Personal trainer business plan

A personal trainer business plan is your opportunity to set your business goals and detail the operations of your business. It's a useful asset if you're looking to attract investment or plan for the future.


Sep 11, 2019

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Anyone using our personal trainer software should consider creating a business plan. A business plan is a fantastic way to structure your goals as a personal trainer, and it helps you to outline the actions that you’ll need to take to reach those goals. For example, if you have a goal of making X amount of money, or to obtain X number of clients, as with many things in life, setting out a structure can be a great way to motivate you. It’s all about reaching your goals as a personal trainer, and ensuring you’re confident in how you’ll achieve it.

What is a personal trainer business plan

A business plan is a document that outlines your business, the key objectives and goals, the means to achieve said objectives and information such as your finances and company structure. Business plans are often used for attracting investment, but they’re also a great tool for personal trainers who want to plan the growth of their business, map out their approach, and to understand if their business is realistic.

For personal trainers, this means detailing information such as the kind of client you’re going to train, the type of training you offer, considerations for secondary sources of income such as sponsorship and ultimately, how you can scale your business to achieve what led you to become a personal trainer in the first place.

Benefits of a personal trainer business plan

If you’re not sure on whether it’s worth your time to complete a business plan, here are some of the key benefits you can expect to realise from the exercise:

  1. It will help you to understand your service and the market available for you to tap into.
  2. You’ll have a clear plan for your finances, and it’ll make financial goal-setting more realistic based on actual figures.
  3. You’ll have a sound strategy down on paper that you can refer to and follow. As you progress through this, you can make amendments to your goals and finances. A business plan shouldn’t be completed and then forgotten about; it’s a living document that needs updating to continue to bring you value.
  4. Prioritising specific strategies or ideas you have becomes easier as you can gauge the effect of them on your business.
  5. You can set your expectations for growth. It’s fantastic if you want to grow 200% in 3 months, but once you lay all of this out you may find it will take longer, or you’ll have to do more than you thought you would like to achieve this.

What information will be included in your personal trainer business plan

There are many variants of business plans, but we’ve pulled together the sections that we think are best suited to any personal trainer looking to plan and strategise their business. Here’s what you’ll be putting down on paper.

Executive summary

This is a summary of your entire business; keep it short, sweet and at a maximum of two pages. Anyone reading this should want to learn more about your business and be able to understand what you’re offering, the goals you wish to achieve, and how you’re going to make them happen. You may find it easier to complete this section last. You’ll likely have new ideas or change your mind about certain aspects of your business as you progress through the plan.

Business overview

This section is for generic information such as the name of your business, where you’ll be training, your target clients and any specialisms you plan to offer. For example, if you’re only offering online personal trainer services, this is where to reference that. If you’re only operating out of a single gym premise, list it here. Don’t go into too much detail about each point as you’ll explain them more in later sections.

Services and products

Your services and products section is where you’ll go into more detail about what you’re actually offering. By this, we mean what will be bringing revenue to your business. This could be solely through training clients, or you may have an interest in pursuing brand sponsorship or even selling branded products to your clients. 

Ultimately, it’s up to you and what you find works well with your style and client base. Will you be offering classes, 1-1 sessions, group training or is your focus on a single high-competing athlete? You can also use this area to detail future ideas you may have. For every product and service you list, include why this is a benefit to your business or your reason for offering it.

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Market analysis

Market analysis is your way of understanding the market you’ll be operating in. It’s an important part of your personal trainer business plan as it may help you to uncover new ideas. Be realistic with your analysis. For example, if you offer highly specialised training, you’ll only have time for so many clients, and therefore you should be charging more.

Here’s what this section should achieve:

  1. Understand what it is you’ll be offering and how this relates to the other areas of your business.
  2. Try to gauge the size of your target clientele and how many you can reach in your area, or even online. 
  3. How you’re going to provide your services and reach your target clients.
  4. What operations are needed to support your business activities?
  5. Any pains or things people love about the type of service you offer.
  6. The gyms that are available for you to train at, and what your relationship with them would look like.
  7. What financial income/expenditure can you expect from your target market.
  8. Look for trends, such as online personal training, as they could open up additional streams of income.
  9. How much do people typically pay for your service?

