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Initial findings from Working in Fitness 2006 survey

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Initial findings from the Register of Exercise Professionals’ (REPs) 2006 Working in Fitness Survey suggest that, on average, people working in the industry are £1,500 a year better off than in 2005.

The median salary is now £17,200 and it would seem that employees working in most jobs are earning more than in the previous two years except for directors, general managers, health improvement facilitators and group exercise teachers who have seen their average earnings drop to £12,295 from £12,721 in 2004.

For the first time yoga and pilates teachers have been included as a separate category and report an average salary of £14,273. This compares to personal trainers who make £16,649 (up more than £2,500 in two years) and studio or fitness managers who earn an average of £17,332 (an increase of just under £1,000 on last year).

More than 1,200 REPs’ members took part in the 2006 Working in Fitness survey – giving the most accurate picture to date of the views and opinions of the fitness industry as seen through the eyes of those working in it - instructors, trainers and teachers.

Detailed analysis by the SkillsActive Research Unit is already throwing up interesting developments and comparisons compared with previous survey findings. The full results of this research will be released at the REPs’ conventions in November and published in issue 7 of the REPs Journal.

Other initial findings show that of those taking part, just over half of instructors are in full-time employment, with yoga, pilates and exercise to music teachers and personal trainers dominating those who are self-employed. From the respondents, there is now a ratio of 55:45 women to men working across the industry. Some occupations have a higher percentage of women – 83 per cent of group exercise teachers and 90 per cent of yoga and pilates teachers, for example, but men outnumber women in more senior roles.

Members were also asked how satisfied they were with a list of various factors on a scale of one to five, with one being very dissatisfied and five very satisfied. Generally the replies suggest respondents are “happy” with their degree of responsibility, their employers, hours of work, job security and training. However, remuneration packages on offer and career development prospects were given the lowest satisfaction scores – especially among yoga and pilates teachers.

However, members were generally positive about remaining in the fitness industry, although the key factor that would persuade people to leave is low pay. Other major factors include better career prospects elsewhere, unsociable hours and poor training and development.

The 2006 Working in Fitness survey was conducted by the Register of Exercise Professionals, SkillsActive – the sector skills council for active leisure and learning – and the fitness business intelligence specialists Leisure-net Solutions

Yoga Photograph: istock

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Initial findings from the Register of Exercise Professionals’ (REPs) 2006 Working in Fitness Survey suggest that, on average, people working in the industry are £1,500 a year better off than in 2005.
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