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Instructor Newsletter 16 June 2011
Note from Rachel
Hi C2go’ers Another inspiring and motivating newsletter to get you on it and ready to go!
Teaching Fitness in schools
Due to the current economic climate many schools have had their budgets and funding cuts for extra curricula activities, and sadly The Schools Sports Partnerships and Schools Sports Coordinators have now become extinct in many areas. For those Instructors who regularly went into schools to teach may have found all funding had been cut and after school sports clubs are no more. Liz Hindley, who has written many times for the newsletter and has built her fitness business around going into schools in the North West was affected badly last year, she found her schools classes and after schools clubs had all been axed.
Check out the new Downloads on the site this week
I have uploaded a new Tabata Cardio Core Workout and you will find 2 x Double Trouble downloads with Jo and I teaching Dance Tone and Step. Lots of choreography ideas and class content. https://www.choreographytogo.com/choreography/latest-downloads/
Fitness, Fatburning and Functional Bootcamp Workshop
The workshop is going great guns. I’ve packed into the workshop so many different workout templates, fat loss info and Bootcamp set up ideas that the 4 hours really fly by. Last week Sally Ghafoor did a guest spot talk on Fatloss and Bootcamp nutrition which was great to hear some of Sally strategies and ideas that are making her Bootcamps so successful This weekend I will be hitting the M5 down to Bristol and then back up to Birmingham If you would like a last minute place you can book online https://www.choreographytogo.com/workshop-booking/fitness-fatburning-functional-bootcamp/ .
New London Date for Level 3 Pilates
I’ve added the new London date for the Level 3 Pilates which is being held on 4/5/6 November at Lille Road Fitness Centre in Fulham. Already this course is filling up fast, ever though November, seems a million years away. The London date will be the final Level 3 of this year. You can book onto the Level 3 here
My Fitness Business Builder Updates
If you are keen to move your business forward or even create a fitness business then do sign up to my Fitness Business Builder Updates. I’ve writing about lots of business ideas to get your creative juices flowing plus I will be launching my 90 Day Fitness Business Builder Coaching Programme very very soon and organising the live mastermind days in September. You can add your email address here to sign up
Feedback and comments
Quickest way to comment and feedback to me personally is on Twitter, I’ll get your tweet straight away and if I’m not teaching or in a meeting will get back to you asap Tweet me http://twitter.com/RachelHolmes or you can get to me on Facebook and the Choreographytogo Fan page http://www.facebook.com/Choreographytogo If you have any website queries please email Lesley@Choreographytogo.com
Part 2 Are you creating a business or a job?
Last week I talked about weather you are creating a sustainable fitness business or a job that you can easily get trapped in to.
Teaching in the community is a great idea and with the right marketing, a strong idea of who your client profile is, the right class at the right time you can expect good numbers and earn a great hourly rate.
Have you got systems in place which will keep the business running if you are not there?
A true business will function whether you are there or not. If you have to be there for it to work, I hate to break it to you but it means you’ve just created yourself another job – one you don’t get paid sick, holiday or benefits for. Don’t get trapped and firmly stuck inside your business being ‘busy’. Take it from me, this will prevent you having a life.
How automated is your business?
If you take a holiday, or heaven forbid, get ill or a member of your family gets ill what would happen? Are there systems in place that mean lots of the menial tasks that don’t actually need you are being done when you’re not there? Do you have an autoresponder that means you can send bulk personalised emails with the click of a button.
Do you explain what you do to potential clients via the phone/email every time some one makes an enquiry or do you have a killer sales video up on your website that gives people all the information they need in a logical manner and then pushes them towards a signup for a mailing list so you don’t need to talk to them each individually.
Write down just 3 things in your business that you either don’t like doing, or you don’t need to be doing personally and take action AS SOON AS YOU’VE FINISHED READING THIS to implement a system that will automate, delegate or outsource that process to someone else.
When do you actually stop to look at your business and see what is working for you and your lifestyle and what is not? Its so basic BUT look at whats working and do more of that and look at what is not working and do a lot less of that.
Your fitness business should fit around your lifestyle. Look at what you want to get out of life generally and create a business that will allow you to do that.
