What Are People Looking for in Online Fitness Classes?
This is not a nuts and bolts, deep dive into the ins and outs of online fitness classes. You won’t be reading about how to monetize your class or the what the best camera is to use.
There are plenty of other places you can find that information.
This is for you who wants to discuss the philosophy behind why some would rather not show up in person to your group training sessions. (Excluding those who cannot be with you in person due to the challenges of travel or illness).
The need to simultaneously be united with a group doing exercise and be a loner seems baffling.
It seems even more vexing when some of your clients start by coming in person and then migrate to your online classes.
Something stinks and you know it. You can’t just blame everything on a post-pandemic world.
Disclaimer: as a professional who trains large groups, you can totally disregard this short blog post if it rubs you the wrong way. The person writing this is a certified group fitness trainer but currently focuses on one-on-one nutrition coaching instead.
After reading this short blog post, you ought to have a better understanding on what others perceive when they gauge your fitness class. Additionally you will have gone through some philosophy regarding why some would rather attend virtually instead of in person.
Let’s get to work!
Are you just like everyone else?
This is going to be the harshest this short blog post will get.
After speaking with many would-be group fitness class attendees, it seems like the traditional group exercise dynamic is losing its luster.
It looks like it’s the same song and dance over and over.
It seems like the same high-volume speakers blasting in your ears and the same neon-colored uniforms of the instructor just isn’t striking the same way anymore.
Though many people enjoy this type of group dynamic, there are a host of others who crave something different. There’s a whole niche in the fitness market that is hanging there, waiting to be grasped by your fitness business.
Those who find themselves wanting a great group workout but don’t require the let’s go girls motivation seem find themselves stranded. This is where many find themselves leaving your group fitness class and going online.
They get to have the structure of a great workout you provide without the cringe that comes with it.
How many of your online fitness class attendees put it on mute?
You’ll never know.
What would happen to your business if you could adjust to this new information?
What’s the average age of your group fitness attendees?
What’s the average age of your online group fitness attendees?
How often do your online folks come in person?
How many times have you asked those you are training their reasons for coming in person or staying online?
Only you know the answers to these questions.
If you’ve never asked these questions, the responses may surprise you. Furthermore, they may even hurt your feelings.
If you can detach from your feelings enough to hear truthful answers to these questions, you may have a better time getting people to your in-person fitness classes.
Why should you care about your in-person numbers?
This is a great question to ask.
According to this article by CTV News,
“If you take a yoga or barre class with your bestie every Tuesday, you’re likely to go even on days when you don’t feel like it. You won’t want to disappoint them, after all. But no one will know if you don’t turn on an online workout.”
You may desire to take you group fitness classes 100% online, and that’s understandable.
It’s certainly easier for you to have to deal with zero people and interact with a camera only. Additionally, it’s more money for less effort.
Feel free to disagree here, but this is a two-fold problem.
- If you have little to no relationships with your clients, they are not likely to give you helpful feedback when they stop subscribing.
- If you have no desire for an in-person relationship with your clients, how much positive impact do you expect to make in their lives?
You can fool your customers for a while, but as soon as they feel that your product or service is only for you to make a profit, they’ll leave.
The sad part is that the profit-only mentality may not be your intention, however that seems to be what is communicated over time without an in-person relationship.
Besides, the bigger your group fitness class gets in person, the bigger the buzz there will be.
Buzz = free marketing.
For some additional thoughts on the fitness industry and how to increase your value, click here.
So what are people looking for in an online fitness class?
Not including those who are traveling, have an odd schedule, or are ill, it sounds like people are looking for an escape.
It sounds like people want a workout that pushes them but cannot stand the stereotypical, stale group dynamic that comes with group fitness classes.
There’s no way to know the needs of those you train without interacting with them. If you find many of your clients would rather watch you on video than travel a few blocks down the road to workout with you in person, something may be amiss.
It’s up to you to discover the missing ingredients that will get them interacting with your service in person.
It’s not magic, you just have to interact with them.
Once you have a genuine interaction and get to know what they really want, the better your in-person attendance will get.
If the band is good, the fans will buy the album. If the band is great, the fans will show up to the concert (in person)!
Be the instructor your clients will want to ditch their online classes for.
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