A number of tried-and-proven options to attract new members and clients can help you grow your business without reinventing the wheel. You can join a franchise system, license the rights to an established brand or invest in instructor training to build a specialty business. Each option has an opportunity cost (what you might lose if you don’t choose the particular option), as well as benefits that you might gain. Among these choices, franchise systems offer many advantages.
One day, while stretching my client Jim, I was taken aback when I realized he wasn’t wearing underwear. His shorts were swim trunks with interior netting. I quickly looked away and continued to stretch him. This happened with Jim on several other occasions, but I never mentioned it because I wasn’t sure how to broach the matter. I also didn’t feel as if he was doing this intentionally, nor did I believe he meant harm.
Are you thinking about selling your personal training studio or fitness business? Your business is probably your primary source of income, and selling it will mean you’ll lose that annual income but achieve a one-time capital gain. Are you prepared for that? IDEA member Toby Davis, senior adviser at Sun Acquisitions, Chicago, shares the following tips for anyone preparing to turn over the keys:
The success of your business relies solely on your ability to attract and keep clients. Use these tips to enhance the client-trainer relationship so that you can focus more on providing quality service to your current clients and less on finding new ones.
You’ve worked long and hard to get your fitness facility off the ground, and while you’re doing okay in your community, you’ve noticed some of your membership base trickling away. Upon further investigation, you realize that while you’ve had your nose to the grindstone, managing your facility and planning for growth, a discount club has opened up not far from you. Not only that, but a handful of specialty boutique studios have carved out some market share. Where do you fit in, and what can you do to keep your place?
Education is the foundation of the IDEA World Convention, but this fitness event offers plenty more than stellar instruction. For Jonathan Bernath, publicist-turned-personal-trainer, it’s where he discovered the “fitness family” that would guide him in his new career.
The fitness industry is a rewarding and inspiring place to be. However, it’s not without its challenges, and getting ahead with passion alone can be difficult. The most successful fit pros know that to build an epic life and career, they must invest in education and learn from those who’ve been there and done it.
In 2016 America, traditional commercial health clubs—multipurpose, fitness-only and corporate facilities—served 32.2 million members, a 3% decline from 2015, according to the International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association. Studios served another 18.2 million, a 15% improvement.
Nonprofit facility membership rose 6.9% from 2015 to more than 24 million. Collectively,
studio facilities claimed 40.7% of total membership.
Many people who want to join gyms are skeptical that it will actually help them reach their fitness goals. A new study from Iowa State University may assuage those doubts—and help gyms to convert more browsers into buyers. According to the research, published in PLOS ONE (2017; http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/jour
nal.pone.0170471), gym members tend to have significantly higher levels of strength and cardiorespiratory fitness and are generally more active than nonmembers.
If you've spent any time at all inside a gym, you've likely experienced this scenario: You're humming along on your treadmill when Joe Talksalot hops onto the machine next to you and proceeds to speak loudly into his smartphone. To distract yourself from Talksalot's not–so–private conversation, you scan the gym floor—and over in the corner you see a woman doing backbends while contorting her neck to maintain a visual on her tablet.
Fitness facility owners and managers often focus on what they offer instead of why they offer it. In the first part of this series about why people decide to join a fitness facility, we explored the roles that inspiration, motivation and doctor’s orders play. In this second part, we’ll discuss four more guideposts.
The search for top talent can be difficult and is often made no easier during the interview process. How do you choose questions that will elicit the information you need to select the right person for the job?
Bosses. We’ve all had them. Good, bad, indifferent. What sets the good ones apart from the rest?
If you have difficulty relating to or mobilizing your staff, perhaps it’s time to do a little self-assessment and determine what leadership qualities you may be lacking.
“My favorite project manager always had my back,” recalls Susan Wall, a freelance instructional designer from Lisbon, New Hampshire. “He also trusted me to do my job, and he challenged and encouraged me to step outside my comfort zone.”
If you’ve ever struggled to fill open classes or you’ve ever wanted more qualified fitness pros on your staff, it’s time to get proactive and ensure that you have the team of your dreams. GROOMing Habits is designed to arm you with the tools to make it happen. In the first installment, we covered Groundwork and Recruitment. Now let’s explore the final components: Options, Opportunity, and Manage & Meet Expectations.
Gone are the days when all that your personal training department needed in order to stay ahead of the curve was a gym full of the latest fitness equipment and a team armed with clipboards, stopwatches and maybe a heart rate monitor or two. Now there’s a barrage of fitness technology, such as wearable activity trackers and mobile apps. Many fitness managers are contemplating if, when and how to formally integrate these new tech tools into personal training services.
The daily responsibilities of owning and managing a fitness facility can be overwhelming. Along with all the usual details, like class scheduling and staff management, a primary concern is the danger of reduced revenue due to member turnover.
I have found that these are the most common reasons why some trainers are not performing: lack of knowledge, lack of confidence, lack of recognition and lack of personalized motivation (you as a manager/owner knowing what specifically motivates them).
Unless you’re extremely fortunate, quality instructors are not knocking down your door begging for work. Instead, you likely find yourself cycling through recently certified fitness pros who have little or no experience. They come, they go and you start over. The amount of time and attention you invest in staffing can take your eyes off the bigger picture, which is to help people get fit and healthy.
As an owner or a manager, could you be putting off talented trainers without knowing it? We asked some top fitness pros what they look for when seeking employment. What they have to say may help you become the type of manager that the best-quality trainers yearn to work for.
At an inspired fitness facility, people are encouraged and motivated to generate a “positive vibration.” This business model makes members feel special, and it motivates people not only to join your facility but also to thrive in your fitness community. What happens when your employees are treated as well as your members?