Do what you love and you will never work a day in your life – unknown
Congratulations on taking the step into teaching pilates. As with any job, the longer you work at it, the more experienced you become. Mistakes are a natural part of learning. Below, we have listed 6 tips to hopefully get you’re classes off to a great start.
Pre-screen your pilates students
Picture the scene, it is the morning of your first new pilates term. All of your students arrive within a few minutes of the class starting time. You are handing out waivers and questionnaires to them as they arrive. Some of them have their own pens, some of them are borrowing pens from you. They then spend 5-10 minutes completing their paperwork. When they are all finished, you can start your class. Ugh.
In my personal experience attending fitness classes, I hate when this happens. I hate it because it eats into the time that I hoped I would be doing the thing I signed up to do – in your
Aside from eating into your class time, you may end up with questionnaires and waivers where you cannot read the students writing.
To avoid these two unpleasant experiences, we recommend sending out your waivers and questionnaires to your students before your pilates term starts. This way, you get your paperwork emailed to you and you can store it electronically.
Blatant self-promotion warning: With BookingHawk.com, you can have your paperwork automatically sent to your students as soon as they make their booking.
Collect payment before the class
This can further add to the clamour of the paperwork nightmare described above. Collecting cash on the day of the class will delay you even further. And what if some of the students want to pay with a credit card, you better hope your credit card terminal is zippy!
The delay caused by collecting payment on the day of your class is not the only reason you should avoid it. There is another very good reason to have your pilates pre-pay for your pilates class. That reason is no-shows!
No shows at classes of all types are costly and frustrating. We even wrote a piece on how to stop no-shows at your pilates classes. Number 1 on that list, is, you guessed it, collecting payments. In our experience, for all types of businesses that are booked, the most effective way to stop no-shows is to collect payment upfront.
Any good booking engine – and the great ones too 😉 will give you the facility to collect booking deposits and full payments.
Collect email addresses for marketing future classes
The saying goes that it is ten times harder to get a new customer than it is to keep an existing one. It is challenging enough getting new clients. So make sure you hang on to your existing ones.
Collecting your students email addresses, is an easy way to keep your classes full. Ok so they have signed up for your next six week pilates class. But you will want to let them know when the following term starts.
Pro tip: Make sure you inform them why you are collecting and storing their email address. That will help you to comply with GDPR.
Again, any good booking system will automatically collect your clients’ contact details. It should also present them with your data use-age policy in line with GDPR. As you have probably guessed, BookingHawk.com does both of these things.
Advertise your new class
If you build it, they will come…or will they!? I remember when we buildt BookingHawk.com and we limited the number of new signups for fear our system would be overloaded with traffic. And he days passed, and the floodgates never opened.
It was only a conversation with a successful entrepreneur that made me realise the following. If tomorrow morning, I were to give €100 to every new customer that signed up, it would not guarantee a deluge of new clients. Why? Because nobody would know about it!
You must advertise. But just because you need to advertise, does not mean you need to spend money on advertising. Check out our post on 5 free ways to advertise your pilates classes.
Start your classes on time!
This will help you in the long run. I remember when I was 16 and playing football for the local team. Training was supposed to start at 8 pm every Tuesday and Thursday night. For the first few weeks, I was there at 7:45 ready to go.
As the weeks went past, I noticed that most lads did not arrive until between 7:55 and
This whole mess could have been avoided if the coach stuck to the start time. The boys that arrived late, would have realised that training starts on time and 8 means 8!
To save you and your students time and frustration, start as you mean to go on and always start your class at the exact time it is supposed to start.
I hope you enjoyed these tips and that you implement one or all of them. We wish you the very best of luck with your new pilates business. If you are in the market for a low-cost booking system, consider BookingHawk.com. At just €11.14 per month, it delivers more bang than the buck it requires!
Hi, my name is Niall Smith and I am the Founder and CEO of BookingHawk.com. I am an experienced software engineer and have worked with companies like AOL, Guidewire, Deloitte and SAP. I am a graduate of The New Frontiers entrepreneur development programme. I live in Dublin, Ireland with my wife. I love to meet other founders and learn from as many people as possible.