Meet Chris Person, a veteran NFPT-CPT of 15 years. Chris is evidence that a formal college degree is far from necessary to guarantee professional success.
After only three years of personal training, he was bold enough to open up his own fitness business and gym with an appropriately catchy name: Person All Fitness. Get it? “Personall” Fitness! When American Ninja Warrior became popular, one of his favorite things to do together with his family was to turn the gym into an obstacle course.
How long have you been certified with NFPT and what made you choose it?
I first was certified in 2007 with NFPT. I chose NFPT because I had been working out at LA Fitness for some time and I noticed at the trainers’ desk that they had a promotion going that guaranteed you a job training clients at LA Fitness if you got certified through NFPT. I chose the at-home study option because I really wanted to internalize all of the information studying methodically and really learn my craft as I have become an adult-onset fitness junkie for the past five years and wanted to do the best for me and for my potential clients.
Why did you decide to become a fitness professional?
My decision to become a personal trainer was twofold. One, I had become obsessed with fitness after a long period of self-destruction including smoking cigarettes drinking etc., and fitness had really helped me to become different both physically and emotionally. I began to feel less insecure and more and more I began to look at myself not only as a fit person but as an athlete. The other reason was that it was the one thing that I felt I would never lose passion for and felt that I could go anywhere with it, and I saw how it was being done in the gym I was at and saw a lot of room for improvement.
How you are currently utilizing your personal training certification?
What is the biggest challenge for you as a personal trainer?
My biggest challenge is probably finding clients, retaining them seems to be very easy, as most people that visit my gym are thoroughly impressed with the amenities and my style, and the results.
What is your biggest accomplishment in the fitness industry?
Longevity, many clients that have turned into friends, and being seen as “that trainer guy” is very rewarding for a guy who used to be very unhealthy.
What has been your most rewarding experience as a personal trainer?
My most rewarding is honestly getting to do what I love every day and getting paid for it and be able to support my family in a real way, not just financially, but also because I work from home I have the ability to be there for my son even when I’m working.
How has social media played a role in your fitness business?
I have posted on Facebook, And on next-door.com advertisements but I really get most of my clients through word-of-mouth. Social media really just highlights my personal fitness rather than my business.
Any advice for people thinking about a career in fitness?
An absolute must is to have a niche, something that sets you apart from other trainers. For instance, mine is that I have my own gym which makes my clients feel like they have their own gym. The other is that you must have good referral sources, like a doctor or a psychiatrist, and orthopedist, etc.