Should I use Athletes or Models for my fitness product shoot?

Fitness product photography helps bring your fitness brand to life, helping to promote healthy living and lifestyle. From a range of fitness products like gym and training equipment, clothing and accessories, or fitness snacks and supplements; it can be hard to decide which models to use for your fitness product photoshoot. 

So, How do you choose the right ambassadors to model for your brand?

Think about what your brand stands for

You want models to embody your brand throughout the campaign. Choosing the best models for your brand helps get your brand message across to potential customers.

Gymshark's New Release
Gymshark’s range of new releases including models with diverse body types on their online store

Gymshark uses a diverse selection of models for its clothing range to promote inclusivity of all body types throughout its brand. It makes it easier for customers to visualise what the product would look like for their body type when shopping online. By using a diverse selection of models makes customers feel comfortable shopping with Gymshark.

Think about who you’re targeting

It will determine if you need a model for your brand or an athlete. Fitness product photography is diverse, and it depends on what will best suit your products or the audience you are targeting. If your brand tailors fitness fanatics looking to get into serious training, fitness/athlete influencers are a great model for your brand. But if your brand represents leisure and promotes a ‘feel good feeling’ then, choosing agency models might be the best choice for your brand. 

Collette modelling Ryderwear
Our premium photographer Collette, modelling for Ryderwear fitness activewear 

What types of models should I use? 


We know by now that influencers have a large number of followers and engagement that can help increase brands’ awareness and reach. Nike recently partnered up with mega influencer Bretman Rock to shoot their annual BETRUE Collection for Pride month. On Instagram alone, Bretman’s post recieved 2million likes and another 2 million views for Nike’s campaign post. His large following and influence online helped branch out Nike’s brand to a diverse target audience.

Nike BETRUE Campaign
Nike in collaboration with Bretman Rock for the #BETRUE Campaign

Micro-influencers are the most attractive models for SMEs. Because although they have a smaller amount of followers, they might have better engagement with their audience. Customers are more likely to associate your brand with those influencers. Micro-influencers are also cost-effective compared to bigger influencers. 

It’s not always about the number of followers!

Ghost Lifestyle is a fantastic example of a brand that uses plenty of fitness-oriented micro-influencers to model and promote its brand.

Ghost Lifestyle with Kirsty Colbert- She’s a British WBFF Pro and Online Coach for women

By affiliating with influencers, you’re provoking the interest of their niche fitness followers by being associated with your brand. They can be tagged and followed on social media, which helps with increasing the reach of your brand.  


Although influencers and athletes might be great for your brand, you also have the option to use models from agencies. Agencies like J’adore can help you find the best model to fit your brand, and they also have an influencer section if you are interested in using influencers for your brand. 

J'adore Models
J’adore models’ influencer section

Depending on the budget of your fitness product photoshoot, this will also help you decide what the range of models available to you. Influencers with a large following often cost more than micro-influencers, but if you choose models from an agency rates of each model will vary depending on the agency. 

Using Your Photographer’s Contacts

You can always ask your photographer for suggestions on the models for your brand. Here at Picture Perfect Photography, you are in luck because our premium in-house photographer is also into her fitness. She has contacts that she could refer your brands to for modelling. 

It is a great starting point in choosing the best model for your fitness product photography. Now you’re ready to find which models to use for your brand. Always think about your customers first and how your models will resonate with them. Then think about their suitability for your product. 

So, what will you use for your brand? 

DOWNLOAD – How to take fitness photos that impress

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