Decide how you want your lifestyle to be and do just one thing RIGHT NOW to make your business fit in with that lifestyle. It might be that you really want to have Wednesdays off – so look at how that could feasibly happen or not work in the evenings or weekends.
As long as you’re intentional and know what you really want, you want it bad enough AND most importantly you stay focused on it, you’ll really struggle not to achieve it.
So my challenge to you is to challenge your current situation, look at what you can systemise/automate in your fitness business, take just one step to make sure your business fits your lifestyle, oh and most importantly don’t just read this and think “Well that’s food for thought” or “That’s a nice idea” – go and really DO SOMETHING about it.
If you are interested in my new Live Fitness Business MasterMInds Groups and Business Building Days coming up or 90 Days Fitness Business Coaching Programme do pop your email into https://www.choreographytogo.com/news/business-builder/#
What Shall I tweet? by Rachel Holmes
After last weeks Twitter webinar I had loads of emails and questions about “What shall I Tweet” so here are some ideas for you. Remember the first thing to really work on is who is your market and who are you tweeting to? Try and narrow down your target market, being all things to all people is usually too hit and miss. Fine tune who you are actually talking/Tweeting to
Who Is your market…..Again!
I know I keep banging on about who actually are you aiming to become your clients and here I go again here 🙂
Yummy Mummys wanting to lose baby weight?
Older fitter adults?
Disillusioned Health Club members who aren’t getting desired results at the gym?
The Fat Loss Crowd?
Slimming World/Weight Watchers
These are only ideas and not necessarily the correct niche for you.
Once your basics are clear and you are ready to give Twitter a go, keep the following in mind:
•Talk about experiences, views, opinions that are central to your brand or personality. So if your target market that’s is older fitter adults, talk about anything that relates to this market, etc. Ensure that your talk is contextual to your brand and not far away from what it believes in. Also, ensure that it is relevant to what is being spoken in that point of time in the newspapers or television and hook in to current events and affairs
•Be funny. When you are funny, people not only like what they say they also share it. So when people know it’s you who is saying this stuff they want more and listen. This causes your word to be spread and increase your reach within the network that you have established. .
•Ask questions so that people respond. Remember mentions? Yes people responding to what you say will increase your mentions and thereafter increase the network your tweets reach out to. Each time you ask a question you also have the chance to receive views and opinions that people have about you.
•Make it a habit to tweet. Do tweet each time you have something interesting to say or share. If possible tweet at least 5-8 times a day and remember to spread what you share. Don’t tweet 6 times in a row. Tweet with well spaced intervals or else people will be bored and unfollow you. Also, do not share information that’s been shared before or is apparent.Engage with your followers
•Use major trends to your forte. If you see something that is a trend and that can be used for your brand, add it to your tweets. Use trends only and only when they make sense and have a brand fit and never otherwise. Also never use trends in each tweet.
•Leave trails. Leave links to your twitter profile every time you make a blog post or a comment online anywhere. This is if people agree to what you have said they will also like to hear more from you.
•Make it a habit to respond to those who follow you. Thank them or simply follow them back. As a check you may also ask them as to what encouraged them to follow you. But remember its good etiquette to thank those following you.
•Retweeting is a fantastic option to use to share information. But if you are retweeting someone be courteous enough to use their twitter handle to show the source. This is something you would like others to do for you as well. So its important to put things into practice.
These are just a few simple tips to get tweeting but tweeting efficiently.
You can follow me http://Twitter.com/RachelHolmes and I’ll follow you right back
I am sure like most of the nation, a large percentage of you are hooked upon the Apprentice on Wednesday evenings. Is it to watch the contestants make fools of themselves? or is it to watch Alan Sugar one of our most prolific, self made success stories, wade in to show his prowess and fire the most incompetent? It is true that those taking part are seen to profess their own business skills, even exaggerate them to cringe worthy levels but still manage to present incapable of making even the smallest of ground level decisions and it is also true that they more often than not display most unfavourable personal characteristics when dealing with one another, they bully, back bite and shift allegiances quicker than we can change channels BUT we love to watch it, including me and I can’t help wonder what it teaches us about business.
