Did you know that Corporate Fitness Programs are an important piece of effective Corporate Wellness Programs? The fitness program is one “leg” or branch of a comprehensive corporate wellness program that is a growing area and something to consider as a fit pro, if you’re trying to find your niche.
By and large, working in the corporate fitness space includes training employees working for a company with conventional fitness practices and programming. When I was starting out as a new trainer, that’s what I did. I was working at a fitness facility in the lower level of a major corporation in Phoenix, AZ. My clients at this facility were exclusively employees working at the company. While there are variations and outliers to this model, this one is one of the most prevalent ones.
The pro’s of this corporate fitness model are:
1) You have a “captive audience” (the employees of the company) for the lack of better words.
2) You can work with the company’s marketing and or public relations department to get the word out about your presence. Many companies have internal newsletters and can highlight the fitness facility and fit pro’s services to the employees. In pre-covid times, fit pro’s could also coordinate with Human Resources or the company’s Wellness Coordinators to do Biometric Screenings or Fitness Fun-Day type of events to build presence and rapport with the employees.
Now that many employees are working from home, some companies have opened the fitness centers in their building and are having employees sign up for access to use the centers so long as CDC Guidelines and local governmental regulations around safe practices for COVID-19 are being followed. There are many creative ways to get the word out to the employees you’re there to train them!
3) You can have an awesome synergistic relationship with the company and have a lot of fun doing PR/marketing and wellness events together, creating a win-win business partnership where you can provide coaching to employees to improve their fitness. It’s very rewarding, to say the least.
The con’s of this corporate fitness model are:
1) There are often non-compete clauses, especially if you are a full time Certified Personal Trainer at the company and employed by them.
2) You usually can’t go outside of the building or employee pool for clients. However, if the company you’re working for is sizeable enough, you may not need to.
3) There is some risk that your mission statement or style may conflict with that of the company’s. Sometimes this can be offset by doing the research upfront and going through a thorough negotiating and interviewing process. Sometimes, you can be on the same page as the company but due to reasons that are out of your control, the company may change directions or have a turnover and/or change in personnel. However, this can happen in almost any place of employment.
Other Corporate Fitness Models include:
1) As a fit pro, you are not full-time at the company but work from their fitness facility a few days per week (either part-time or as a contractor) to train the employees. The company has your bio, circulates it, and spreads the word about your services. In this way, you have your corporate fitness clients on certain days and can be at a different facility on other days.
*I was always told early on to major in minor details, especially when it comes to non-compete clauses and contracts. If you’re going to work out of multiple locations, take a thorough look at your contract for those clauses, and negotiate as needed. If needed and you have access and the resources to do so, show the contract to a legal advisor.
2) If you work for a gym or fitness facility, it might have a contract with a company (or several companies) and you could represent your employer and go into the company’s building on behalf of your employer to train.
3) If you have your own facility, you can negotiate a rate with companies in your community and invite them to send their employees to your facility.
4) If you’re a fit pro at a larger fitness facility, many times, they have existing agreements or a professional relationship with several companies in the area for the companies’ employees to come train at the facility. You can let your team and manager know you’re interested in working with clients coming from those companies.
As you can see, there are many ways to work in the capacity of Corporate Fitness Programs. The most conventional one is being a coach in a fitness facility located onsite for a company. But that is clearly not the only way it can be done. I’m sure if you got creative, there are more ways than those listed above. If you like working with the working adult population, checking out opportunities to be a fit pro within a Corporate Fitness Program may be for you!