MB Madaera
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Built 11.7 lbs muscle


Chris Madaera
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Keelan Parham
Lost 30 lbs fat
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Bob Marchesello
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Jeff Turner
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Jeanenne Darden
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Determine the Length of Your Workouts

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"Doing more exercise with less intensity,"
Arthur Jones believes, "has all but
destroyed the actual great value
of weight training. Something
must be done . . . and quickly."
The New Bodybuilding for
Old-School Results supplies
MUCH of that "something."

 

This is one of 93 photos of Andy McCutcheon that are used in The New High-Intensity Training to illustrate the recommended exercises.

To find out more about McCutcheon and his training, click here.

 

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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

Ok, so I make a good living as a trainer. But am looking to take my business to the next level.

Along those lines, I am flirting with the idea of hiring other trainers. I currently am the ONLY trainer, and it is causing me a bit of burn-out. I can't even take a family vacation without losing several grand in training fees, cause if I'm not training, I'm not earning.

But employees may be even MORE hassle and make me MORE burned out.

I really have ZERO desire to deal with a bunch of governmental paperwork required when hiring and maintaining employees. In fact, I'm NOT going to do that.

So I'm wondering if any of you know...can you hire trainers as "independent contractors" and simply pay them cash, then require them to pay their own taxes and get their own health insurance?
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Brian Johnston

Ontario, CAN

Be like a hairdresser... rent out a chair (or in this instance... your equipment). They are responsible for their own clientele and government forms, etc.
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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

And hey...let's maybe discuss other topics related to the business of personal training as well? I think those of us who train and/or have our own studios can learn from each other's business trials, tribulations and successes.

Some of you, like Fred Hahn, are fairly "big operators" for instance from a business perspective.

Whereas, others like myself" just have small PT studios with low overhead and minimal hassle.

I think those considering starting inn this business can learn from BOTH those with bigger PT businesses/franchises, as well as from those who do this business on a smaller scale.
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perrymk

coach-jeff wrote:
I can't even take a family vacation


My uncle was a farmer. In at least one respect there is a similarity to PT in that he had to be there all the time. As I recall, he was able to take occasional vacations by working with a neighbor farmer. That meant doing double chores for a couple of weeks (his and the neighbors) and in return the neighbor would do his chores so he could go out of town.

Perhaps a similar arrangement could work for you on occasion.
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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

Brian Johnston wrote:
Be like a hairdresser... rent out a chair (or in this instance... your equipment). They are responsible for their own clientele and government forms, etc.


Yeah, that's what I'm thinking. Just not sure if the IRS would take a good view of that here in US.

So not to get off on a total tangent...but as a Canadian, what does the average Canadian think of their single payer healthcare system? And do employers have to pay more into that system for each employee?
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DukeMatisse

coach-jeff wrote:
Brian Johnston wrote:
Be like a hairdresser... rent out a chair (or in this instance... your equipment). They are responsible for their own clientele and government forms, etc.

Yeah, that's what I'm thinking. Just not sure if the IRS would take a good view of that here in US.

So not to get off on a total tangent...but as a Canadian, what does the average Canadian think of their single payer healthcare system? And do employers have to pay more into that system for each employee?



Here in the US you can do exactly what Brian said; rent out your space for an hourly rate and have the trainer sign a release of liability for use of the space as well as a contract stating that his/her clients will also sign a release of liability approved by you.

You can increase the hourly rate for use of your facility if said trainer is training a client you provided them.

So you have two hourly rates; one for those who have their own clients and one for those who want to train leads you provide; either way they are the ones paying you a flat rate per hour and it is on them to charge the client.

Once money leaves your pocket to pay a trainer you have to deal with the IRS and labor board which may or may not be a hassle; filing a 1099 for an independent contractor is not really a big deal...

Here in San Francisco we charge between $60-$75 for a 30 minute HIT session. So you're figuring roughly $125 per hour generated per trainer with a maximum of two trainers working per hour. Paying a good trainer half of that to train a couple clients we already have at our facility would be fair, and our hourly income is then higher than if we charged $25-$40 per hour for use of the facility, but there is increased paperwork and liability once they are technically working for us.

