Online Trainer Academy (OTA) – a review

If you’re a personal trainer looking to expand your client base with minimal hassle, then this post is for you! You may already be feeling the pinch working 1:1 with a full client list, or want to be able to run your business in a more hands-off way so that you can travel or spend more time with loved ones. There is a way to take on more clients, train them well in your own style and still gain some time back for yourself – online training.

I run a busy and diverse coaching practice, including working with clients on fitness & nutrition and yoga, as well as working as lead coach in a workplace wellness and productivity business, so I have a very limited number of hours each week to see clients in person. With more personal training requests coming in than I could handle, plus the added exposure of a TV series, Be Fit Bristol Fit, potentially inviting even more interest, I needed to plan ahead and have something ready to accommodate the extra business.

Why did I enrol?

I was already very familiar with the work of Jon Goodman and the Personal Training Development Centre (PTDC) having found their Facebook forums and articles a hugely valuable resource as both a trainee and practising PT; I even wrote a couple myself. When they started advertising for the first intake for the OTA, I signed up knowing that the quality would be excellent and that unlike merchandising products like e-books, I wouldn’t have to sell many packages to recoup my investment.

What do you get?

When the materials arrived, I was very impressed. There was a comprehensive, high quality textbook, a workbook in which to capture all the essentials, plus a wealth of online materials that I could watch on my phone on breaks between clients. I had tried unsuccessfully to get an online training package off the ground last year but didn’t have a clue what I was doing. With the OTA, I was able to identify my niche client group and get busy targeting them so that I didn’t waste time or valuable resources. I learned how to run my platform off Google Docs – so simple and accessible – how to cost out my hours, and how to design the package to avoid the newbie mistake of trying to be available 24/7 to clients and wasting precious time. You work through the materials at your own pace and then take an online exam at the end to gain your certification, so pay attention as you go!


What did I do with it?

I’m now a certified online trainer and my new training platform, Badass Body Online, based on martial arts conditioning, has been running with clients around the world for several years. I completed the course within about three months on top of a busy schedule and then knuckled down to write all the materials over the Christmas period. I signed up my first clients very quickly from existing contacts and now have a great resource for people wanting the Brainbox Coaching approach but who can’t see me 1:1. It’s perfect for clients globally who can train at home using my workouts and get feedback on their nutrition; my first enrolment was from Italy!

Extra benefits 

And, having completed the course, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by all the continuing support and extra resources Jon keeps adding for OTA grads – it has been the gift that just keeps giving and I highly recommend it to you I feel you want to take your fitness business to the next level.  Those of you who know how many ‘opportunities’ to promote other people’s products I turn down very regularly will appreciate that choosing to affiliate myself with the OTA is high praise indeed! Online training based on the OTA guidance means you can expand your business and stay true to your values in a competitive industry.

Online training during COVID-19

Updating this review in April 2020, I can only say how grateful I am that I took OTA a few years ago! It has made my life so much less stressful as I have easily been able to switch 1:1 clients over to online training as well as keep on advertising for new clients for Badass Body Online without the 1:1 contact. The whole platform, training style and system was already working and ready to scale up. As a result, I have not only kept all my clients, but I am regularly contacted by other fitness and yoga professionals asking for advice on how to get online. Of course, I refer them to the OTA! Thanks again, Jon!

Want to know more? Click here for more info and enrolment.

Get a FREE paperback copy of the Wealthy Fit Pro’s Guide to Online Training here!

Drop me a line at if you want to know more about how I put all the OTA info into action and see great results with online training for yourself!