The Ground-Floor Guru
By moving his studio to a busy shopping center, Bruno Bosardi has increased business and awareness.
Subject: Bruno Bosardi
Company: The Body Alchemist
Heal Thyself. Bruno Bosardi, Pilates and Gyrotonic® exercise trainer in San Diego, happened upon these two training methodologies just as many other instructors and practitioners do: once a professional dancer, Bosardi began to experience chronic back problems that eventually ended his career and led him to discover a new path in life. “I tried numerous methods to heal my back issues,” he recalls. His dance partner suggested he give Pilates a try. “After one session I found relief. I focused on stability in my pelvis, and it worked. That was 15 years ago, and I haven’t stopped.” Bosardi is currently certified through the Pilates Institute of New Mexico and is a master instructor for Body Arts and Science International.
In Bosardi’s unending search for practices that could help others regain or enhance mobility, he happened upon Gyrotonic exercise. “I first heard about Gyrotonic when it was referred to as White Cloud,” he says. “I looked for someone who was trained in it, and I tried it out.” Bosardi discovered an overlap between Gyrotonic exercise and Pilates, but realized that the former helped take his understanding of movement to new heights. “The work focuses on pelvic stabilization [like Pilates], but with an emphasis on extension and rotation of the spine, which is more applicable to everyday movement.” He decided that the Gyrotonic program would make a great addition to his services and he became a fully certified instructor.
Changing Lives. Bosardi’s clients range in age from 20 to 84, and 70% are women. He finds great pleasure in assisting others to discover the benefits of movement, and he’s especially thrilled when he’s able to help someone regain mobility. “It sounds a little cliché, but I change people’s lives,” he says. “I have had clients who were practically immoble, but through Pilates and Gyrotonic, I helped bring movement back into their bodies. They can travel again and are much more active in their daily routines.” Bosardi mentions that he works hard to emphasize a greater comprehension of each movement, thus improving each client’s execution. One client, Betty Wied, says, “I am a senior citizen and I have been working out with Bruno since 2001. While I always knew that Bruno’s guidance was beneficial to me, I truly learned how valuable his skills were when I fell and fractured my pelvic bones 2 years ago. With Bruno’s help, 6 months after my fall I was able to dance at my son’s wedding and walk without assistive devices.”
Window Shopping. After 10 years, Bosardi decided to move his practice to the ground floor of a bustling urban shopping center. The move helps elevate the community’s understanding of Pilates and Gyrotonic exercise, and provides Bosardi with greater exposure. “The studio is now out in the open with windows on both sides, so it’s much more visible to passing traffic,” he says. “People can walk in and see others on the equipment (he offers both mat- and equipment-based programs), which is a relatively new concept for a Pilates studio, as most are not that visible.” He believes that many consumers are aware of Pilates mat exercise, but are largely in the dark about the equipment. The new exposure has helped increase business by 20%, says Bosardi.
Business Minded. Despite his successes, things haven’t always been a walk in the park. “I realized that just because you are a good trainer doesn’t mean you are a good businessman,” he says. Some challenges he has experienced include lack of available business training and maintaining high-quality staff. He suggests that any trainer interested in opening a facility should prepare by doing lots of research and number-crunching before attempting such a monumental task. “A partnership with a good businessperson who understands how to do marketing is a good option,” he says.
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