How to Make More Money as a Personal Trainer

By Ajoke Aminu


Side Hustles

Ajoke Aminu

Ajoke Aminu

Writer & Career Coach

Are you a personal trainer who’s tired of solely relying on client sessions for your paycheck? Consider exploring the world of personal trainer side hustle—from affiliate marketing to offering virtual training sessions, there are several unconventional fitness side hustles. Thus, let’s analyze how to make money as a personal trainer, and grow your career as both an in-person and remote personal trainer.Personal training is a fulfilling profession that puts your passion for fitness to work but after every rep, you find yourself wondering how to make money as a personal trainer.

How to Make More Money as a Personal Trainer

Don’t underestimate the power of a personal trainer side hustle. With the rise of fitness side hustles and the growing demand for healthier lifestyles, personal trainers have the potential to make more money than ever before. So, how much does a personal trainer make, and how can you bump up your earning potential?

A personal trainer in the United States makes around $42,000, and by diversifying your income streams and exploring other opportunities you can make more money as a personal trainer. For instance, establishing a strong online presence can attract more clients and set you apart from other personal trainers. Read further to put your creativity and passion for fitness to work.

Our criteria for the best side hustles for personal trainers:

  • Offers flexibility.
  • Leverages the skills of personal trainers.
  • Start with a low initial investment.

Online Training and Courses

Online training and courses are popular fitness side hustles among personal trainers looking to expand their reach and income. By creating workout routines, training programs, or even full courses and selling them online, trainers can help people all over the world reach their fitness goals from the comfort of their own homes. For those looking for a personal touch, virtual personal training sessions using platforms like Zoom or Skype offer a way to get one-on-one attention from a certified remote personal trainer.

  • Requirements: Personal trainer certification, reliable internet connection, video conferencing tools, and ability to create customized workout plans.
  • Prospects: Use freelance platforms like Upwork and Fiverr, create a personal website or social media presence, or partner with fitness apps or websites.
  • Potential Earnings: Varies but can range from US$20 to $100+ per hour, depending on experience and client base.
  • Downsides:
    • Limited physical interaction with clients.
    • Competition from other online trainers.
    • Potential for scheduling conflicts due to global clientele.

Fitness E-books and Guides

While this personal trainer side hustle aligns more closely with a dietitian’s responsibilities, if you have the necessary expertise, it’s worth considering too. Selling e-books on nutrition, workout plans, or other health-related topics is a lucrative option with people increasingly focused on their health and wellness. To sweeten the deal, the growing market for nutrition and workout plans welcomes non-certified personal trainers as well!

Offering your optimized fitness e-books and guides on Amazon or your own website can help you effectively reach your target audience. So, whether you’re looking for a remote personal trainer side hustle or just want to explore how to make money as a personal trainer, creating and selling fitness e-books and guides might just be the perfect fit for you.

  • Requirements: Expertise in fitness and nutrition, writing and design skills or hiring a freelancer, platform to sell digital products (e.g., Amazon Kindle, personal website)
  • Prospects: Self-publish on Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, promote through social media and fitness forums and collaborate with influencers for marketing.
  • Potential Earnings: Varies widely, but successful e-books can generate passive income ranging from a few hundred to thousands of dollars per month.
  • Downsides:
    • Initial time investment in content creation
    • Competitive market
    • Marketing efforts are required for visibility.

Group Classes

With the ability to train multiple clients at once, you can maximize how to make money as a personal trainer while still providing a top-notch workout experience. More importantly, don’t be limited by geography—become a remote personal trainer, so you can offer your services both in-person and online.

  • Requirements: Certified personal trainer, suitable space for in-person classes or virtual meeting platform, and marketing and scheduling tools.
  • Prospects: Local fitness centers, community centers, or parks for in-person classes; advertise online through social media, fitness forums, or your website for virtual sessions; and collaborate with gyms for classes.
  • Potential Earnings: Varies based on class size and location, but group classes can significantly increase your earnings compared to one-on-one training.
  • Challenges:
    • Requires effective time management and class planning
    • Marketing and client retention are crucial for sustained income
    • Adaptability to different fitness levels and needs of participants is essential.

Workshops and Seminars

Indeed workshops and seminars belong to the world of fitness side hustles. First, establish yourself as a professional in the fitness industry. Taking from the playbook of nutritionists, host informative sessions that cover a wide range of topics including nutrition, proper exercise form, and sports recovery. Workshops and seminars help fitness enthusiasts enhance their fitness journey.

  • Requirements: Expertise in the chosen topic, presentation and communication skills, and suitable location for in-person events or virtual platform for online seminars.
  • Prospects: 
    • In-person: Local fitness centers, community spaces, and gyms.
    • Online: Promote through social media, your website, or webinar platforms. Collaborate with wellness organizations and schools for speaking engagements.
  • Potential Earnings: Earnings can vary widely, but offering workshops and seminars can supplement your income and enhance your reputation as an expert in your field.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Effective event planning and promotion are key for successful workshops.
    • Continuously update your knowledge to deliver valuable content.
    • Engage with participants for feedback and future opportunities.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is an enticing option for those looking to earn some extra cash through their fitness side hustles. As a personal trainer side hustle, recommending fitness equipment, nutritional supplements, or workout gear can be a great way to monetize your knowledge and expertise.

