Personal Trainers
June 26, 2022

How to Build Beginner Workout Programs and be amazing at it 2022

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Personal Trainers
How to Build Beginner Workout Programs and be amazing at it 2022
Cory McKane
Blog Post Summary:

Different kinds of workout programs will address different needs, but there are ample options to consider for your beginner programs. In this article, we'll show you how to build beginner workout programs and be amazing at it.

Different kinds of workout programs will address different needs, but there are ample options to consider for your beginner programs. This progress will be able to help those just getting started on their health and fitness journeys. Plans made for beginners should also have room to evolve down the road, as clients start to advance. 

When you start creating a personal trainer workout plan there are certain steps you can follow to reach the best results, and make sure you have designed the best plan possible. 

5 Types of Plans

When you start designing personal training exercise programs for beginners there are five common types of plans that you can use to establish your program foundation. These different plans can address nearly every kind of client you might come across. 


One of the main types of personal training exercise progress you can create for your clients is a beginner plan. This should include some basic exercise movements, as well as rest time and plenty of room for advancement. Make sure to monitor the intensity of the movements you include, and ease beginner clients into a new personal trainer workout plan. 

Create a plan broken down into daily workout routines, with rest days included. You should also include options in your workout plan to keep clients from getting bored of doing the same movements. 

Some of the best exercises to include in beginner workout plans include;

  • Stationary bike exercises
  • Treadmill exercises
  • Bike riding
  • Brisk walking

Busy Schedules

Plenty of people who seek out a personal trainer have busy schedules in their daily and work life. This leaves little time for fitness, so they will need an exercise program tailored to their fast-paced life. This can include short sessions of thirty minutes or less, either daily or every other day. You should also include full-body and high-intensity movements so clients can make the most of their limited time. 

Training plans for busy clients can feature; 

  • 30-minute cardio movements 
  • Elliptical workouts
  • Interval training

Strength Training

Strength training workouts for clients will include a lot of weight lifting exercises, as well as high-intensity movements and total-body routines. This kind of training program will focus on helping clients build up strength, so the number of weights and intensity should increase over time. Recovery and rest time is vital to this kind of training to prevent any serious injury or overworked muscles. 

Strength training movements include;

  • Weight lifting 
  • Rock climbing
  • Push-ups
  • Cycling 

Flexibility Training

Flexibility training is another rule of movement you can focus on in your client's fitness plans. These kinds of routines will require clients to have a full range of motion, so they might not be best suited for beginners. 

Warm-ups and cool-downs are extremely important for this kind of personal training plan to keep clientele from straining or overworking muscles. Some programs may dedicate a specific day to flexibility training, while others will feature some kind of flexibility movement in each session. 

Examples of flexibility movements you can feature include; 

  • Yoga
  • Stretching 
  • Pilates 


An advanced personal training plan will require more complex movements and exercises so that advanced athletes can continue to progress physically. These plans will be more advanced than beginner routines as athletes start to work on more complex goals. Advanced types of personal trainer workouts for clients should feature more intense cardio, mixed-up routines, and ample recovery time. 

Advanced personal training plans can feature;

  • Circuit training
  • Mixed interval training
  • Aerobics 

6 Steps To Building Your Programs

As you create your personal training plan there are six steps you can follow to design a program guaranteed to help clients achieve effective results. The following steps will help you pick each level of exercise, and address recovery times. 

Choose Primary Exercises

Primary exercises are one of the most important aspects of your personal trainer workout plan, and deciding what they will be should be one of the first steps of designing your plan. Make sure to consider these exercises carefully, and keep in mind any movements your client prefers. You should also keep in mind your clients' short-term and long-term goals, and make sure the primary exercises you choose can help them achieve those goals. 

Primary exercises include;

  • Rows
  • Lunges
  • Squats 
  • Bicep curls
  • Deadlifts
  • Chest presses

Decide on Secondary Exercises 

The secondary exercises in your personal training exercise programs should be chosen to support the primary exercises. Just like primary movements, secondary ones should help a client work toward their fitness and health goals. Secondary movements can be more flexible, and you have more options when it comes to exercises you can include. Unlike primary exercises, which should be more strict. 

Secondary exercises can include;

  • Tricep kickbacks
  • Single-leg deadlift
  • Single-leg squats 
  • Single-leg glute bridges

Select Tertiary Exercises 

Following both primary and secondary exercises you need to select the tertiary exercises to include in your personal trainer workout plan. These consist of rehab and prehab movements and don’t have to be included in each program. 

However, they can be beneficial for all types of athletes. Tertiary exercises can be part of active rest and are used as a way to heal injuries or correct imbalances. 

Choose Rep Ranges

The rep range that you use for exercises in personal trainer workouts for clients will vary based on each movement and your client's individual goals. Clients working on power will use reps of five or less, while reps of around fifteen and twenty can be used to work on endurance. Typically, the more sets you have with equal fewer repetitions. Rep ranges will also affect the rest time you include, as it should reflect the exercise it follows. 

Pick A Cardio Option

Depending on the type of personal training exercise programs you are designing, you may need to include a cardio option. Steady cardio movements can be beneficial for multiple types of clients, but they can be hurtful for reaching certain types of goals. 

For example, cardio does not do much to build up muscle, but it can be a great way to burn calories. Steady cardio movements have also been found to have beneficial impacts on mental health. 

Cardio options include;

  • Treadmill use
  • Elliptical use
  • Jogging
  • Jump rope
  • Jumping jacks
  • Swimming

Design Warmup Movements

Warm-up movements are just as important as exercises and rest times found in your personal trainer workout plan. Proper warm-ups will prevent injuries while working out and are a great way to get your client's blood pumping. Warm-ups also make it easier to move for the rest of the workout. They should last for at least five minutes. Having your clients do some stretches at the end of the regime to cool down is also a good idea. 

Examples of warmup and cool-down movements include;

  • Stretching
  • Push-ups 
  • Arm circles
  • Leg swings 
  • Planks

Wrapping Up

As a personal trainer, you are responsible for building programs to help your clients reach their goals, and there are six steps to follow that can help you do that successfully. When designing your program you can also keep in mind the five common types of plans, and what they are meant to help clients accomplish. 

When designing plans with beginners in mind you should also leave room for advancement and growth as their fitness levels increase. The best beginner plans will be able to evolve with clients. 


Are you new to personal training? Read these articles to get started on growing your business:

About the Author:

Cory McKane

Cory is a huge fan of fitness - and an even bigger fan of helping you with your fitness. He's started on his journey with WeStrive back in 2015 and has been building it ever since.

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Written by
Cory McKane
CEO | WeStrive
Huge fan of fitness - Even bigger fan of helping you with your fitness. I've been building up the WeStrive platform for over 5 years and I'm excited to keep building out the greatest Health & Wellness platform on Earth.

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How to Build Beginner Workout Programs and be amazing at it 2022