Notes 2 Inspire: Boundaries Not Barriers

I’ve been thinking a lot about the difference between Boundaries and Barriers. As a teacher, a coach, a friend, wife and overall human its easy to say yes when we mean to say no, feel obligated to do things or simply want to help others.

Talking to others recently had me really diving into the differences of these words. I was listening to people I work with and realizing that some were putting up barriers instead of setting boundaries. .

Boundaries: a line that marks the limits of an area; a dividing line.
Barriers: a fence or other obstacle that prevents movement or access.

I think its incredibly important to have boundaries around your work schedule, life, and business relationships. But, remember boundaries are a “line” or in my imagination written in pencil or pen, not sharpies or cement.

If we build walls aka barriers around our life we can’t move those walls should our goals change. If we build walls in order to control things they only box us in. But a line, a boundary, we can move that as needed. The key is that WE can move our own boundary, not that anyone can move your boundary line.

This week, if you feel like you’re hitting a wall everywhere you go maybe you are? Maybe, its a wall you built when you meant to draw a line?

Take a look where you have walls and where you have boundaries. Double check that they are all within your design.

xx~LL

How to Motivate Different Client Personality Types

Personal Trainer and Pilates teacher and lover Michael Myers is back as a guest blogger! This week he shares his advice on motivating clients. As we all know every client has a good day and a not so great day. Some clients can accept a new exercise challenge and others take a correction personally and can even internalize it. As Pilates instructors and Fitness Professionals it can be tricky to find the balance of encouraging a client and discouraging a client, motivating or accidentally discouraging. And, to top it all off even when you think you have figured it out our clients come in for their sessions from where ever they are in their life that day! Lately, it has been on my mind ways to help other teachers create a teaching space that is optimal for all personality types. I asked Michael to share with all of you because he has a special skill in getting his clients to show up and commit even after years and years of starting other programs and quitting.


Clients walk in the door every day with goals and expectations that might have best suited them 10 years ago. However, now that life is starting to catch up with them they have different physical issues or limitations. Let’s just call it general “Wear and tear.” Now the trainer has to come from a place of giving the client what they need opposed to what they want. I see a lot of trainers getting stuck in this place on a daily basis. Whether it be attributed to the trainer’s lack of overall knowledge or overall concern. Once again as Fitness Professionals we must remember clients seek us for our knowledge, and a level of respect is gained when you lead somebody to what they need, opposed to what they might want.

A trainers voice is everything, and we all know the power of words. Trainers must stand strongly behind their voice, training philosophy, and emotion. Yes, I said emotion. Emotion is a strong motivational tool. Clients do not walk into sessions with the expectation to let the trainer down, or not give it 110% (We must remember this is still an investment) However, somewhere between the ears there is a disconnect, but if they feel the genuine emotion behind the coaching they will push that extra mile. It all boils down to the human connection and being personable with your clients. There is no such thing as ego when you’re doing something for somebody else’s best interest.
The trainer’s outlook on Fitness and the clients must always remain positive but never coddling. Once a trainer starts coddling clients, giving positive praise when its totally unwarranted, letting the client dictate the flow of the sessions and allowing the client to manipulate the situation, the trainer has lost. There is no respect for a trainer that consistently gets ran over. A trainer can not motivate somebody that doesn’t have the utmost respect for them. As long as we remain strong inside of our voice, philosophies, and training emotions clients will remain motivated, and trainer will remain respected.

-Michael Myers

Certified Personal Trainer, Michael Myers received a full, four-year football scholarship to Colorado State University, where he played Running Back and kick returner,  graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Applied Human Science. Certified by the International Sports Science Association (ISSA), Stott Mat Pilates, Schwinn Cycling and many other group fitness class programs, Michael has developed a deep expertise that spans a wide variety of training methods. Michael works with a slate of private clients in addition to teaching various Boot Camp classes and Mat Pilates classes at Equinox in West Hollywood and Century City.

Follow Michael on Instagram! 

Join Michael and LL on for more tips and advice on Motivating Clients here and check out our course on Attracting, Challenging and Retaining Male Clients.


What are your challenges do you have when it comes to motivating clients? Share your wins, questions or struggles in the comments below!

xx~LL

 

Notes 2 Inspire: Stop Pretending!

