Running a business is not for the faint-hearted, it’s often a big chance you take a step out from the comfort of a secure job, into a self-sufficient role which can be incredibly demanding on your time, as well as your mental and physical well being. Often failure can come at a high price, but success can be all that much sweeter for it.
In a turbulent year for businesses big and small already, what can you be doing to help stay afloat as we battle the ongoing pandemic? Many small businesses are being resourceful and turning to options currently available to support their product or services online. Personal trainers are no different and in their millions have migrated online utilising applications like Zoom to support coaching and their social media to create a presence. But could you be doing more? How many can you tick off below…
There will be many casualties from lockdown the inevitable fact that being forced to adapt rapidly online, will not have sat well with all clients, especially if zoom or online coaching just does not work for them. It’s not for everyone, but when was the last time you checked in with them? Asked how they were doing? If you could help in any way, even if it was just someone different for them to speak to. Because when the gyms open back up, they might well be the first to want to jump back in.
Reflecting back on a conversation had with a recent client who said during the first Lockdown, their PT dropped off the grid, so when he popped up after lockdown lifted the client had lost complete interest by then. Checking in on all your clients regularly is important for retention and loyalty, its important to show you care, especially in times where your clients may feel isolated or cut off from human interaction.
Making your social media work for you!
Who is your professional profile aimed at? Your clients? New potential clients? Other PT’s? Your friends? Just posting pictures for likes?
Social media can be a great tool to create leads and generate interest in your services if you are using it properly, and it can be easy to lose sight of this. A good tip is to DM new followers and check-in to say hi, introduce yourself, and start up a conversation, say “thanks for the follow!” You never know where it will lead. Be proactive with your communication, and reach out where appropriate to those who show interest.
Pick and choose what works for your business, how you spend your time is valuable, so choose which social media sites work for you. Same with the content you put out. If writing blogs do not come naturally to you, maybe focus more on creating video content instead. Use your time constructively and work to your strengths.
As personal trainers, it’s understood that there are a number of reasons, which often implicate clients leading a healthy lifestyle, be that sleep, nutrition, injury, bad form, not understanding the basics. Which can hinder your clients making progress or reaching their goals. Could you be offering your clients something more, such as an online workshop to help? Going above and beyond with your clients will again help with retention and invariably be beneficial in the long run. If your workshops become a success then maybe this could become another revenue stream to explore.
Ask for feedback
Some clients you may have had for a while and it’s important that they feel like they are being heard. Constructive feedback from our clients can be really helpful and will allow you to see your service through their eyes. If there are improvements to be made, this may help keep future clients in the long run. Send them a survey, Survey Monkey is always a popular choice and its free!
Whilst many of these hints and tips may not make your business an overnight success, there are some great habits to start implementing in order to give yourself the best possible chance of success through these challenging months.
Thanks for reading
PT Workspace team
As we approach the end of 2020 it is quite clear to see how tired and exhausted trainers have become navigating the most unpredictable and challenging year to date. Whilst we can take positives out of 2020, such as online personal training and a better understanding of health in relation to Covid-19, the long hours training clients in the parks during Lockdown 2.0 has finally caught up with us. December is a cold dark month which is usually overshadowed by Christmas cheer, but understandably not everyone is feeling so festive this month.
As we enter the busiest time of the year for the fitness industry, December is the month to lay the groundworks for January and the year ahead. As demanding as this year has been already, the time you put into planning now will make the transition into 2021 smoother. It’s time to re-evaluate this year and get SMART.
S – Specific, significant, stretching
What will be accomplished? What actions will you take?
M – Measurable, meaningful, motivational
What data will measure the goal? (How much? How well?)
A – Agreed upon, attainable, achievable, acceptable, action-oriented
Is the goal doable? Do you have the necessary skills and resources?
R – Realistic, relevant, reasonable, rewarding, results-oriented
How does the goal align with broader goals? Why is the result important?
