T Nation

Becoming a Trainer/Coach


Hello everybody,

First off i would like to thank everyone for all the amazing posts on this website, I have found so much of it useful in my own training. I have a been big into lifting for a while now, and this website has really furthered my passion. I have spent a long time now trying to figure out what I would like to do with my life, and I am finally starting to get an idea.

What I am wanting to do is start studying to be a trainer or coach, not sure what specialty just yet, I figure that will come along the more I learn. Also Im hoping to learn alot about nutrition and the human body in general. Another thing that really seems to stand out in my mind, like its something I feel like I should do, is to open a gym/supplement store.

What I would like to know is, is this a good idea? I mean I tend to err on the side of caution, but I feel like its what I want to do. Are there any other coaches trainers out there that could give me advice? How do you feel about your chosen profession? The biggest thing that scares me I feel is that I might not be able to support a family, or something might not work out like I would like?

Then again, maybe I just need to stop worrying and go for what I want. Maybe thats all I need to hear, if so just respond "quit being a bitch and go for it" :smiley: thanks for any help in advance.


You can certainly be successful as a trainer or a coach but it does take hard work and perhaps long hours, at least in the beginning. Generally the people that succeed at those types of jobs are ones that have a real passion for it.

Also trainers and coaches aren't exactly the same thing so you would probably want to decide what road you want to head down. If you have questions about becoming a personal trainer PM me as that is what I do (train people to become trainers). Good luck with whatever you choose,


sup man

i to have learned a massive amount from this site.

here's briefly how i got into strength & conditioning, as a coach.

i was a computer science major who was always into basketball/athletics. one day i decided to switch majors. eventually i got my bachelor's in exercise science. self study has gotten me to where i am today though. note-taking/research/experimenting is absolutely essential.

prior to getting my degree i did a volunteer internship at a performance facility. there i realized i wanted to eventually train college/pro/elite athletes. there i worked with middle school, high school, college, mlb/nfl, and an 2006 nfl combine class. i always got hyped when training, or assisting in training, of the elite athletes. i wanted to try all of my own progressions and ideas on these athletes, but of course that wasn't going to happen.

so i left there, did my internship, landed my current job as an s&c coach at "memorial sportscenter" in pembroke pines florida. proved myself by putting some great results on people who were preparing for tryouts and "combine-like" testing events. so now i work with elementary school level, middle school, high school, college, minor/major league, arena football, and various other non pro/pro athletes.

every monday/tuesday/thursday/friday, i absolutely CANNOT wait to go to work. it's too much fun. my first training session consists of minor/major league baseball guys, football players, etc. it's a big group. in a group, everyone works harder. the guys who don't mind getting filmed, love the damn camera. i take my mac, and video their pr's or things they want taped, and put it on my youtube. it's always interesting, because every athlete is different. different goals/imbalances/deficits/strengths etc. so it always keeps you on your toes - which eliminates the boredom factor.

when testing day comes, i get really hyped up. i get nervous, hyped, excited, etc. i feel like my rep (even though i don't really have one yet) is on the line. so in some weird way, i feel like i'm the one being tested. so every inch they add to vert/broad jump, or tenth/hundredth that drops off their sprinting, when they reach their body comp goals, when they get their goal numbers at a combine/testing event, it makes your day, week, year... etc

i don't know what kind of trainer/coach you want to be. all i know is that being a strength & conditioning coach doesn't feel like a job. it's too much fun.



I have experience in being both a trainer and a strength coach. In Australia the money sadly is not there for strength and conditioning. There aren't enough pro teams around, the development leagues want volunteer strength coaches and so on.

I spent 5 years as a trainer and I really hated it by the end. The form we had all clients fill out had boxes to tick in terms of what their goals were. Fitness, tone and weight loss were 99.99% of my clients. Some PT's would get off on that, I hated it because if I got them under a mildly heavy bar, the chances were I would not see them again because things got too hard.

I've now got a 9-5 office job and also coach for a local Aussie Rules football team. The pay is trivial but the experience is great. Taking guys from the off season to the finals is very rewarding and challenging. It's nice to be training people for performance over the typical housewife 'fitness, toning and weight loss'.

I'm totally into sports and I realise that is not where the money is in Australia, but that is where my passion lies so I'll do my day job for money and see where my volunteer work takes me.

I'm hoping for a win in the Green Card Lottery actually and try my hand in the US one day.

The bottom line is work out what you can get fired up about. If the hearts not in it, you won't be in either business for long.


Sounds awesome.