If it’s time to get your career into shape, a great personal trainer CV is exactly what you need. Creating one doesn’t have to feel like a tough exercise. We’ve got all the tools you need to flex your skills, experiences, and even personality traits.
Personal trainers can work in a variety of environments. Whether you’re employed by a gym or teach private classes, we’ll help you create a CV that meets your specific needs. With dozens of occupation-specific CV examples and guides, Resume.io is an expert resource for professionals in all fields and stages of their careers.
This CV guide, along with the corresponding CV example will cover the following topics:
- What does a personal trainer do?
- How to write a personal trainer CV (tips and tricks)
- The best format for a personal trainer CV
- Advice on each section of your CV (summary, work history, education, skills)
- Professional CV layout and design hints.
What does a personal trainer do?
Personal trainers are fitness experts who help people exercise and meet their fitness goals. Also known as PTs, these fitness gurus work with individuals or small groups to evaluate their clients’ needs and propose tailored exercise regimes to help achieve the clients’ goals.
Personal trainers also demonstrate various motions and techniques and supervise their clients as they exercise. They may also make recommendations on diet or other routines for the client to follow in their personal time.
Personal trainers are often employed by gyms and health clubs, however, they may also be self-employed and rent space in a gym or another location to give classes to their own clients. For celebrity and wealthy clients, personal trainers may work within private homes. They may also be employed by companies to teach classes during the work day or during evening hours.
Job market and outlook
As more gyms open across the UK, more personal trainers will be required to fill new positions. One study from HFE found 12,000 personal trainer jobs currently being advertised, with about 2,000 of them located in London.
How to write a personal trainer CV
The very first step in writing your personal trainer CV is understanding what sections to include. Your CV should contain the following elements:
- The CV header
- The CV summary (aka profile or personal statement)
- The employment history section
- The CV skills section
- The education section
Convincing a client to take a class with you is as much about your knowledge of fitness as it is your personal style and approach to training. The same goes for your CV. The goal is to convey your expertise and experience while allowing the hiring manager or another reader to imagine you as their personal trainer.
Many personal trainers have similar skill sets so before writing your CV, think about what makes you stand out. Do you specialise in a particular sport or area of fitness? Are you all about having fun? More results driven? Do you take a holistic approach to physical fitness? Whatever makes you tick, make sure it’s featured prominently on your CV.
Choosing the best CV format for a personal trainer
Since personal trainers don’t always climb a traditional career ladder, they have a bit of flexibility when it comes to choosing the best CV format. Applicants who have worked in many staff jobs in gyms, for example, will likely benefit from the reverse chronological format. This “standard” structure focuses on the employment history section where you can list previous positions starting from the most recent and moving backwards through the past ten years of experience.
If you’re self-employed or have a mix of employment types, the functional or hybrid models may work better for you. These formats focus on the skills you can perform and minimise the employment history section so that you can adapt it to your personal needs.
The header of your CV is the section right at the top of the page which contains your name and contact information. A great header is extra important for a personal trainer as it helps convey your “personal brand” and make you stand out among candidates with similar skill sets. A splash of colour or other design elements can go a long way here. Personal trainers may also want to include a professional headshot in the header.
CV summary example
The CV summary is 3-5 sentences that explain your motivation, key experiences, and areas of expertise. Think of it like that introductory course that leads a client to sign up with you. This is also the place to add a touch of personality to your CV to draw the reader in and make a personal connection. Include numbers and action verbs to help you focus on your concrete accomplishments and prove your effectiveness as a personal trainer.
You may want to adapt your summary for the work environment you are applying to. Consider the clientele of your potential employer and craft a summary that highlights your matching skills and experience. The day of a personal trainer at an exclusive country club will naturally look different from the coach of a crossfit gym. Make sure your CV is tailored to match. Check out our adaptable CV example below.
Enthusiastic and dynamic certified Personal Trainer with 8+ years experience helping clients to achieve their fitness goals through effective training sessions. Adept in designing programs that foster the maximisation of workout efficiency and an overall sense of well-being.
Employment history sample
The employment history section serves to capture your experience and help a hiring manager assess whether you can meet the needs of their gym or fitness program. The goal is to keep this section concise and touch on all the key points without repeating the same duties or skills over and over.
First, create subheadings with the job title, the name of the employer, the dates worked, and location. Then create 4-5 bullet points that convey your top responsibilities, achievements and skills. Consider the potential employer’s needs as you write this section and adapt your bullet points to the type of work or clientele you may encounter in the new position. Get more insight from our employment history CV sample below.
Personal Trainer, Club 18, York
March 2017 - June 2022
- Developed safe and professional training programs for individual clients.
- Conducted fitness consultations for new clients, including an overview of medical history, lifestyle choices and desired goals.
- Continually worked to increase Club 18's class attendance and support the retention of clientele.
- Managed an average of 150+ personal clients per year in addition to teaching various club classes.
- Continually monitored and assisted members to ensure proper form was used during exercises.
- Worked in collaboration with colleagues to ensure a tidy environment.
Group Fitness Personal Trainer, York Fitness Studio, York
August 2015 - March 2017
- Worked to coach and motivate studio members while leading them through effective workouts.
- Helped YSF to see a 40% increase in studio membership sales following my first year of employment.
- Taught upwards of 25 classes per week including but not limited to rowing, circuit training, Pilates, HIIT, and Zumba.
- Corrected any incorrect exercise movements to prevent injury.
- Set up and broke down studio equipment before and after classes as needed.
- Routinely communicated with the YFS Manager regarding member feedback, equipment status, and scheduling.
CV skills example
The CV skills section may seem obvious to write, but there’s a bit of strategy behind this section. Since it usually takes a bullet point format, it’s best suited for abilities that can be summed up in a word or two. Make sure to take a final look at the job description for the position you’re applying for. Think of the skills section as a place to add those can’t-miss qualities that will impress both the hiring manager and the ATS which often focuses on this section in its search for keywords. Check out our CV sample below.
- Exercise Science
- Diet and Nutrition
- Planning and Instruction
- Punctuality and Reliability
- Health Promotion
- First Aid Administration
Hard vs. soft skills
As a personal trainer, you rely on your knowledge of health and fitness to reach clients’ goals. However, your style and attitude are equally important to your job. Hard skills are technical abilities that are directly related to physical fitness, while soft skills are those invaluable personality traits. Both have a place in your CV skills section.
Personal trainer CV education example
The education section of your personal trainer CV is not to be overlooked. While personal trainers may come from a variety of educational backgrounds, they will still need to have some training on health, fitness, and coaching. Make sure to add any diplomas, degrees, or certificates here, along with any organisations you’re a member of, any awards you’ve won, or any training completed. Find an adaptable example for the education section below.
Associate of Science in Biology, University of York, York
September 2012 - May 2014
CV layout and design
The layout and design of your CV communicates a great deal about your professionalism and experience — all before the hiring manager even reads a word on the page! As a personal trainer, there’s no need to go overboard with design elements, but a splash of colour and a professional headshot can help make your CV welcoming and attractive. You are your own brand, so pay attention to your header and make sure it sends the right message.
The balance of white space to text is another important factor when it comes to keeping the page easy to read. Stick with the same font style throughout your CV and use sizes between 10-12 point. A professionally-designed CV template can make this easy to accomplish.
Key takeaways for a personal trainer CV
- Personal trainers are in high demand but will need to adapt their CVs to the employment type and work environment they’re interested in.
- Use the summary to create a friendly and personal introduction that makes you stand out in the hiring manager’s mind.
- Don’t forget to include your key qualifications in the education section.
- Check out our adaptable personal trainer CV to get started on creating a great page layout.