How many hours per week are you working now? Is there space at your gym for other trainers to work at those same hours with you? How many total trainer can be working comfortably at the same time?
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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

DukeMatisse wrote:
coach-jeff wrote:
Brian Johnston wrote:
Be like a hairdresser... rent out a chair (or in this instance... your equipment). They are responsible for their own clientele and government forms, etc.

Yeah, that's what I'm thinking. Just not sure if the IRS would take a good view of that here in US.

So not to get off on a total tangent...but as a Canadian, what does the average Canadian think of their single payer healthcare system? And do employers have to pay more into that system for each employee?



Here in the US you can do exactly what Brian said; rent out your space for an hourly rate and have the trainer sign a release of liability for use of the space as well as a contract stating that his/her clients will also sign a release of liability approved by you.

You can increase the hourly rate for use of your facility if said trainer is training a client you provided them.

So you have two hourly rates; one for those who have their own clients and one for those who want to train leads you provide; either way they are the ones paying you a flat rate per hour and it is on them to charge the client.

Once money leaves your pocket to pay a trainer you have to deal with the IRS and labor board which may or may not be a hassle; filing a 1099 for an independent contractor is not really a big deal...

Here in San Francisco we charge between $60-$75 for a 30 minute HIT session. So you're figuring roughly $125 per hour generated per trainer with a maximum of two trainers working per hour. Paying a good trainer half of that to train a couple clients we already have at our facility would be fair, and our hourly income is then higher than if we charged $25-$40 per hour for use of the facility, but there is increased paperwork and liability once they are technically working for us.

How many hours per week are you working now? Is there space at your gym for other trainers to work at those same hours with you? How many total trainer can be working comfortably at the same time?


Good insights. I'm not really set up yet to take on trainers, as my studio is a very small one located behind my house. I have a very low overhead business model, which means almost all my training income is profit.

But I am thinking of either opening up a bigger studio at some point, or simply letting another trainer or two take training times I don't want to take. I work 6 days a week, and split-shifts every day, and it gets a bit old at times. Though I am very grateful to all my clients and consider most of them friends.

But I'd like to have a couple evenings off a week, and my weekends off as well.

Another thing is that I'm very anal retentive about how clients are trained. Even if a trainer brought in their own clients, I would NEVER allow balance boards, plyometrics or other goofy crap in my studio. So I'd have to have things more "systematized" as well, to ensure a consistent training experience from client to client.

Heck, I even sometimes consider getting out of training entirely and focusing on helping people with weight loss and diet, as fat loss is THE main reason MOST people come to me. As if exercise is going to allow them to eat the way they want and lose weight. NOT!

I think I need to start me one of them pyramid scheme companies to achieve freedom in my life. Yeah, that's the ticket. Or maybe not.
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WesH

coach-jeff wrote:
Heck, I even sometimes consider getting out of training entirely and focusing on helping people with weight loss and diet, as fat loss is THE main reason MOST people come to me. As if exercise is going to allow them to eat the way they want and lose weight. NOT!

I think I need to start me one of them pyramid scheme companies to achieve freedom in my life. Yeah, that's the ticket. Or maybe not.


Yeah, A Pyramid is the way to go for the really big bucks. Even the great P90X is a pyramid marketing scheme to sell bad supplements. Soy anyone?

You're correct that most people who go to a trainer think it's going to let them eat crap and look like a "fitness model." At least the women. My male clients are all after muscle.

Vacation time is simply a cost of doing business and having a life. Take off the 13th week of every quarter and tell your clients its necessary for recovery to take such periodic breaks.
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SpencerG

MOVING this discussion from a different forum to here...

SpencerG wrote:

Did you ever find someone to spell you so that you can take time off/vacations/etc.?


coach-jeff wrote:
@ SpencerG - Good thoughts there. Vacation? What's that? (<: Only get one week a year. And it's not paid, as I have to close my little studio for that week.

