How to Fix the Problems in Your Pilates Business

If you are looking at your week ahead and about to have a freak out about how o earth you’re going to get it all done you are so not alone! As Pilates instructors and studio owners, wives, husbands, partners, human beings there is a ton to do. You’ve got your clients, all the tasks that go along with that and you’ve got your life and all that happens in that. And, oh, that tiny thing like making money and propelling your business forward. How on earth can you do it all without freaking out?

  1. Know what your problems are and ask yourself why that problem exists.
  2. Create a plan of action that addresses this problem
  3. Hold yourself as accountable as you hold your clients
  4. Hold your clients accountable to the policies you told them about when they started
  5. Worry about what you can do and let others worry about the rest.

See, it’s so easy! F

Ha! Wouldn’t that be awful if I ended the blog there? “Here are you 5 tips for a week where you get it all done. Ok, GO!”

Look my fellow fitness pro you have a freaking ton going on. But, the first part of getting your business running the way you want it is to know what the problems are and why you have them.

Problem: You’re not making enough money

Why aren’t you making enough money?

-You are not teaching enough

-you are not charging your worth

-you’re not charging for late cancels

Fix: Set a goal that helps fix the problem. If you are not teaching enough but you are charging enough and holding others accountable then we got to get you known! We have to get your website working for you! We have to get your more clients.

If you are not charging enough we need to figure out how much you need to make, how many hours you want to work and find an average rate that will take all those sessions to add up to what you are desiring to make this year. I do this a lot when I coach others and in my AGENCY group.

If you are not holding people accountable to your policies then this is the week you remind people of what those are and you stick to them! Not only will you feel more respected but people will value their sessions with you more too!

See how these 5 steps help you solve your problems? What problem do you feel you have? Why is that problem occurring? What steps can you take this week to fix that problem and help you grow your business?

If you’re not sure then please contact me here. Let’s figure out a plan together that is possible. There are enough clients to go around and your tribe is awaiting your arrival.

xx~LL

Are These 3 Things Holding You Back?

What happens when LL and Cool J get together?! Well, read on to find out! This week’s guest blogger is a soul sister of mine and I couldn’t be more honored to have her share her words here with you in this week’s blog post. Jenna Zaffino, Pilates Teacher, Business Coach, Podcast host and way more than words can describe has shared three common limiting beliefs and help for each of them.  As you read this week’s blog ask yourself if any of this sounds familiar to you. And, if it does let’s talk! Limiting beliefs are walls keeping you from what you want. And, as you’ll read Jenna and I know that there is so much magic on the other side of every wall.  Jenna, take it away!


As a career coach, I’ve been fortunate to work with Pilates Pros around the world.  My favorite part of coaching is learning about the various cultures in different studios.  This provides a great reminder that we are all connected through this beautiful method. 

Most similarities amongst global Pilates teachers fall into the positive realm; health conscious, movement enthusiasts, love the Pilates Method forever and ever, etc. On the opposite end, however, I have seen some major universal themes that get in the way of the progress of Pilates Professionals and create negative stories that hold us back from the true potential of our work.

The following are what I’ve seen to be the top 3 limiting beliefs of Pilates Pros, along with some perspective that may help you see your situation in a new light.

  1. Suffering is part of the job.

Many teachers believe that they must suffer in order to provide help for others. For some, it’s getting paid less than they are worth (or working for free,) for others, it’s working far too many hours in the name of providing help.  The truth is, suffering, rather than thriving will, in fact negatively affect your work. The suffering mindset breeds resentment, irritability, hopelessness and ultimately is a gateway to burnout.  What starts out as a noble sacrifice can quickly become a burden – especially when it negatively affects your finances. To me, it’s about the ripple effect.  If you are paid what you are worth, you may be able to lessen your hourly workload, which preserves your energy for the clients you still see.  When those clients have a quality experience with you, they will be more likely to refer you to the people and opportunities who will appreciate the wholeness of your work and pay you for it.  Start thinking about the areas where you might be overextended.  What is one small change you can make to move towards an energy of thriving rather than surviving?

