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  • Instructor Newsletter 22 August 2013

    bluecropGood Morning everyone I hope you are enjoying the last few weeks of August This week I’ve taken a week away from teaching as I’ve deadlines to meet and projects to finish and its been bliss being at home powering through the old todo list and moving forward. After 7 months of research and devlopment we are  launching a new line of KSFL Supplements including a new Greens Drink and Fish Oil which I feel are the most important supplements to add and support the diet and I am now working full steam ahead on the KSFL/NHS contracts which launch in September. All exciting stuff.

    To see the KSFL Supplements Click here

    This weeks newsletter has a real mix of articles including the question everyone seems to pose Kelly Reed and I – “Should I do my Level 3 Pilates” Kelly gives her sound advice to those that are thinking about doing the qualification. With the success of Freestyle Fitness Yoga Jayne has been “trying” to make inroads with the UK Yoga Alliance and you can read her developments here plus Katie Bulmber Cooke explains how to plan your own retreatand Cori reiterates how important it is to be you! I’m looking at your personal brand and how crucial it is to develop it in this busy and crowded marketplace.
    How do you STAND out from the Fitness Crowd

    I was so inspired by Cori’s article last week about doing your own thing it really got me thinking. As you scroll through your Facebook newsfeed and check out the Fitpros you follow on Twitter, so many people seem to be doing exactly the same thing. Teaching the same classes, offering similar services, samey, samey, samey……

    Some one jumps on something or creates a new funky class or programme and suddenly the market place becomes so crowded with an identical product. Bootcamps and Zumba have really  suffered with this, as every man and his dog appears to have leaped onto  those trains until the whole market place just got so crowded with identical marketing, same PR, promotion and even music and class content. It’s the old purple cow syndrome. At first the new programme/class is a total novelty but then it all becomes background as the local industry catches up. But, with September approaching, what do YOU do to stand out in a competitive market place like Fitness, especially on social media and online.
    The big thing to remember is that whatever you do in life, there’s always competition, both direct and indirect. Therefore, it’s vital that your personal and fitness brand looks, feels and behaves differently from the rest.

    Here are my top tips to Standing OUT from the Fitness Crowd by Rachel

    1.Develop a strong personal brand. Whatever different styles or concepts you teach make sure your personal brand is strong. Identify what is different & unique about you then build your brand around that, so even if you teach the same programme as others in your area, you stand out because you have a really unique brand and presence on social media. Ensure your website fits your brand and is dialed into the customers and demographic you serve.

    2. Look outside of the Fitness Industry for inspiration. Look at Fashion, Music, Dance & The Arts, Colour trends, Personal Growth, Media/Radio/Magazines/Blogs for ideas, stimulus and motivation.

    Bring your outside passion into your fitness business. Tell us about your hobbies and interests. Andrea Riddoch, who  runs a community fitness based in Leeds, has a passion for animals and you see that in her Instagrams and Tweets. She stands out because you can see her outside passions come though into her work.

    4.Think about all the big brands and personalities you love and admire. Why do you love them, what makes them special and why do they stand out for you? They don’t have to be fitness related, any brands that you follow and buy from.

    5.People buy from People. If your personal brand is strong, whatever you teach or create people will come to you and become loyal customers and followers.

    6.As we rely more on social media and the internet to promote our services and businesses it’s crucial to develop an authentic and passionate brand.

    Are you Ready for September – Promote your Passion.

    The Scottish schools are back and after the bank holiday weekend in England we are all systems go. Here are my top tops to promoting your classes and services:

    1. Build your Facebook Page –  Not your profile page, but you have to work hard on your  actual business page. Try and get as many likes as you possibly can every day. Encourage people to “LIKE”  your page so you can then start to utilise Facebook adverts. My top tip is to get friends, customers and prospects from your profile page who are interested in your products and services and onto you business PAGE.
    Facebook ads will take over from  newspaper ads in the future and they really work, but you can only create ads using a PAGE so make sure you schedule tons of updates and make you page a hotbed of great information.

    b. Text everyone in your phone – Use TEXT LOCAL to send a quick text to everyone you know and get your customers to text their friends.

    c. Email everyone on your database, especially lapsed members, inviting them to come back at a special “Returners Rate”

    Get all your friends to share your information, posters and flyers.

    Create strategic alliances with local business. It is so important so don’t overlook this step. Go and talk to as many local businesses who service the same market as you do. Talk to people and network.

    Ensure your marketing is consistent, do a little bit every day. Convey on all of your marketing materials how much you LOVE health, fitness and helping people.  Your passion will shine though in person and online and that will attract people to you and your classes.

    What is Your Personal Fitness Brand

    I talk a lot about promoting your personal brand but what is it and how do you build it to help grow your fitness business.