The other day I was getting ready to have one of those spiral moments. You know, those moments where you fear what can go wrong, you picture how that failure will go down, and then all the things that will happen because of it. The slippery slope continues until you’re in a ball, tears streaming down your face, you’ve failed in the biggest way. Does that resonate? Or, maybe it’s just me? Anyways, I was on the brink of spiraling. And, my husband stood there and asked me, “How is this time different than before?”

See, I wasn’t about to attempt something so new I hadn’t done something similar to this before. In fact, I think most of us tend to do the same things and maybe we uplevel them…more people, more money, more to lose. But, even if the scale is bigger then gist, the skill set is something that we have.

His question stopped me in spiraling tracks. How was this time any different than the times before? Sure the audience was bigger if I “failed” it was going to be on a bigger stage. But, a bigger audience didn’t mean I was changing my speech or changing my point. My teaching wasn’t changing in any way. So, why on earth was I pretending that I didn’t know how to do the thing I had been hired to do?

My dears, as go on our journey and the stakes get bigger it’s easy to think that each opportunity is different than the one before. That we aren’t ready, that we are frauds, that people are going to find out. That, somehow we have managed to get where we are without actually knowing how to do the thing. But, if we are super honest with ourselves we are pretending. We are no owning our strengths or our gifts. We are pretending not to know what we know.

So this week, when a problem arises when it starts to feel like you’re about to fall on your face and embarrass yourself remember that you do know how to slay. That you have all the skills you need to do the thing. That this is an opportunity to shine not to shy. And, people don’t ask people to do things when they know they cannot do it. They ask those they know who can.

xx~LL

3 Powerful Ways to Promote the Awesomeness of Pre & Postnatal Pilates

This week’s guest blogger Alison Marsh of Your Pregnant Core might be the best person to discuss this week’s blog topic! If you have been reading my blogs or taking my courses you know I am a massive fan of nicheing out! And if you are passionate about Pilates for women before, during and after their pregnancies that is a niche. Check out Alison’s tips for marketing to this group of women.


You’ve attended a thorough pre and postnatal Pilates teacher training, and can’t wait to start teaching this very special population!

In today’s age, women are getting pregnant later in life, and tend to be hyper-aware of their health during pregnancy. Taking care of themselves becomes a priority.

These are the women who need your transformational pre and postnatal Pilates services. And they are more likely to have the ability to afford ongoing sessions, whether that be through mat classes or privates, or both!

The following tips will get your skills in-front of the women who need them!

Establish Yourself as the Pre & Postnatal Pilates Expert in Your Community

 

 

Volunteering your services is the best way to fast-track credibility in your community. It allows you the opportunity to practice, as you build confidence in teaching this population.

Joseph Pilates had a dream that all people would practice Contrology. It is our responsibility, and honor to share this practice with pre and postnatal women who wouldn’t otherwise get this specialized training.

Where to Seek Volunteer Opportunities:

  • Women’s Wellness Centers,
  • Library District,
  • Women’s Shelters, and
  • Hospital Health and Wellness Centers
  • YMCA or other Community Fitness Centers

Example:

In Las Vegas (where I live), we have University Medical Center’s Healthy Living Institute where they offer free classes to the community. I volunteered my time via a workshop, teaching pregnant moms how to safely move through their everyday activities to reduce low-back pain and other ailments that come with pregnancy. Then we went through a 15-minute Pilates-inspired session with a basic dining room table chair that they could do at home.

I made up a hand-out with the tips we went over, and then added my contact information. This has been a great way to not only give back to my community, and build my reputation as the expert in this area, but have gained private clients this way as well.

Build Relationships with Local OBGYN’s, Midwives, and Doulas

Start with your personal OBGYN.

When you have your annual visit, and they ask “Do you have any more questions?” Tell them about what you do, and the services you offer. Have a card or flier ready!

This is exactly how I built a great relationship with our now “in-house” OBGYN Nurse Practitioner, Paige Cook, who not only refers clients to us, but reviews all of our materials to ensure they are safe for pre and postnatal women.

Visit women’s birthing centers where the services of Midwives and Doulas are offered.

Prepare information about the services you provide and offer to come speak with their staff and give them a short presentation of your services.

Or, invite them to one of your free events that you have planned in the community. Always have plenty of cards and/or fliers to leave!

Build a Presence on Social Media

Begin building a following on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter – whatever you are most familiar with (and you don’t have to use them all! )

One way to gain clientele in this area is to start a free Facebook group for pre and postnatal women in your area. Or, if you plan to do virtual training, open the group to pre and postnatal women around the world!