Alan Sugar sold a product from day one, he was mentored by the most basic of economic principles, namely supply and demand. If you have an audience willing to buy, as long as you can provide a product and make a profit, you are in business. Once governed by supply and demand, you are always looking for someone to provide you with the best product at the cheapest price. Once the product becomes mass produced and more easily accessible it is of less value to the business man, he is looking for the next new product where he can work the ‘margins’.
If we bring fitness into this and more importantly you and I teaching Group X, we would be wise to consider the principles of supply and demand. Our product is our skill range i.e. what classes can we provide long term or for cover and can we diversify into other areas.
If like any other business the strongest candidates get the best jobs and are paid a higher wage then surely the following should apply.
Those with more qualifications are paid more.
2. Those with more experience are paid more.
3. Those who get results get the job.
4. Those who have specialised skills are paid more.
5. Those who show commitment to their employer are rewarded.
Does this happen? Please let me know your thoughts on this one and we can perhaps come to some kind of a decision about how we move this business forward – firstname.lastname@example.org.
If we want to step up into business mode then we have to set up at least the very basic of standards for us to perform our saleable skills.
Forget olive oil, any other oil in fact, Coconut oil rules supremely in the good for you oils.
Unlike other oils derived from vegetables, it does not become unstable nor carcinogenic when cooked at a high temperature.
Unfortunately Coconut oil was once believed to be a “bad fat” by doctors as it contains 90% of its fat from saturated fat, which immediately threw up the warning bells for a lot of people. So lets look at this fantastically healthy oil.
Out of the 90% of saturated fat within the coconut oil, which by the way are mostly medium chain triglycerides (awesome!!!) 50% of that comes from the wonderful Lauric Acid. There is only one other place you will find lauric acid naturally and that is from Breast Milk (oh yes you now know what my kiddiwinks drink – Coconut milk). The human body converts lauric acid into monlaurin, which has absolutely outstanding anti viral, anti fungal, anti microbial properties. This makes lauric acid a fantastic defence for the human body for diseases like athletes foot, measles, herpes, flu, swine flu, hep C, the list goes on. There is also research on how it can help people with HIV/Aids. Are you seeing how fantastic coconut oil is, basically it strengthens your immune system.
The other fantastic thing about coconut oil is that is natural, there are no toxic side effects which you would get trying to treat all of the above with pharmacutical drugs, but to do all of these wonderful things the body must be able to produce monolaurin the only way to do this is to have an abundance of lauric acid, without lauric acid the body cannot make monlaurin.
What about the Saturated fat?
Not all saturated fats are alike, the medium chain triglycerides found in coconut milk are not harmful, they will not raise your cholesterol levels, it will not lead to an increase in LDL in fact coconut oil has been found to reduce injuries to the arteries and prevent arthelscolsois.
Coconut oil also has the added benefit of helping your metabolic rate, the medium chain fatty acids in coconut oil are burned instantly on consuming which then boosts your thyroid levels for hours after – so coconut oil is a great addition if you have thyroid issues.
So in short Coconut oil, helps you lose weight, strengthens the immune system, is good for heart health, helps prevent free radical damage and does not spoil when heated to a high temperature, along with many more health benefits, so I something worth putting IN your diet and advising your clients too as well.
Next week I promise I will be back ranting on what NOT to be eating!!!
Join Sallys Blog here www.gethealthsavvy.co.uk
Working with schools – an update By “Leaping” Liz Hindley
Following a big panic about my business I am now getting calls direct from Headteachers and have realised that I need to re-channel my marketing efforts. I am happier and motivated once more.
Under White Paper directives, schools are being given more autonomy over their spending, making it more important for fitpros to engage directly with schools if they wish to increase their involvement with this important market.
Previously I had built relationships with the School Sports Partnerships, meaning I could instantly access – say – 20 primary schools and a High School with one call to a Partnership Development Manager. As this role has been pretty much stripped away, and many SSPs have been disbanded in their entirety, building relationships with schools directly has become the important thing.
