Guest: Steve Washuta

Podcast Release Date: 6/15/2021

Welcome to Trulyfit the online fitness marketplace connecting pros and clients through unique fitness business software. 

Steve Washuta: Welcome to the Trulyfit podcast, I am your host, Steve Washuta, co-founder of Trulyfit, and author of Fitness Business 101. A little housekeeping today before we get started Trulyfit, hopefully, about five weeks away from officially launching our fitness business software platform where you personal trainers and people who are interested in fitness looking for personal trainers or group fitness can go on for free. And you can list yourself as a fitness business professional list your schedule, both your virtual and your onsite schedule, and we send clients to find you.

And if you are a client, if you’re someone who’s seeking out a fitness professional, you can do the same, you can go on the site, you can pay for site credits, and then you can search for the fitness professionals and book them. So today I am going to be by myself, we do have 8 to 10 great guests coming up over the course of the next two months.

But I really want to get this one out there because I’ve had a lot of trainers ask me recently, and I’ve seen it a lot in the forums about in-home personal training. I know that people are doing in-home personal training. And I know that people have stayed even with COVID repeals starting to kind of be thrown out, and people going back into gyms and interviewing for jobs.

There are a lot of people who stayed in-home personal training, but now they’re reassessing things. If I want to continue this in-home personal training, how do I do it properly? Did I start this properly in the first place? Do I have the structure to move forward with this in-home personal training? And there are five questions inside of that, right? If you unpack that five, sort of smaller micro questions that I see that are asked the most. So I’m going to go over each one of those individually.

And the first one is, do I need insurance? That is an easy one. Yes, of course, you need insurance. Does it matter which company you go through? I would say Not really. You can Google it. NEXT is the one that a lot of national academy of Sports Medicine trainers use, at least in the United States, and it’s different in Canada.

But that is easy cheap insurance, a lot of cheap insurance, liability insurance to have. You need insurance if you’re working anywhere, but especially in your home. And that leads right to the second question, do I need an LLC? And I will tell you, yes, you do need an LLC.

If even if you have insurance, who knows what is going to happen? When you get into that courtroom. I don’t know past precedent in your particular state, and how that’s going to work out if there is some sort of litigation, and either do you write and the legalese reading into these insurance policies is also beyond us. Right? Not our scope of practice, you have to take every avenue of safety that you can for yourself and your family, both from a financial standpoint and a long-term business standpoint. So yes, you need an LLC, because what happens is that money that’s tied into your LLC will be the money that will be being pursued in any lawsuit rather than somebody trying to get your home or your house or your personal things. So make sure you have an LLC.

Now, not only does it make you seem more professional, but for again, for legal reasons, to circumvent having, you know, your life savings taking away on your home, and your family having to deal with this. It’s important that you have an LLC. The third question here, and probably the most asked question is, what is my best avenue for getting clients? How do I get clients, if I’m running a gym out of my home, or some sort of, you know, backyard garage in-home personal training? Well, you know, there’s a lot of ways so let’s go down some of the easier ways.

Number one, you can just go on Thumbtack, that is sort of a pay-for-play here you’re paying for leads, and then you reach out to the client, you try to connect with them and pitch them once you get that lead. And voila, you have a new client. So it’s easy. I’ve gotten a lot of clients through Thumbtack when I was in-home personal training heavily. It’s worth fully it’s right, the leads are anywhere from a depends but it depends, but I don’t know, they’re probably averaged around six or seven or $8 for a lead, right. So obviously, one session quickly pays that off, and then some, it’s it’s worth a lead and even if you’re only let’s say every three or four people, you’re only securing of those leads, it’s still worthwhile if you’re going to gain a longtime client.

Steve Washuta: Standard social media outreach, obviously will continue to do the job and it’s a numbers game you’ll eventually get at least one or two people from that and it’s free so well worth it. Old clients so if you were training in at a facility that is either shut down or is back open, but you decide not to go back there and you don’t have a nondisclosure or nondisclosure that uh, I think I just had nondisclosure I’m at non compete if you had a non compete with the gym that affects you from reaching back out to those people reach out to your old clients.

You’d be surprised how many of the old clients are nervous to reach out to you They think that maybe the reason why you’re not reaching out to them is that you don’t want to train them anymore. And you would be more than surprised, please, if you’re looking for clients reach out to your old clients, free assessments or outdoor classes once a week are important. So you know, when I first started my fitness business, I put out flyers everywhere.

