Accounting for Gyms & Personal Trainers

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Running a gymnasium or personal training business can be challenging. The early starts and late finishes can take their toll despite some down time during the day. You need to have good time management skills plus lots of patience because you’ll have to contend with clients not turning up on time plus some ‘no shows’.

As a personal trainer you’re always on show and you have to be ‘up and about’ the whole time. You are effectively a walking billboard for your business and need to demonstrate to clients that you practice what you preach which means maintaining your fitness and appearance.  On an operational level, heavy weights and gymnasium equipment present occupational health and safety issues while you also need to monitor and manage your gym members. If you have casual staff or sub-contractors you have to manage payroll and superannuation not to mention the usual small business administration issues of GST, BAS and PAYG. .

It's an incredibly competitive industry and you have to work on your marketing to attract and retain clients. In fact, in the digital and social age, your marketing could be the difference between boom, doom and gloom. Over the years we have mentored dozens of personal trainers and gym owners through the various stages of the business life cycle, from start up right through to sale. We offer you experience, technical knowledge and most importantly, an intimate understanding of the fitness industry.


Starting a business is a bit like building a house. You need solid foundations including the right business structure and accounting software, adequate and appropriate insurances, a marketing plan, a lead generation website and various social media channels.

Your choice of business structure is critical and there are a number of different options including sole trader, partnership, company and trust. When choosing your tax structure you need to consider asset protection as well as your family situation, your forecast level of profit and your future plans regarding the potential admission of new business partners.

Another important decision is your choice of accounting software. The wrong software can prove catastrophic because poor financial records are one of the biggest causes of business failure in this country. Up to date, accurate financial records let you make informed business decisions. When selecting the right software for your business it’s important to match your business needs with your level of accounting skill. The wrong software can produce records that resemble a 'computerised shoebox' and excessive bookkeeping and compliance costs. We support a range of cloud based programs like Xero and where required, we can train you or your staff to use the software to contain your fees and reduce any bookkeeping frustrations.

When starting a new business you need the right tools and we have developed a number of them specifically for new business owners. Our start-up expense checklist is designed to identify all your potential establishment costs and it dissects your set-up costs into categories including plant and equipment, IT expenses, occupancy costs, professional fees and marketing costs. These figures automatically feed into a cash flow budget template to help you identify your start-up finance requirements.  We have also published the 'New Business Starter Kit' that walks you through the start up process and you can download a copy from the right hand side of this page.

Through our affiliate partners we can also help you locate suitable funding to finance your gym fit out, equipment purchase, franchise fee or motor vehicle. Using industry benchmarks we can analyse the financial performance of your gym and compare it against your industry peers so you know what is working in the business, what's not working and what areas needs working on.


As a personal trainer or gym owner you need marketing muscle to succeed in such a competitive industry. One of our biggest points of difference compared to other Geelong accounting firms is our marketing expertise and we can assist you with your branding (business name, logo and slogan) and introduce you to the right people to help you build your website and social media presence.

In the past, most gym owners and personal trainers relied on customer referrals and conventional marketing methods like Yellow Pages, the local newspaper or leaflets to win new customers. While some of these techniques remain effective, you need to move your marketing focus online to align with the shift in consumer behaviour. Google and social media are now the number one source of new business for the fitness industry.

To generate leads your website must appear at the top of page one in a Google search for 'personal trainer in your suburb'. The truth is, most of your competitor's websites are nothing more than electronic billboards that simply list the who, what and where of the business. Over the past few years we have worked with many clients to help them create quality and affordable websites that pay for themselves many times over. Your website should be the heart of your marketing and you need to look at it as an investment not a cost. Choosing the right development partners will ensure you get expert advice and assistance with your content, search engine optimisation, calls to action and video production.

Here at Scotts Accountants we view the tax return as the start of the client process, not the end. Our mission is to help you fast track your business success and we offer gym owners and personal trainers a range of tailored tax, accounting, financial and marketing solutions including:

  • Start-Up Business Advice for Gym Owners & Personal Trainers
  • Advice regarding the Purchase and Sale of your Gymnasium
  • Spreadsheets and Tools including a Start Up Expense Checklist
  • Templates for your Business Plan, Cash Flow Budget, Letterhead and Business Card
  • Advice and Establishment of Your Business Structure
  • Tax Registrations including your ABN, TFN, GST, WorkCover etc.
  • Preparation of Business Plans, Cash Flow Forecasts and Profit Projections
  • Accounting Software Selection and Training (Bookkeeping, Invoicing, Payroll etc.)
  • Preparation of Finance Applications for your Bank Loan (if required)
  • Preparation and Analysis of Financial Statements
  • Bookkeeping and Payroll Services
  • Tax Planning Strategies
  • Wealth Creation Strategies and Wealth & Retirement Planning Services
  • Industry Benchmarking and KPI Management
  • Vehicle & Equipment Finance – Leasing and Chattel Mortgage
  • Advice & Assistance with Pricing
  • Advice regarding Claiming Motor Vehicle Costs
  • Recession Survival Strategies
  • Advice regarding Employee Relations and Workplace Laws
  • Business & Risk Insurances
  • Business Succession Planning
  • Marketing including the establishment of your branding, brochures, website and social media strategies
  • Advice and Assistance with the Development, Content and Website SEO

In summary, we are so much more than just tax accountants. We are ‘business and profit builders’ who provide strategic advice and practical business solutions that could give you a serious competitive edge in the fitness industry. We work hard to understand your business and over the past decade gym owners and personal trainers have become niche areas within our firm.

If you're an ambitious business owner looking to boost your current results or if you're looking to get your new business off to a flying start, we invite you to book a FREE, one hour introductory consultation. Simply call us on (03) 5224 1133 or complete your details in the box at the top right hand side of this page and let's get to work on your business so it's more profitable, valuable and saleable.

Scotts Chartered Accountants - Infinite Possibilities