5 Ways to Combat Your Competition as a Fitness Pro

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They’re taking over the internet, stealing all your clients, and (worst all of), potentially spreading false information, which, unfortunately, gives your industry a bad name.

Who are these people, you ask? They’re the influencers, the enthusiasts, and the supplement-slinging wanna-be fitness pros that are all about making a quick buck and aren’t really invested in bettering clients.

Listen, being a personal trainer is tough enough. Not only are you constantly expected to keep up with the ever-changing fitness industry realm (not to mention continuing your education all the time), you’re also supposed to be on your grind at all times. The hustle never stops, which means you’re expected to keep up with the constantly adapting fitness rules, trends, crazes, and more.

When you tack on the fact that there’s a whole new wave of competition that’s directly aimed at stealing your clientele, your chosen career might seem a little overwhelming. And we’re not here to deny that claim, either. As personal trainers and fitness pros ourselves, we’re constantly dealing with the competition—and it comes in several forms. The key? Knowing who and what you’re dealing with and taking a few tips from those who have come before you (hi, that’s us) about the best ways to combat it.

Ready to listen up? We hope so. Dive into our brief look at the type of competition you’re dealing with and then get ready to take notes, because we’re teaching you how to combat them, too.

Who Exactly You’re Up Against

Fitness pros, meet your competition

  • Insta-Famous Influencers
    • “you’ve all been asking me about my fitness routine, click the link in my bio for an exclusive peek at my gym sched!!!”
  • Product Enthusiasts
    • The latest and greatest in workout trends—the waist training cardio stomach cuff! 
  • Non-Certified “Trainers”
    • “no, I didn’t go to school for this, finish your weighted wind sprints”
  • False Information
    • Butter isn’t a carb, go nuts. 
  • Supplements
    • This all-in-one supplement is guaranteed to help you burn fat, gain muscle, lose weight, become a rocket scientist, clean your car, and more! 

​5 Ways to Combat Your Competition

1. If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Join ‘Em

No, we don’t mean that you should start spouting useless, inaccurate information or representing supplement of fitness-oriented brands that aren’t authentic, but you can hop on the platforms where this is happening to help combat some of the false information going around. We’re not saying that you should invest all your time and effort into becoming an Instagram star, but we do think that putting some time into your social media platforms and creating a space that’s a wealth of quality education can do a lot for the public. Even better, it’s a great way to attract new clients to you—once they see that you’re certified, qualified, and not just in it for the insta-fame or to make money repping some inauthentic product, people are bound to be interested.

2. Be a Constant Source of Solid Information

In a world full of false information, fake supplements, pyramid schemes, quick fixes, influencers, and enthusiasts, sometimes you just have to cut the flash and boil it down to the basics. In other words, let the influencers and enthusiasts and products have their day in the sun—they’ll fizzle out quicker than they popped up on the market. If you can be a solid source of consistent, accurate, and helpful information, clients and consumers are going to recognize that.

3. Hustle Don’t Stop—You Can’t Either

This isn’t a quick fix or a one-size-fits-all remedy, but it is the best advice we can give you—never stop never stopping. Work hard, hustle hard, and do what it takes to be the best. Continue your education. Gain new certifications. Keep up with the dos and don’ts of the fitness trend world. Be innovative. Be intuitive. Offer online classes and in-person classes and go as hard as you possibly can.

4. All-Around Wellness Should be Your Focus

Listen, we’re not saying that you need to go full-Zen mode and preach to your clients about things that you might not necessarily believe in, but if you’re a fitness professional worth their salt, you probably already believe that overall wellness—not just a physical goal—is what fitness is all about. And guess what? That’s a huge difference between you and the competition out there who are just looking to make a quick buck off a well-intentioned-but-unsuspecting client. The more you’re willing to promote overall wellness and health to your clients, the more they’re going to recognize that you’re in this because you care about them and their general wellbeing. For you, this isn’t about likes on an Insta page or selling a product—you want your clients to meet their goals because you believe in them, want the best for them, and are there to support and promote an overall healthier lifestyle.

5. Don’t Forget that You’re in the Customer Service Industry, Too

A huge difference between you and your competition is the emboldened realization that you’re not just in the fitness industry—you’re in the customer service industry, too. Anytime you’re working with people, you’re in the customer service industry. Sure, you’re the professional and you should advise your client correctly (which oftentimes means correcting their form, etc., AKA, the customer can’t always be right), but you’re there to help them get exactly what they came for—results. Recognizing that you’re there to serve your client and provide them with the best of the best information and guidance is going to make you an in-demand fitness professional without a doubt.

Meet The Author:

Parker Franklin

Parker, IFG’s Brand Manager since 2022, began his wellness journey in 2020, leading to a significant personal transformation. He holds a journalism degree from Murray State University and started his career as an award-winning journalist in western Kentucky before transitioning into marketing and PR. At IFG, Parker is responsible for writing content, managing The Fit newsletter, and overseeing promotions and collaborations with affiliate fitness organizations.