I still have not 100% made up my mind if I want to get a bigger space and hire trainers.

Right now, I have zero overhead because I train all clients from home. So the $70 to $90 per hour I earn is almost all pure profit.

But of course the drawback is that I can not grow my business any bigger this way either. Unless I diversify into other income streams like books (I'm writing a diet book), or whatever.

My temperament is the sort that would prefer not to deal with employees. And I would suck at firing people. Too "nice" to be a tough boss I think.

But who knows...I may still go that direction eventually. Would be nice to just work on being a "rainmaker" for my studio, rather than training split shifts every day except Sunday.


If you are still in Shreveport then let me make a suggestion to you. Since Barksdale Air Force Base is there, hire military wives as part-time "Exercise Guides" for your gym. Typically they are smart, hard-working, disciplined, and looking for work. That last point is important. Since they move around a lot they usually are looking for something in their field that they can put on their resume for when they get to a bigger city. Part-time work fits their lifestyle and goals perfectly.

There are two other advantages... they aren't looking for benefit packages and they won't be in town long enough to become a competitor. Don't think that you are taking advantage of them by not offering benefits, because their medical coverage is better than yours I can assure you.

The reason that I have stated that you should call them "Exercise Guides" is to distinguish their roles from yours for your customers. If you are a Physical Trainer and they are also Physical Trainers then why should your clients listen to you over them? It is your gym... your protocols... that is why!

If you are going to an all machine environment then you don't need a man spotting your clients. Air Force wives are your best bet for spelling yourself in your business IMHO.

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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

SpencerG wrote:
MOVING this discussion from a different forum to here...

SpencerG wrote:

Did you ever find someone to spell you so that you can take time off/vacations/etc.?


coach-jeff wrote:
@ SpencerG - Good thoughts there. Vacation? What's that? (<: Only get one week a year. And it's not paid, as I have to close my little studio for that week.

I still have not 100% made up my mind if I want to get a bigger space and hire trainers.

Right now, I have zero overhead because I train all clients from home. So the $70 to $90 per hour I earn is almost all pure profit.

But of course the drawback is that I can not grow my business any bigger this way either. Unless I diversify into other income streams like books (I'm writing a diet book), or whatever.

My temperament is the sort that would prefer not to deal with employees. And I would suck at firing people. Too "nice" to be a tough boss I think.

But who knows...I may still go that direction eventually. Would be nice to just work on being a "rainmaker" for my studio, rather than training split shifts every day except Sunday.

If you are still in Shreveport then let me make a suggestion to you. Since Barksdale Air Force Base is there, hire military wives as part-time "Exercise Guides" for your gym. Typically they are smart, hard-working, disciplined, and looking for work. That last point is important. Since they move around a lot they usually are looking for something in their field that they can put on their resume for when they get to a bigger city. Part-time work fits their lifestyle and goals perfectly.

There are two other advantages... they aren't looking for benefit packages and they won't be in town long enough to become a competitor. Don't think that you are taking advantage of them by not offering benefits, because their medical coverage is better than yours I can assure you.

The reason that I have stated that you should call them "Exercise Guides" is to distinguish their roles from yours for your customers. If you are a Physical Trainer and they are also Physical Trainers then why should your clients listen to you over them? It is your gym... your protocols... that is why!

If you are going to an all machine environment then you don't need a man spotting your clients. Air Force wives are your best bet for spelling yourself in your business IMHO.



Interesting thought. Could always advertise for such in the local Air Force base newspaper.
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SpencerG

coach-jeff wrote:


Interesting thought. Could always advertise for such in the local Air Force base newspaper.


Actually, most bases have a base hiring office. Wives and children will file their resumes there for companies to look at or companies can file their job postings there. I have used this method from time to time in my business. Most of my jobs are simple and short-term so the base Hiring Office suits my needs.