    A ‘personal brand’ is synonymous with your reputation, and refers to the way other people see you. Ask yourself what you want people to say about you when you’re not around – the answer is directly related to your personal brand. This is why creating YOUR personal brand and blowing it up is crucial in fitness, because fitness is so fast moving and we all teach lots of different classes and move into new genres as our career progresses and evolves, having a solid personal brand is vital.

    It takes time to build up a reputation and become a trusted authority, or expert locally and nationally – which is necessary when building any type of successful brand. However, there are certainly a few simple steps to building a personable image, creating rapport and gaining trust as an online and offline fitness business owner.

    Your online/offline brand should be easily recognisable.  Take time and care in developing this, as it will be a very important aspect of your business.

    * So the question is, who are you?What do you stand for?
    * What comes into people’s minds when they hear your name?
    * What are your passions / what do you love and how do you want to help and serve people?

    Once you’ve been around for a while online, and that includes all your social media channels, you should have already started to develop a personal brand. People will start to recognize your name, what you’re working on, what you offer, and what you’re about, what you stand for, as people are getting to know you.

    Remember, having a ‘personal brand’ means that you never start from scratch again –all of your future fitness projects grow from your personal brand. For example, I started as Rachel Holmes Fitness and then added Choreographytogo, Fitness Pilates, and more recently Kick Start Fat Loss. These are all separate brands, but I developed them from having a strong personal brand. If you can’t think of a cool name for your business use YOUR own name and make sure you purchase your domain name and your children’s domain names for future use.

    I’d love your feedback Tweet me @RachelHolmes Instagram RachelLHolmes

    Choreographytogo Facebook page

    As my business grows and diversifies I’ll be using my Choreographytogo Facebook page much, much more every day with lots of free videos, updates, choreography and ideas. So please make sure you head over and like the page. You will easily be able to get me over there and I’m making the page as interactive now as possible.

    Kick Start Fat Loss page will be everything KSFL, Nutrition, Fatloss, Recipes  and weight management topics and again I’m posting loads of information over there,  so do head over and Like the page if this interests you.

    Business List – Fitness Business Builder

    I’ve created a new fitness business email list where I’ll be sending out really short quick tips and ideas style mails. If you are looking to elevate your fitness business, looking for ideas to create your online fitness business, starting a coaching business etc then sign up as soon you can. It will be quite different to this newsletter and you will be able to read the email on your phone in a couple of minutes. You can sign up here this will be quite different to this newsletter & I’m looking fwd to cracking on with this.

    Take your Fitness Pilates to the next level – Kelly Reed-Banks

    I often get asked “is it worth doing my level 3 Pilates qualification?” “I’ve been teaching Fitness Pilates for years, do you think its worth me doing my level 3?”

    Well my advice to you is –
    When was the last time you updated your training? Do you teach in Clubs as well as in the community? Are you on REPS? Do you want to deliver 1-2-1 Pilates training? –
    If then the answer to any of those questions is YES then YES you definitely need to do your level 3. Or if you haven’t updated your knowledge since you did your initial training then maybe the time is now!!
    Unfortunately a couple of years ago REPS decided to change the criteria for Pilates instructors so that anyone who wanted to be REPS registered to teach Pilates had to hold their level 3 qualification. This obviously effected everyone who teaches Fitness Pilates but also anyone who had a level 2 Pilates qualification with any other training provider as well.
    Which also means that any clubs who require you to be REPS registered will also require you to hold your level 3 qualification. But this isn’t such a bad thing!! Science changes all the time and along with that so does the fitness industry. Many courses will require you to update your knowledge over the years to make sure you are ahead of the game with what you are teaching.
    Les Mills are great at this as they require their instructors to go on regular quarterly workshops etc. We here at C2GO also recommend that you keep your knowledge updated and fresh especially with your Fitness Pilates classes which is why myself and Rachel run so many workshops over the year.

    So what’s the difference then between doing your level 3 Pilates training and just doing a couple of workshops etc?
    Well the qualification itself is internationally recognised. So, if like me you wanted to go and teach abroad, then you absolutely CAN with this qualification. We also go in depth to re-invent the original 34 exercises, breaking them down, building them up, moving them into different positions and even getting them standing!! This gives each instructor an unlimited amount of choreography ideas which will keep you going for years!!

    When Joseph Pilates created these original 34 exercises he had no idea that they would still be taught on a regular basis every day nearly a hundred years later. However, many of the exercises are not suitable for the general ‘JOE’ in your classes, which is why Fitness Pilates came about, but also its important to understand why we teach the moves we do, where they come from and how they can still be re-invented all the time.

    Our level 3 Pilates qualification also looks at Special Populations and how to deal with certain individuals coming into your classes. We all know that every case study is different, but if you have some general guidelines to work with, this can really help to give the best quality teaching you can to your clients.