Marketing strategy

If you have any plans for marketing, this is the place to detail them. If you’re not sure whether marketing is right for you, or you wouldn’t know where to start, we’ve written an entire guide on digital marketing for personal trainers which will give you all the information you need to promote your business online. Not all marketing efforts have to cost apart from the time needed from you to get them done. For example, you can create trial workout programme within the FITR Training platform and easily share it with a link, giving potential clients the chance to try before they buy, and helping you to get in front of people. Marketing can be the difference between attracting those few extra clients that help you achieve your goals. Make sure you include any marketing costs into your financial plan!

Competitor analysis

You may be friends with other personal trainers in your area, and while you may not see them as your competition, your business and theirs may overlap. You don’t need to conduct a rogue operation to learn about their pricing or try to poach their clients. You should take the time to understand what they’re doing and what works for them, or what they’re not doing that could work for you. Learning from your competition will help you to refine your business not only in a way that will help you to achieve your goals, but it’ll help you build something personal to how you think it should be done. Remember - if you’re good friends with your competition, you can always consider teaming up and launching a brand!


Your operations section should outline the things that define how and when your business runs. For example, your hours, the locations you’ll train at and the equipment you need to get the job done. 

Think about what you’ll do on a day to day basis and get this down on paper. If there are periods where you won’t train, or if you’re not available during seasonal periods such as Christmas, outline this here. Explain how you’ll keep track of who you train, any stock levels if you’re selling products, how long each day you expect to travel, how you’ll travel etc. Bear in mind also the technology you may need to use for part of your business, such as for processing payments or online personal training software.

Company structure

This section is one of the easiest; you need to define who is involved with your business and the role they have. If it’s only you, then you just include yourself. But, if you’re looking to launch a brand or representing a gym that’s involved in your business, this is the section where you mention everyone involved and the part they play.

If you have any future plans and you can envisage where you’d like to take your business in the future, then work this into your company structure section. It’s beneficial to show how your business will develop alongside your service offerings based on growth. Within this, include how your company structure may adapt to accommodate the change in business operations.

Financial Planning For Your Personal Trainer Business Plan

Financial plan

Your financial plan is where you get down to the nitty-gritty of the money side of your personal training business. Accuracy is essential here, and if you’re not realistic, your financial plan won’t be as useful for you. If you’re not able to confidently predict your finances, it can affect many other elements of your business, and even your personal life. Your financial plan will map out your income, outgoings and the difference between these figures on a monthly basis. If in doubt, use sensitised numbers as you’ll benefit from slightly overvaluing that expecting more income than is likely.

As you continue to build upon your financial plan, you’ll have an entire sheet of historical figures to reference which will make financial planning easier and easier as you move forward. You’ll also use this section to predict and set objectives for earnings at specific time periods. How you approach this is up to you; setting annual objectives are realistic, but you may wish to do them quarterly to allow you to adapt your operations if things aren’t going as planned.

For example, these are the type of elements you’ll build into and consider for your financial planning:

  1. Your incomes and their source, such as 1-1 training sessions, group sessions, wages from working at a gym etc.
  2. Your outgoings such as travel, gym membership and access to any business related equipment.
  3. Earnings for yourself.
  4. Your financial objectives over a set period.
  5. Marketing costs.
  6. Hardware, such as a phone you may use solely for your business.
  7. Any assets relating to your business.
  8. Costs such as rent or utilities etc.

When you create your financial plan, we recommend that you use a programme such as Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets. They’ll make your life much easier, and you can keep them up-to-date. Make all of your updates within these programmes and copy and paste the information into your business plan.

Summary of a personal trainer business plan

To summarise, a personal trainer business plan is your chance to map out everything that makes up your business. We think it’s a valuable asset for anyone from personal trainers to gyms looking to reach objectives. If you’re considering implementing an online training element to your plan, you should check out the service we offer people in your position. Using our platform, you can handle every element that comes with online personal training in a single place. Check out the FITR Training features here if you’re interested.

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