Association offer broader insights, reflecting a spectrum of salaries ranging from entry-level to expert professionals. 

The Challenges of a Personal Trainer 

A comfortable average hides the overachievers and the undertrodden. As personal trainers’ responsibilities grow to meet the diverse needs of an evolving clientele, so do the challenges they face. The gig economy has seeped into fitness, with an increasing number of trainers opting for part-time and contract-based work, which can be a double-edged sword, offering flexibility but posing financial uncertainty. The high turnover rate in the industry persists, partly due to these economic uncertainties and the struggle to find consistent business. 

Add to this mix the need for continuous education, certification renewals, and the often unpredictable nature of clients’ schedules, and the multi-faceted role of a personal trainer transforms into a continuous balancing act. To earn more, trainers must not only excel in their craft but also in their business acumen, client relations, marketing, and digital presence, among other skills. 

How To Earn More as a Personal Trainer 

Becoming a high-earning personal trainer is a deliberate, step-by-step process rather than a sudden windfall. Here are strategies to increase your earning potential: 

Specialize and Certify 

In a saturated market, specializing can be a game-changer. Whether it’s by becoming an expert in HIIT, nutrition, or training a specific demographic like athletes or seniors, honing a niche can command higher rates. Earning additional certifications in your chosen area further validates and quantifies your expertise. TrueCoach has just launched a partnership with NASM to help aspiring trainers and coaches save up to 33% on their continuing education, which you can check out here.

Upskill with Business Knowledge 

Running a personal training business within a gym or freelancing requires a solid foundation in business operations, budgeting, and marketing. Understanding your market and its demands will assist you in setting competitive prices and creating effective revenue-generating initiatives like packages, memberships, and online training platforms. 

Acquire Soft Skills 

Your persona and how you market it plays a large role in your salary. Effective communication and interpersonal skills can significantly impact how you retain clients, upsell your services, and negotiate your rates. Investing in emotional intelligence training can go a long way.  

Embrace Technology 

Integrating technology into your training programs can not only improve the client experience but also increase your reach. Virtual training, personalized fitness apps, and wearable tech can enhance your services, justify premium pricing, and open new revenue streams. 

How TrueCoach Can Skyrocket Your Income Potential 

Adapting to the digital age is an essential pillar for any personal trainer looking to bolster their earnings. TrueCoach, a leading online training platform, encapsulates this shift by offering trainers powerful tools to deliver effective, scalable training. By utilizing TrueCoach or other similar platforms, trainers can: 

Increase their Reach 

Online training transcends geographical barriers. Trainers can now work with clients from different time zones, broadening their reach and enhancing their income potential. 

Automate Workflow 

Operating an online training business means more time spent training and less on administrative tasks. TrueCoach’s streamlined interface simplifies workout delivery, client communication, and progress tracking, amplifying efficiency and scalability. 

Improve Client Retention 

Maintaining clients is just as important as obtaining them. With personalized programs, automated check-ins, and progress visuals, TrueCoach aids in keeping clients motivated, engaged, and loyal to your brand. 

Leverage Scaling Opportunities 

Online platforms offer a spectrum for growth, from adding a few online clients to building a comprehensive online training business. Scaling gradually with technology ensures that quality isn’t compromised, ultimately leading to significant income growth. 

Embracing platforms like TrueCoach in tandem with strategic shifts in your training approach and business mindset can position you above the salary average, optimizing not just your income, but also your professional satisfaction. 


The penultimate lesson for personal trainers can be distilled into a simple mantra: to earn more, you must become more. In a profession that champions leading by example, personal trainers must continually evolve, sharpen their skillset, and be cognizant of industry and financial trends. 

The path to a lucrative personal trainer’s salary is paved with continuous education, strategic specializations, business savvy, and an embrace of digital tools. As the fitness industry continues to bloom, there’s ample opportunity for those willing to sprint – or should we say lift – towards their financial finish line. 

In 2024, the possibilities are as boundless as the stretches of a marathon straight. For those looking to transform their personal training career into a personal best, the race starts now.


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Article by TrueCoach

First published: March 13 2024

Last updated: March 13 2024