T – Time-based, time-bound, timely, tangible, trackable
What is the time frame for accomplishing the goal?
Setting realistic goals will guide you in the right direction and keep you motivated no matter how hard things get.
Between prospecting for new clients, getting existing clients results, and billing more hours, setting SMART goals can help you stay on track so you know exactly what steps to take on a daily basis to reach your specific target.
The time to elevate your business is now!
Thanks for Reading
PT Workspace Team
‘Whilst we are all in this together, we are not all in the same boat’. This quote you hear bounded around rings true for many of us facing lockdown and the monumental effect it has had on our lives and businesses.
Whilst despair can plague your thoughts guessing which month is finally going to ease restrictions, your moral compass goes into overdrive and you are left wondering what, when, where, why… Is this the right time? Then BOOM! You’re down the rabbit hole spiralling. So easily done and stressful at the same time. You go online or switch on the TV which stokes your anxiety, and before you know it you’ve dreamt up a hypothetical situation with no way of knowing which part is fact or fiction. Before all context is lost, take a moment to see what positives you can derive from this unrivalled experience, no matter how small they are.
- Keep Focused! Exhausting energy on what you cannot control will not help your mental health, neither is it the best use of your time. It’s draining! Although, that is not to say you should not prepare for change, as in these challenging times being able to adapt is important. However, making informed decisions from the evidence provided by trusted sources is advised, as you would in all other areas of health and fitness. You got this! Think smart.
- Health is important! We know this, you know this, and now the rest of the world knows just how important it is also. Never has it been so vital to look after one’s health, the days of waiting for a miracle cure or quick fix are drifting into the abyss (well we hope so). Which means good old hard work and determination can prevail. Opening the door for personal trainers and fitness/ nutrition professionals to do what they do best, especially for those seeking help.
- Kindness! Yes, headlines and social media will showcase the most frustrating people society has to offer, but in challenging times, the kindness of strangers has been a beautiful thing. At least there are a few good eggs still knocking around to restore faith in humanity. Maybe you are one of them?
- Time is precious! Nobody appreciates change being thrust upon them when they least expect it, and not many envisioned 2020 quite like this. So if this has given you time to re-evaluate a few things that have needed your attention, then hit the reset button and work on what is viable during the quiet days.
- Starting something new! Whether you are an avid weight lifter and suddenly found your running feet, or decided that now is the time to create an online personal training platform, then take kudos in starting something new which you may not have done otherwise. All about the small wins, acknowledge them because we all have to start somewhere.
Finding positives might be a stretch too far some right now and that’s okay. But on reflection at some point, there will surely be some important lessons learned and maybe positives down the line.
Stay Healthy and safe!
Thanks for reading
PT Workspace Team
It’s a difficult time for the fitness industry with all gyms ordered to close as of the 23rd of March. So making the best out of the current situation has been challenging but not impossible for fitness professionals. Many have chosen to reach clients through online personal training and classes, which have proven popular for some more than others. Whilst online personal training and Instagram lives have become the new normal, there are other ways in which to engage and support your clients, call it another string to your bow. Until the day that the gym doors open, we have a few tips to help…
- Nutrition advice: As a personal trainer you will know how important a diet is in the overall grand scheme of exercise and calories. Nutrition is, of course, a touchy subject in regards to the limitation of advice you can offer. Often said in a passing comment, that it’s important to stay in your lane. This does not mean that you can’t offer helpful advice about tracking calorie intake and macros. Help your client understand how to maintain some progress through what they are eating, especially if they are worried that they are reaching for the fridge too often. Planning meals in advance, with ingredients that can work across several meals, limiting food waste could be a great help.
- Check-in: Days and weeks are starting to roll into each other, so make sure you are touching base to see how your clients are doing and coping. A personal trainer can be so much more than the person who beasts them at the gym. Someone’s lifestyle impacts heavily on progress and if they are struggling, whether that be stress or anything else, you can be an outlet to drive positive constructive behaviours moving forward. Again, know your boundaries and refer where applicable.
