change your programming

Build Momentum by Changing up Your Programming

Summertime – school is out, members are between vacations, and you have probably noticed attendance is down in your group training classes.

This is a great time to make a few adjustments to your schedule to maximize the space and time.

It is true that many of your regulars don’t like change. However, if you let them know that change is coming, and it is only “seasonal” – they might look forward to what is in store. Also, remind them that changing up their regular routine is a great for achieving fitness goals.

Here are a few things you can do to drive attendance and engagement in your group classes this summer.

First, check the layout of your current fitness schedule.

Early AM:

If you have been offering 60 minute cardio classes in the mornings (i.e. indoor cycling classes, cardio boot camps, strength training, or step aerobics), try a split format class featuring two or more of your most popular class formats. Club Intel, a consumer insight firm serving the health and fitness industry, as well as the Association of Fitness Studios have both identified hybrid or fusion programming as a growing, emerging trend for 2018.

Here’s a simple example, Cardio & Core – 30 minute high intensity sweat session followed by 30 minutes of core training. In this case, your regulars will still get the cardio they are looking for paired with a bit of strength training for a great comprehensive workout.

Lunchtime:

Shorter classes lasting 30 – 45 minute classes are ideal for the lunch crowd. Start the classes a little before or after the hour to accommodate lunch schedules (i.e. 11:45 AM, 12:15 PM). A HIIT training class is the perfect format for a shorter class times. You can also stagger a HIIT class throughout the week with a short core training or Yoga class to promote active recovery between high intensity workouts.

For example: Mon, Wed, Fri at 12:15 PM – 12:45 PM Cardio Boot Camp / Tues, Thurs at 12:15PM – 12:45 PM Express Pilates. Then advertise your new Fast Fitness Lunch Schedule to nearby businesses.

After Work:

We all enjoy the extra hours of daylight in the summer months. Some rush home after work to spend time outside with their families or even finish up the yardwork. Consider changing a 60-minute evening class to 2-30 minute classes back-to-back. This will accommodate those who still want a quick, structured workout before they run home to take advantage of those long summer nights. Members who love the 60-minute time frame can simply stay for both classes.

Pilot or Test New Programs:

Summertime is also a good time to beta test some new equipment/programming options with your staff and dedicated members. Use the summer months to shop different program models, determine what fits your clubs needs, and what can make you stand out among the competition. Check out group training programs designed to accommodate a wide variety of fitness goals and feature unique and popular products such as TRX, PowerWave, and Axle. Try out a few this summer before committing to what new programs/equipment your facility will launch.

Making adjustments to your class programming for the summer provides a way to challenge your members to step up their training game by trying something new. Give your studio and group training class schedule a summer makeover and watch your group training attendance gain momentum rather than fizzle out this summer.

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Elisabeth Fouts

About Elisabeth Fouts

Elisabeth Fouts is Power Systems’ Education and Trade Show Coordinator and a 10 year veteran in the fitness industry. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Science, is certified in and actively teaches 4 Les Mills Group Fitness Programs, and serves as a PowerWave Senior Coach. When Elisabeth isn’t teaching group x classes, you can find her training for or participating in an Obstacle Course race or watching Tennessee Volunteers or Dallas Cowboys football… GO VOLS!