Why You Need a Substitute Teacher and Where to Find Them

If they are willing to go to a sub or guest teacher you are amazing at what you do

Good for Business

Having someone else teach your clients for you while you’re away on a trip or training might strike a chord of fear. I know, most teachers are not keen on letting someone else teach their clients. I mean, what if your client likes them better? I bet reading that out loud made you realize just how funny that sounds. Your clients love you. And, if they are willing to go to a sub or guest teacher you are amazing at what you do! Most clients don’t like change and would rather miss their Pilates than take from someone else. But, you should want your clients to take from a guest teacher. It’s good for your business and for clients!

Pilates instructor teaching Pilates exercise on reformer
Most clients don’t like change and would rather miss their Pilates than take from someone else

Why You Want a Sub

Before we talk about where to find these guest teachers or subs let’s cover three reasons why you should want and be cool with having your clients take from someone else:

  1. Consistency is key! If you take a week off Murphy’s law would almost guarantee your client will be missing the week before or after. By arranging a sub for them you can ensure they only miss what they would have on their vacation. Allowing them to remain consistent, keeping Pilates in their schedule and you feeling guilt-free about taking some much deserved time off.
  2. They’ll realize just how good you are! When another teacher works with your client they will finally hear what you have been trying to get them to understand this whole time. They will also be excited to share (or lament if that’s their personality) about what they did with the other teacher. This is not an “I liked them more” convo but just a “look what I remember, I was a good student” share time.
  3. Clients who take from other teachers hear new things because every teacher has a different pair of Pilates eyeglasses on. It’s easy overtime for clients to tune us out. By hearing a new analogy, new cues, or just a new voice they’ll listen to you better the next time you teach them.

Finding the Sub or Guest Teacher

Now that I’ve got you convinced that your clients will not leave you for the sub or guest teacher, in fact, they will probably last longer how do you go about finding this person?

If you are a studio owner chances are you have some options to turn to. If you’re an independent contractor it gets trickier. Or, if you work out of your own home or solo at a studio, like an independent contractor finding a sub or guest teacher isn’t as easy.

  1. Talk to your legal expert to make sure the payments for these sessions are kosher. I’ve got a great one if you need just contact me here. She is a fitness instructor who also is a lawyer!
  2. Take from other teachers in your community. When you find one that teaches like you inquire if they are interested in subbing when you travel. If so, is it possible for them to teach in your space? Clients are more likely to take from a sub if all they have to do is show up like usual.

  1. Make sure your client cards are up to date. This makes it easy for a guest teacher to step in, teach the session your client is used to and go.
  2. Follow-up Check in with both the teacher and the client to see how it went. The first time might be awkward for all parties. But, eventually, it’s easy and natural.

If you are a studio owner and the clients are studio clients I highly recommend that clients take from more than one teacher as a policy if they come more than two times a week. This makes it easier and more natural for clients to take from other teachers when their primary teachers are away or sick.

For my independent contractor in a studio with other teachers be sure to introduce your clients to other teachers when they are in for their session so that when you offer up the guest teacher it’s not a random teaching stranger but rather someone they are used to teach.

Are you ready for your next trip? Who’s going to sub for you?

xx~LL 

Pilates clients working out using Magic circle
The first time might be awkward for all parties. But, eventually, it’s easy and natural.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

<a href="https://profitablepilates.com/instructor/lesley-logan-2/" target="_self">Lesley Logan</a>

Lesley Logan

Lesley Logan fell in love with Pilates after her first 100! From side-hustle to full time, she jumped from teacher to manager to running multiple studios. She wrote a book that focused on the business of Pilates, which grew into ProfitablePilates.com and is now a business coaching program called Agency. Take class from LL at OnlinePilatesClasses.com and listen to her podcast at LesleyLogan.co/podcast. When not in Los Angeles she travels, leading workshops and retreats around the world.

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