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November 4, 2022

How to Become an Online Fitness Coach

Angela Hylton
Chief of Staff

Virtual training and fitness coaching have taken the world by storm.

After several years of working from home and closed gyms – it’s no surprise that people are enjoying the flexibility of virtual fitness options. You can work out at home, or even on the go, without having to worry about making it to the gym on time or fitting a class into your schedule.  

You don't have to pay for a gym membership or expensive classes – making it a completely customized experience.

As the demand for online fitness coaching grows, more and more fitness lovers are using tools like Volley to facilitate their programs. If you’re looking to scale or launch your online fitness business, we’ve got you covered.

In this article, we’ll discuss everything about online fitness coaching and the steps you need to get started.

What is an online fitness coach?

An online fitness coach is a professional who provides guidance and support to clients who want to improve their physical health. They help their clients set realistic goals, design personalized workout plans, and provide ongoing motivation. Online fitness coaches also provide resources to help clients live an overall healthier lifestyle. This may include providing tips on nutrition, stress management, and sleep habits.

Online fitness coaches typically work with clients via video chat, text, or email on platforms like Volley. Many coaches work asynchronously to offer better flexibility for themselves and their clients.

How do online coaches make money?

There are a few different ways that online coaches can make money. How you choose to monetize your online fitness business depends on your own working style and preferences. 

Here are some common ways online fitness coaches make their money:

  • 1:1 Coaching: With one-on-one coaching, you work with clients directly and help them reach their goals. On Volley you can charge for a one time consultation or recurring monthly training. You’d deliver custom plans and meet regularly through apps like Volley to deliver feedback and discuss progress.
  • Group Coaching: Whether you’re offering a class like live yoga or cycling or providing workout plans. Building a space for a group is a great way to build community by working with multiple clients at once. 
  • Fitness Plans: Fitness plans are easily done asynchronously and allow you to provide pre-planned routines for clients to take away. You can meet with them regularly to discuss progress or provide pre-planned programming for clients to download.

It’s important to choose the style of working with clients that works best for you–since it’s something you’ll be doing every day!

9 steps for becoming an online fitness coach

If you’re passionate about fitness, becoming an online coach might be easier than you think. We’ve rounded up 9 steps that will help you get there!

1. Identify your target audience and area of expertise

While it sounds ideal, you can’t be a coach to everyone. And that’s okay!

As an online fitness coach, it's important to identify your niche. This will help you attract the right clients and build a successful business. There are many different niches you could choose from, such as running, cross training, Moms, or even home workouts. Identifying and focusing on your target audience will make it easier to attract clients and build a successful business.

2. Share your skills and experience

Clients want to make sure you have the right skills and knowledge to be an effective coach for them. So you want to share any experience that you have. Whether you’ve been a group fitness coach in the past, done one-on-one training, or even competed in a sport–make sure to highlight any relevant experience. While it's not required, having some sort of certification or degree in a related field can help you stand out from the competition. You can always work towards getting certifications in your specific area from fitness organizations.

3. Build your coaching structure

Fitness coaching is more than simply providing instruction to your clients. It’s important to consider the entire package that you’re offering. Depending on your niche, your structure might look very different. Some coaches may need daily workout and check-ins, while others might provide these more infrequently. Will you be offering additional services such as meal plans or mental coaching? Make sure to also consider things like goal setting and client assessment. This will help you continue to improve your coaching and help your clients achieve their fitness goals

4. Define personal brand

Your online fitness coaching venture is a business. But you’re the face of your business – meaning you need to build a personal brand. Your personal brand should tell potential clients who you are. What are you like? Are they likely to be a good fit for your coaching style? Your brand should appeal to the audience that you’re hoping to target.

Some things you’ll want to consider when creating your personal brand include:

  • Creating a logo
  • Writing a mission statement
  • Your unique value and offering (ie. what makes you stand out from similar fitness coaches)

5. Build your online fitness course on Volley 

Now that you’ve created the foundation for your online fitness you need to set up the course on the platform of your choice.

Volley's Grow platform is a great solution for coaching since you can easily build your space, create custom channels, set up one-on-one DMs and determine the flow for components of your program.

6. Determine your pricing strategy 

If you’ve never worked as an online fitness coach, your pricing structure can feel like a mystery. You don’t want to undercut yourself nor do you want to scare your audience away with a price that’s too high.

Some things you can do to narrow down a pricing structure include:

  • Competitive research: What are similar online coaches offering? What would alternatives cost a potential customer?
  • Experience: If you’re a coach with years of experience, your pricing might be higher than a new coach. Some areas of fitness may require years of training, which can impact your pricing.
  • Cost of doing business: How much are you paying for things like course materials, your time, marketing, and any other direct costs?

7. Start marketing to potential clients

As an online fitness coach, there are two parts to your job. Coaching current clients and finding new ones! You’ll need to focus on marketing–especially at the beginning. Start with digital marketing initiatives like building social media channels and potentially creating a website.

8. Launch course on Volley 

Once you’re ready to go live, launching on Volley is simple. Create your Grow and Consult with Me offers, and start onboarding new clients, you’ll be on your way to coaching in no time.

9. Collect feedback

Once you’ve launched your program, you should be particularly iterating to make your online fitness coaching business more successful.

You can get feedback on your programs in a few different ways:

  • Ask participants to DM you on Volley
  • Ask participants to share their own experiences
  • Create an anonymous survey and share it with clients through Volley

Become a fitness coach with Volley

Volley makes face-to-face connection more flexible! From delivering programming to connecting with clients, Volley makes it possible for you to deliver video messaging on your own time. Instead of spending all your time on zoom, Volley offers ultimate flexibility for you and your clients.

Ready to start your online fitness coaching business? Download Volley for free today.

Angela Hylton

Chief of Staff at Volley

About the Author

Angela is Chief of Staff and so many other things at Volley—an award-winning communication platform. Like a seasoned trapeze artist, she balances marketing, HR, sales, and operations without breaking a sweat. Her sage advice informs executives and eliminates bottlenecks. Coworkers count on her. Recruiters are looking for her. When she's not re-negotiating vendor contracts, you can find her at home with her husband, and two kids in Cleveland, Ohio.

Connect with Me

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