You could do a weekly Facebook Live video, sharing tips on how to take care of themselves during pregnancy and the postnatal period. Maybe a five-minute routine a week. Whatever fits best for you!

The POWERFUL thing about a Facebook group is that you can really get to know this clientele’s pain points – what they worry about most – and frame your marketing around helping them resolve these issues.

For example – During Pregnancy:

Many women fear to gain too much weight. You can be the advocate who encourages them to eat healthily, moderate their exercise routine by giving them mini-Pilates sessions, and embrace healthy weight gain, as this is a healthy part of pregnancy.

And For Postnatal: You will be there to help new moms be patient with their healing bodies by offering safe, healing-inspired Pilates sessions, and encourage moms not to rush back into high-intensity workouts.

Click here to print out the Body Patience After Pregnancy guide for your clients, to help them understand the healing that their body is going through. And don’t forget to put your contact information on the handout!

Other Tips for Marketing:

  • Pick a Niche – Topics include Diastasis Recti, Incontinence, Twin Pregnancy, HIgh-Risk Pregnancy (which is more prevalent due to women having babies well into their 40’s), In Vitro pregnancies.
  • Example: My niche is diastasis recti, and I am now known in my community as the Pilates Instructor to see if a woman has DRA, or wants to prevent a non-healing DRA (abdominal separation)
  • Use positive, encouraging language in your marketing.
    • Example: Rather than talking about how to stay slim during pregnancy (which is not healthy advice), talk about how to help mom keep her energy up and reduce or eliminate the aches and pains of pregnancy.
    • Again, this is where pre and postnatal specific Facebook group can help. Using the language that this population uses will help your marketing resonate with the right women.
  • Collect success stories from past clients, and use them in your marketing materials.
    • If you are just starting out, find a few pre and/or postnatal moms, and help them for a reduced rate, or simply as a trade for sharing their experience with you. One trade that I do is offer sessions in exchange for permission to video the sessions and use them for my educational and marketing materials.
    • Sharing success stories of clients with a focus on the client’s transformation is a powerful sales tactic.
  • Believe in the services you offer!
    • When you are confident in your abilities, and the services you offer, you are excited to promote your amazing services.
    • You have an obligation to let this population know that you can help them.
    • Pregnant women and new moms NEED your services, for the well-being of themselves, and their families!

Your Turn:

There are pre and postnatal women who need you RIGHT NOW!

Follow the steps below to get started on getting your awesomeness out to those women!

  1. Pick 1 of the 3 marketing ideas above.
  2. Take one of the action steps below (corresponding to your chosen marketing idea):
    1. Establishing Yourself as the Expert in Your Community: Visit or call one of the centers on the list – library, health center, medical center, YMCA, and introduce yourself and what you have to offer.
    2. Build a Relationship with Local OBGYN’s, etc: Find the closest facility to your studio, visit and introduce yourself and your services.
    3. Build a Presence on Social Media: Take the steps to make a Facebook page, Facebook group, etc. If you already have one, do a live video introducing yourself, with an exercise or health tip for mom.
  3. Visit our Your Pregnant Core Facebook page and share that you have taken action on marketing your awesome pre and postnatal skills!

You are awesome!

Now go rock your fresh, new marketing skills and start helping the women who need you!


 Thank you, Alison Marsh! For more info on what Alison is doing check her out on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and her website! Or, comment below!

xx~LL

Notes 2 Inspire: Rejection is Information

Rejection sucks. It hurts. It’s a total let down if you were super excited about something and then the door feels like it slams in your face. Fear of Rejection is real and is a massive block for many of us doing the things that we feel compelled to do!

But, what if Rejection got a total facelift. What if instead of thinking about Rejection as a bad thing, as something to fear and as a reason for not launching the product, sharing the post or idea or asking someone to join you on something we saw it as necessary feedback?

Ok, don’t stop reading just yet, hear me out. When we put ourselves out into the public there is always the possibility that we will be loved by some, liked by others, maybe others will just be neutral and then, of course, there will be the rejecters. Their rejection doesn’t mean you should do the thing you want to do. Rather, it just means they are not your audience. They are not your client, they are not someone you have to spend another moment trying to convince.

See, here’s the thing, it’s easy to think that you, your product or business is for anybody and everybody. But, it’s not and it can’t be and if you continue with that mindset no one will hear you or see your product because you cannot talk to everyone at the same time. When you, your idea, product etc gets rejected it is feedback to help you go out there and do the thing again!