The calls I have had recently are from pro-active Heads who have decided that increasing the physical activity of their kids needs to be high up the agenda, but there will also be Heads out there with the budget to spend, but lacking in knowledge of where to turn.
Running a fitness business is about being flexible and adaptable, learning on the go and facing up to challenges. You also need a lot of drive and determination.
For a while there I lost all direction. Everything I knew about working with schools was thrown into disarray as people who had bought in my services were losing their jobs and Government cost cutting meant that schools were too nervous to spend. The rug was pulled from under me in a matter of a fortnight, and my business felt in danger, too many external influences that I could not control were having a negative impact on everything I had worked hard for over the last 6 years of specialising in kids fitness.
What I want to pass on is that there is still a market out there for instructors who are working with kids, even for those – like me – who mainly work in curriculum time with schools, it is just that the focus of your marketing efforts has to be more targetted.
Things to tap into:
Cross-curricular activities. A buzz word in the education world. PE is one of the simplest and most effective ways of linking other subject areas, allowing children to explore topics through active methods and physical responses whilst having fun. Could you come up with:
Cheerleading in French?
Skipping rhymes (Literacy)
Local traditions (I ran a workshop on Lancashire Circle Dance for a regular school I visit – Don’t ask?, but did you know that the Hokey Cokey is a descendant of traditional circle dance – me neither but it was a giggle to get the kids doing the “choreography” slowly, in the same way I had taught the earlier dances, and asking if any of them had done the dance before. “Definitely not” they all screamed, before I speeded it up, added the words and the lightbulbs started to switch on! Superb)
Health and wellbeing is another hot topic. Fitness Pilates/ Yoga/ Good posture/ awareness of surroundings.
Pupil Premium. This additional funding is for every pupil on Free School Meals, making schools in more deprived areas more financially able to support their pupils who may not have access to the types of activities that a lot of children take for granted. I know of one school who sent their pupil to a dance class in a local village hall and asked the instructor to invoice the school, as they could justify the use of the funding in this way because of the improvement seen in the girl’s behaviour at school, resulting in improved academic achievement and better health. The “Every Child Matters” agenda has “Be Healthy” as the first on its list of 5 outcomes. Having worked with lots of more deprived schools over the last 5 years, and loved the impact I have had on groups of – what can be more challenging – children, I am excited at the prospect of increasing my marketing to these schools. Could you also tap into the funding in this area?
With a bit of imagination, plenty of enthusiasm and targeted marketing, I am now feeling confident about my plans for the academic year to come, although admittedly I have had to re-jig an awful lot and I have a pack of printed flyers left which will just have to be stuck into the recycling. I am re-enthused and ready to tackle the schools directly, using the relationships that I have built up over the years.
In my area there are a plenty of afterschool opportunities for kids with parents who are willing/ able to pay. The work I have done in Lancashire has primarily been in schools in more deprived areas, targeting kids with limited access to sports and health initiatives. The other thing I have learnt is that these kids come with a “Pupil Premium”
I always knew that running a business would have its ups and downs. The emotional response I had to the recent blip was quite a revelation, but if (and when) it happens again, I will hopefully be more prepared. I am generally a “glass-half-full” kind of gal, which helps, but that doesn’t mean that the downturn was anything more than it was – a dark, worrying time. I was surprised at how quickly my confidence took a nosedive. I am normally very creative, waking at all hours with ideas for new class formats, products and improvements to my business, but all of a sudden I was sleeping through but feeling exhausted. No energy to invest in the business, despite the sudden abundance of time to spend on it – something that I would have killed for six months earlier.
Working with schools means that things are often cyclical, and maybe the easier days will return, but for now I am relishing the idea of the hard work to come.
“Leaping” Liz Hindley is a kid’s fitness expert and founder of Physikidz Ltd, a specialist provider of fun fitness programmes to schools, supporting the national curriculum
10 mistakes fitpros make when talking to the media by Nicola Joyce
In this series of blog posts, fitness copywriter and journalist Nicola Joyce (aka <a href=”thefitwriter.wordpress.com/”>The Fit Writer</a>) lets us into the industry secrets most fitpros never find out. Ever wondered how people get their names, products and services in front of industry journalists and magazine editors? Nicola’s brought you some advice, straight from the horse’s mouth.