    One of the other things that myself and Rachel really wanted to offer within the level 3 is the advanced functional anatomy and to help you understand about how the body works effectively to promote everyday function. With this in mind we spend time over Tri-plane exercises, foot and ankle release work, Self myofascia release using foam rollers and tennis balls which is vital to aid recovery, enhance training and to really give your Pilates teaching a different niche.

    The course is a mix of online and face to face contact. To start with you will attend 3 days with me where I will go from teaching you the basics all the way through to advanced teaching skills & knowledge  to deliver 1-2-1 or small group Pilates training. You then have up to 2 years to complete your portfolio (most people do this within 6 months!)

    Once you get back home and back into the real world of teaching you will put a case study together for a group of participants who you will teach for 6 weeks, planning their sessions, monitoring their progress and eventually filming a session of you teaching them. This can be a fantastic learning experience and a chance to really get to know your group, see how much someone can progress in just 6 sessions.

    With any level 3 course you need to obtain your level 3 Anatomy and Physiology qualification as well, now if you already have this, you do not need to sit it again. We can just put a copy of your certificate in your portfolio. If you do not hold your level 3 A&P we will organise for you to sit this in your own time with an allocated supervisor possibly in your workplace or at home. So you don’t have to travel miles to sit the exam keep paying extra money to re-take it.

    This course is really designed for the busy instructor who really wants to take their knowledge further. We know that sometimes life gets in the way which is why you have that 2 year bracket in which you can complete your work, but also I am on hand to help answer any questions you may have over the time.

    You don’t have to have already trained in Fitness Pilates first to come on the level 3. (Yes it obviously helps but its not a necessity) You just need to hold a level 2 qualification in either gym or ETM.

    For me personally, this qualification has enabled me to teach 1-2-1 sessions (and get paid good money for that!), also to teach at the physio clinic to enhance my skills even further.
    So if you are feeling a little stale with your teaching, If you’re looking at offering something different in your classes or possibly teaching 1-2-1, or if you are passionate about Fitness Pilates and looking for a new course which will help to take your teaching to the next level then my answer to you would be YES YES YES its definitely worth doing your level 3 qualification.
    Our next course is in Manchester on 13th-15th September or in Derby in November.
    Don’t get left behind with this ever moving industry, keep your knowledge up to date, keep your teaching fresh and keep your participants on their toes!!
    If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact me –

    Kelly Reed-Banks

    Bitter Sweet Experience By Jayne Nicholls

    My Freestyle Fitness Yoga Certification is now 13 years old. If you look at your children (if you have them around this age) and see how they have developed over this time, both changed and evolved, grown stronger with such great potential, well bizarrely this is how I feel about FFY. We have been through such tough times, especially in the early days of trying to establish a brand and an identity; we have kept our heads high when REPs and Body Balance came along finding our own pathway when faced with ‘’no – you can’t do this’’. Along this route I have also established a Level 3 industry standard Yoga Diploma, Young Yoga and Hot Yoga certifications designed to get instructors and the general public up and running. So I thought it is about time we made inroads into the world of Yoga as we are pretty much established and have put in the ground work.

    So can I join the Yoga Alliance UK? Yes I absolutely can in fact I joined as a senior Yoga Instructor unqualified by their recognised courses and based upon 4,000 hours of teaching over the past 13 years. That’s me all signed up with card, certificate and holding page on the site. Can I bring my 2500 FFY instructors into YAUK – ‘’no’’, can I endorse my Hot Yoga or Level 3 Diploma – ‘’no’’.
    I had such a bitter sweet conversation with the YAUK rep who told me that they are pretty much anti REPs and anti fitness instructors teaching Yoga via anything other than the 200 hour route. To YAUK, we dilute Yoga, nor do we represent Yoga how they believe it should be presented.

    Now in any other situation this would leave me either mad or sad, but surprisingly I feel neither. I am so proud of what we have done and who we are that this really does not matter or affect FFY, in fact it re establishes who we are and what we do. I felt a little sorry for her gripping onto something that has and will change despite their desperate need for it to stay the same. I have been in that situation as a freestyle instructor all those year ago and faced with a very new concept called BTS.

    So why am I so supremely confident that fitness and Yoga make the perfect partnership? Here are just 2 reasons:

    1.       It’s 2013 and everyone who steps into a group setting should feel confident that their physical activity is designed to suit their physiology and lifestyle. Every fitness instructor is trained from base level to elite standard in this area and can command a group with empathy and knowledge. If we add Yoga onto this in parts that we have learned for example breathing, Bandhas, relaxation we offer a fully rounded service where the roots are firmly set in the here and now but the content can travel into Yoga pre or post modern.
    2.       Most importantly I believe as course director that teaching makes a great instructor, not learning how to teach. We are only ever as good as we can be in front of our clients, we are not established by our training. Every instructor has the right to travel through bad – average – good to great and they can only do this in front of a group.