       2. I should do it all myself to save money.

I used to live and breathe this tenant to a fault.  Then, one day, a successful entrepreneur asked me what I was best at.  “Teaching Pilates!” I exclaimed.  He said, then do more of that and hire someone to do the things that drain you.  The idea of spending money on help can be daunting, but each time I have invested in my business by taking something off of my plate that allowed me to do more of my great work, I have reaped the benefits 10-fold.  Today, I run a small business of just me as the teacher/coach/podcaster AND I have a full-time Operations Director.  She provides the platform for me to shine.  On paper, I may save some $$ without an employee, however, without the help of a teammate, I would most certainly be in burnout mode every day.  What is one area that you can outsource? Laundry, reception internships, and housekeeping are 3 great areas from which to start taking some work off of your place.

       3. I have to stick with the known model of running a Pilates studio.

I feel like this one is a doozy, however, the more I’ve worked with clients to individualize their business practices, policies and procedures to the needs of their business, the more I have seen their businesses thrive.  If you’ve owned a studio, or even run a private practice, you know that there is a certain way that things are done as “norms” in the industry.  The thing is, there are no rules as to how you run your business other than the policies and procedures must serve both your clients and your bottom line.  Have slow months in the summer? Why not run your annual budget on a 10-month projection.  Need to ensure that classes are attended? Why not offer pre-registration for class series?  I encourage my clients to get creative with their models, not only from the standpoint of differentiating themselves from other competitors but to make their business work for them.  What is one way you would like your business to serve you better?

Join me on June 28th with Lesley as we bust through some of your limiting beliefs to help you make the shift towards thriving in your business!


Yes, you read that right! Jenna and I will be teaming up to help you with your Pilates business questions, concerns, problems, projects and more! All you have to do is register here and then send in your questions here. Join us live for the webinar or enjoy the replay for up to one week.

xx~LL

For more Jenna Gems check her out on Facebook, Instagram, her website and her podcast.

Pilates: How to Hire a Team that Rocks

Recently I added new team members to Profitable Pilates and Lesley Logan Pilates. When I was looking to hire for my Pilates team I had specific goals in mind. And, you should too! When you are looking to hire Pilates instructors for your Pilates business it is integral that you hire smart.

It’s easy to hire any instructor that comes your way! I mean, I hear you, it’s not as if Pilates instructors grow on trees. But, if you hire any instructor who is available then you are not doing your Pilates business any favors. Sure, you could luck out with a rockstar instructor. But, more often than not you could be costing yourself valuable time. And, time in a Pilates business is money.

Here are some tips to consider when hiring:

1) What you are goals and what are their goals?: If the goals don’t intersect it’s not going to work out. I know it’s tough to say “thanks but no thanks” to an amazing instructor. Especially when you are desperate! But, you will get frustrated when they are doing their thing and it’s not in line with what your goals are.

2) Why do they want to work for you?: With all the ways to look up a business and a person these days, they should have done some research. They should know why they want to teach in your space. What is it that draws them to your Pilates haven? How will your space allow them to grow and shine?

3) Do their strengths support your weaknesses?: It’s easy to want to hire people exactly like you! But, you cannot be all things to all people. If you know where your strengths are lacking and can find team members who strengths are your weaknesses your team will grow further. Clients of all types will have the instructor for them!

4) Do your due diligence: Phone interviews to weed out those who are not right for your business. In person interviews where you see them teach and you two can have a conversation. What do they love about teaching? What do they hate? How do they handle difficult conversations? The answers they give are only “wrong” or “right” if you think so. Some teachers struggle to schedule, take payment and sell Pilates. But, if you have a studio manager who handles all of that then it’s totally ok that this is a weakness of theirs.

5) Listen to your gut! Seriously, your mind and pocketbook can easily steer you the wrong way!

Look, I believe in running a Pilates business a little unusual. I don’t think you should hire based on how the studio down the street does or the studio you worked for did. For more tips on running your studio check out this blog. Also, hiring is an art and takes practice. Check out more tips here and take your time. Hiring slow and looking before you need a teacher is key. Otherwise, you’ll need to fire fast!

Lastly, an easier way to attract teachers and a team is to become known! If people find out how amazing you are and your studio is they will be flocking to work for you!

If you have questions about hiring, firing and building a team contact me here. I’ve done a lot of all of it. It’s not easy. But, a good team takes you further than you can ever go on your own!

xx~LL

How to Keep Pilates Clients Coming Back

Pilates client retention is not always the first thing we want to think about when it comes to our Pilates business. In fact, in a perfect world, we wouldn’t even have to think about how to keep your Pilates clients. It would just happen, like magic. But aside from knowing how to teach the exercises, retaining clients is essential for maintaining a full schedule.

