The Father Of Personal Training JAKE STEINFELD

Posted on 28. Jun, 2009 by in Marketing Fitness


Body By Jake

True, I’ve had some big names on this blog – everyone from Jennifer Lopez’ , Tyra Banks’, and 50 Cent’s Personal Trainers, all for LIVE interviews, and most have contacted me for the privilege (lol) of sharing their knowledge on the top online fitness marketing blog in the world (yes, that’s Alexa verified).

So I shouldn’t be excited about the guy who I’m going to be profiling now, especially since he’s not even here for a live interview (I’ll get working on that), but it’s hard not to be.  Not only is one of the originators of the training business – he’s taken the natural finesse, hustle, and street smarts that defines a Top-Level Trainer and parlayed it into mega-millions, and he’s not slowing down yet.

It’s Jake Steinfeld, aka BODY-BY-JAKE.  I remember flipping through Jake’s book a few years ago at a Barnes and Noble, but when I went into his history for this blog post, I was blown away by what I found.  When you read the progression and sheer DOLLAR FIGURES that Jake has behind him, you’ll be speechless too.

Here’s the whole post – check it out:

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Jake Steinfeld, born on February 21, 1958, is an American actor and the most well known personal trainer of all time. He is regarded by many as the father of personal training and is responsible for creating the personal training industry more than 30 years ago.

Jake Steinfeld moved to Los Angeles from Brooklyn, NY with the goal to win the Mr. America Competition. However, when he came in second in the Mr. Southern California competition he realized that he most likely wouldn’t achieve his goal. His friends had predicted that he would be back in six months and had no chance of making it big in the City of Angels. But, Jake was not about to give up so easily.

A chance meeting with a small time movie actress gave rise to Jake Steinfeld the personal trainer. He would soon go on to training some of biggest names in the movie business which included Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford.

In 1990, Jake soon realized that he was sitting on potential goldmine of opportunities and he just had to do something to exploit his success as a personal trainer. His unrelenting quest for success gave birth to Body-by-Jake, one of the most successful fitness products businesses with positive feedback from more than 2.5 million happy customers.

However, it was not all easy going. The road from being a highly paid personal trainer to a global business leader was fraught with mistakes and skepticism. Body-by-Jake was met with an equal does of enthusiasm and skepticism.  A the time he launched his brand, the economy was just entering into a recession and people were more interested in staying afloat than giving a new idea a go. Soon out of money, Jake could either throw in the towel or he could give this another shot somehow.

His wife being his biggest supporter, urged him to take a second mortgage on their recently purchased home to pursue his dream. This time around, Jake decided to take another look at his business model. He realized he was making mistakes and needed to target a wider audience. That’s why even though he personally considered infomercials as being cheesy, he decided to take the plunge. There was no looking back after that, and the tank for Jake was slowly moving from ‘E’ to the full mark.

A self confessed street-smart entrepreneur, Jake continues to develop successful products, brands, and businesses as Chairman and CEO of Body by Jake Global®. He entered the realm of web based businesses with the creation of Global Fitness Media®, the entity behind websites such as FitPlanet®, and Good Food Near You®. One of his most successful ventures included FIT TV, which he sold to Fox Network’s Rupert Murdock for $500 million in 1997. Another multi-media innovation of Jake’s was the launch of ExerciseTV®, the first fitness on-demand television network, with partners Comcast®, New Balance®, and Time Warner®. Jake also helped found Major League Lacrosse®, which indirectly fetched him sales worth $600 million for his Body by Jake brand.

Not to be left behind in the fitness publishing domain, Jake’s latest book, “I’ve Seen a Lot of Famous People Naked and They’ve Got Nothing on You!” was a New York Times® business bestseller and Wall Street Journal® best seller.

Jake did his bit for the society by creating “Don’t Quit! Foundation” to support and educate youth about the value of physical fitness by providing state of the art fitness centers for schools. Jake was also appointed to serve as Chairman of California Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports by Governor Schwarzenegger (another fitness trainer turned entrepreneur – hint-). His goal was to inspire kids to have a ‘Don’t Quit’ attitude and be more active.

His TV appearances included Body by Jake TV show and a bunch of other small roles in different sitcoms. He also lent his to voice Git, a lab rat in the latest Disney animated feature Ratatouille.

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What an amazing story, and what an amazing ride!  What did you think of that?  Leave your comments below.

And remember this is only PART 2 of the special five part series on trainers turned entrepreneurs.  There’s some more amazing people so stay tuned.

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26 Comments

T. J.

28. Jun, 2009

Kaiser,

I definitely think that a lot of trainers love and greatly benefit from your content but merely keep the comments on the low side to avoid extra repetitive stress via typing.
;)

It sounds silly, but with so much info on the web and so many ways to get sucked into typing, clicking on a mouse, etc. I often find myself trying to cut out extra reasons to stay online. I love thought provoking pieces, enjoy handwriting things, could talk for hours on end about all sorts of topics, but feeling glued to a screen and a keyboard is like pulling teeth for me. Consequently I often find myself greatly limiting my time commenting on blogs and posting on forums.

Perhaps I am just an obstinately stubborn guy slow to embrace the way the world largely works these days and am short changing myself by resisting the online trends. That said, I thoroughly enjoy your blog and newsletter and am grateful to you for sharing your time and talents and for being such a phenomenal resource to all of us.

TJ

28. Jun, 2009

Jake’s best “role” ever……..foul-mouthed cab driver in “Coming To America”!!

