Premier Private Personal Trainer & Online Coach

How Long Should A Personal Training Session Be?

By: Zack Mathews

When considering the question, how long should a personal training session be, you are likely to get multiple answers based on different trainer’s perspective.

Some trainers prefer quick 30 minute in and out workouts, others take 2 hours, and there’s a whole lot of coaches that hang out right in the middle of those two.

When meeting for a consultation with your personal trainer, it’s important to ask them about their session duration and why they chose that time.

Their answer should give you clarity if they will be able to help you and if the price of training is worth the duration.

Today I’ll discuss a few of the main session durations that trainers follow and the pros / cons of each.

  • Are 30 minute workouts worth it with a personal trainer?
  • What’s the deal with 50 minute workouts?
  • Is 60 minutes the sweet spot?
  • Who trains with their personal trainer for 90+ minutes?
How Long Should A Personal Training Session Be? Breakdown

How Long Should A Personal Training Session Be? 30 Minute Breakdown

A fast 30 minute workout with your personal trainer is acceptable if you are on a budget or extremely short on time.

I always say to my clients that something is better than nothing.  If 30 minutes is all you make time for, then that’s what is best for you.

Unfortunately there aren’t many reasons why you want do a 30 minute session besides those two points.

In my opinion, a 30 minute personal training session is not worth it because you will feel rushed, it’s hard to connect with your coach in that time, your workout turns into a HIIT workout, and a few other reasons.

I break down all these points and additional ones in my article Is A 30 Minute Personal Training Session Enough?

What's The Deal With 50 Minute Personal Training Sessions?

Many coaches like the 50 minute route because it’s adequate time for their clients to get a full workout consisting of a warm up, main moves, possibly cardio, and you might even have time for a cool down.

It provides a great overall experience for the client and the client is still in and out in less than an hour.

The 50 minute personal training sessions are also good for the personal trainer because it allows them to:

  • Have 10 minutes in between clients to put away equipment and set up for their next client.
  • Wash their hands and/or use the restroom.
  • Grab a quick bite to eat.
  • Take a moment to reset and mentally prepare for the next client.

It’s powerful what 10 minutes can do for a trainer instead of running from client to client.

Should A Personal Training Session Be 60 Minutes?


The 60 minute session length is where most trainers live, including what I do with my Virginia Beach personal training clients.

Having a full hour with your coach allows you to get through all the movements listed in the 50 minute section, plus an extra 10 minutes for all types of fun activities!

That 10 minutes can be used for:

  • Reviewing food logs.
  • Talking about struggles / obstacles.
  • Discussing your weekend.
  • Joking around and laughing.
  • Chatting about daily events.
  • Showing each other cat videos.  Oh, is that just what I do with my clients?

As you can see, it’s not all about work, work, work.

Personal training should be fun and you should get along with your coach and want to hang out with them.

I have to be conscious of the time with some clients because I know we can go off tangent when certain subjects get brought up!

Since you’re going to be spending 1 - 4 hours with your personal trainer each week, you may as well enjoy it! 

I like to think my clients enjoy our time together.  

60 minute personal training sessions with client
how long should a personal training session be? 50 minute session with client

Who Trains With Their Personal Trainer For 90+ Minutes?

The hour and a half sessions are much rarer but I do see it from time to time.

It’s rare to see it when training general population clients because it’s more for specialized coaching.

90+ minute sessions are usually for:

  • Coaches that are training clients who are getting ready to go on stage and they need extra time to work on posing.
  • A strength coach that is working with a client preparing for a powerlifting meet.
  • A strength and conditioning coach preparing high performing athletes for their sport.

It’s a very small percentage of the population so you won’t see most coaches offering it.

Also, it’s important to know that you don’t NEED an hour and a half session to see results.

A 50 - 60 minute session is plenty of time to build strength and muscle.  Your diet will take care of the fat loss so don’t feel like you have to exercise for hours on end to burn calories.

How Long Should A Personal Training Session Be Recap

At the end of the day, chat with your potential personal trainer about their session duration and their philosophy behind it.

If they do 30 minute workouts and their reasoning makes sense, go for it!  On the other hand, if it seems like they do 30 minute workouts to churn and burn clients, maybe you should steer clear of them.

As I mentioned earlier, most coaches will be in the 50 - 60 minute range for their sessions and that will be adequate time to help you get in shape.

Once you’ve got your session duration figured out, I recommend reading the articles:

I hope all this information helps.

If you have any questions about personal training, feel free to reach out.  I’m always happy to help.