You will be looking for a long-term employee with specialized skills so you may want to advertise in the paper for those who don't go to the Hiring Office. Of course, you could also simply post flyers on the bulletin boards of base gyms...
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admnautilus

Washington, USA

hey Coach Jeff. I have a number of studios and understand where you are coming from. If you would like to discuss the studio pt business, I would gladly give you any help that I can. If so PM me. Jeff
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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

admnautilus wrote:
hey Coach Jeff. I have a number of studios and understand where you are coming from. If you would like to discuss the studio pt business, I would gladly give you any help that I can. If so PM me. Jeff


Thanks for the offer, and if I make a firm decision to expand, rather than stay a simple one man operation i will take you up on your generous offer.

But just real quick...what was the main impetus in propelling you to open multiple units and get into the whole hiring employees thing? As opposed to a smaller one man operation? Simple business decision?
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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

WesH wrote:
Yeah, A Pyramid is the way to go for the really big bucks. Even the great P90X is a pyramid marketing scheme to sell bad supplements. Soy anyone?

You're correct that most people who go to a trainer think it's going to let them eat crap and look like a "fitness model." At least the women. My male clients are all after muscle.

Vacation time is simply a cost of doing business and having a life. Take off the 13th week of every quarter and tell your clients its necessary for recovery to take such periodic breaks.


Yes P90X...with their ballistic exercise videos...did indeed go MLM. Too bad. I view mlm companies as a cancerous blight upon humanity.

The vacation thing has been more about money. I can't very well charge people for sessions I didn't provide. So to take a week off means I lose out on a lot of training fees.

Of course I could (and very-well may) hire someone to train clients, so that my personal presence is not always required. But I need to think long and hard about that, as my temperament is perhaps ill-suited to being an employer, I'm afraid. Not to mention the fact that I am VERY OCD about how my clients are trained.

Nonetheless, we're starting to get to a point in our personal finances, whereby taking perhaps two vacations per year will be doable. looking forward to it. And I do close up for all major holidays of course.

And as a Dad, I kind of hope one or both of my kids might take a shine to the business. Though I would never try to pressure them to.
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admnautilus

Washington, USA

Hey Coach Jeff,
We decided to do multiple clubs do to our first one getting pretty full. Our first studio has been open for close to 15 years now and the second one in town is on its 7th year. I was told by a good business owner, that had multiple lumber yards, that when you start to see yourself at 80% of capacity it is time to start looking to expand.

We have 5 studios in different areas around country and one in England. If you find yourself wanting to discuss more please pm me. I do not post here much anymore do to all the fighting and know it alls. You can check us out at abstractbodyworks.com Jeff
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coach-jeff

Louisiana, USA

admnautilus wrote:
Hey Coach Jeff,
We decided to do multiple clubs do to our first one getting pretty full. Our first studio has been open for close to 15 years now and the second one in town is on its 7th year. I was told by a good business owner, that had multiple lumber yards, that when you start to see yourself at 80% of capacity it is time to start looking to expand.

We have 5 studios in different areas around country and one in England. If you find yourself wanting to discuss more please pm me. I do not post here much anymore do to all the fighting and know it alls. You can check us out at abstractbodyworks.com Jeff



Looks like a Pacific NW operation that's really expanding. Good use of video on the site. And I like that you show older people in the video, so that demographic can see that approach is a safe and sustainable way for them to exercise. Looks like you guys are using about a 5/5 cadence on reps. I plan to visit that part of country in not too distant future, as the Willamette Valley is on my short list of potential places to move to eventually. Will have to check out one of your studios when I get up that way.

Do you train clients anymore yourself? Or is your job at this stage to be a rainmaker for the business?


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admnautilus

Washington, USA

I train clients most days. Wear many hats. Hard to let others take the reins from me. I also know clients like to deal with the owner at times too. Need to make a presence known so they don't feel like they are being shuffled off to an employee.

I still do most of new clients for first couple of workouts. If I could make a suggestion to those who are interested, try buying a fantastic book by Jerry Vass. Soft Selling in a Hard world. This little training manual will make you a ton of money and also make you bullet proof in the sales process. Jeff
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