To be able to do something you are passionate about makes you fortunate; to be able to take that passion and make it into a successful career makes you one of an elite few.
Personalized exercise regimens remain extremely popular, thanks in large part to high-profile celebrity personal trainers and popular television shows like The Biggest Loser. That’s good news for you as you look at the career prospects of sharing your love of exercise and good health with others. Perhaps best of all is that a career in personal training may not only be fulfilling, but financially rewarding, as well.
According to a 2012 CNN Money article entitled Best Jobs in America, personal training ranked number 18, with a median salary of $56,000, and top trainers earning as much $128,000. In other good news, this profession has experienced a 24 percent job growth rate over the past 10 years, and is expected to experience continued growth for the forseeable future.
Personal Trainer Salary Info By State
- District of Columbia
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- New York
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
Trends in Personal Trainer Salaries
A number of professional organizations in the fitness industry conduct regular salary surveys of their members and publish the results. Recent findings reveal that average salary statistics remain fairly consistent between organizations:
The American Council on Exercise (ACE) conducted a survey of health professionals in 2013 and found that higher salaries were reported than in their 2010 survey. Further, fitness professionals with advanced certifications continue to receive more benefits and enjoy higher salaries than other industry professionals. The survey also revealed that like many other professions, personal trainer salaries often varied according to:
- Geographic region
- Experience level
- Education level
According to ACE, the average, annual salary for personal trainers in 2013 was $52,537, or $26 an hour; that’s a 12 percent increase from 2010.
The ACE survey also broke down fitness trainer salaries, by region, and found that personal trainers in the Southwest earned the highest, average salary, at $60,120, followed by:
- Northwest: $56,281
- Southeast: $53,079
- Northeast: $52,030
- Northcentral: $46,060
According to the National Federation of Personal Trainers, personal trainers earned between $26,258 and $58,346 in 2013.
The National Federation of Personal Trainers also found that personal trainers earned the highest salaries (hourly) in the following metropolitan areas, as of 2013:
- New York, NY: $16.26 – $54.04
- Houston, TX: $16.50 – $30.00
- Los Angeles, CA: $19.44 – $25.70
- Dallas, TX: $14.74 – $30.25
- Phoenix, AZ: $14.12 – $20.56
- Arlington, TX: $13.50 – $40.00
- Chicago, IL: $12.50 – $29.38
A recent survey by the Wellness Council of America found that 26.25 percent of the professionals in the fitness and wellness industry earn between $25,000 and $50,000 a year. This survey also revealed that about 18 percent of fitness and wellness professionals earn between $50,000 and $75,000 per year, 11 percent earn between $75,000 and $100,000 per year, and nearly 16 percent earn more than $100,000 per year.
The Wellness Council of America also reported that personal trainers who completed higher levels of education and certification earn higher starting salaries.
Personal Trainer Salaries by State
Shown for comparative purposes, the data featured below reflects the results of a national survey of personal trainers conducted by the US Department of Labor in 2013: