Whether you’re thinking of being an in-home personal trainer or if you’re thinking of hiring one, this covers the main points that you may or may not be thinking with.
How Much Does It Cost To Have a Personal Fitness Trainer Come to Your Home?
The price on this varies wildly. In my research, I found out that the biggest factor is location.
By location, I mean the cost of living in the area in which you are located. If I’m in a small town in Kentucky I won’t make as much as if I were doing house calls in Los Angeles. Those are just the facts of life.
There are many other factors involved. First, you have to figure out why a home visit is needed. It could be due to convenience or disability. If it is convenience, a certain amount of social graces and charm is needed. If it is disability, a certain amount of knowledge and experience are necessary to get the person to where they want to be.
Knowledge and experience cost more than social graces and charm.
The knowledge factor alone could mean that the person has a college degree and several certifications, all of which cost him $50,000 to get and he’s trying to recoup his costs.
The experience factor is a matter of years spent working in the field. One could argue that this is more of a factor than book smarts. I have found, through studying in college and working as a personal trainer at the same time, that the mix of theory and practical is what really helps one apply what he learned. You study about a knee, then you go train one in the gym. There’s no better way to do it.
You’re also paying for missed opportunities. The trainer could have had several clients lined up at a gym that he was going to train. At $50 per hour, with 2-3 clients per hour, he could have made between $200 and $300 with the time that it took to drive to your house, set stuff up, train you and then drive back.
You’re also paying for travel time and gas.
There are no prices set in stone when it comes to house calls. It’s a negotiation game. When I was starting, I did house calls to train someone’s teenage kid for $20. I was hungry for work at that time and in college in a part of the country where the cost of living was low, I was willing to accept that price. A higher price could have been negotiated, but it was also for a friend.
How To Find a Trainer and How To Be Found as a Trainer
As a personal fitness trainer, I can say that I’ve gotten most of my clients by word of mouth.
Using Google to find an at-home personal trainer will find you a qualified trainer, but you’ll pay for it. Usually if it is someone well-established enough to be found so easily, their prices reflect it.
If you’re looking for an at-home trainer, ask others in your situation. If you’re disabled, ask your doctor if he or she knows of any fitness trainers who could help you at home. If your doctor doesn’t know, tell him to ask his clients if they have at-home trainers and to get back to you.
You can also drop by a gym and ask to talk with a trainer for a few minutes. Ask them if they are willing to do it or if they know of other trainers who do house calls. As a personal fitness trainer, I would happily send a lead over to another trainer who could utilize it. We talk to each other and help out with each other’s clients when we can.
If you’re a trainer who is looking for clients to train at their homes, I would recommend the following:
- Let other trainers know that you’re taking on at-home clients and to send you leads.
- Ask your fellow trainers who they have trained in the past at their homes and ask them to reach out to their old clients and see if they are interested in picking things back up.
- Set up a website for yourself. Get reviews. Advertise yourself as an In-Home Personal Trainer.
- Get on web directories for At-Home Personal Fitness Trainers.
- Set up a Google Business Profile titled “Personal Training at Home in Your City – Your Name”
Anyone who is a qualified trainer should have clients of their own and can reach out to them and tell them to get the word out.
How Long Is an At-Home Personal Training Session?
The span of your session is as long as you want it to be – if you’re the client. Usually much longer than an hour is too much, unless there are special circumstances.
At-home calls tend to be for special needs situations. This could be a disabled person, a senior citizen, or a medical case who isn’t able to travel.
When this happens, it takes time. You do not want to rush a training session with clients like this. If you’re doing your job, you’ve gotten with the physical therapist or doctor and have specific instructions to follow. It takes as long as it takes to do these. Plan and make sure you don’t schedule something right after you’re supposed to be finished training the person.
In situations like this, I find that it is best to work out in advance what they payment will be when training sessions go longer.
Initial Assessment for In-Home Personal Training
Before anything really gets started, there should be an initial assessment.
The personal fitness trainer is responsible for taking a person through an exercise program to help them reach their goals. The trainer has to be familiar with the setting and the person before a program is worked out to get the person from Point A to Point B.
An initial session (at cost to the potential client) should be arranged where no exercise is done, but a meeting is held in the space where the client is going to work out. The trainer may need a doctor’s consent based on risk factors and medical history. Or specific instructions may need to be given by a physical therapist or doctor depending on the scenario.
I have gone to a stroke victim’s home and taken him through basic exercises as directed by his physical therapist and doctor. The basic exercises were walking, sitting down and standing up, turning around, etc.
These are very risky moves on a 65-year-old man who has the coordination of a baby on one half of his body. They take time. Sometimes sessions run short due to lack of energy, sometimes they run long because you’re close to hitting a milestone.
This type of case specifically involved me going and visiting a physical therapy clinic and learning what I needed to learn so that this man got the care he needed at home.
So, the initial assessment needs to be done to make sure that the trainer is qualified and that the space is also set up for exercise. The trainer needs to see it for himself to get ideas about what exercises to do to make sure that the client gets from Point A to Point B.
In some of my other articles, I’ve touched on matching trainers and clients based on personality.
With a scenario of being outside a gym and meeting in your home, the personality factor weighs more. I’ll just say it straight out: Personal training at home is best for both parties when the trainer and client actually get along well.
My suggestion for handling this properly is to purchase a week or two of personal fitness training. During that week, a simple program is set up and you two get comfortable with each other. A program is worked out, written up and given to the client and everyone gets to figure out how this new schedule fits into their lives.
If all sorts of factors start falling into place, then the client should extend it for a month or two and pay in advance for at least a month at a time so that the fitness trainer can get a good idea on how his schedule is going to be.
As a personal trainer, I never just took people on when it involved going into their homes. Here, it is more important to be picky with your clients. Tell them that you’re willing to do a week (on Monday, Wednesday and Friday) and that you can both reassess once the week is finished.
In this way, I can back out without breaking any commitments. Walking into someone’s house can be creepy. It can be in a neighborhood that has violence, you may have to travel during rush hour, the house might smell (leaving you smelling like the house), or it could have pets that cause allergies to flare up. Or they could just not have a space to exercise at all and you’re being asked to train someone in a bedroom with no space.
So, be picky. Both trainer and client should approach this cautiously.
At-home personal training needs to be set up correctly.
If it is set up right from the start, and both parties agree to all of the little details like pay, appointment time, etc. then it’ll work out. Things go off the rails pretty fast when either party is late for appointments or there are problems with payments.
As a fitness trainer, I mostly enjoyed going to train people at their houses.
The stroke victim I mentioned above was cool and fun to work with. Beautiful house. I rode my motorcycle over there through an awesome neighborhood and I got compensated generously for it.
It’s really good work when you can find it.
The client and the trainer both win on this type of setup.