Pilates is for Everybody
“Pilates is for everybody.” As Pilates instructors, we say and hear this all the time; however, most of our clients tend to be women. When men do give Pilates a try, it is usually because their spouse made them or their doctor recommended it, and they quit as soon as their pain dissipates. Men are a big portion of the population that you could be helping, but who won’t even walk through your studio door (yet!).
The big question is, how do you get men into the studio and keep them committed?
When I first started teaching Pilates, it was for drop-in classes in a gym. The odd guy would pop in with his wife or girlfriend to try a class, but only a few came consistently. It turns out that one of those men (let’s call him “Steve”), found Pilates again when he learned about my Pilates Strong – Pilates for Men series. He had been missing Pilates for the five years since I taught at the gym! So our instincts are right – men can and do love Pilates when the conditions are right.
I’ve built a successful men’s program at my studio, and now my clients consist of about ¼ men. I teach them through private sessions, a Men’s Series, and through my regular group classes. But it wasn’t always like this. I used to struggle with my retention rates. I’d have men try Pilates, but quit after a few months. I just couldn’t understand why they didn’t keep coming back if they were seeing the positive benefits.
Then it hit me – for too long I had been stuck looking at the problem from my fitness-loving, female background. And that type of thinking is a far-cry from how a middle-aged man with crippling back pain is thinking.
It was only once I mastered all three of the following areas that I noticed the numbers of male clients signing up and continuing their Pilates practice:
Three Keys to Creating a Successful Men’s Pilates Program:
- Understand the reasons men choose to practice Pilates
- Know what motivates them to come back
- Learn to dispel their objections as to why they “can’t” do Pilates
Sure, as Pilates instructors we know that middle aged men, athletic men, and even our husbands (ha!) could benefit from Pilates. And some men, like Steve, see and love the benefits of Pilates right away! But in order to get the rest of my male clients committed, I had to change my approach. Now that I have implemented some insightful changes to make my business more male-friendly, I have a solid core of male clients and a sold-out Men’s program.
Benefits of Running a Pilates for Men Program
Increasing the number of male clients I work with has certainly made me more money, but there have been several other benefits as well:
- I get to work with more couples, and see them bond over their shared fitness goals.
- Men and women tend to have different common issues, so it has been fun working with different challenges and abilities that men bring to the studio.
- I am getting more client referrals from men – something that was nearly non-existent before!
The biggest benefit of running a Pilates for Men program, though, has been being able to share my passion for the power of Pilates with a whole new group of people that I never thought was possible.
Join me in this course and discover the benefits of running a Pilates for Men program. Let’s share the power of Pilates with a whole new group of people!
– Melissa Nagai
b.Pilates & Fitness, Owner