Clients do not grow on trees. And while Pilates should speak for itself there are some things we can and should do that will help our clients come back again and again, week after week. And, lucky for you, retaining clients is something that you have the most control in.

The truth is the cost of gaining a new customer is high! It’s so much easier to keep the clients you have coming back. Some of these tools are already in your hands.

  1. Client Packages: if they buy into a package they are now committed to you and Pilates for the remainder of that package
  2. Cancellation Policies: While these are usually in place to protect your time these policies also help the client stay accountable for their Pilates practice. This means they feel the results and they continue to show up
  3. Scheduling their Pilates in advance: If you find yourself asking clients when they are coming in next you may be risking losing a client to a busy schedule. Instead, “sell” the time slot they love to them. Make them schedule out in advance and this way they schedule their busy lives around their Pilates session with you.

We’ve discussed attracting new clients on the blog here before. And, even have a course dedicated to it. Client Retention has also made an appearance. And due to many emails, calls and Dm’s from our readers we went and made our Client Retention webinar an online course. So, now you can watch it when it’s the perfect time for you.

Try these tips and for more advice on client retention check out our latest online course “Client Retention” for your Pilates business.

xx~LL 

 

How to Start Becoming Known for Pilates in Your Community

How known are you as a Pilates instructor or studio in your community? You’ve got your business cards, a website, maybe you have even left some flyers at a local business. But, you are still not getting the new clients you’re want to teach. You are wracking your brain with ways to market your expertise as a Pilates instructor. And, you are posting away on Facebook and Instagram. You feel like you are doing all the things and yet it feels like it is all falling flat. So, how do you start to become known for Pilates in your community?

Becoming Known in your community is the key to rocking your business bliss. It doesn’t matter if you are an independent contractor, Pilates studio owner or you teach Pilates in your own home. The beauty of our business is that you can still have a successful business of your design by marketing some of the “old-fashioned” ways. We dove deep into this in our course and blog about “Attracting New Clients.” New client referrals and local connections go a long way when you are known for what you do best. Because they speak directly from the heart and often to people who are similar to them.

If I were to ask you who were the popular fitness instructors in your area, you could tell me. Would your name be among them? Becoming popular isn’t a contest (I know it can feel that way). It’s something in your control. When you are clear as to who you are as a teacher, whom you are the ideal teacher for and you deliver results your clients will speak for you. They will be the best marketers money can buy. And, the best part of that kind of marketing is that it didn’t cost you anything. Your clients and those who have heard about what you are known for will help get your name out there better and faster than you could with buying ads or posting flyers.

Tell me what is something unique about taking Pilates with you? What is my Pilates experience like when I take a session or class with you or at your studio? What kind of client are you the best teacher for? What results do your clients gain after working with you? You can post these in the comments below or send them to me directly here.

Having the answers to who you are as a Pilates instructor and what space you best serve is just one step in getting you Known! Let’s start taking those steps together. Join me this Thursday (replay for one week) for our next webinar all about becoming Known. It’s time you take control of who you attract to your business and for your community to know what it is you do as a Pilates instructor.

Are you ready to become known? Register here.

xx~LL

Goal: Set, Delete, Repeat!

Who decided your teaching schedule? Who set your personal goals? Who influenced your professional goals?

If the answer to those questions isn’t You, You and You then we need to talk my Pilates pal! Here’s the deal, and I am going to get pretty honest with you if you do not set your own goals someone will be making sure you’re working towards their goals.

Continue reading

Why Should You Listen to Your Clients?

Before you think I’m going to suggest you let your clients talk during the whole Pilates session let me just say that this is not about being a therapist or friend to your client. This post is about listening for key clues that help you teach them better, grow your business more and retain your clients for a lifetime. Rest assured you will not have to be the shoulder they cry on (although that can happen) or their dating advice expert. But, what you will hear when you are truly listening (and sometimes not with your ears) will be what sets you apart from the rest. Having good listening skills can be the difference between someone giving up Pilates when tough times hit. Good listening skills can mean client referrals and a healthy, thriving business vs one that is constantly trying to get more new clients to replace the ones that “got bored,” or “became too busy.” Think you listen well?