    I love the world of Yoga but Fitness as an industry, as a business and as a product has evolved so much, I simply cannot look down at this point. Shame though!

    Jayne Nicholls

    Self worth by Cori Withell

    First off, thank you so much for all the terrific feedback I received to last weeks article.  I think I hit a nerve!

    So, a follow on from that!

    Along with seeing lots of posts about wanting to follow the next big thing I wanted to touch on another biggy in my opinion.

    What has happened to fitness self doubt?

    Along with the influx of the big fitness trends, Zumba, Fitsteps, Les Mills, Piloxing etc etc.
    Our self doubt has taken a nose dive.
    The amount of threads on various forums where instructors are saying they can’t do that because they are rubbish or they have no creativity.

    PLEASE – stop it!

    Just TRY!

    How will you ever know unless you try?

    This is like the shepherd and the sheep analogy – if you want to follow then be the sheep but if you want to lead then you must be the shepherd.

    Too many instructors I know are terrified of failure, worried sick of looking a fool by their peers.  I totally get that.  I was that person for years!  BUT that person stopped me from doing what I really wanted to do and that was be ME!

    I don’t want to be a carbon copy of Beto thanks very much!  I want to me Cori, fitness instructor, having a laugh, connecting with my clients.  I am never going to do that if I am constantly striving to be something that I am currently not.

    Making mistakes, community classes not working, marketing failures etc etc is LIFE!  It doesn’t mean that you are a failure.  It doesn’t mean that you don’t have anything of value to offer.

    But if YOU don’t believe in YOU, then how on earth is a class full of ladies looking up to you going to?

    Learn and work hard to be confident in you, your clients will love you for it, they will want to have what you have and the great thing is that you have the ability to show them that.  That makes you an incredibly awesome person 🙂

    Be confident to be YOU.

    Health and happiness x
    Cori x

    Katie Bulmer-Cooke

    Howdy C2Goer’s.

    I hope everything is rocking in your world of fitness right now!

    I’m really excited about the next few months…

    On Saturday 7th September I’m presenting at The Big One North, a super one day event packed with sessions. I’m teaching Triple A (Arms, Abs & Ass), the new era of LBT, at 9am. It would be great to see some C2Goer’s there.

    On Sunday 8th September me and Simon are doing Tough Mudder in Yorkshire. If you’re taking part too, tweet me @KatieBulmer1.

    On Sunday 20th October I’m presenting at Richard Callender’s event, The Armageddon Project in Potters Bar (somewhere south of Sunderland)! I can’t wait for this! There are 6 brilliant classes on and makes a great day out for fit pros and participants alike.

    Sandwiched in between all of that is my next Real Results Retreat. A 2 night break for my clients which is fully catered (all clean eating), packed with outdoor exercise sessions, indoor Pilates, hot tubs, beauty treatments and log cabins. This is the third time I’ve held it and this time I have 10 of my lovely clients coming, some for the second time.

    Lot’s of my fellow fitness professionals have asked me how I structure, organise and price them. It’s really simple, but not many people seem to be doing it, so here are my 10 simple steps to starting your own retreat.

    Source a venue. I used log cabins in a small holiday park in Ripon. I would suggest initially hosting them somewhere fairly close to home- Ripon is about 1 hour from me. You don’t have to go abroad or to a super-fancy spa.

    Make a draft itinerary. What activities will you do? What space is available? Will you offer treatments? How many meals will be included?

    Decide who will cook? Will you hire someone in (remember this person will need to be paid and will need a bed too) or will you do what I did and pass your food hygiene certificate and do it all yourself?

    Contact a local mobile therapist and ask for a price list. Remember to build these costs into the price of the retreat.

    Plan the menu and make a shopping list. Once you start taking payments put the money on a supermarket gift card so it’s ready to spend on everything you need before you head off to your destination.

    Make a list of what your clients will need to bring such as hairdryer and swim wear if there is a hot tub etc.

    Make a list of what you need to bring to conduct your sessions, such as a stereo, iPod, mats, equipment.
    Keep your customers well informed. Give them an itinerary, directions, contact numbers etc.

    Start small. I did my first one for just 5 people, and I took my friend Jayne along to help me with organisation and food preparation.
    Ask for feedback afterwards via (anonymous responses can be obtained) so that you constantly improve your service.

    Retreats are a great offering to have in your product matrix, a fantastic up-sell and USP.

    I hope you find this helpful. If you have any questions please feel free to tweet me @KatieBulmer1.

    Thanks for reading,

    KBC x

    Katie Bulmer-Cooke

    Have a wonderful week
    Love Rachel x

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