But how do you make money as a personal trainer through affiliate marketing? By partnering with companies that offer products or services you believe in and promoting them to your network, you can earn a commission for every sale made through your referral. It’s a win-win situation: your clients get access to high-quality products and you get rewarded for your recommendations. So, why not give it a shot and see how it can work for you?

  • Requirements: Knowledge of relevant products or services, marketing and promotional skills, and affiliate program memberships with relevant companies.
  • Prospects: Join fitness equipment, supplement, and sports gear affiliate programs. Promote affiliate links via your website, social media, and email marketing to reach your audience.
  • Potential Earnings: Earnings depend on the commission structure and sales generated, but affiliate marketing can be a lucrative passive income source for personal trainers.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Select products or services aligned with your niche and audience.
    • Maintain transparency with your audience about affiliate relationships.
    • Continuously evaluate and optimize your affiliate marketing strategy.

Fitness Retreats or Bootcamps

Fitness retreats or bootcamps are a fantastic way to jumpstart a healthy lifestyle and, for trainers, they can be a lucrative side hustle. By organizing weekend or week-long intensive programs, personal trainers can offer clients a unique and impactful experience. With healthy meal plans, relaxation, and intensive training, fitness retreats are an immersive way to help clients reach their wellness goals. If you’re looking for how to make money as a personal trainer, consider organizing your own fitness retreat right away!

  • Requirements: Fitness expertise, location or facilities for retreats, and marketing and event planning skills.
  • Prospects: Promote through your client network and social media; collaborate with travel agencies or wellness resorts; create your own retreat packages and advertise on your website.
  • Potential Earnings: Earnings vary based on package pricing and participation, but fitness retreats can be a lucrative venture.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Carefully plan the schedule to balance fitness and relaxation.
    • Ensure safety and medical support, if needed.
    • Offer unique experiences to attract participants and encourage repeat business.

YouTube Channel or Blogging

This remote personal trainer side hustle has become increasingly popular in recent years as people seek out online fitness coaching and personalized training programs. Personal trainers who are looking for fitness side hustles should start a YouTube channel or a blog. By sharing your knowledge and expertise, you can build up a following and monetize your content through advertisements and sponsored partnerships. You can also utilize affiliate marketing, as explained earlier, to generate income as a blogger or vlogger.

  • Requirements: Expertise in fitness and content creation, video or writing skills, and consistent posting schedule.
  • Prospects: Start your YouTube channel and blog on platforms like WordPress or Medium. Then promote your content on social media and engage with your audience.
  • Potential Earnings: Income can range from ad revenue to sponsorships, affiliate marketing, and merchandise sales, depending on your reach and engagement.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Create high-quality, informative, and engaging content to attract and retain viewers/readers.
    • Build a strong online presence and engage with your audience for better monetization opportunities.
    • Stay up-to-date with platform policies and trends for maximum reach and income potential.

Fitness App Development

With the increasing demand for wellness and fitness-related apps, a personal trainer can now remotely train anyone from anywhere in the world. A fitness app can have features such as a workout tracker, nutrition guide, progress tracker, and even personalized training programs. As a personal trainer, creating your own fitness app can be a lucrative way to make money while helping people achieve their fitness goals. So, why not invest your time and energy in something that can help you and others to stay fit and earn money at the same time?

  • Requirements: Expertise in fitness; use of an app builder or collaboration with a developer; design and usability considerations; and marketing and user acquisition strategies.
  • Prospects: Launch your app on app stores and promote it through various digital channels.
  • Potential Earnings: Earnings depend on app popularity and monetization methods, including in-app purchases or subscription models.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Conduct market research to identify user needs and preferences.
    • Ensure a user-friendly interface and regular updates for app engagement.
    • Implement effective marketing strategies to increase downloads and user retention.

Specialized Training

As a personal trainer, you have a wealth of opportunities to explore fitness niche areas of specialization that will set you apart from the competition. Whether you’re interested in prenatal fitness or senior wellness, there’s no limit to the depths you can go and the benefits you can offer your clients. Fortunately, specialized knowledge often allows you to charge premium rates!

With a focus on specific high-paying niches like prenatal/postnatal fitness, senior fitness, or sports-specific training, consider these factors:

  • Requirements: In-depth knowledge and certifications in your chosen niche, marketing strategies to target your niche audience, and tailored training programs and approaches.
  • Prospects: Target local communities or organizations interested in your specialized area. Create online content, courses, or workshops tailored to your niche audience.
  • Potential Earnings:
    • Prenatal/Postnatal Fitness Trainer: You could charge between US$60 to US$100 or more per session, especially if you offer tailored programs and have advanced certifications in this area.
    • Senior Fitness Trainer: Rates might range from US$50 to US$80 per session. Specialized knowledge in senior fitness can justify higher fees.
    • Sports-Specific Trainer: Depending on your reputation and the sport, rates can vary widely. For instance, trainers working with professional athletes might charge hundreds of dollars per hour, while those working with amateur athletes might charge US$50 to US$100 per session.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Continuously update knowledge in your niche to offer the best services.
    • Develop a strong marketing strategy to reach your target audience.
    • Personalize training plans to address the specific needs of your niche clients.

