Why take the corporate route as a personal trainer?

Carlos Anthony Castro
3 min readJan 25, 2024

Almost 3 years into my time at Equinox, I be the first to admit that I don’t consider myself a “corporate” person. Never been a fan of the manager meetings, discussions of monthly numbers and terms like “report that to HR”. The corporate world sucks right.

Most of us personal trainers want a life where we wake up, put on our sweat pants and train clients. And if we’re good, the rest of that business stuff will take care of itself(ha!).

1 piece of advice I’d give to any college student that’s undecided on a major, choose business( I was an engineering major at Cal State LA)! It’s the one field that works across the board. You could be the great at what you do. But if there’s no understanding of the business side of things you’re headed for failure.

Most aspiring personal trainers would never ask themselves questions like:

  • What’s my closing percentage?
  • If my closing percentage is 20%, how many potential clients do I need to get in front of to meet my goal.
  • What do I have to do to get in front of more potential clients based on my closing percentage?

Prior to my 2 1/2 years at Equinox I worked in automobile financing for 17 years. Something I’ve found similar to personal training is that the approach on the business side is almost exactly the same. We’re in a numbers game:

  • The more shots you take the better your chances.
  • Money has to constantly be moving. Any money thats sitting around is just getting chewed up by expenses. (Ie: you just took yourself a private client. But he / she canceled the first 2 sessions. Hey you took a pymt up front though!! So it’’s ok right??Is this still ok that they canceled on ya?) This is likely also why our client’s sessions in the corporate world of trainers “expire”, and has be reinstated after a period of time.

Hey food for thought, you just blocked off your schedule for a client that keeps canceling. That means you’re losing out on other potential clients. And the your current client is even further away from purchasing another package of sessions!(And getting results. Money just sitting around getting used up by expenses).

As personal trainers we charge for the one thing that more valuable than money. We charge for our time. So, thats a huge part of how we set our rates. And we have to understand the total amount of time that we’re putting into a client’s session. If we understand that and run our business accordingly, the top tier clients will respect it. Because they’re also business people.

So why start off in the corporate route?:

  • Get your feet wet
  • Get connected with a few clients
  • Gain some experience training
  • Let the corporation handle the business side
  • You learn the business side of things
  • Corporate pays all the bills, handles the marketing, insurance and legal implications
  • You get to build your reputation as a trainer

I highly recommend going the corporate route for all aspiring personal trainers.



Carlos Anthony Castro

*Personal Trainer* Marathon Runner * Instagram @iron_endurance_training