I know that sort of old school, you can obviously do a social media push, but to do a free assessment, and people come in, they give you, you know, not only their time and energy and effort, which is already sort of convincing them into the fact that they might like you or think you’re worthwhile, but they give you their email, they give you some information, you give them the assessment, but not not the fixes for the assessment, right. So they come in whatever sort of assessment you want to do, I was doing golf swing specific assessments, but you can do your average, you know, corrective exercise with some sort of, you know, upper body strength assessment, whatever you want to do get creative.

Tell them where you think they’re weak, where do you think that they could change things, which in turn can help them get stronger, or get more flexible? Or whatever it is that they need to do? But don’t give them necessarily all the answers to do that. That is how you pitch them, Hey, I can help you do X, Y, and Z, why don’t you book a session with me. So free assessments are always a great way to get these clients or a free outdoor class, right Run, run a free outdoor class for 45 minutes to an hour on a Saturday, it’s worthwhile you’ll get you’ll get a bunch of clients. And then you know, the best way sooner enough is Trulyfit.

You know, once we are launched, that is the purpose of truth that are one of the purposes is for you to sign up for free. Have your page up there as a fitness professional, group, fitness instructor, whatever you are, personal trainer, and let your listing your schedule up there and we drive people to go find you. Number four, the fourth most asked question is charging What do I charge? If I’m if my in home gym? Well, these are the same answers you’re always going to hear and you’ve been beating over the head with them.

But the reason they’re the same answers you’re always going to hear is because they’re true. You know, first you have to look in your area charges are area dependent. If you live in, you know, downtown Los Angeles, you’re going to be paying more for an in-home personal training session than if you live in Idaho. That’s, that’s, that’s just part of the game here. Right? The cost of living in nowhere, Ville, Georgia is going to be less than it is in downtown Seattle or Los Angeles or Houston. So you have to factor all those things in and make sure you’re charging sort of commiserate with your area. In less of course, this leads to the second point, you know?

Steve Washuta: What exactly are you giving your client? Do you think it is worth more than other trainers? Are you doing something on the back end, where your client, maybe you’re only taking on clients, let’s say that have a lot of issues and elements, you have to do your own research in the background? And you’re providing them with high, excuse me expensive, and you believe that this is a better experience. If you could sleep at night charging them 1015 20% more than the other people in your area or you believe you can get it, then go for it, I would never tell someone to charge less. But understand that these people are also going to be savvy and you don’t want to lose them if you haven’t connected with the client yet.

And let’s say you’re on thumbtack, and they see that you’re 10 or 15 or 20% more, you’re going to be less likely to get these clients now they, you know, the people who argue against me say well, it doesn’t matter. You don’t need as many clients. If you charge more, I understand that. But eventually, you’re going to have to provide a high-value experience a better experience, because these people are going to ask themselves, why am I paying $80 an hour and we’re not gonna be paying 55 for the same level of experience. So also, if you’ve worked in a facility at a facility in your local area beforehand, and you’re working with the same clients you’re working with Susie Johnson used to work with Susie Johnson out of Fit Club gym, and now she wants to come to your house.

Typically, these people understand that the gym is not that the gym is now not getting a cut. So they might want to be charged a little bit less than you don’t have to do that. But I do that personally, if I was working with them, and I tell them hey, listen to Jim’s not taking the full cut. I’m very upfront with my clients, so I can charge you a little bit less. And they like that right? Sometimes that means they book an extra session that week, which in turn gets me nets me more money in the first place.

But completely up to you what you want to charge I would just say always be somewhat area dependent or at least know what people are charging in your area. What are you giving that other potential fitness professionals are not giving? Does that allow you to charge a little bit more can you sleep at night knowing what you charge your clients? And are you charging your client if you’re working with them at a four out of another facility the same or a little bit less? And last but not least?

What’s the best equipment to get this first and foremost space-dependent right? I can’t tell you what equipment to get if I don’t know I don’t know how big your spaces some people work out of spaces as little as you know. 100 square feet. It’s hard for me to tell you what equipment to get.

So first understand your space. Are you indoors? Are you outdoors? Can you do both? Because I can tell you that my clients who I train in house, I like both. They like to switch up sometimes they like to go outdoors and do things, can you quickly go indoor-outdoor, that’ll change the equipment you’re getting.

Your training style also matters here. There are some people who aren’t that creative, and they have to buy more equipment because of that because they can’t get that creative with equipment. Remember, if you need to stay creative, you use dots, duration, object tempo stability, I talked about that in another podcast, you could search for that. It’s it gives you endless ways to be creative. By switching up the duration, the object, the tempo or stability, you only need to switch up one of those variables to continue to be creative with very, very little equipment. But if you’re somebody who struggles with creativity, you’re going to have to buy more equipment.

