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Working with a Mobile Personal Trainer versus an In-Gym Personal Trainer

Are you thinking of working with a PT but aren’t sure whether to join a gym to have a PT come to you (a mobile PT)?

Firstly I will clarify the difference between the two. A mobile PT is a personal trainer who doesn’t have a fixed location they work from. They are mobile, so are usually flexible in where they can train you – work, home or a local park, you decide! A gym based personal trainer may work in a specific location such as a gym or studio and train all their clients there. Typically both types of trainer will be self employed (though some may work for an organisation as an employee).


A trainer who works within a gym will typically be self-employed and pay a ground rent to the gym to be allowed to train their clients in that space. This often means that they charge an increased rate for their services, as they need to ensure they are making enough money to cover their gym ‘rent’ as well as their personal rent and bills! Mobile PTing removes this element of ‘gym rent’, meaning a trainer can usually charge a lower rate as there are less overheads. I recommend looking at a few different trainers to compare prices as they can vary widely.


One of the biggest benefits of working with a mobile PT is that they come to you. This is really valuable if you have limited time. Consider you are working from home in Hackney and want to fit in a PT session during your lunch break but your gym is near work in Islington. You would need to factor in time to travel to and from the gym on top of your 45-60min session. For most people with busy jobs this wouldn’t be practical. With a mobile PT they come to wherever you need them so you can easily fit a full session within an hour lunch break at home one week, and at the office the next week, without needing to add time to travel. If your home or work place is very near to your gym this is less of an issue, so consider your personal time and requirements and factor this into your decision.


Naturally a gym space will have more equipment available than a mobile PT can carry with them. The benefit of all that equipment is that it can be easier to make linear progressions with weights (i.e. once you master a 5kg shoulder press you can move on to 6kg and keep on progressing in that way).

Mobile PTs may have to get more creative in how they progress exercises. But that can be a good thing, as you will learn all the different ways that you can progress (such as adding resistance bands to weights, advanced body weight exercises, tempo focus). This is really valuable if you want to do more of your workouts at home than in a gym environment in the future or if you travel a lot and need to be able to workout outside of a gym.

For some goals a gym environment may be more appropriate (i.e. for heavy strength or hypertrophy training). A good personal trainer will always make a recommendation based on what is best for you.

Getting out into Nature

My favourite aspect of mobile PTing is that you have the opportunity to get outside and into nature while you train. This can have huge benefits to mental health and wellbeing on top of the benefits of the exercise itself, particularly if you spend a lot of time indoors at a desk. That’s something you don’t get in a gym. Oh and you never have to queue for a piece of equipment!

Still unsure whether working with a mobile personal trainer or a gym based personal trainer is the best route for you? Drop me a message to chat about your needs and I’ll happily give you some unbiased guidance based on your personal circumstance.


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