How To: Become A Personal Trainer

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Amina Daniels from last week’s interview is an exercise powerhouse and a never ending fountain of good advice. Because she owns her own boutique fitness studio, we decided to ask about breaking into the industry. Below she tells us the steps to become a personal trainer, and why it matters what your motivation is.

1. Start Online. You can sign up to start training from your couch, right now! The two main starting points are “ACE or NASM, that’s how you get certified”. You have to be at least 18 years old, and their programs last around 10-12 weeks. 

2. Attend Fitness Expos. After she became certified, Amina started attending different demos and expos to learn about new exercise methods. “That’s how I fell in love with TRX, a functional piece of equipment that helps you move better.” You can search for expos near you here and here.

3. Expand Your Offerings. “The more skills you have, the more desirable you are and the better you are. I’m always trying to get more personal trainers to diversify their offerings and get functional training, course educations, get kettle bell training. You’ll be a more well rounded individual and also have more avenues to make money."

4. Find Your Motivation. Amina’s biggest reason for running this studio is encouraging people to exercise to gain strength and flexibility rather than to be obsessed with their body for superficial reasons. She is “trying to change the narrative on fitness. You don’t have to be confined to a wheelchair if you decide that you are going to work on the body that you have for your whole life.” So in all of her classes, she is "trying to help people be better humans.”

Thank you so much, Amina! Detroit is lucky to have you encouraging so many people to use exercise as a tool to better themselves and their lives. Readers, after you’ve renewed your gym membership (and actually decided to go today!), come back next week to hear from a designer who works at one of the world’s most influential newspapers. (Photo provided by Amina Daniels)