But this time you’ll be even better at it! You’ll know who to talk to and who you don’t need to worry about. Rejection is integral growing your idea from a piece of paper to out in the world and beyond.

So, the next time you get a big, massive rejection thank them. They just helped you in more ways than they will ever know!

xx~LL 

How to Write a Newsletter That Your Clients Actually Want to Read

You know you have to write them, you know you hate to do it and No, email is not dead! Actually, quite the opposite. When people give you their email they are giving you direct access to THEM. You don’t have to play the algorithm game and wonder if your clients saw that you have a new class, workshop or event. But, what to write? And, how do you get them to click on YOUR email as they go through their inbox? Well, this week’s guest blogger Pilates instructor, Podcaster, and business savvy lady Nikki Naab-Levy is here with words of wisdom you must read!


Something I hear frequently from fellow Pilates teachers is “I haaa-aaate writing my newsletter. I never know what to write about and I always feel like I’m pestering my clients when I do it!”

If you feel like this, you’re not alone.

We become Pilates teachers, because we want to teach movement, not because we want to write newsletters. However, when done well, your newsletter is an opportunity to inspire and educate your clients outside of their sessions, deepen your relationship with potential customers, and build your business.

Also, with the right mindset and approach, it might even be fun.

Here are some tips for writing your newsletter:

  1. When choosing a topic, consider your client’s perspective: If you’re ever stuck on what to write about, it helps to put yourself in your client’s shoes and consider what they are struggling with and what they look to you for help with.

Some good questions to ask yourself include:

What questions do my clients ask me all the time? What are they struggling with?

What is something that I teach all the time that my clients don’t know, which gives them big results?

What is a simple exercise or tip that I could teach my clients, which would give them a quick win with a problem that they are trying to solve?

If you brainstorm a list with answers to these questions, it’s likely that you’ll see some themes emerge. Each of these topics or themes could make great newsletter content. For example, if many of your clients tell you “I LOVE how I feel after our session, but I don’t have equipment at home! What can I do instead?” you could write a newsletter with three exercises your clients can do at home to feel great in between sessions.

If you get stuck, don’t forget it never hurts to ask your clients what they’d like to know more about. Most people are happy to share!

  1. Write about things that light you up: If you’re bored with the topic you’re writing about, your readers will be able to feel it. However, if you pick a topic that you’re genuinely excited to share, your enthusiasm will come through and your clients will be excited to read it too.

Don’t believe me? Think about it in the context of normal life. If you asked your friend if you should try a new vegetarian restaurant and she told you, “Yeah, I guess. They have a lot of vegetable dishes and vegetables are good for you” you wouldn’t want to go there. However, if she told you, “OMG. This place is amazing! The food comes out looking like a work of art, tastes as good as it looks, AND it’s healthy,” you’d be all about it.

  1. Be yourself! Your clients come to you for your knowledge, personality, and teaching style. They don’t come to you, because you can teach them the hundred, which they could figure out from a YouTube video.

The same principle applies to your newsletter. The people on your list are following you because they like your unique voice. This means that your newsletter doesn’t need to read like a 2,000-word research paper on rotator cuff function.

If you write the way that you talk about your work in real life, not only will your newsletter be more fun to read (and write!), but your personality will shine through. This can help you attract more ideal clients because if they like what you have to share in your newsletter, they might decide that you would be great to work with in real life too.

  1. Consider alternative forms of media: Not all newsletters require lengthy text.

If you don’t enjoy writing, ask yourself what form of media would be more fun to communicate through? If you’re more comfortable with video, maybe try sharing an idea or an exercise that way and then including a link to the video as your primary newsletter content.

If you feel comfortable talking, you could do a voice recording, like a podcast. There is now voice recording software and apps that make this easy to do. If you’re visually oriented, you could create a gorgeous image in Canva and include a bulleted list of tips for an exercise or a simple recipe.

  1. Repurpose content you’ve already created: If you’re stuck on what to create there is a good chance you already have something finished that would make stellar newsletter content.

Is there a juicy blog post you recently wrote? You can copy that text and email it to your list. Was there a video that you posted on social media that got a lot of positive feedback? You can write a short paragraph about it, include a link, and your newsletter is done. Not only does this save time for you, but it helps the people on your list see the amazing content you’re putting out, which they might have missed if they weren’t on social media the day you shared it.

