Strengthen your resume with our advice for personal trainers!
Personal Trainers help individuals of all fitness levels reach their health and wellness goals -- just as we’ll help you reach your career goals!
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that this career will grow by 15% in the next decade, which is far faster than average. Despite this growth you still need a solid resume foundation in order to launch your next job.
In this article, we’ll discuss
Owner, Stacy’s Personal Training & Fitness
Personal Trainer, Marigold’s Gym
Fitness Instructor, Marigold’s Gym
The first step to drafting your resume is deciding which resume format to use. This depends on your career experience and skillset.
You have 3 main options for your resume:
Tip: only include jobs relevant to the position to which you’re applying, so leave out any former jobs that don’t fit. For example, if you’re applying to be a personal trainer at a gym, you wouldn’t mention your experience as a musician, since they have no connection. In contrast, you should mention your experience as a fitness instructor since that is very related to your current job as a personal trainer!
Example: Have a header like “Fitness Classes” where you list any specialites you teach, such as boxing, yoga or HIIT. You could also note that you primarily work with certain demographics, such as the elderly or youth or athletes.
Tip: When in doubt, choose the Reverse-Chronological resume format. For more information on this format, check out or guide on How to Write Your Resume in Reverse-Chronological Order.
For a Personal Trainer, hiring managers want to glance at your resume and get a sense of the following:
The best format for a Personal Trainer is the Reverse-Chronological resume format. This is best because it shows the trajectory of your career -- how you’ve grown as an instructor and how you’ve expanded your client base.
Hiring Managers look at resumes for only six seconds.
Including a resume summary is one of the best ways to succeed in that short glance.
But first --- what is a resume summary?
A resume summary is one or two sentences at the top of your paper that summarizes your entire resume. It’s the punch line that gets the resume reviewer wanting to know more.
For a Personal Training career, include the following points in your summary
Here is an example of a bad resume summary:
Personal Trainer with five years of experience teaching clients how to improve their fitness.
This is a bad resume example because it is incredibly vague. It gives no sense of who you are as a person or what makes you stand out as a Personal Trainer.
Here is an example of a good resume summary:
Enthusiastic NCSF-accredited Personal Trainer and business owner with five years of experience teaching senior clients balance and functional skills. Additional expertise in youth athletic conditioning, with focuses on strength training.
This is a good resume example because it gives a strong sense of your expertise -- you work with certain demographics such as youth athletes and senior clients -- and of you as a person -- you are “enthusiastic.”
For more ideas, checkout our guide on writing a killer resume summary.
The next step to drafting your resume is to list your work experience. This includes the name of your position (e.g., Personal Trainer, Fitness Instructor), the name of the location at which you worked, and the length of time in which you worked.
Furthermore, write your resume experience in a way that anyone in your industry will understand. Don't use company-specific language.
For example, let’s say you worked at a gym that called boxing gloves “personal protective gear.” Not everyone is going to know what this means, so it’s best to stick with the common name, “boxing gloves,” otherwise a hiring manager may not know what you’re talking about, and if the manager is confused, they’re more likely to throw out your resume and move onto the next.
You should also quantify your resume whenever possible. This means adding a number -- such as a dollar amount or percentage -- to your accomplishments. Quantifying your resume gives the hiring manager a more concrete idea of your workplace performance. For example, say that you “trained 2 college athletes,” “improved client retention by 20%,” or “saved the business $10,000 by suggesting energy-saving workout equipment.”
Tip: One way to quantify your resume is by listing your accomplishments and awards.
For more information on how to format your work experience, check out our guide. Don’t have any work experience? We have a guide for that too!
Skills show the hiring manager what you can do for the company -- without taking up too much space in the “work experience” part of your resume.
There are two types of skills -- soft and hard. “Soft” skills are those that are not quantifiable and are more indicative of your personality. Examples include leadership, problem-solving, and communication. In contrast, “hard” skills are those that are learned through formal education. Examples include computer technology, programming languages, and certifications.
A Personal Trainer needs both soft and hard skills. Including both of these on your resume will show the hiring manager that you are well-rounded and competent.
Relevant Soft Skills
Relevant Hard Skills
If you want a more complete list of skills, read our guide on the proper way to include skills on your resume.
Personal Trainers do not need a college experience. Many businesses do require that you have a high school diploma or GED as the first step. But most importantly, Personal Trainers need to be certified.
Popular Certification Programs:
These programs can take anywhere from a few months to a year, as it depends on how fast you progress through the certification steps. Most of the programs require that you read a textbook and then take a proctored exam.
Since you already require a certification to be a Personal Trainer, this is an additional, optional section. Other certifications can show employers that you’re expanding on your skills and diversifying your experiences. Not only are you more knowledgeable, but you’re also more employable.
Certification programs include:
For more information on certifications, check out our guide on how to include certifications on your resume the right way.
Alternatively, instead of listing additional certifications, you can personalize the “Certifications” tab on our resume builder. Use this section for your athletic achievements or hobbies. If you’ve ran marathons, participated in Iron Man competitions, Crossfit tournaments or anything else -- include it!
This will show your clients that you are what you preach -- a badass athlete. You should be proud of your fitness accomplishments, and sharing it with your clients will bolster their own confidence.
Now it’s time for the fun part -- picking the aesthetics of your resume!
Here at EasyResume, we offer a variety of different templates to meet your needs. Below are a few broad categories to get you started:
Your resume template should reflect the job to which you’re applying. For a Personal Trainer, try an Elegant, Modern or Professional template, as these will give your resume a clean, polished look.
We’ve done it! Almost.
Now it’s time to get down to business -- actually creating the resume.
Here’s what you need to do:
Start from our resume example to save time.
You’ll soon be well on your way to training your next batch of clients in no time!
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