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Health & Fitness Articles

Protecting Members and Yourself, Problem Solver

Thank you for the February 2001 Problem Solver column, “Dealing With Fellow Instructors’ Eating or Exercise Disorders.” Recently a colleague of mine encountered this situation with a member of her facility. With regard to getting involved, our staff is concerned about the legal implications, including possible claims of discrimination and privacy violation. What are the legal guidelines for approaching a member (especially at the request of other members) when it is clear that the member’s health is in danger?

Keeping Pace With Step

After more than a decade, step classes are still going strong. Our longtime, dedicated steppers are growing ever stronger—or so we assume. And our step teaching awareness is at an all-time high—or is it?

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Sponsors and Partners: The Big Payoff

9 Steps to Becoming a Better Manager

In the fitness business, many
managers acquire their titles and supervisory responsibilities in the absence of any formal training—or, for that matter, any natural leadership skills. Even trained managers may occasionally get so busy with their
day-to-day responsibilities that they
neglect the basics of handling people. Whether you are a new manager or a veteran, take some time out to brush up on these essential skills.

If You Build It, They Will Come: Starting a Pilates Program in Your Facility

I f Yo u B u i l d I t , T h e y W i l l C o m e :

Starting a Pilates Program i n Yo u r F a c i l i t y

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By Lindsay Merrithew and Moira Stott-Merrithew

ow that a U.S. District Court has ruled that Pilates is a generic term (see February 2001 IDEA Health & Fitness Source Industry Watch column for details), more and more fitness facilities are considering providing this popular form of exercis…

Preaching to the Converted

Turn on your television and there they are: the exercisers. Pick up a newspaper or magazine and you can read about “them” exercising—not to mention all the companies advertising fitness equipment. Get on the Internet or call a friend and you discuss exercise.With the massive media penetration and “top of mind awareness” fitness has achieved, it should come as a shock that in 10 years there has been virtually no growth in those of us actually exercising, rather than just talking about it.

Boss Talk

I have a new boss. I don’t yet know exactly how he thinks or what he expects from me. Sound familiar? Even if the organizational structure at your facility has not changed recently, you may have wondered exactly how and what to communicate to your manager or boss.

What Do Facilities Pay?

Every facility follows a business model, which impacts all costs,
including salary levels. When looking at these figures, keep in mind how costs are associated with revenue. For example, it is simpler to
associate the cost of a personal trainer with the revenue of a session fee than it is to associate the cost of a fitness instructor with the revenue of a membership fee, which allows access to an entire facility. These cost-revenue associations may impact compensation.

Getting the Classes and Times You Want

Q:What steps can I take to get the teaching schedule I want? The facilities where I teach don’t seem to have any formal system for determining who gets what class when. Hints to my directors haven’t gotten any real commitment or definitive answer. I don’t think politics drives these decisions. Maybe it’s simply random—or the luck of being in the right place at the right time. Any ideas for being proactive? What have other instructors done to improve their weekly teaching schedule in terms of class type, time and frequency?

Big Bang Exercises

Your participants rush to the gym in the early morning,
during their lunch hour or after work, desperately trying to stay fit, keep the fat off or simply feel better about their bodies. Pressed for time and wanting results, many exercisers are after something new—an exercise that delivers more or is better than other exercises.

Think Beyond the Walls (nontraditional teaching opportunities)

Did you know that innumerable teaching opportunities exist beyond the conventional health club setting, which caters mostly to the already fit? The truth is that moneymaking options for group fitness leaders are plentiful—if you are motivated to move beyond the comfortable limits of traditional facilities and if you widen your clientele to encompass those who are less fit.

Think Beyond the Walls

Did you know that innumerable teaching opportunities exist beyond the conventional health club setting, which caters mostly to the already fit? The truth is that moneymaking options for group fitness leaders are plentiful—if you are motivated to move beyond the comfortable limits of traditional facilities and if you widen your clientele to encompass those who are less fit.

Big Bang Exercises

Your participants rush to the gym in the early morning,
during their lunch hour or after work, desperately trying to stay fit, keep the fat off or simply feel better about their bodies. Pressed for time and wanting results, many exercisers are after something new—an exercise that delivers more or is better than other exercises.

Getting the Classes and Times You Want

How to Build Excitement

Remember the last industry convention you attended?

Motivate Without Money

When faced with the dilemma of how to motivate employees, many managers simply avoid offering employee incentives because they “don’t have it in the budget.” Yet most employees can be handsomely rewarded if managers budget time, effort and a bit of creativity.

What Are the Pay Scales Around the Country?

Average hours worked and compensation for the industry were reported in the January 2001 issue of IDEA Health & Fitness Source. These charts break down those results into regions. When looking at the numbers, consider that the region includes big cities and suburban areas, as well as small towns.

Kicking Around New Kickboxing Ideas

Experienced teachers know that class variety is one secret to long-term success and self-preservation. Teaching a wide repertoire of class modes—for instance, step, indoor cycling and kickboxing—can help prevent burnout and improve your teaching skills. Developing options within a mode—endurance cycling, mind-body ride and power spin, for example, or step interval, multiple step and advanced step—is also important.

Upping the Fun Factor

As amazing as it now seems, back in the 1970s we had to prove that aerobic dance could actually increase your heart rate. “Yes, cardio activity is effective,” our new and growing industry asserted. Once this effectiveness was established, researchers began publishing studies that detailed injuries sustained during aerobics classes. So in the 1980s and 1990s, our adolescent industry committed to making classes safe.

Kicking Around New Kickboxing Ideas

Experienced teachers know that class variety is one secret to long-term success and self-preservation. Teaching a wide repertoire of class modes—for instance, step, indoor cycling and kickboxing—can help prevent burnout and improve your teaching skills. Developing options within a mode—endurance cycling, mind-body ride and power spin, for example, or step interval, multiple step and advanced step—is also important.