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How to Become a HIIT Instructor

become a HIIT instructor

Are you ready to jumpstart your fitness career and become a HIIT instructor? Look no further! HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) is currently one of the most popular fitness trends, and for good reason.

Not only is it a highly effective way to get in shape, but it’s also a blast to teach! With HIIT, you’ll be leading classes that are packed with energy, excitement, and results.

But before you lace up your sneakers and grab your microphone, there are a few things you need to know. We’re not just talking about the standard certification requirements and workout planning; we’ll dive into the lesser-known tips and tricks for building a successful High Intensity Training teaching career.

And don’t worry about being boring; we’ll teach you how to make even the most basic exercises feel brand new and exciting for your participants. So, if you’re ready to turn up the intensity and become a HIIT instructor, strap on, and let’s do this!

Four Benefits of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Workouts

They are Highly Efficient

One of the biggest benefits of High Intensity Training is that it is incredibly efficient. Because these exercises involve short bursts of intense activity, they can be completed in a relatively short amount of time, making them a great option for people who are short on time but still want to get in a good workout.

As you know, the world is fast-paced right now, and people are looking to do more with less time. Going through instructor training means you’ll be able to service all these people and potentially get a large client pool.

More Calories in Shorter Duration

Another major benefit of HIIT is that it can help your clients burn a significant amount of calories in a short period of time. These workouts are designed to push the body to its limits, which means that the body will continue to burn calories after the workout is over.

You can take some creative liberties with your exercise regimens and create intense calorie-burning HIIT exercises that aim to achieve total muscular failure or, dial things back when you’re training older clients.

Boost Cardiovascular Health

HIIT workouts also improve cardiovascular health, increase endurance and have positive effects on insulin resistance, which can be especially beneficial for people at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

People seek out personal training sessions for this very reason, but high intensity training can take it even further and provide bigger payoffs.

HIIT Workouts are Highly Adaptable

In addition, HIIT workouts are highly adaptable, which means that they can be tailored to suit people of all fitness levels. Once you get certified, you can use your knowledge of exercise science to create the perfect routines for your clients.

Why You Should Consider Becoming a HIIT Instructor

We’ve gone over all the benefits of High Intensity Interval Training. Now, let’s talk about some of the reasons you should consider getting a professional certification as a HIIT teacher.

1. High Demand

HIIT is one of the most popular and in-demand workout trends currently. According to recent studies, the US HIIT market is currently at $2 billion and is estimated to keep growing (IBISworld) as the number of HIIT classes offered at gyms increases rapidly. This means that there is a strong demand for qualified HIIT instructors to lead these classes.

Grabbing your professional certification means you can tap into this market and build a successful career for yourself.

2. Career Advancement

Being a HIIT instructor is not just a job but a career. As the demand for HIIT increases, so does the opportunity for career advancement. Many instructors start as independent contractors and eventually build their own business or become lead instructors or program directors for gyms or studios.

It has a similar path to personal training, where you can build your own business and client list, except HIIT instructors are less common than personal trainers. That means higher demand with greater career prospects.

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3. Personal and Professional development

By becoming an instructor, you’ll not only be helping others improve their fitness, but you’ll also be pushing yourself to grow and develop professionally.

Through continuous education and professional development, you’ll be able to refine your teaching skills and stay up to date with the latest trends and techniques in HIIT.

You can focus on everything from physical education to exercise science and even the current events in the fitness community; basically, everything a successful personal trainer would need to know.

4. Job Flexibility

Many HIIT instructors work on a freelance basis, which gives them a lot of flexibility and allows them to work at their own pace. They can choose the hours they work and which gyms or studios they want to teach at.

They can even choose to focus on specific HIIT exercises – upper and lower body or resistance training, for example.

This can be especially beneficial if you have other commitments, such as raising children or studying or an even bigger career move.

5. Positive Impact

Teaching HIIT classes is not only about providing a workout based on exercise theory; it’s about providing a community for people to belong, grow and feel good about themselves. HIIT instructors play a big role in motivating, encouraging, and supporting people to reach their fitness goals.

It bears mentioning that while being an instructor can be a fulfilling and rewarding job, it is also demanding and physically challenging. You may often have to train with your clients – do resistance training, rest in recovery intervals, the whole deal – which can take a lot out of you.

Before trying to get your certification, make sure you are prepared to work hard and invest time and energy into building your skills and knowledge.

Is it Worth it to Become a HIIT Instructor?

Leading HIIT class as an instructor

Becoming a HIIT instructor can be a rewarding and fulfilling career path for those who are passionate about fitness and helping others achieve their health and wellness goals. Some of the perks include work flexibility, great global demand, career advancement, and an overall positive impact.

However, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons before making the decision to pursue this career.

