The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association is the fitness industry's only global trade association representing over 10,000 for profit health and fitness facilities and over 600 supplier companies in 75 countries.



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Personal Trainer Regulations

Poorly written personal trainer regulations have the potential to

  • Substantially increase the costs trainers incur to comply with requirements
  • Reduce, if not temporarily eliminate, the pool of trainers available to clubs for hire, and
  • Pose major financial threats to clubs that generate revenue from personal training sessions.

The first attempt to regulate person trainers started in California in the early 1990s. And, IHRSA has successfully been fighting for clubs on the issue of personal training regulation regularly since 2006. It’s an issue IHRSA has faced many times in many states.

  • 2006: Georgia
  • 2007: Texas and Massachusetts
  • 2008: New Jersey, Maryland, DC
  • 2009: New Hampshire, Massachusetts (again), California
  • 2010: New Jersey (again), Maryland (again)
  • 2011: Massachusetts (yet again), Georgia (again)
  • 2012: Florida, New Jersey (yet again), Texas (again)
  • 2013: Massachusetts (and again)
  • 2014: DC (fight begins again) See the recap of the DC battle
  • 2015: DC and Massachusetts
  • 2016: Massachusetts (yet again)
  • 2017: Nebraska

IHRSA has learned from years of fighting this legislation that states copy what other states legislate. When we defeat badly written proposals in one state, we see very similar language show up across the country the very next year. That’s why it’s so important to fight these proposals as they arise.

The biggest problem club operators would face with all the personal training legislation – IHRSA reads every bill introduced on this issue – is that it would create a bottleneck, making it harder - not easier - to hire/retain well qualified personal trainers. IHRSA works to educate these lawmakers on how their proposals would hurt small businesses and the very people they are trying to help.

As these bills arise, IHRSA works to ensure that the legislation does not limit a clubs’ access to qualified personal trainers, or make fitness services more expensive and difficult to acquire for consumers. 

IHRSA recommends certification of personal trainers by an accredited third party, but not licensing.

NOTE: Contributions from IHRSA members support IHRSA's efforts to keep your training business safe from government regulations. Download a pledge form or visit today.

Reader Comments (1)

Is there a best of both worlds option? Would if be possible to have licensed trainers (title TBD) which could then utilize medical coverage for training in order to use exercise as medicine? Have training services reimbursed through insurance like other licensed professionals such as Physical Therapists? Creating the licensure nationally with a committee represented by IHRSA, ACSM, ACE, NASM, NSCA, a few docs, a few PTs and certainly tenured Personal trainers in the field. Still preserve the current options but add the licensed higher tier that can work closer to the medical community/platform.
December 8, 2015 | Unregistered CommenterCarl

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