Chris

28. Jun, 2009

Hey Kaiser, I not a Trainer but love your blog and am an avid reader(I sell motorcycles). Like your writing style and attitude. I’m trying to put together a blog and can’t wait to see the video on how it’s done. Thanks for all the great content. Keep it up. Take care, -Chris

Brittany

28. Jun, 2009

Hey Kaiser,

I’m one of those trainers that reads your blog all the time and never posts a comment. I really should comment more and I’ll try to do that in the future. I get a lot out of it so thanks for doing what you do.

As far as Jake Steinfeld goes, he was one of the first trainers I ever knew of. He and Gilad! I used to do his TV workouts when I was in middle school. I giggle every time I do “Mountain Climbers” because they will always be “The Jake Run” to me!!

Greg Justice

28. Jun, 2009

True confession time…It was the book “Body by Jake” that made me take the plunge into opening AYC Health & Fitness, Kansas City’s Original Personal Training Center, in 1986.

I read with interest how Jake was training Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford and charging $250 for a half hour session!

Hmmmm…I thought, I wonder if this could work in a conservation Kansas City market…I took the plunge and haven’t looked back.

Great blog post, Kaiser! Now you’ve got me wondering “Who’s Number Three?”

Sirena

28. Jun, 2009

Hey Kaizer,

Like Brittany, I read your blog all the time but never comment! You have awesome content. I guess it really does make a difference when you actually tell us to comment :)

Great series, and keep up the great work! I’m also digging your new services as I’m going to be a new customer ;)

Sirena

p.s. How about a series on the BEST fitness infomercials? I have to confess, I totally obsessed with them!

Bryan

28. Jun, 2009

You’re a success no matter what. So you didn’t meet goal the first time. So what. You know that. Drive, determination, and consistancy prevails. You also know that. Just reinforcing what you already know and live by. Keep up the good work. I am a veteran and always appreciate new exciting info and that’s what you offer.

Paul

28. Jun, 2009

Great success story. Makes me want to learn more about it in greater detail. Before I got into the fitness industry and started learning how to make money in it, I always thought he was just a greddy infomercial whore. I had no idea about his mission to create awarness for physical activity in young people. Respect. Lots to learn from his story.

Ok, gimme my free blog creating video now.

Kidding. Great post as always, Kaiser. I’ll stop keeping my thoughts to myself from now on.

But seriously, where’s my free video hahaha.

Jim Hart

28. Jun, 2009

Kaiser,

Great interview from a guy who is truly a pioneer and a legend in the fitness world. It’s good to see a sucess story from someone with such humble beginnings. It goes to show that focused attention and hard work eventually pay off. He is an inspiration to all fitness entrepeneurs looking to break away from the clubs.
JIM

Greg Crawford

29. Jun, 2009

..Hey Kaiser,
That’s funny , Body by Jake is old school! Your blog is awesome, keep it up!

Greg.

Gary Swarni

29. Jun, 2009

Kaiser,
Dude you’re the man. I’ve loved watching this blog grow. Keep it ,up.
Jake is a great man. I know him personally and he is as passionate about fitness and life today as he was when he first started. Most people laugh when they hear ” Body By Jake” beacuse they think of the infomercials but what they dont realize that this man is a straight bad ass go getter business man. If people what to lear business they should model Jake.
Keep up the outstanding work.

Gary

harly

29. Jun, 2009

wow, jake is the man, def a very good example that hard work pays off

Mickey

29. Jun, 2009

Hi Kaiser,

Jake is definitely an example that you don’t need a Harvard Business School MBA to make the big bucks. Determination and belief in yourself is more important than alphabet soup after your name.

Oliver

29. Jun, 2009

keep the good stuff coming Kaiser, would love to hear some more stories like this. I too I am someone who avidly reads your stuff but rarely post comments. I receive a heap of newsletter and blogs everyday, and to be honest yours is one of the few I ALWAYS read. You have a great mix of practical stuff and inner game.

Good luck with the comment tally

Oliver T

Kaiser

29. Jun, 2009

I never fully knew Jake’s story before this post and really slept on how heavy this guy is – I think this post has really struck a chord –

Hey guys – my comment counts – we’re now only six away!

Doug Groce, CSCS

29. Jun, 2009

Jake is an excellent example of someone who understood early on that being successful in this biz is much more than just knowing training.

Not only does he GET fitness, but he GETS marketing. Not a bad combo .. Does anyone else feel that the phrase Body By Jake is stuck in their mind, but can’t figure out why?? haha

Craig Poindexter

30. Jun, 2009

I would love to put out a product from or open a gym called Body by Craig but in the world of marketing I’d only be the imitator. Not something I’d be able to live with, how about you? I do like the title SUPER-TRAINER though.

Yavor Marichkov

30. Jun, 2009

Love modeling successful people – keep those biography style posts coming man!

ronald

30. Jun, 2009

site looks awesome im going to have to sign up soon…

fitnessgirl

30. Jun, 2009

awesome post kaiser love how you keep this blog alive for all of us!

bulldog

30. Jun, 2009

YESYESYES, EVERYONE USE KAISERS SERVICE YOU WONT BE DISAPPOINTED!

BiasTraining

30. Jun, 2009

Kaiser you never seem to disappoint me with your blog posts, keep up the good work buddy! everyone out there needs to really stick with this site, its one in a million.

Darren

01. Jul, 2009

Thanks for the great interviews Kaiser

Nitin

02. Jul, 2009

Very cool. I like the term ‘top fitness marketing blog in the world’.. your ranking is killer – 189747 at the time of writing this. You think you can crack into the top 100000? I think its a matter of months for you bro.

Doug Murphy

03. Jul, 2009

Very inspirational post-talk about making the big bucks! I could relate to a lot of these comments-I have been spending less time online, and I’m guilty of not posting comments as I read things in a hurry and take off for the next appointment!

Train With Jake

14. Jan, 2010

Jake Steinfeld is a true legend. Thanks for the post, Kaiser.

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