  1. Include a call to action: When you send a newsletter, ask yourself, “What do I want people to do with this information?” It could be something sales related like, “Want more ways to improve posture? Book yourself an introductory private,” but it doesn’t have to be.

A call to action could be as simple as “try this exercise the next time you feel stiff” or “Find this helpful? Share it with a friend who could also use this info!”

And on that note, if you try one of these strategies, we’d love to hear how it goes. You can let us know in the comments section below.

 ——————————————————————————————————————–

Nikki Naab-Levy is a Pilates teacher and massage therapist for people who aren’t zen, hate green juice, and are allergic to words like self-love (but kinda need it). She has over a decade of experience helping people build strength, improve mobility, and overcome injury.

Nikki holds a B.S. in Exercise Science and a B.S. in Journalism from Ohio University and is a Master Trainer for the Balanced Body Bodhi Suspension System. Her fitness wisdom has been featured in Greatist, Girls Gone Strong, The Balanced Body blog, and Men’s Fitness.  

When she’s not teaching a sneaky hard Pilates class, you can find her hiking in the Pacific Northwest with her husband Kc, freelance fitness writing, and chain-drinking Americanos. For practical fitness advice + workouts that don’t hurt, visit her website NaabLevy.com or check out her podcast Moving Well on iTunes or Stitcher.

Check her out on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, and Linkedin!

Notes 2 Inspire: Don’t Believe Everything You Think

If you have ever listened to Tim Ferriss’ podcast he often asks his guests what they would put on a billboard if they had the opportunity. The answers are really enlightening and always get me thinking. What would I put on a billboard? Which then, inevitably I come up with several ideas and can’t decide! One day, someone asked Tim what he would put on. He has a couple and one is a quote that someone else said would go on their billboard that they saw on a bumper sticker: Don’t Believe Everything That You Think!

I mean, isn’t that just the best?

Our minds can create so many scenarios. We as humans desire to be right. We will find support, evidence, and signs that what we think is the reality. But, the truth is most often our thoughts are not accurate. We take things personally, we make assumptions, and we think that just because we haven’t done something means we cannot do something.

Depending on what’s happening in my day my thoughts can make me feel like I’m invincible and other times that all is impossible.

This week, try not to believe everything you think, thoughts are not facts.

xx~LL 

Paying It Forward: How Community Changes a Business

I love to introduce every guest blogger! And, I know I always say I am excited to share the words of the author but on this day I am beyond honored and grateful to share the words of this weeks guest author. She is a brilliant woman, artist, incredible Pilates teacher and dear friend to me. I could go on and on about all the things that Anula does that make me smile. Her generosity knows no bounds. And, perhaps that is why she is the best person to talk to you about building a community. I’ll let Anula Maiberg take it from here!


Here is what Yoga got right: it went from a spiritual practice a massive cultural mammoth. The branding of the Yogic lifestyle did not happen overnight. Like it or not Yoga is multi-million dollar industry. Certification programs are 200 hours or less (Pilates can go up to 800). Class sizes are only restricted by physical space and can easily be held outdoors where space isn’t even an issue. Between retail sale of water bottles, mats, apparel tied in with oils, crystals, jewelry, hemp/chia/flax power bars laced with water blessed by a shaman in a hilltop by the side of the Himalayan mountains blessed by a single sourced, fare trade butterfly of complete inner peace and spirituality, you’ve got something pretty good going on business-wise.

Pilates, on the other hand, is staunchly Germanic. Its a workout regime for those who like rules. A Pilates teacher may give modifications but a group class is rarely framed through the lens of: you could go into your Teaser practice or hang out in Child’s Pose. That’s not the common style. Sometimes this formula lends itself to an astringent reputation. We all sort of know what the vibe of a Yoga studio can be like. But what’s the vibe of a Pilates studio? When we ask people who have never tried Pilates before they often reference a more clinical environment. That obviously has so much to do with extremely knowledgeable teachers using their skills for rehabilitative purposes. This part of the Pilates industry is amazing and wonderful. There’s another aspect that is sometimes missed: community.

You thought I was gonna say merch? Well, I’m not. Studios can obviously sell what they want but often that isn’t what keeps students coming back.