Continue reading

Should You Run Your Pilates Business as Usual?

I saw an ad the other day in a magazine. It read “Business as Usual.”  Boring! Your business is anything but usual. Teaching Pilates is a unique career choice. One that requires you to wear many hats. You have to teach clients, market your business, some have to manage teachers, manage a schedule, reschedule, keep copious notes, study movement, study Pilates, do Pilates etc etc etc.

Pilates teachers and studio owners don’t clock in and clock out and leave it all at the “office.” We are inspired by our own practice, other fitness modalities a random billboard or in the case of this week’s article an advertisement. The business of Pilates is anything but usual.

So, why do so many teachers and studios seem to follow a mold? Do business per the usual?

The studio on the other side of town, down the street or even right next door might seem like they have it all. They may have bright lights, busy classes or offer other fitness modalities. The other studios in your town or even online (because it’s hard to not compare) may seem to have it all and so when you’re trying to make the magic happen, trying to bring in the money it can be easy to do business like others before you, do business as usual. To follow the mold. But, if you are not clear with who you are as a teacher/studio, whom you teach and what you offer and stick to that…then there is another mold you’ll fall into. The one where a studio closes its doors.

If you heard the podcast interview I did with Pilates Unfiltered I was asked why I don’t own a studio? It’s not because I don’t think I can run one. It’s not because I don’t think it’ll be fruitful and it’s not because I don’t want it. The truth is my goals for my business and my personal life does not align with owning my own brick and mortar today. So, I run my business so that it continues on the path to my own desires.

Last week I went live about Pilates being my side hustle and not doing your Pilates business in the usual way. But instead doing your business your way. I know you’re thinking easier said than done. Yes, totally easier to say than to do but so is Pilates! Check out those videos above and then sit down and think about the teacher you want to be. Who do you want to teach? When do you want to teach? Where do you want to teach?

It takes longer to grow your business your way but it feels so good to go to work day in and out and when it’s your business and not you trying to fit into a mold or doing what you think worked for someone else.

I’d love to hear your goals and any questions or celebrations on how you are running your Pilates business. You can share them in the comments below or contact me here.

This week we have a deep dive in Social Media ads, going LIVE, trolls, and scheduling. You may wonder if you need to use social media for your marketing or if it’s even working. We will be talking about that starting June 22nd so register for this webinar here. Or, check out our entire summer series. Because I am so dedicated to you running your Pilates business your way we have one hour online LIVE workshops on developing and marketing your Niche, Group Fitness Classes, Having a life and Teaching Pilates, Converting First-time clients, a Q & A and more. Click here for all the deets. If you missed last week’s webinar and you want the entire series go ahead and sign up and I’ll make sure you get it.

Ditch Business per usual and start doing business per YOU!

xx~LL 

 

Do You Have the Courage to Pursue Your Dreams?

This week I am stoked to share a beautiful note from my dear friend and incredible Pilates instructor and practitioner Miguel Silva of Uno Method Pilates in Spain as our guest blogger. I met Miguel through Vintage Pilates as we prepared and then spent a year doing “The Work” with Jay Grimes. Below I hope you find some incredible inspiration from Miguel’s story. I know I did. I am beyond honored to call Miguel a friend. Please check out his handles below and if you have a chance to take a session or workshop from Miguel I promise you will enjoy every minute of it!

———————————————————————————————————————————————————

“All your dreams can come true if you have the courage to pursue them” Walt Disney     

My friend Lesley Logan asked me one of the most difficult challenging and beautiful tasks that I can have in my life – write a note to inspire – 

I wanna start with one question: what is your purpose in life? 

My purpose is to do things that make me feel alive and give to our world something that I can be remembered for – guide people to find happiness. 

It might sound pretentious… 

but for me, it’s the less that we can do during your journey here. 

I’ve experienced lots of different jobs in my life, but all of them were related with “guiding” people. 

Finding Pilates was finding the light, the hope for my dreams! 

Back to the year of 2005, I remember being inspired by my first pilates teacher! 

One of the first things that he asked me and I recommend to all Pilates “lovers” read the books that Joseph Pilates wrote. That man had the power of encouraging me to go ahead with my inquietudes. He put sports and wellbeing together and showed everyone how Pilates works in their bodies.

