Carlin Polidano 
(EPTI Advanced PT Diploma graduate, November 2017)

Carlin was originally enrolled on EPTI’s very first Malta-based PT Diploma practical course, back in June 2017. However, he was unable to attend due to rupturing his achilles tendon whilst training for a Spartan race.

I still remember him making a visit to the practical course hobbling into the gym on crutches to say “Hi!” to our teaching team.

Fortunately he made a full recovery in time to attend our next practical course in November 2017. At this time he was employed as a full time firefighter at Malta International Airport.  


Conversations with him during the course revealed a strong and driven desire to advance the quality of personal training in Malta.

After graduating with the EPTI Advanced Personal Training Diploma, he set up his own 75m2 PT studio in a garage unit in Luqa in January 2018, naming it Fit Stop Fitness Centre. He then set about putting the lessons learnt during his EPTI Personal Training course into practice, working full time hours with personal training clients in addition to, and around his full time shift work at the airport.

Over the course of the next couple of years, he continued to invest in his business while still working as a full time firefighter, and growing the client base up to 60 members. During this time he established a team of fitness professionals to service this growing membership base. A number of EPTI PT graduates have worked with Carlin at Fit Stop.

When the first Covid lockdown occurred in early 2020, Carlin was already working on developing his own fitness app and was able to keep his members active through online training via the app. When gyms re-opened, he welcomed back his previous clients that were also joined by many new members attracted to Fit Stop by the accumulating positive reviews online. 

Carlin subsequently invested in a second, larger premises in Paola, in the second Covid lockdown. During this difficult time, whilst gyms were forced again to close, renovation work was done and a 210m2 gym was installed and equipped with quality equipment and open to the public in November 2021. 

Now that Carlin’s business had now grown to such an extent that it required his full focus, he left the fire brigade to concentrate on managing the personal training systems across both Fit Stop Fitness Centre gyms.


Carlin and Fit Stop have since gone from strength to strength. He now employs a team of 12 personal trainers across both locations and has a membership base of over 230 clients, which includes government ministers, and prominent journalists and TV hosts from the Maltese media.

As well as face to face personal training at both locations, clients are also able to tap into the Fit Stop Fitness Centre app to access online and hybrid personal training programmes. At the Paola gym members are also able to purchase healthily prepared food from the fuel bar.

In April 2022 Fit Stop’s achievements and contribution to the fitness industry were recognised in winning the ‘Rising Star’ category at the Malta Healthcare awards.

Carlin is certainly delivering on his promise that he made back in 2017, to raise the bar for personal training  in Malta!


If you would like to follow a rewarding career that inspires and motivates you to enrich peoples’ lives, then get in touch with us to receive more information about our Personal Training Diploma and Gym Instructor courses in Malta.

EPTI is Licensed as a Further Education Institution by the Malta Further & Higher Education Authority (MFHEA) (#2021-012).

Furthermore, all EPTI Personal Training Diploma course packages are approved for Get Qualified funding in Malta.

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Personal Trainer

My first piece of advice to all new PT’s is to get a position at a gym.

Unless you can get a job in a quality PT studio where you be given clients, then I believe a gym is essential because:

● You have other PT’s there to learn from and to bounce ideas off
● There are already there that need your help
● You will learn your trade much faster
● Once you do get busy it’s much easier to schedule your diary and to get great results in the gym

Trying to set up as a home or park based PT from day 1 is MUCH harder in my opinion and will be very lonely. I know that many PT’s are afraid of gym rents but what is more important than having to pay rent is
that you take your time to get a position in a good club, with a great support system.

Once in the gym here’s my advice on how to get your first client...

Get to know everyone:
● Ask for 10 minutes with the gym manager on day 1. Tell what you are passionate about and how you will do all you can to help their club and their members.
● Ask if you can spend an hour doing work experience with the sales and reception to understand what they do and to get to know them. Offer to train one person from each of these teams for free for 6 weeks.
● Get to know fitness instructors and other PT’s. Some PT’s will be more than happy to help while some will be less enthusiastic. Stay friendly and positive and boost their egos by asking what advice they wish they had when they first started out.

