Miami’s fitness scene is burgeoning, to say the least. Everyone who lives here loves to look good, and being fit has become more of a social trend than anything else. While I usually buck societal conventions- wellness, and physical fitness are definitely movements I can get behind, regardless of the motivation.
As the health and wellness industry continues to thrive, more and more people are deciding to join the ranks of personal trainers. While the market can seem saturated and competitive, I decided to sit down with a personal trainer, Angelica Casanas, who is making a name for herself in the local Miami scene, to find out how one could navigate such obstacles to get their own start. It was interesting to see how her own journey paralleled my own, as I work toward launching my own activewear brand.
- How long have you been working in the fitness industry and where do you currently train? I opened my studio 2 years ago in Hialeah Gardens and I coach a 10:30 AM cross-training class, as well as a strength training class Monday and Wednesdays at 8:30 PM and Saturdays at 9:30 AM called Get Fine(r) at Another Level Fit in West Miami.
- How did you get your start in the industry? I have always been into working out and training my friends, and after my daughter was old enough to be in school I found myself at a point where I was ready to take the next step. I called Pino, a long time friend, who owns Another Level Fit, and asked him if he was hiring. He said, no. So I said, OK, I want to shadow your coaches. I started shadowing the coaches, but in the meantime, I was also recording my workouts. I would post them on Instagram, and I guess the manager at Equinox must’ve seen it and asked me to come in for an interview. I went in, not knowing that Equinox has a University where they take the time to teach you everything about being a personal trainer, from coaching to selling. Once I started their program, it was a perfect fit because it forced me to be hands on. After about 8 months, as I was ready to move on Pino called me and asked me to take over one of his classes at Another Level Fit. Even before I started teaching his classes I had I started the Get Fine(r) class- and it took a lot of patience, dedication and consistency to build it. It’s not as easy as saying “Hey I’m going to start a class and everyone is going to come.”
- So what would you say is step 1 for anyone looking to break into the fitness industry? Decide that that’s what you want to do and that you are going to do whatever it takes to make it happen. Then just start reaching out to people and putting it out there. That’s the first thing I did; I hadn’t spoken to Pino since high school. I also started putting the videos out there and that’s what got me noticed at Equinox.
- How important is social media in building your clientele as a trainer? Well honestly, I think it’s 50/50. There are a lot of trainers I know without social media accounts, that are very successful and have a lot of word of mouth clientele. For me, I use social media to bring awareness to my brand because I don’t have a gym where people can just walk in and come to me. My gold mind is social media, as well as word of mouth. While having a lot of followers isn’t necessary, a social media presence is nice to have because right now that’s the first thing people ask for. They want to see your Instagram page so they can get to know you. When people hit me up for training they can check out my Instagram page to see if they like my training style or not. It’s a nice opportunity to give clients a preview of what you can do for them.
- I’ve noticed there’s a big community of Miami Fitness Trainers- is it necessary to be part of that community? There’s definitely a community, everyone knows everyone! It’s nice to have a group of people who can support you and it’s a great opportunity to learn from each other- I love learning. I started attending workshops – where I was able to learn so much and meet other trainers in the community.
- What’s the hardest part about being a trainer? Being consistent and not losing motivation. There will be times where you might not have as many clients as you would like and you feel stressed- but you can’t be discouraged you just have to keep moving forward.
- When you have a bad day, what keeps you going? Something as simple as a client thanking me or telling me that I’m really good at this gives me a push and gets me hyped up to keep going.