Group classes are either done on mats (which are often raised from the ground), on Tower units or Reformers. This lends itself to a sense of separation between students. Some people love it and some people don’t. In this webinar, we’re going to explore a segment of the population that may be yearning for a sense of connectivity. We’ll be discussing how to tap into a market that may want to feel in touch with their fellow neighbors to the right and to the left. We will go over some strategies of how we can warm up our overall reputation and how to make Pilates indispensable to a group class goer. Group class is the most financially un prohibitive way to practice Pilates. How do we take the group class from a luxury to a necessity? (and if not a necessity to an event that should seldom be missed). The short answer: create a community. The longer answer is how.


For the “How” on this join Anula and me for a one hour webinar on May 17th 12pm pst for a live discussion with tips and actions you can take to create community. And, if you can’t join us live the replay runs for one week. Snag your spot here. For questions please feel free to comment below or contact me here.  Oh, and my Pilates pro’s you don’t have to be a group class teacher to create a community. You can create community in your private based studio too! So, are you ready?

See you at the webinar!

xx~LL

 

 

Check out more awesomeness from Anula on Facebook and Instagram 

Notes 2 Inspire: Do Yours Match Up?

Every day we have to make so many and maybe even too many choices.

I mean, Tom Hanks in “you’ve got mail” even talked about the number of decisions one has to make at Starbucks just to order coffee. And that’s just coffee! It’s not even a decision you have to make to do the things you want to do. I know coffee helps but it’s not the keys to the kingdom.

In the many books, I’ve read and interviews I have listened to all “successful” people have daily routines so they can make fewer decisions every day in order to not experience decision fatigue.

Because during your day you have to make choices towards your goals as often as possible.

And if you’ve exhausted your decisions for the day it’s going to be harder to make choices that match your intentions.

This week, take a look at all that’s on your plate, the decisions you have to make and ask yourself, “do these choices match my intentions?”

If they do, pat yourself on the back and enjoy every minute. If there are some that don’t then map out some steps to reverse the choice or prevent it from happening in the future.

Your intentions are yours, your choices are also yours. When they are in alignment magic will happen. When they are not…boy is it frustrating.

Xx~LL

Discover How to Market Your Pilates Teachers

I know you are so excited when you hear a teacher of yours is taking a well-deserved vacation but inside you also feel that tugging on your gut…how many sessions am I losing while she/he is on that trip?

Or, you maybe you find yourself needing to teach less, run your studio more and you want to pass some of your clients off to another teacher or a new teacher at your studio? Or, you need to make room for more clients, need to grow your Pilates business, and retain your clients.

Maybe, you rent space somewhere and you want to take some time off but you don’t want you, clients, to lose their rhythm?

Do any of these sounds like you? Then you are in luck! This week here are some tips to “sell” another teacher to your clients. All these tips and suggestions will help you manage your clients and grow your Pilates business.

First, if you are in any of these positions or one I haven’t mentioned but requires the same action pat yourself on the back. This is a good thing! You’re getting busier, your business is growing, you are able to grant or take vacations. All, of this, is a sign you are doing well. But, none of these situations should hinder a clients growth or Pilates practice. And, that is what is at the heart of all of these scenarios. Teacher A needs to teach less, change their schedule or take time off. Clients of Teacher A need a temporary or new Teacher. Enter Teacher B, C and maybe even D. But, how do we get Teacher A’s clients to want and trust any of these other teachers? And, does it matter if clients take a break when a teacher does?

Let me address the latter question first. Yes, it does matter if clients take time off when the teacher takes a break. Rarely in life does it work out that a client and their teacher pick the exact same days to take a break. My week of this past spring was right after my client’s kids spring break. So, if I let them take a break when I was gone they would have missed two weeks. And, then wouldn’t you know it when I came back they had the flu. By the time I saw them again, it was three weeks. But, luckily I have teachers up my sleeve in my community and the studio I rent at that could take care of my clients for me. So, they only missed the weeks they were gone.

But, how did I get them to want to take from someone else? Patience, consistency, and honesty were key as well as:

  • Introducing fellow renters in the studio whenever I could
  • Constantly encouraging clients to make up sessions they lost or were going to lose when they took a trip
  • Regularly reminding them of their goals and how far they had come since they began Pilates

How can you do this for your team or for your clients?

Studio Owners:

  • Be aware of all the teaching styles, personalities, and client personalities
  • Know teachers availability at least a month in advance
  • Slide clients into the same timeslot with the best fitting teacher and then let the client know that they are “all set up with teacher B and if they need to reschedule to let you know by ___ day.”
  • Create a teaching space where the clients experience more than one teacher if they come more than twice a week.
  • Have client cards that teachers fill in so clients feel that they don’t have to explain injuries, issues or goals with a sub.