 My journey continues because of all the teachers that I had and still have. They are constantly inspiring me and many others with their devotion to this wonderful method. 

Thanks to all of them, my UNO Pilates students and my 2016 mates from “the work,” all of you together with my family gives me strength to accomplish my dream of keeping Joe Pilates words alive. 

In 2018 I’ll see one of my dreams becoming a reality – UNO pilates studio & the Pilates camp – will be open for all of you that want to learn, train and bring your students.  Enjoy the beautiful south coast of Algarve, Portugal.  Surrounded by wild nature, the way that Joseph Pilates wanted! 

I don’t know if my little note will inspire you or not, but I’d like you to let you know that every stone that appears on your path it’s there for you climb on top of her and enjoy the views of what you have ahead… 

Obrigado 

Miguel Silva of Uno Pilates


I know Miguel’s note inspired me and would love for you to comment below and share how it inspires you! Please follow Miguel at any of his handles below and let’s all go visit him on the South Coast of Algarve, Portugal. May you have the courage to Pursue all of your dreams!

xx~LL

Contact Miguel- Facebook  Twitter and Instagram

PS if you would like “Notes of Inspiration” weekly in your inbox (nothing more than a note, seriously no sales or links) please subscribe http://eepurl.com/cHaALvhere.

How to Handle the Excuses for Not Doing Pilates

Recently my friend and Yoga Instructor were chatting about the famous excuse we often get “I’m not in shape enough for Pilates.” Well, she gets “I’m not flexible enough for yoga.” I say it’s famous because I know all of you instructors have heard the same phrase before too. “I’ll call you when I get more in shape, flexible, have more time and insert-latest-excuse-for-procrastination-here.”

I remember when I was a new instructor trying so hard to win them over and responding with all the ways that Pilates would help them get in shape, become more flexible, save them time at the gym, etc. Now, years later and a schedule so full of coaching and teaching I do not have the space for clients not begging for a slot I wish someone had told me a better way to respond to those “excuse filled potential clients.”

You know who I am talking about, those people that are soo busy! They have this and that. Then there are those who want to lose weight before they start. How about the ones that are going to do their own thing for a bit and when they are stronger they will come back? How are you supposed to respond to these clients? Should you? Do you beg? Do you begin listing all the bullet points and Pilates principles to get them to sign up? Do you shrug your shoulders and walk away?

None of the above! Seriously, you cannot convince anyone of anything with words. You’re not going to change their mind in a moment. They have made their minds up. All you can do is be an open and welcome space for when they are ready. Wait! Don’t click off this or roll your eyes at me just yet. I promise I have tips for you.

Try these tips:
1) Are your website and social channels an open and welcoming space showing what life as a Pilates client with you is like? If you have videos and images of clients like them doing Pilates, then your studio will speak for itself. If this client can see themselves in your studio, see inflexible students getting their Pilates on or, reading testimonials from clients who came super out of shape and now because of you are in their best shape. Maybe, they see a class schedule designed for the busy working client? Instead of telling them you can help them with their problem show them how you do that!

2) Understand but don’t agree You can totally empathize with them but you don’t have to agree with them. Just because I said you cannot talk this person into changing their mind doesn’t mean you agree. Take the time to get to know them a bit more and connect with them. Some people like to throw their excuses out there to “pre-reject” and protect themselves from possibly being humiliated or rejected. In their mind, you might not want to work with them because they are too insert reason for not starting Pilates here.

3) Play a little hard to get You know how in the dating world we all want the person who didn’t call us back? We pine for the person that isn’t paying attention to us. I’m not saying practice bad business and not return calls, emails or walk away from these excuse spewing potential Pilates clients. But, what if you heard what they have to say and understood what they had to say and then told them “when you’re ready to let me know. Hopefully, I’ll have a slot for you.” With your kindest smile and your genuine tone. This is not to be confused with passive-aggressive “I’ll show you” tone. After all, you do hope you have room for them when they are ready. And, you only want a client to contact you when they are willing. Be kind and supportive and then let them go. They’ll walk away wondering why in the world where everyone is trying to get anyone to do something you are not. You’re not begging for them to take Pilates from you.