On the positive side, HIIT is a popular and in-demand workout trend, and there is a growing need for qualified instructors. Additionally, being an instructor can be a great way to stay active and motivated in your own fitness journey.

On the other hand, becoming a HIIT instructor requires a significant investment in time, money, and energy. It requires getting certified and then continuing education, building a reputation and networking. 

Also consider that it can be challenging and demanding work physically and mentally. Additionally, the instructor’s lifestyle also requires being in good shape – much like personal training – and having the energy to keep up with the classes and clients.

Overall, becoming a HIIT instructor can be a great career choice for those who are passionate about fitness and helping others, but it’s important to weigh the pros and cons and understand the commitment required before making the decision.

The Top HIIT Instruction Certifying Bodies

Before you start your HIIT training, it’s important to know that there are several certification bodies. Each organization has its own unique benefits and drawbacks, so it’s important to understand which one might be the best fit for your business.


The American Sports and Fitness Association is a fantastic certification body and they offer several fitness programs, including HIIT training. If you’re looking to become a certified HIIT instructor and ensure that your students get high-quality instruction every time they take a class at your studio, ASFA is a great option.

Their training program is rigorous, but their instructors are well-qualified and enjoy job security in an industry that’s known for its high turnover rate.

2. Core Health and Fitness.com

Unlike many certification bodies, Core Health and Fitness has specific HIIT training for aspiring trainers and several instructors on roster to teach you everything you need to know. The training can be taken remotely or via live virtual and in-person events.


Issa certifications are pretty popular in the fitness community because they help students get a helpful blend of knowledge that includes sports medicine, understanding of muscle group actions, and of course, full body workouts.

4. IFPA Fitness

The International Fitness Professionals Association’s HIIT training program is the most expensive on this list, and so it might not be a great place to start.

However, it also has an extensive syllabus that covers everything from improving client results to safety HIIT practices, and even learning how to combine HIIT with a personal training career.

How Much Does a HIIT Certification Cost?

The cost for getting certified ranges from $39 to $500 depending on which organization you take the course from.

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For example, ISS charges $39.95 for HIIT training, but it’s part of a larger personal training certification program. On the other hand, you have the stand alone IFPA HIIT certificate program which is $499, but may be too expensive for new trainers.

Before you settle on a program, check out their website (linked above) for even more details.

Preparing for the HIIT Certification Exam

Most HIIT programs are offered online so your exam will most likely be based on fitness knowledge. Expect multiple choice questions on topics such as anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, and nutrition.

There may also be a teaching skills portion that tests your ability to design a safe and effective workout plan for a client with a specific medical condition or disability.

Additional Tips to Ace the HIIT Certification Exam

1. Eat Healthy: Make sure you’re eating healthy foods with lots of nutrients and vitamins like vegetables, fruits, lean meats, nuts and seeds. Eating these types of foods will give you the energy needed for the exam as well as keep your body strong! 

2. Get Plenty of Sleep: It’s also important to get plenty of sleep and rest before you take the exam. You’ve taken exams before, so you know that students who get enough sleep tend to do better on exams than those who don’t. 8 hours is a great number to aim for. 

3. Try Relaxation Techniques: People always say “relax,” but we both know that does nothing. So instead, try some relaxation techniques like deep breathing or meditation. These can help you calm down and reduce your anxiety before the exam. 

4. Prep Properly: Finally, make sure that any materials you need for the exam are organized and ready to go. This will help you reduce your stress level and will allow you to focus on the test itself rather than worrying about what you’re going to do with your pencils when it’s time to start writing!

Building Your Skillset as a Certified HIIT Trainer

Even after you get your certification and become a pro at leading group fitness sessions, there will be things you probably don’t know and need to learn. Here are some ways you can build up your skillset as an instructor:

  1. Read blogs and articles written by other HIIT trainers to get ideas on how they run their classes. YouTube videos and Instagram content works perfectly as well.
  2. Ask more experienced instructors for advice. They may have some tips they’re willing to share with you! 
  3. If you’re yet interested in learning more about HIIT, consider taking classes in other disciplines such as strength training or yoga. It may seem like a lot of work at first, but once you’ve got your certifications, you’ll be able to teach all types of fitness classes.
  4. Connect with other fitness professionals. You can learn new things from a personal trainer, for example, and apply that in your classes

Creating Effective High Intensity Training Classes

The best HIIT classes are ones that keep students motivated and excited about working out, regardless of whether it’s a full-body workout or a more concentrated kind of training. Here are some tips for creating effective HIIT classes:

Make sure your classes are fun

You want students to feel like they’re really getting something out of their workout, so make sure they’re laughing and having a good time while they’re sweating. This can be accomplished by playing fun music or incorporating games into your workout routine.

You may also need to learn about how to motivate training clients during your group fitness classes.