How to get in with editors, journalists and bloggers
First of all, understand how the chain of command in the media industry works. You have inhouse journalists, who work as staff on magazines or newspapers. Their bosses are editors, commissioning editors and sub-editors. Then you have freelance journalists, who usually specialise in a sector (like fitness, sport, health or wellbeing). Freelance journalists will be commissioned by inhouse staff to write features, interviews, kit tests and other bits of content for the publication. Then there are PR (public relations) people. They work on behalf of brands to manage publicity. Part of that will be managing relationships with journalists and editorial staff.
What’s the process behind a magazine commission?
There are two ways in which a magazine article can come about: from a pitch from the journalist to the editor, or from a commission from the editor to the journalist. The latter usually (but not always) happens when the editor already knows the journalist’s by reputation, or if the journalist has previously written for the publication.
For pitches, journalists need to come up with strong, timely ideas. When we get commissioned by an editor, we will usually need to ﬁnd case studies, expert comment and/or products to ﬁt the brief. We may have to do this extremely quickly and we’ll therefore be looking for fitpros who can help us by getting spot-on product information, fantastic expert comment or strong case studies.
On the topic of kit tests – these are always commissioned. We will never be able to pitch an editor the idea of testing a single product. So, if you want to get your product in front of an editor, you need to send it to them ﬁrst and then they will send it to one of their freelancers to test. See my blog post about press releases for some handy hints.
What about fitness blogs?
If publicity via a fitness blog is on something you’re interested in, you need to get in touch with bloggers. I blog at TheFitwriter. Bloggers are our own editors and those of us who have chosen to do product tests on our blogs can be contacted directly to see if it is a good ﬁt for our readership. It has to be your call as to whether or not you think blogs are a suitable outlet for your product, but it’s worth bearing in mind that customers are increasingly reading blogs for online reviews and feedback.
How can you make the most of freelance journalists?
We want to work with you and hear from you, but you need to know what we need – and what we don’t need – when a deadline is looming. Here are a few tips.
Dos and don’ts
– Do contact us, but only with information we have previously stated we’ll ﬁnd useful or which will ﬁt the commission we’re working on
– Don’t send information which doesn’t ﬁt the bill, no matter how strongly you feel the magazine should feature it
– Do note our deadline and tell us honestly if you can help us meet it
– Don’t promise anything you can’t deliver
– Do send complete information, images, case studies, contact details
– Don’t send information and then disappear off the face of the earth (at least let us know who else in your team we should speak to)
How do magazine editors want to hear from you?
I asked one of the deputy editors I write for regularly – Laura Jones at <a href=”http://www.bodyfitmagazine.co.uk/”>Body Fit magazine</a> – to give you some advice. Here’s what she had to say:
“Remember that editorial staff at consumer magazines like Body Fit get hundreds of press releases a day. To give yours a chance of being read, make sure it has an eye-catching headline, relevant content and all the contact details we might need. Make sure you read the magazine first so you know what kind of content we do – and don’t cover – and ensure you know who our target readership is.”
How to ﬁnd a freelance journalist or relevant commission
“This is all great”, you say, “but how do I begin to find freelance fitness journalists? And how can I know which articles they’re working on?” OK, I’m about to let you into some real industry secrets here… make sure you use these!
– Twitter – search the hashtag #journorequest – journalists use this when they need a quote, comment, product for an article they’re writing. Save the search as a stream so you can see it every day.
– Use the website http://www.responsesource.com/index_journalist.php– journalists and editors upload specific requests here
– Networking – online and in real life. If you find a journalist in your sector, keep in touch.
Nicola Joyce is a freelance copywriter and journalist who specialises in writing for the sport and fitness industry. As a journalist, she writes regularly for Body Fit, Muscle and Fitness, Triathletes World, Women’s Running and lots of other consumer magazines. As a copywriter, she helps businesses like yours communicate clearly with their customers, clients and prospects. Read her blog click here /a>and visit her website http://www.nicolajoyce.co.uk
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Thanks for reading