In this article, you’ll get a great insight into how much money you can make as a Nutrition Coach.
You’ll also find out the following:
- Certifications you need to possess
- Duties and responsibilities of a personal trainer
- How much do nutrition coaches make?
My 10+ years of experience in this business will serve as a pointer.
Let’s get started!
Many factors can affect how much money you make as a nutrition coach.
Learn how to maximize your nutrition coaching income with these proven strategies.
Let’s face it – the fitness industry is one of the most enjoyable sectors in which to work.
Every day, we help people improve their fitness and health and even their quality of life.
We also get to hang out with minding people at the gym – how cool is that?!
It’s personally and professionally rewarding.
But what about money?
The fitness industry is NOT the most well-paid, but you can make an excellent living with effort and dedication.
You might even land some high-profile clients and enter the rarefied air of celebrity fitness training.
Hollywood, here we come!
But, before you pack your bags and head off to L.A., there are some more practical ways to maximize your training income, most of which don’t involve relocation to the West Coast.
So, how much money can you make as a nutrition coach? Let’s find out!
As a personal trainer, you can increase your income by:
- Working for yourself rather than a gym
- Setting up your gym or studio
- Becoming a marketing expert
- Selling good quality products
- Expanding your skillset
The last item on this list is one of the best ways to increase income.
For a lot of PTs, this means becoming a nutrition coach.
Nutrition coaching, or lifestyle, wellness, or health coaching, is a bolt-on qualification you can add to your personal training certification.
Nutrition coaching courses are usually between 8-12 weeks long and cost between $600-$1000.
There are many nutrition coaching courses, including online and traditional learning pathways.
My top six nutrition coach course recommendations are:
- NASM Certified Nutrition Coach
- ISSA Sports Nutrition Certificate
- ACE Fitness Nutrition Specialist
- AFPA Nutrition and Wellness Consultant Certification
- Precision Nutrition Certification
- NESTA Fitness Nutrition Coach
These courses provide full instruction, learning materials, support, and end-of-course exam and/or assessment.
Each is structured slightly differently, and the delivery and learning methods vary from course to course.
Irrespective of which course you choose, by the end of it, you’ll be able to offer in-depth advice and support so that your clients can reach their health, fitness, and weight loss goals more easily.
After all, you are what you eat.
The duties and responsibilities of a nutrition coach include the following:
- Gathering information about your client’s current diet
- Analyzing that information
- Making recommendations
- Setting goals
- Providing ongoing support to help your client reach their goals
- Teaching your clients to become self-sufficient and able to continue eating healthily on their own
So, how much can you earn as a nutrition coach?
And how can you maximize your income?
I’ve got some ideas and will share them with you today.
How much do nutrition coaches make?
In this section, I’ll unveil the average amount of money that nutrition coaches make annually, according to Paysa.com.
Before revealing the best strategies for increasing your nutrition coaching income, let’s look at average salaries.
This will give you an idea of how much you should be able to make as a nutrition coach.
According to Paysa.com, and based on 2,000 profiles, a nutrition coach earns an average of $47,074, ranging from $26,233 at the 25th percentile to $58,934 at the 75th percentile.
Top earners (the top 10%) earn more than $84,830.
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Using Paysa.com again, and based on 9,000 profiles, a wellness coach earns an average of $56,157.
This ranges from $45,541 at the 25th percentile to $64,707 at the 75th percentile.
The top earners earn more than $75,788.
Finally, I looked at health coach salaries, the third name for nutrition coaching.
Based on 6,000 profiles, a health coach earns an average of $49,631, ranging from $42,557 at the 25th percentile to $55,639 at the 75th percentile
The top earners (the top 10%) earn more than $62,772.
From these three different job titles, the average salaries are:
- 25th percentile – $37,777
- 50th percentile – $50,954
- 75th percentile – $59,760
- Top earners (10%) – $74,463
However you slice it, and whatever you call yourself, it’s clear that nutrition coaching can be financially rewarding.
And, even better news, the outlook for nutrition coaching looks rosy.
