How to Start a Virtual Fitness Business


With the increase in the level of awareness in the importance of healthcare and wellness, there is higher concentration on keeping fit. Hence the fitness industry has continue to command lots of attention.

 The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook projects a growth of 15% for fitness instructors and trainers by 2029, which has a higher speed than the average occupational growth rate. And with the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic, the fitness industry has – like many other industries – extended its services into the virtual space.

As a remote fitness trainer, there are lots of opportunities you’ll be open to. These include that your clients will not need to subscribe to the regular gym membership to receive your services, there will be a broader potential customer base, and plethora of other passive income openings.

Find how to start a virtual fitness business with the guide given below.


1. What Fitness Model Would You Prefer To Employ?

The format you decide on will largely determine how much fitness opportunities you’ll be able to leverage. You may want to combine different setups to give clients the open door to determine the style and price point that they’ll prefer.

Some helpful tips to structuring your virtual fitness business include;

  •  Offering one-on-one personal training. This would involve coaching a client on a video call while they work out to achieve their fitness goals.
  • Lead livestream “group” classes that would involve multiple clients at a goal.
  • Create workout routines which customers can purchase to achieve their individual goals. The programs are often non-personalized, and are usually being targeted at meeting the needs of a specific audience, such as aged people or pregnant women.
  • Create workout videos that can engage your clients when they pay to become a regular member of your fitness training program.
  • Do a mixed-session of the above training methods. This could be to offer a live stream group class package where your pre-recorded workout or fitness videos or PDF can be accessed with a personal training session scheduled each month.

After deciding on your choice of fitness model, look out your model scalability and goals. Some formats have more earning potential than others but they may demand increased work and time commitment. For instance, you’ll not necessarily need client interaction with a workout PDF template. But you need lots of online marketing to find clients for the products.

Get creative with the variations you are offering and look for ways to get the best out of it. You may want to record your livestream classes and make them available on your fitness site or social media platforms for membership access after making the required payment. You can use extra coaching services such as healthy lifestyle education, nutritional programs, accountability check-ins via text, phone, or emails, and online assessments.

If there will be no need for direct supervision in parts of the fitness program, it can help when you allow clients to see videos with explanations to proper techniques and forms, to guide them in performing safe exercises.


2. Get the Right Fitness Equipment and Tech

To get started, you do not have to infuse so much cash into the business. Once you have access to the basic equipment, you can continue to upgrade as required later on. For a virtual fitness coaching business, access to strong and reliable internet connection cannot be negotiated.

You will need a recording process with the aid of a good camera to demonstrate exercises and watch clients. You can easily get this done with your laptop, a smartphone, or tablet. You should also keep a second device to keep track of your client’s timing and workout details, and how many reps they have completed.

You do not have to engage highly expensive tools. You can use simple and easy-to-use tools such as emails and Google Drive. However, when considering software to use, use the ones that will save you time, and also accommodate your future needs as your business advances. Lots of companies offer free trials so you can test out different products to find what suits best.

Your clients will be offered access to a wide range of workout equipment, hence, it is crucial to put it into consideration when determining your workouts. If you are a general template of your workout, try to keep the required equipment relatively simple.  It is always nice for your clients to have a set of heavy, medium, and light dumbbells.  

Some recommended equipment by The National Academy of Sport Medicine for personal trainers, include A BOSU ball, A kettlebell, resistance bands, a large exercise ball, a slam ball, and a medicine ball.

Employing brightly colored equipment in your training sessions will make your clients watch your movements and reproduce them over a video.


3. Set Up Your Training Space

 As a fitness trainer, people will take it more seriously when you have a designated training space. Choose your workout space and answer these questions to be sure you have made the best decision:

 Do I have enough space to demonstrate the exercises easily, and enough distance from the camera for clear viewing of my clients?

Is the lighting perfect for each session? It is important that you choose a perfect lighting for your clients to see what workout session is ongoing and every move you are carrying out in each session. Having good lighting will let you appear professional. If you’ll be relying on natural lights, ensure that it is well circulated at different times of the day.

 Will my background look appealing to my clients? Remember that your clients will see this clearer than you think during each session.

Are there possible causes for interruption? Look around for stray pets, kids, and other items that make you appear unprofessional if they bump into your video.

Is the environs quiet enough for a successful workout session? Are there potential noises outside the location? If you’ll be playing music during the sessions, it is crucial to be sure that the music will not prevent your client from hearing your instructions, or clash with their own music. You may want to do some trial-and-error sessions first without including your clients.

Once you have fully set up your training space, host a remote trial class with family members or friends to fish out any possible issue that you may not have considered. Familiarize yourself with the conditions from the angle of your clients before finally going live with them.


4. Protect Your Clients and Your Business

When you have sincere concern for your clients, they will know it and it will impact rightly on your business. Keep accurate information about your clients and the progress they are making in the sessions.

Keep track of each of your clients through a file carrying a record of their personal data which should include their contact info, address (you may need to call 911 for them while having a session), and an emergency contact. You may also want to keep record of the fitness equipment under their care, for your own planning.

In addition, consider necessary legal forms such as safety waiver, liability release, and a contractual agreement that reveals your policies (late fees, cancellation policy, etc.). You may also want to consider your clients filling out a PAR-Q (Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire) to pinpoint risks that can be linked to exercises, based on the history of their health.

5. Get Set To Start Running Your Business

When kick-starting your business, ensure to have a business plan in place. Also keep a proper bookkeeping and accounting system, access to small business resources, and effective marketing strategies.

You’ll also need workable rates for your virtual coaching sessions. How much you’ll be charging your clients depends on a variety of factors which include the value you offer them, your own experience level, and clientele.

Typical one-on-one virtual training pricing can range from $100 to $500 per month. According to PayScale, an average personal trainer pays $19.35 per hour, and rates usually range from $11 to $51. Virtual coaching sessions are often 20% to 25% less than an in-person training session.

But whatever pricing you consider, ensure to stay steady with the rates. Do not undervalue your skills and worth, and retain similar rates across all your clients.

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