● Introduce yourself to as many members as possible.
● Tell them that you are new to the club and new ask their advice about the gym/local area.
● Run a members questionnaire asking their no1 health and fitness questions. Give them a couple of brief tips and offer either:
a) a more detailed workshop
b) an email follow up
c) or both
● Offer to cover/run a class.
If you can get paid for it that’s great.
If not, do it anyway. It’s a fantastic way to get to know people fast.
Do not worry about giving your time away for free. It’s a chance for members to try what you do.
If you are good, they will love it and they will want to do more.
The mindset of someone who is employed is usually only ever to do what they are being paid to do. If you wish to RUN a successful business you have to be prepared to delay immediate gratification for long-term rewards.

Also run:
● Fast classes
● Gym challenges
● Body fat assessments
● Just spend your time interacting with as many people as possible.
● Give free taster sessions
● Train staff
● And take friends in to train
● The busier you look, the better.
● Gym members do not know that you are training people for free.
● Train hard in the gym daily yourself and always make sure you practice what you preach.
● Be approachable and do every session and every interaction as though a reporter is writing about you for the local paper.

Bonus tip – it can be intimidating to approach members on the gym floor.
Remember that:
a) members are intimidated too
b) all it takes is 5 seconds of courage to approach people
c) smile and just try to help people

When to ask for a consultation:
We tell our PT’s to never ask for a consultation until you have made 3 good interactions with that person. (unless they are giving you a green light by asking lots of questions about your services)
You build a relationship initially.
When you do offer someone a consultation, do it confidently and remember how much that session is worth.
You are doing him or her a favour, not the other way around.

Extra IMPORTANT Bonus tips:
● Don’t do what everyone else does – if PT’s are sat around or hardly ever there – DON’T copy them
● Don’t get dragged into backbiting or negativity – always be helpful, friendly and positive.
● You only need around 12 clients to have a hugely successful PT business so once you do sign someone up make sure you help them to get fantastic results and look after them as you would your own family.
● Track your interactions daily. Aim to speak to a minimum of 5-10 people per day and do not leave until you have.
● If you wish to run a successful business (in any industry) you must dedicate your life to that business for at least the first 12 months. Work hard (and smart) and there is NO BETTER JOB!

Hope this helps

As many of our PT Diploma students are based in Malta, Spain and scattered across mainland Europe in general, we thought that we'd put together a short blog to help students join EREPS should they wish to.

It’s an extremely easy process, since the Active IQ qualifications are recognised by both REPS and CIMSPA in the UK who both have qualification standard agreements with EREPS in Europe.


The EREPS Registration Process:

1. Click on the EREPS Membership Registration page:

2. Once on this page, you will need to upload your CV and digital scans of your official fitness certificates for the level you choose. Be aware that the Active IQ Level 2 Fitness Instructor certificate is Level 3 in EREPS; and the Active IQ Level 3 Personal Trainer certificate is Level 4 in EREPS.

3. The cost for 1 year’s membership of ERPES is €30. EREPS will review your application and if you have qualified through EPTI and had the relevant Active IQ certificates, you will soon be accepted as a professional member of EREPS.

4. You will need to provide details of your indemnity insurance policy. For our Personal Training Diploma graduates in Malta, we have partnered with a Maltese insurance company who can provide a tailored professional indemnity insurance product to safeguard your liability in the case of injury or an accident. The cost of 1 year’s insurance is approx €120-€150 depending on location.

Kindly note that our partner insurance company in Malta require you to be a member of EREPS before they issue cover. Therefore, when making the initial EREPS application, tick the option of “not yet insured and not yet practising” to obtain your membership number.
Once you have then obtained your insurance, upload your insurance details and quickly amend your EREPS membership to “practising PT with insurance” by ticking this option.

Malta Indemnity Insurance Application:

Click the link below to request an insurance application form (Malta only).
Please give your full name and Maltese ID number for our reference.


If you’ve ever wondered what happens on the practical part of a Fitness course - look no further!
Here is a VLOG giving you a snapshot of Day ONE on an EPTI Personal Trainer Diploma practical course.

You will get a “feel” for the atmosphere and excitement that all of our students (and tutors) experience during their time with us. Watch to the end for some photos showing the rest of the course. Enjoy! Caroline

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