Want To Carve Your Fitness Niche? Tips From This Expert Will Help
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According to reports from IBISWorld, the personal training market is worth $9 billion in the US. The industry is growing at 2.8 per cent annually, and it doesn't show any signs of slowing down. There are nearly 577,041 registered personal training businesses in the US. This raises the question of whether all fitness trainers are aware of the niche they want to target. But what is a fitness niche anyway? To know the answer, let's take a look at an example first.
Suppose your father had bought you a stereo speaker on your eighteenth birthday. It lasted for seven long years, but now it doesn't work anymore and is beyond repair. You want a new stereo, and so you visit the nearest electronic store. And bam! You see a hundred different stereos with different features. The salesman asks the type of music you usually listen to. You say rock. He recommends a stereo that offers extra bass. You bring home the stereo and listen to your favorite songs.
What does that tell you? The salesman pointed you to a specific niche of stereos because that's what you wanted. According to Dor Eckstein, an Israeli fitness guru, most training programs are like those stereos. While most of them would work for most of your clients, you need to pick one that suits a specific client according to his body structure.
Sure, most workout programs look the same, but a fitness instructor knows the differences in the exercises he suggests. And that's where a fitness niche proves to be a game-changer.
What does a fitness niche mean?
Think of a fitness niche as something you are passionate about. You want to learn everything about it and be better at it than the others. You spend time learning and experimenting, and soon, you become so good that people consider you an expert. A fitness niche is precisely that. For example, if you love yoga, you're good at it, and people know you for your yoga lessons, it means yoga is your fitness niche.
Eckstein, for example, belongs to the fitness and nutrition niche. He teaches you how to exercise to maintain your fitness and provides unique diet charts according to your physique. Everyone has a fitness goal in mind before they hire a fitness instructor. Some want to lose weight; others want to build muscle mass, while some just want to maintain their shape.
Dealing with different clients every day isn't anything new to Eckstein. This is where his experience in his niche becomes so crucial. He assesses each client according to their fitness goals, past experiences, what they like to eat, their lifestyle, and workout habits. He also examines his clients' body structure, fat percentage, and metabolic rate before suggesting anything.
Eckstein believes that if you stick to your niche, you can offer specific solutions to your clients instead of providing generalized answers, pretty much like the stereo salesman. He suggested a stereo with extra bass to enjoy rock music.
Finding your fitness niche
Finding your fitness niche isn't like buying any soap that you lay your hands on. It requires you to reflect on who you are and the people you would want to work with. Here are a few steps that Eckstein suggests so that you can find your fitness niche:
Work with a diverse clientele: According to Eckstein, the best way to train various people is to start working at a big gym. Remember, finding your niche wouldn't happen in a snap of a finger. You need to grind your time to find out the type of clients you enjoy working with. That's the only way to find out what you are good at.
Interact with people: Talking with people is another easy way to find your niche. For example, Eckstein interacts with his clients at his clinic in Tel Aviv and over video calls. He believes that real conversations create real connections, and that helps in figuring out whether your client falls under your niche or not.
Besides face-to-face consultations and video calls, you should also join online communities to see how other trainers interact with their clients. This can help you learn from them and incorporate their methods into your practice.
Look for people you want to work with: Don't jump to the conclusion that you are the best fitness trainer out there. No matter how good you are, you might not have the knowledge and experience to teach a different aspect of fitness. Ask yourself what type of client you want to work with. What area of the fitness industry are you passionate about?
For Eckstein, it's nutrition and fitness. For someone else, it can be a fitness gadget. The more you narrow down what you like and dislike, the easier it becomes to identify your niche.
Irrespective of the niche, you must remember that keeping yourself updated is the only way forward. The fitness industry never stops evolving, so you must always stay on your toes to ensure that you provide the best service to your clients. It's easy to see the success that Dor has achieved over the years, but a lot harder to implement what he has done to reach his current position. That's where your patience, resilience, and determination to become a successful fitness trainer for a specific niche come in.