Renters:

  • Introduce your clients to the teachers you know and trust that you would want to sub for you
  • Train your clients to schedule their life around Pilates and tell you in advance when they are traveling
  • Have client workouts, goals and injuries written down and shared with the sub so all your client has to do is show up.
  • Pay the teacher out of your client’s package so again the client just has to show up

The reality is you are going to have to be patient. Especially if your clients have only worked for you for a long time. But, be honest with them. Tell them why you need for them to try out Teacher B, C or D. “I love teaching you three days a week, but my schedule is changing and I don’t want you to lose your third session each week. So, Monday and Thursday you are with me and Saturdays you are with Teacher B. You’re at the exact same time and he/she knows your goals, workouts and favorite exercises.”

Give them an opportunity to try out the other teacher and have them give you feedback on how it went.

Be patient, no one likes change. Put yourself in their shoes. What if your instructor told you the same thing. How would that make you feel?

Don’t give up!

If they don’t go for Teacher B maybe Teacher C or D is going to work. Whether you are a studio owner, manager or instructor looking to share your clients it is integral to the success and future of your business to work on this. You can’t teach everyone every hour they want. Your teachers in your studio need to make enough money to live and want to teach at your studio. If they are busy doing what they love it gives you time to grow your business, take time off and really empower and support both your teachers and your clients.

If you are a renter or independent contractor having teachers who can cover for you means your client’s Pilates practice stays consistent. They continue to hit their goals and feel the benefits of Pilates. Which means you can take your trips and not worry about losing clients because of it.

Client retention has a lot to do with clients feeling they are getting the benefits of Pilates. And benefits come with consistency. But, that doesn’t mean you are at the beck and call of your client’s availability.

So, when is your next trip? Have you set up your subs yet? Got a new teacher on your team? What clients get to try them first?

xx~LL 

Notes 2 Inspire: Enjoying the Middle

There is a beautiful piece of art that says “the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the middle the end.”

The reason I think it’s beautiful is that it’s so freaking true! It’s also the hero’s journey.

Pixar and most movies subscribe to the hero’s journey. The main character is someone we like who encounters a situation and he spends the whole middle of the movie trying to solve the situation he/she finds himself in. And then after the longest middle in life usually figures out that they need help, need to be vulnerable and need to level up often by teaming up they solve the problem, best the bad guy, win the moment and then the credits roll.

It’s not about the end my friends. It’s really that cliched journey that is the reward. Fall in love with the messy middle.

Xx~LL

Your Invitation to Investigation

I remember when I first started teaching Pilates. It was over ten years now but I didn’t know what I didn’t know and I was so excited to be teaching something I believed in so much I would say the cues I heard my teachers say. I didn’t always know if I was getting the results I wanted but I knew my teachers who knew what they were doing did and so if it worked for them…

But, then over time, I realized that not all cues work the same. Not all exercises feel the same in different bodies. Clients and teachers have different learning and different teaching styles. It took getting curious and investigative to up-level my teaching!

And, the thing about curiosity and being a detective is that it’s not something you can compartmentalize. Once I turned on this investigative work in my teaching it affected my own Pilates practice. Exercises I would skip doing because I didn’t “get it” or it felt “wrong” I began to find something new. To come at them from a different angle.

The detective work didn’t stop there! It’s like a virus that but the good kind! Because when you practice being curious you don’t take roadblocks as the final answer. You hit a wall and you ask yourself “is there another way?” Of course, there is! So, then you try to find all the other ways. Are you struggling to get to your next level because the universe is against you? Did someone really take that opportunity from you? Or, is there another way?

When you practice finding different ways to get different clients to do the same exercises but for their body options present themselves. When you practice getting curious as to how the Pilates method feels in your body and you stop skipping exercises or practicing the same exercise the same way expecting something different the opportunities for growth in your own body and strength appear. When you stop taking things that “happen” to you as the answer and start getting curious as to other ways you can achieve the same desires you take control over your own life. Your destiny is accessible all because you got curious!

And, my dear friends, Pilates instructors, and studio owners I want to help you become investigative! That’s why I created my online Pilates business course Your Invitation to Investigation!

Your Invitation awaits.

Where are you stuck? Where do you want to grow?

xx~LL