Tamar Cline, assistant director of fitness at Colorado State University (CSU) in Fort Collins, has spent the past 7 years training new fitness instructors just to see them graduate and move away. Cline and CSU staff help students get a head start on their certification exams while earning spots at the Student Recreation Center as group fitness instructors.
If you teach group exercise long enough, you’re bound to encounter the group exercise diva. This self-proclaimed privileged member wreaks havoc in your classes and throughout the club. She is the person who feels that rules apply only to others—not to her. She (or he!) displays disrespect for the group exercise experience, the instructor and the other participants. The diva’s behavior tends to create a negative experience for the majority of attendees. Unfortunately, the instigator often goes unchecked.
With the growth in fitness-specific curricula in colleges and universities, new graduates are becoming an even more important human resource for the fitness industry. What employers may not expect, however, is who comes with these new hires: their parents. The current graduates, who belong to the generation known as the Millennials, have entered the workforce with a different parental relationship from that of previous generations in that it tends to be more of a friendship or a partnership.
Fancy television ads, colorful magazine spreads, eye-catching direct mail pieces. What do we truly hope to achieve with our ongoing marketing efforts? The answer: satisfied paying customers. However, with tremendous competition in the fitness industry today, traditional forms of advertising are no longer enough to garner significant results in most markets. It’s time to step it up.
Does the following scenario sound familiar? After interviewing a young college graduate for a front-desk position at your fitness facility, you get a follow-up call, not from the candidate, but from her mother. “I am calling to let you know what a great young lady Amy is,” the mother says. “She is very eager to start working, and I know she’ll do a great job. So what do you think?”
As a group fitness instructor, you seek out innovative choreography, purchase motivating music and put on your biggest smile in an effort to keep people coming back for more. While relating to participants may seem most pertinent, don’t neglect the critical connection with your group fitness director. Since this individual is typically the one who hires and fires, determines the class schedule and decides what equipment to purchase, it’s important to establish a positive and productive relationship with him or her.
According to the Kiplinger Business Resource Center, “The United States economy in 2008 should limp along, with little or no growth in some quarters and a lousy feeling to many businesses and consumers” (Idaszak 2008). When economic conditions create a difficult market, the fitness industry must respond quickly in order to weather the storm and prevent financial problems. Begin by reviewing your budgets and identifying costs that appear superfluous or redundant.
About 30 years ago, the first wave of
group fitness instructors (known then as aerobics teachers) got their start in
an industry yet to be defined. Many of those people are still teaching and
training, yet as the industry grows and changes, continuing to shape itself,
the need for a steady influx of teachers is evident. Since the world of fitness
is radically differ...
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