Careers in Fitness

Can you be a Part Time Coach?

The reason we typically want to do something part-time is that we either want supplementary income or we are really passionate about something which is not part of our full-time role.

Working part-time therefore is not just about getting a financial boost and following your passion, it also allows you to experience working in a different sector. It gives you the flexibility to scope out how things work in a new industry and get a feel of the people you would be working with there.

There are many fitness professionals who started out part-time and eventually moved to it full time. This is because the fitness industry lends itself very well to time flexibility. In traditional roles of a personal trainer, one can set their times with clients outside of their main full-time hours. If you choose to work out of a physical location, your part time work will usually not interrupt your full-time work.

However, if you are a virtual trainer, you may get enquiries and scheduling requests in the middle of the day too. It is up to you to decide how to deal with those and also depends on the understanding with your manager.

Points to Consider

For those who want to work as a Nutrition and Fitness coach, things can get a little overwhelming at first. You will need to have a mindset of being always on at two jobs at the same time. This is because your work with the clients is not limited to certain hours. If you are guiding them on nutrition too, then your client may require your guidance at any time. Even if you set up regular follow-up calls with them, they might have questions that they will reach out to you even outside of those calls.

Typically, clients prefer coaches that are always accessible, approachable and have a good turnaround time for their queries. If you set up too rigid times with your clients, you might find not many may be willing to work that way.

You either have to be charging very low or very high. The latter should ideally only come after gathering years of experience and expertise.

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Important Tips

So, for Nutrition and Fitness Coaches, if they decide to pursue part time work in fitness while working their nine to five job, they need to get good at time management. You need to find small pockets of time in your full-time workday to clear out emails and messages from your clients. Ideally, it is better to keep a separate phone for your fitness work, so you can prioritize your work as per your time slots.

You need to also purposefully set time aside for your private life too. It might seem like overkill, but you will otherwise find yourself drowning in multitasking responsibilities in a matter of days. It is a good idea to communicate to your friends and family when you can be with them a hundred percent.

Essentially, the truth is that working part-time in fitness, especially virtual work is not as easy as it looks. The good news is many people have done it in the past and continue to do this fulfilling work which is financially rewarding too.

Author: Jyoti Dabas, Founder & CEO, Institute of Nutrition and Fitness Sciences (INFS)

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