Mix up the exercises

If you do the same moves over and over again, your body will adjust and get used to it quickly—which means less overall calorie burn! Mixing up your workouts will help your students engage a new muscle group each time, and prevent injury due to familiarity.

Give people options

Everyone has different fitness levels, so make sure you offer beginner and advanced options. That way, everyone feels challenged but not overwhelmed by the intensity level of their workout. 

HIIT classes are all about the music

You don’t want to be playing songs that are too slow or too fast, because that will either make your class feel like it’s dragging on or make it feel like it’s too much of a workout. It will definitely take some experimentation to find the sweet spot, but once you do, your sessions will much more fun.

Building a successful HIIT instructor career

Workig out HIIT instructor

Even after you get your certification, it’s very easy to feel overwhelmed. After all, the field is growing at an incredible rate and there are so many different ways to teach HIIT classes.

But don’t worry! We’ve got your back with these tips for building a successful career as a HIIT trainer.

1. Think About What Kind Of HIIT Class You Want To Teach

Are you looking to lead a class that’s intense and gets your students’ hearts pumping? Or do you want a little bit of relaxation in there so it’s not too fast-paced?

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You should also decide if you want to focus on cardio or strength training. The answer is probably “all of the above,” but it’s important to know what kind of HIIT class you have in mind before getting started.

2. Determine if There’s Demand for This Type of Class

This can be hard, since there are so many different instructors out there offering lots of different types of HIIT classes, but it’s worth doing some research and seeing if people are asking for what you want to offer.

3. Decide on Your Niche

Are you going to specialize in one type of workout? Or will your classes incorporate several different kinds of workouts? There aren’t any wrong answers here—it just depends on what works best for your business and your clients. 

4. Create a Marketing Plan

Once you’ve got all of that figured out, it’s time to put together a plan for how you’re going to get the word out about your new class. If you want people to know about it, they need to hear about it! 

The good news is that creating a marketing plan isn’t all that difficult. In fact, here’s a YouTube video that goes into great detail on how to do it.

5. Don’t Forget About the Importance of Networking

Make sure you take advantage of any opportunities that come up to network with other fitness professionals, especially ones who specialize in what you want to do.  

We mentioned this earlier, but it’s also a great idea to network with related fitness professionals – personal trainer, yoga instructor, zumba teacher – these are all invaluable people to know.

6. Create an Online Presence

You’ll need a place online where people can learn more about your classes, sign up for them and find out more information about you. Your site should be professional-looking, easy to navigate and include all of the necessary contact information (including your email address). 

It may also be a good idea to start a fitness YouTube channel so people can see what kinds of classes you offer, and maybe even get some free lessons.

Next, we’ll go into specific details about how you can start attracting clients for your HIIT training classes.

Getting HIIT Training Clients

Offer Trial Classes

Providing free trial classes or consultations before booking long-term memberships is a great idea because it allows potential clients to get a feel for what it’s like working with you before committing themselves financially (and emotionally). 

This will also help you get a better idea of what type of clients you’re looking for and if your services are a good fit for them. 

Provide Group Discounts

Group discounts are a great way to get your clients to invite their friends and family. This can be especially effective if you offer different types of classes, such as a yoga flow class and a Pilates mat class. 

Group discounts are also a great way to attract new clients. If you have one or more popular classes, such as barre or yoga, offer discounts for people who want to try out more than one class with you. 

It’s a great way to get new clients interested in your services while getting them hooked on the practice they enjoy most!

Leverage Word of Mouth

Satisfied clients are your best advocates, and if they are happy with your service they will tell others. The best thing you can do is to help them achieve their goals and have fun doing it. Next, encourage them to tell others about you.

You can even provide referral incentives to nudge them further in that direction.

Partner with Gyms and Studios

Another way to build your client base as a HIIT trainer is partnering with local gyms and studios. Offer to teach classes or lead workshops at these facilities in exchange for the opportunity to connect with potential clients.

Stay Consistent

You will most likely get more rejections than new clients in the early days. But, confidence and expertise in your classes will put you over the top. Focus on sticking with your marketing plan and providing an enjoyable and challenging experience to your clients.


So there you have it folks! By now, you should be fully equipped with all the tips, tricks, and insider knowledge you need to become a successful HIIT instructor. From getting certified and building your skillset to creating effective HIIT classes and building a loyal following of participants.

Here’s a quick rundown of what we covered:

  • Understanding the benefits of HIIT and its importance
  • Gaining certification from reputable organizations
  • Continuing education to be always updated on latest developments
  • Creating unique, engaging and challenging HIIT classes
  • Networking, promoting your classes and standing out in the market

Becoming a HIIT instructor is not only a fantastic way to help others get in shape, but it’s also an incredibly rewarding career. So don’t be afraid to turn up the intensity and start your journey to becoming a HIIT superstar!

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