Licensing and Franchising

Consider licensing your unique training program or method to other trainers or gyms, or even opening a franchise. Not only will this increase exposure for your brand, but it also has the potential to create additional income streams beyond your individual client roster. This is your sign to share your expertise with the world and see where it takes you!

  • Requirements: Well-defined and marketable training program, legal expertise for licensing agreements or franchising documentation, and business acumen for franchise management.
  • Prospects: Approach local gyms or trainers interested in implementing your program. Seek legal counsel to create licensing or franchising agreements. Develop a franchise model and expand through franchisee partnerships.
  • Potential Earnings: Income potential varies widely, with licensing fees or royalties from franchisees contributing to revenue.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Ensure your program is well-documented and easy to replicate.
    • Collaborate with legal professionals to draft clear and fair licensing or franchise agreements.
    • Maintain quality control and support for licensed or franchised outlets to protect your brand and reputation.

Renting out Equipment or Space

As a personal trainer, you know that every dollar counts. One option that you might not have considered yet is renting out your private gym space during off-hours. Not only does this give you a chance to make extra money, but it can also help foster relationships with other trainers in your area. So, if you have a bitter taste in your mouth when asked “How much does a personal trainer make,” renting out your space could be the perfect passive income solution for you.

  • Requirements: Access to a gym or fitness space, equipment for rent or use, and marketing and scheduling capabilities.
  • Prospects: Connect with local trainers who need space for their clients. Advertise your available space and equipment through social media and fitness networks.
  • Potential Earnings: Earnings depend on the demand and rates you set for renting your space or equipment.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Ensure safety and insurance coverage for all users.
    • Establish clear rental terms and schedules to avoid conflicts.
    • Market your space effectively to attract trainers and fitness classes during off-hours.

Referral Programs

Referral programs may be just the ticket boosting your fitness side hustles. Partnering with related businesses like physiotherapists, nutritionists, or sports goods shops can be a win-win situation for both parties. By offering a referral fee for every client they send your way, you can expand your client base while also helping out your industry peers.

  • Requirements: Establish partnerships with related businesses; clear referral program terms and tracking; and marketing to promote the referral program.
  • Prospects: Network with professionals in related fields and propose collaboration. Promote your referral program through your website, social media, and physical brochures.
  • Potential Earnings: Earnings depend on the number of referrals and the commission structure you establish.
  • Tips for Success:
    • Create a transparent and fair referral program to incentivize partners.
    • Keep track of referrals and commissions accurately.
    • Continuously nurture and expand your network of collaborating businesses to increase referral opportunities.

Key Considerations and Challenges of Fitness Side Hustles

When it comes to starting your own side hustle in the fitness industry, there are certainly a few key considerations and challenges to keep in mind. However, with a clear plan and determination, anyone can successfully start a fitness side hustle that helps them earn that extra cash they need.

Time Management

As a personal trainer with a side hustle, you’ll need to be adept at time management. This means efficiently scheduling and conducting client sessions, dedicating time to marketing your services, and still having a work-life balance. Effective time management is essential to prevent burnout and maintain a sustainable side business.

Tax Obligations

When running a side hustle, it’s crucial to understand your tax obligations as a self-employed individual. You may need to pay self-employment taxes, track expenses, and report income accurately. Failing to address tax responsibilities can lead to financial and legal issues.


Liability insurance is a vital consideration. As a personal trainer, there’s a risk of accidents or injuries during training sessions. Having the right insurance coverage helps protect both you and your clients in case of unforeseen incidents, ensuring peace of mind and financial security.

Certification and Credentials

To build trust and credibility with clients, it’s essential to obtain the necessary certifications and credentials. This not only demonstrates your expertise but also helps you stand out in a competitive market. Continuously updating your knowledge and skills is also important to stay relevant in the field.

Marketing and Client Acquisition

Attracting and retaining clients can be a significant challenge. Effective marketing is key to reaching your target audience. This includes strategies such as social media marketing, website development, referrals, and networking within your community. Building a strong client base takes time and effort.

Inconsistent Income

Personal trainer side hustles often come with income fluctuations. Your earnings may vary from month to month, making financial planning essential. Creating a financial buffer during high-earning periods and budgeting for slower months can help you manage inconsistent income effectively.


If you’re an avid fitness enthusiast who is interested in making some extra cash on the side, look no further than the world of fitness side hustles. Also, with the rise of remote work and virtual communication, becoming a remote personal trainer is more achievable than ever before.

The key is taking that first, all-important step towards making your dream a reality. You don’t need a fancy office or gym to get started, all you need is your own passion and commitment to helping others achieve their fitness goals.

As highlighted earlier in the article, endeavor to obtain the necessary qualifications, set clear goals, and develop a strong marketing strategy. By addressing these considerations and challenges head-on, you can embark on a rewarding journey as a personal trainer, making a positive impact on clients’ lives while building a successful side hustle. So, take that first step today and begin your personal training side hustle adventure!

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Ajoke Aminu

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