- Focus on technique: Depending on how well prepared your client is with equipment at home, will dictate much of what you will likely do with them. But like the majority of the population, who didn’t quite see 2020 turning out like this, means there will be limitations. So it is a great time to really focus on getting technique airtight with your clients. Technique, after all, is the backbone to succeeding in their goals.
- Keep Moving: All trainers know that increasing general daily activity can go a long way in helping burn calories, but maybe not your clients. Encourage them to get that Vitamin D whilst the sun is out and make the most of the one daily exercise allocated during this time. Set them a challenge to achieve to keep them motivated with incentives, hopefully, this will stop them from moulding into the sofa if you are concerned about isolation. Obviously, be mindful of the current guidelines around COVID-19, that your challenges do not encourage your clients to break these, for example, 10,000 steps daily may not be safe or achievable in some cases.
With no end in sight as it stands, it’s all about the daily small wins which will keep both you and your clients motivated through these tough times. Stay Healthy and safe!
Thanks for reading
PT Workspace Team
There is no telling how long the UK will be in lockdown, as it has been said on many occasions these really are unprecedented times. Many of us would never have experienced anything like this in our generation or even our parent’s generation for that matter. So its completely natural to feel a level of uncertainty or anxiety especially if you have had to face temporarily closing your business, or are particularly worried for friends and relatives which you cannot see.
As it stands we have to take each day as it comes and have faith in the kindness and humanity shown in the community when some days can look pretty gloomy. Now more than ever looking after your mental & physical health is pivotal to making your way through the next few weeks and months ahead, so we have some ideas to help you through isolation and keep your mind and body stimulated.
Some might be obvious but hey, give it a go anyway…
- Limit the amount of media you listen to every day. Some of the great mental health charities in the UK are suggesting limiting yourself to around 5minutes of news every day if you feel like it’s impacting on your health. If it gets too much change it over or turn it off!
- Find 15minutes a day to clear your mind, whether you meditate, pray or just listen to your heartbeat. Allow yourself to let go and focus on the moment. It may sound very hippy but this does wonders for the mind.
- Develop your online presence, now more than ever you have something which we don’t often have…Time, time to work on your brand, time to present the best version of yourself to your clients.
- Declutter- Follow people on Instagram who inspire you, keep your feed insightful and positive, delete those who question your self worth or elicit a negative reaction
- Further your education, If you are a personal trainer there are lots of CPD courses available on sites like https://www.premierglobal.co.uk/ where you can develop your skillset. Times are tough and if upfront payment is not a viable option, explore payment options the company has available to you. Just ask.
- Bake- Now we know some of the essentials in the stores can be hard to come by, but there are websites such as ‘BBC good food’ which feature recipes from bits which can be found in your cupboard or are less difficult to come by in the shops. https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/collection/storecupboard-baking
- Find a Podcast which holds your attention. Personally, we are always partial to a good Ted Talk, but here is a list of highly rates podcasts of 2020 to explore for yourself https://shapescale.com/blog/health/best-fitness-podcasts/
- Learn a new skill or language. There are sites where you can learn beginner languages for free, such as https://www.duolingo.com/. Or if you have always wanted to learn how to do a handstand, now is the time! I bet there is a youtube video for that. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oLt5RXhch8E
- Read a book, whether you download it to your fancy phone or tablet, or enjoy the old fashioned feel of the pages, Amazon have their best sellers on hand to prompt inspiration if you are stuck. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Best-Sellers-Books-Fitness-Exercise/zgbs/books/270721
- Keep in touch with friends and family, with the rise of apps like Houseparty and Zoom it has never been easier to connect with loved ones. Oh, and you can play games too.
Of course, if all else fails there is always the classic Nexflix and chill for the evening. Stay healthy and Safe.
Thanks for reading
PT Workspace Team