It’s a growth market and is expected to expand for many years.
According to surveys, 60% of Americans want health and nutrition coaching, but 80% have never been offered it.
It’s clear from these numbers that making a move into nutrition coaching makes good financial sense.
How to maximize your nutrition coaching income
While even the lowest salary listed above is nothing to sniff at, especially if it’s on top of your regular personal training income, most of us want to do more than scrape by.
Instead, we want to maximize our salaries.
After all, while working as a PT or nutrition coach is enjoyable, enjoyment doesn’t pay the bills!
Whether you have completed your nutrition coaching studies, or are about to start, here are some strategies designed to maximize your income.
1. Set a sensible hourly rate
What you charge per hour will directly affect your earning potential, but that doesn’t mean you should crank your prices to the max.
If you charge too much per hour, you might have very few clients, and your total income will be lower.
But, if you charge a low hourly rate, you could have lots of work and still come out behind.
The trick is to charge as much as you can while remaining busy.
That way, you’ll earn more money from less work.
The average rate for nutrition coaching is $65.00, and that’s a good place to start.
If you are a new box, newly qualified nutrition coach, you might want to consider charging $10-15 less than this to reflect your inexperience.
On the flip side, if you have been in the nutrition game for a few years, you’d be justified in adding an extra $10-15 to reflect your experience.
Adjust your hourly rate to ensure you get plenty of clients.
Avoid selling your services too cheaply or so high you price yourself out of the market.
This may take some market research and experimentation, but get it right, and you’ll be busy AND well-paid.
2. Combine in-person with online nutrition coaching
According to Precision Nutrition, one of the top-rated nutrition coaching course providers, trainers who offer in-person and online nutrition coaching earn more than those coaches who do not provide a mixture of services.
Online and in-person nutrition coaches make roughly the same, whereas those trainers offering a hybrid service charge about $10.00 more per hour.
That might not sound like much, but over a year and based on ten hours of nutrition coaching per week, that adds up to an additional $5,200 annually.
While you will need to set up a website to offer digital nutrition coaching, this is relatively easy to do, and many online resources make creating a website both quick and easy.
In almost every industry, specialists earn more than generalists.
In nutrition coaching, once you have found your footing and feel ready to develop your expertise, you can specialize in the following:
- Youth Nutrition
- Nutrition for sports
- Nutrition for weight management
- Senior nutrition
- Nutrition for special health and medical needs
As a specialist, you can charge more per hour.
But be warned, specializing may also reduce your client pool, so choose your specialty wisely.
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Because of the growing problem of youth and adult obesity, anything related to weight loss is a safe bet.
You may also need additional qualifications for some specialties, such as working with clients with special medical needs.
4. Get more than one qualification
Gaining additional qualifications will increase your confidence and justify charging more per hour.
Also, additional qualifications reassure your clients that you are worth more per hour than someone with a single certification.
A few extra letters after your name will do wonders for your earning potential.
As you can often study for additional qualifications part-time, online, and at your own pace, gaining supplementary skills needn’t affect your current income.
And once you’ve gained your new certification, you can charge more.
Statistically, nutrition coaches with multiple qualifications can charge $10-15 more per hour than trainers with a single certification.
5. Market nutrition coaching alongside and also separate from your personal training business
I firmly believe that if you train someone, you should also advise them on their diet.
After all, eating unhealthily could undo many benefits of your carefully planned and perfectly executed workouts.
Combining proper training and the right dietary approach means you’ll get better results from both interventions – 2 + 2 = 10!
Subsequently, you should market and advertise personal training and nutrition coaching together.
But nutrition coaching can be useful for non-exercisers too.
Not everyone likes or wants to work out, but they may want to learn more about healthy eating.
Some potential clients feel they must sort out their diet before setting foot in a gym.
Others may not be able to exercise at all.
Because of this, you can widen your potential client base by offering your nutritional coaching services both together and separately from your personal training business.
And who knows, you may even be able to convert a non-exercising nutrition coaching client to personal training.
