Head of School of PT - Paul Swainson

"Like so many areas of life, I believe the fitness industry is one in which you must continually learn, especially as knowledge moves on so fast. You can never know everything but if you take the approach of always trying to, you will become a better professional. You might not agree with everything you come across, but that’s not to say you shouldn’t take it on board – my mind has been changed on many different subjects since I began my career. If you’re not open to change you’ll be left behind."
"The best piece of advice I have received is to copy successful people! ‘Modelling’ those that you look up to from the worlds of sport and business - doing things the way they do them – is one of the best ways to learn and grow personally and professionally. Also, be pro-active. One of my favourite quotes is “Don’t wait for your ship to come in – swim out to it”."

Paul is a fitness educator, presenter and writer, with over 10 years experience as a personal trainer, manager and mentor. After gaining a Psychology degree, he began his career in 2002 and went on to run a successful personal training business in various gyms in Leeds and York as well as launching a private fitness training consultancy in 2007. Since 2011 Paul's roles have centred around course development and delivery, consultancy and business coaching for fellow fitness professionals, culminating in his current position as Head of the Future Fit School of Personal Training, where he aims to provide fitness professionals with all the support and resources they need to qualify, develop and excel in their career.

Paul is an experienced presenter and educator, having lectured and taught all over the UK on courses and at fitness conventions, and contributes regularly to industry websites and national publications.

Experience and expertise

  • Over 10 years' experience as a gym instructor, personal trainer and tutor
  • Course development and delivery, consultancy and business coaching for fellow fitness professionals
  • As a PT, Paul specialises in advanced resistance training methods and exercise and health psychology - recognising that the motivation for behaviour change is key to achieving results with clients
  • Paul teaches and assesses the Level 3 Exercise Programming and Coaching and Functional Equipment Training courses.  He has worked for Future Fit Training since 2006.

What's your greatest achievement in fitness?

In terms of achievement on a professional level, I am very proud to have helped many people reach their personal goals, from dramatic reductions in body fat percentage, to successfully passing fitness tests for the military and police. I also worked with a professional Thai boxer for a year, helping him to prepare for fights. He became a world champion whilst I was training him which was hugely rewarding.

Personally, one of my biggest achievements is probably competing at the British Indoor Rowing Championships in 2005. I didn’t break any records or win any medals, but I had set myself a target time to beat 6 months earlier, followed a structured training programme designed to hit that target and became very self-disciplined in terms of nutrition – all the things trainers need to coach clients to do. To achieve my goal was tremendously satisfying.

Tell us something personal about yourself

Given my career choice, people find it odd that I didn’t start enjoying exercise until I was 18. I was one of those boys at school who hated PE and was never much good at sport!