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Best Practices


Do you have a cancellation policy? Why or why not?

By IDEA Authors | February 16, 2010 |

My time is valuable. When clients cancel and I don’t charge them, I lose income. My rent and bills don’t change because of these cancellations. I inform my clients of my cancellation policy right away and ask them to sign a form saying they understand the policy. I have a 24-hour cancellation policy, but if I see that someone has several cancellations, I schedule him on a week-to-week basis. With all this being said, I use common sense.

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Promoting a Fitness Bucket List

By Sherri McMillan, MS | January 26, 2010 |

In the 2007 movie The Bucket List, Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson play terminally ill patients who escape the hospital ward to complete adventures on their “bucket list.” Most people can connect with the concept of a bucket list—the things you want to do before you “kick the bucket”—because no one wants to die with any regrets. We all want to live our fullest lives.

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Tricks of the trade

By IDEA Authors | January 26, 2010 |

When we introduce a new service, we spread our promotional efforts over a variety of media. If we want a big push, we take out a print ad in targeted local publications. It’s important to note that a print ad has to run for a while before it gains attention. You can’t just run an ad once and think that it’s going to produce anything. An ad has to run for at least a couple of issues before the event you’re promoting, and has to continue to run for several months before people actually start to take notice and inquire about your offering.

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Creating a Successful Internship Program

By Justin Price, MA | October 26, 2009 |

Internship programs provide supervised practical experience for people wanting to gain hands-on knowledge in a specific area of the health and fitness industry. Designing and running your own internship program can be a rewarding experience for both you and your students. It can also become an additional revenue stream for your business and increase awareness of your name as a leader in the personal training industry.

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Selling Affiliate Products

By Amanda Vogel, MA | March 13, 2009 |


You probably already recommend health and fitness products to your clients. What if you could receive a cut of the profit when clients purchased stuff you told them about? This technique is called affiliate marketing, and it’s one way to bring in revenue without having to actively provide a service, as you do with one-on-one training.

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Identifying and Managing Risk Among Trainers

By Darren Jacobson | November 1, 2008 |

 9  Business Basics:
Pricing Your Services
13  Technology:
From Mobile to Mobility
17  Training for Growth:
The Struggle for Significance
21  Best Practices:
Build Your Team

By nature, personal trainers are passionate, driven, organized and excellent at communicating, or so we would like to believe. In reality, within any team there are radical differences in terms of trainer competencies.

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Build Your Team

By Darren Jacobson | November 1, 2008 |

It is said that if you want to be successful, you must surround yourself with great people. One of the most challenging aspects of running your own business is finding great people and then keeping them.

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emergency kit

In Case of Emergency

By IDEA Authors | July 24, 2008 |

Whether you call it a disaster plan, an emergency response plan, a crisis management plan or something entirely different, you must put in place a contingency plan for your business—with the hope that you’ll never have to use it.

Setting the Foundation
Start by taking care of some simple foundational elements….

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Are Your Interview Practices Sound?

By IDEA Authors | May 29, 2008 |

interviewing job applicants, do you use standardized practices, or are your
interview protocols as varied as the candidates? A study in the Canadian Journal of Administrative
Sciences (2007; 24 [1], 30–44) has discovered that many human
resources (HR) professionals may not be offering applicants interview equality.
As your personal training business or g…

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Keep It Green

By Kristen Horler, MS | September 1, 2007 |

Environmental awareness and ecological
responsibility are at the forefront of today’s
news. Fitness industry professionals
can follow the examples of the rapidly
growing number of green spas, green
buildings and companies practicing sustainable management policies. You may
be surprised to learn that it does not necessarily
cost more to"keep it green!"

Discover …

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Equipping Older Clients for the Future

By Colin Milner | December 31, 2005 |

Over the past two decades, fitness equipment manufacturers have gone from peddling basic barbells to hawking digital talking machines. During this time, many new products have rocked the way fitness professionals design exercise programs, while other gadgets have fizzled away, never to be seen again. Now, with the first of the Baby Boomers turning 60 this year, a new line of senior-friendly pro…

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Getting Your Equipment Needs Met

By IDEA Authors | June 30, 2002 |

Q:My director knows our studio microphone is broken and agrees we need to fix it right away. She says she has requested a repair. Yet 3 weeks have elapsed, and nothing
has been resolved. Meanwhile, my voice
is shot. If I refuse to teach until the mike is repaired, I will be considered a problem instructor. But if I continue to teach without a mike, my voice will suffer even more. What should I do?

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Protecting Members and Yourself, Problem Solver

By IDEA Authors | May 31, 2001 |

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?

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