6. Offer a menu of services
Nutrition coaching covers many potential services, from basic dietary analysis to ongoing nutritional and motivational support.
While some people might want the “full package,” others may want a few healthy eating ideas or an occasional diet review.
Create a menu of services and set prices based on how much time you’ll need to provide each.
That way, clients can choose the services they want, and you can upsell other services based on what you think the client will need.
This will ensure that your clients get what they pay for, and you won’t have to do more for some clients than others – for the same price.
For example, you might have one entirely self-motivated client who only uses you as a source of information and advice.
They are a very low-maintenance client.
In contrast, you may have a client who needs constant reassurance and calls you daily for support.
A very high-maintenance client.
Offering a menu of services means you won’t spend more time on some clients than others.
You could even create tiers for the services you offer, for example:
- Bronze $
- Silver $$
- Gold $$$
Creating a clear-cut structure for your services will save you from doing extra, unpaid work you weren’t planning on or expecting.
While this won’t directly increase your income, it will stop you from giving away your time for free, which is the next best thing.
7. Consider working with small groups as well as individuals
For many people, $60 for nutrition coaching is too expensive.
But, if you reduce your hourly rate to make your services more affordable, you devalue your services.
After all, your services are based on your qualifications and your years of fitness industry experience.
You can make nutrition coaching more affordable, as well as more profitable, by working with small groups.
Let’s say you want $60 per hour, but you charge $15.00 per person per hour for small group sessions.
Not only will this make your services more appealing and accessible, but it could also increase your income.
Set a five-person minimum for this service, and you’ll make $75 per hour instead of your usual $60.
Choose a theme for your small group sessions so that you don’t find yourself being pulled in several different directions at once, diluting the service you are offering.
Instead, set up different groups for clients with different needs, such as a weight-loss group, a vegetarian-vegan group, and so on.
That way, you’ll be able to give all group members the same attention level.
Some clients, impressed by your level of skill and professionalism, may go on to upgrade and work with you on a one-to-one basis.
8. Go all-in on nutrition coaching
When you are starting, it makes sense to combine nutrition coaching with personal training so that you aren’t under too much pressure to succeed immediately.
This will give you a financial safety net while establishing this new business avenue.
But, if you are serious about becoming a successful nutrition coach, it may be worth making that your sole profession – especially if you want to earn the big bucks!
Trainers who do nutrition coaching full-time charge more per hour than those who don’t.
By all means, build your nutritional coaching job on the side, but if it starts to look more profitable than your other sources of income, you may be ready to move into full-time nutrition coaching.
Becoming a nutrition coach can add value to the client’s life in many ways.
You’ll help make a difference in achieving their fitness goals.
While everybody eats, many people don’t have the first idea about eating healthily.
Obesity and nutrition-related health issues are on the rise.
The food industry won’t help – they want people to keep buying their unhealthy products.
There are also lots of myths and misconceptions surrounding the subjects of nutrition and diet.
It’s no wonder that so many people need and want to eat healthily and lose weight but has no idea how where to start.
As a nutrition coach, you are uniquely positioned to help existing and new clients eat more healthily, having a massive impact on their happiness and well-being in the process and making a good living at the same time.
There is no better time to get into nutrition coaching than right now, and if you use the information in this article, you’ll soon be on your way to maximizing your earning potential.
1. NASM.org – Certified Nutrition Coach
2. ISSA.com – Sports Nutrition Certificate
3. ACE.org – Fitness Nutrition Specialist
4. AFPA.com – Nutrition and Wellness Consultant Certification
5. Precision Nutrition.com – Precision Nutrition Certification
6. NESTA.com – Fitness Nutrition Coach Certification
7. Paysa.com –Nutrition Coach Salaries
8. Paysa.com – Wellness Coach Salaries
9. Paysa.com – Health Coach Salaries
10. Precision Nutrition.com – Nutrition Coaching: What Should You Charge?
11. Market Research.com – Health Coaching Gains Favor Among Consumers, Insurers, & Employers
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