Fear of not being good at something, fear of being rejected, fear of change and fear of no longer having the excuses we tell ourselves as reasons why we haven’t hit our goals is incredibly powerful. You know Pilates is the best thing for them. That Pilates is tailorable, and there is a Pilates practice for everybody out there at the level they are. But, for you (often a stranger) to be able to overpower what is in their head is tricky. You’ll leave the conversations frustrated for them and you. After all, you need to build your business. Make sure your website and handles all show the welcoming space you are for your ideal client and spend your time going after the clients who are open to change!

I know easier said than done. But, trust me it works!

Looking for feedback on if your website and social channels, coaching on your business contact me here. I save a few coaching slots each month for Pilates consultation. Lastly, Summer Session of Business webinars will be announced next week!! But, before I go live with the schedule you still have time to give your input. Click here and give your feedback.

xx~LL

How to Wear Cute Pants for a Living

I don’t know about you but I hate cold calls, I hate people trying to sell me stuff, I hate flyers on my car, shoved in my hands or even in my mailbox. I despise people trying to talk to me as I am going into Whole Foods. Ok, maybe hate and despise are strong words. But, I don’t want people trying to bug me about things I don’t want. But, if you and I bump into each other in Whole Foods, if you and I are standing in a long line together at Starbucks, airport security or any line you can pretty much bet we are going to chat, have a laugh, and you will know I teach Pilates.

Not only will you know I teach Pilates but you will know where I teach and what it is to do Pilates with me. I know, you’re thinking “LL you are kind of a hypocrite.” Nope, not at all. See, when people invade my space or litter their advertisements on my car that is annoying. I don’t know who you are. Ok, great you have a product or business you want to tell me about. But, you’re not there when I get to my car. Also, most often you’re trying to tell me about your new restaurant and I’m gluten and dairy free so how do you know I am even your customer. It’s a waste of paper, their time and money.

But, in a store when you and I are in line and you say “fun pants” and I say “thanks! I love them too. I mean, if I have to wear workout clothes for a living they should be cute!” and then you say “oh, yeah, what do you do?” Well, then I’m not pushing my business on you. You invited me into the conversation. I just found a way to bring up that I wear workout clothes for a living. When I tell you “I teach Pilates down the street across from the Starbucks. Do you know it?” I’m not pressuring you, I am just answering your question and asking you one back. My question about if they have been to my studio will get me a couple answers: 1) have they been to the studio where I work 2) if they have done Pilates ( I know I didn’t ask that but they’ll probably answer that hidden question) and given that LA is so neighborhood-based I’ll know if that is even convenient for them.

Based on their response I have a couple options. If I am enjoying the vibe and they haven’t closed the door I can then tell them how awesome Pilates is there, invite them to come and get their card to give them the info. I can give them mine ( I prefer to take theirs so I can follow up with them). Or, I can keep the conversation going. Maybe they need more info about Pilates. Maybe they have some misguided impressions, maybe they are just visiting. The point is until my time is up I am connecting with them about what I do, where I do it and how we can do it together. It’s my mini elevator speech sans an elevator!

My most favorite workshop and role-play to do is my elevator speech workshop. See, the thing is in Pilates many teachers spend a lot of time trying to get heard among the noise on the world-wide-web. Or, they go super old school and do flyers and word of mouth (nothing wrong with this!!! You just don’t have that much control over it). But, you do have control over whom you talk to and what you say and how you say.

  1. What do you do?
  2. Where do you do it?
  3. Why do you love it?
  4. Why should they do it with you?
  5. How can they contact you or more importantly you contact them?

Best part this whole convo cost you nothing! No marketing dollars. You were just out doing your thing!

I know you think easier said than done. But, you can totally do this too! I will tell you how on April 27th in my next webinar (think Workshop on the web). Register here. If you can’t do the time or the date have no fear. I know some of you are live halfway around the globe from me and will be asleep. Some of you are down the street teaching. That’s the beauty of a “replay.” Register anyway and you’ll get an email to watch the replay (it will be up for a few days). You can send in your questions ahead of time at lesley@profitablepilates.com

xx~LL 

PS can’t wait to watch some Business workshops? Check out my Courses here and my latest tutorials for PilatesAnytime.com here you can use my promo code LLOGAN for a 30 day trial.

 

 

Do You Really Have to Have Tough Conversations?

Yes, and No! I know, I hate those non-answers too.

When I worked in retail, it was inevitable that I would have to have at least a few tough conversations a day. Maybe, even in an hour. Continue reading