The COVID-19 pandemic has been a major disruption for most industries, in one way or another, but some industries have been hurt more than others. If you’ve been working as a personal trainer, or if you were interested in becoming a personal trainer, you might feel lost on what to do next.

In most areas, gyms remain closed, and in the few areas where gyms are open, people don’t want to be in close proximity with one another—especially if they’re sweating and breathing heavy, like during exercise.

Fortunately, people are still motivated to get fit—which means there’s a way for you to make money. Everything starts with starting a fitness brand online.

How to Become a Personal Trainer Online

If you’re used to working with clients in a one-on-one setting, you might be confused as to how to operate as a personal trainer online. There isn’t a set formula, but you can see how it becomes possible when you break down the main goals of a personal trainer:

• Your first goal is usually educating your clients on topics they might otherwise not understand. You’ll be teaching them how to work out properly, from proper form on lifts to how to cool down and stretch after a good session. Conveying information is possible through many channels—not just in person.

• Goal setting. You’ll also be responsible for helping your clients set goals. If your client is overweight, how much weight do they want to lose in their fitness regimen? If they want to build muscle, what type of results do they want to see? How much time do they have to work with, and what equipment do they have available?

• Direction and guidance. You’ll also be guiding your clients through exercises. Form is vital to performing exercises correctly, so it’s one of your biggest priorities. This is something you can do after watching someone on a stream, or in a video chat.

• Another job of a fitness trainer is dispensing motivation. You’ll give your client a reason to show up on a regular basis, and you’ll help them push through their toughest moments. Again, you don’t have to be in person to do this.

You can accomplish these responsibilities in an online setting, with the help of channels like:

• Online streaming. You could use platforms like Twitch or YouTube to live stream your workout routine, educating many people at once.

• Video chats. Alternatively, you could use video chats to guide users through individualized fitness sessions.

• Photos and video. You can also build out a website or a blog with photos and videos, demonstrating proper techniques and workout routines.

• Social media. One of your most important channels will be social media, where you popularize your content and reach out to new people.

Getting Started

So how do you get started?

• Decide on your goals. First, decide on your goals. What are you hoping to achieve? For example, do you want a big, daily audience as you go through your daily fitness routine? Or do you prefer a conventional series of one-on-one relationships with clients? Do you want to specialize in a specific type of fitness, or just help people achieve their goals generally?

• Create and differentiate your brand. Lots of people are trying to become fit or become fitness trainers during the pandemic. You’re going to have thousands, if not millions of competitors. If you’re going to stand a chance of success, you’ll need some way to stand out. What could make your brand seem unique? Is there a specific audience you could target, or a form of fitness to market?

• Invest in the right equipment. Make sure you invest in the right equipment. If you’re going to be a successful trainer, you need to show people how to exercise properly. That means doing the exercises yourself. You’ll also need to invest in high-quality capturing equipment, including cameras and microphones, and a good computer you can use to stream.

• Build a website. When you have a good idea of what you want your brand to be, you can start building a website. Make sure to include ample calls-to-action (CTAs) so your interested visitors can sign up for a consultation or watch you stream.

• Flesh out a social presence. From there, you’ll want to build out a full social media presence, establishing yourself on the most popular channels on the web. Start reaching out to your former clients (if applicable), and start building a community through interaction.

From here, you have a number of options for growing and maintaining your personal fitness brand. Continue investing in yourself, learn from your mistakes, and work your way to a higher stream of income.