It’s also clients federal clientele range from, you know, an 18-year-old kid who’s trying to you know, make the swim team to a 67-year-old woman who just wants to be able to get up and down off the couch and off the ground easily so she could play with her grandchildren, you’re going to need different equipment for that clientele if your clientele is all 23-year-old athletes who are trying to make the salt who are, let’s say the softball players, well then you might not need a huge different range of equipment because you’re working with a specific demographic so you have to look at your demographic and it and buy that equipment that’s very clientele dependent.

Now, I know a lot of these answers seem like cop-outs or they’re just very vague. So I’m going to get specific here for me. It’s important that I have, of course, dumbbells. I need dumbbells. Me- I have 550s A TRS because you can do every possible thing with the TRS suspension trainer. There’s not one thing you cannot do with a T rex suspension trainer. It is my favorite piece of equipment and then a Bosu because oh Sue because there is no level of client that doesn’t need to be challenged in some way on balance and stability and proprioception.

So, if I can only get three different things, so it’d be a set of dumbbells ranging from five to 15 at least from my clientele, specifically, a TRS and a Bosu. Now, do I have a lot of other equipment? Yes, I trained in Muay Thai and kickboxing with my clients. So I have all of that equipment. I have a ton of different bands, I have weighted balls, slam balls, balls of all different sorts, I have battle ropes, I have jump ropes. I mean, I have a lot of different things with me because I’ve accrued it over the years and I have different clientele and different ranges of clientele, I should say demographic wise, who all need different things.

So, again, do I need insurance? Yes, you do need insurance. Should you start an LLC? Yes, you should start an LLC. It’s not that expensive to do it. You can do it through LegalZoom for like, I don’t know, 90 bucks or something. The best way to get clients, there’s a bunch of different avenues thumbtack might be thumbtack might be the easiest Avenue right now Trulyfit will certainly be the easiest Avenue once we are launched, contact old clients run free assessments, outdoor classes, standard social media outreach is always fine.

Charging. What exactly do I charge depends upon your area. What exactly are you working with? As far as what are you giving to your client? How long are these sessions? Are you putting more energy and effort into the front end and the back end? Do you have a higher level of equipment than other trainers? You can all factor that in when you’re charging more but it’s really area-dependent should that be the number one thing you’re looking at here? And can you sleep at night? Obviously, Do you know do you feel like you’re charging the appropriate amount for your client. And lastly, what’s the best equipment to get it’s space-dependent obviously if you’re in-home personal training indoor rather than outdoor or collectively both you can get different equipment.

It’s training style-dependent. If you’re very creative, you don’t need as much if you’re not as creative, you’re going to have to buy more equipment clientele-dependent. understand if you want to stay cheap, if you only want to buy a few things, things you might have to narrow your clientele down, you might have to work in reverse. Like I only have, let’s say you know $700 to spend on equipment and I can’t get that many different things well then you might not be able to work with all different demographics.

If you’re not an experienced trainer and know how to use all this equipment for different ages and different issues that your clients might have. You might have to say, Okay, I’m only going to work with young clients because I can easily do you know, burpees and bodyweight exercises and jumping and plyometrics with people under the age of 40 but I can’t do that with a 65-year-old. Again, my picks are always the T rex has mentioned trainer, dumbbells, and a Bosu. You can’t beat that for the money or you can get a TRS suspension trainer now for like 150 bucks, I think. Right and then maybe 190 now I think it’s 150 and then you know, dumbbells are, they’re a little bit more expensive than they used to be.

They’re closer to $2 a pound now, with the COVID pandemic hitting and people scooping them up quickly and you know, Bosu again, a little expensive 150 bucks, but really you can get all dollars and set yourself up with some good pieces of equipment and then start to Find cheap stuff right get a few bands and also be ready to add to your pile of toys here on there, you’re going to have to make sure you’re reinvesting in your business like any other business, and keep things creative. Your clients don’t want you to be using the same equipment for for for three months, right? Every once in a while you have to spice it up and bring a new piece of equipment in there. One of the pieces of equipment that I’ve been using with my clients is the agility ladder.

The super cheap $12 on Amazon could do a lot with the agility ladder at any age, it doesn’t matter, right? It’s more of a coordination and balance thing with somebody who’s of a certain age over 50 let’s say and you can use it as more of a dynamic sort of plyometric agility when you have younger clients but it works both ways you can use it if if you’re creative enough so I hope that helps for people who are looking at in-home personal training if there are any other questions please send them directly to social at Trulyfit.app.

Again, a host of great pods coming soon. Everything from Keto 101 we’re gonna have on somebody who’s a boxing specific trainer and analyst someone who’s Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specific trainer and analyst those is really fun sort of MMA conversations but really they’re going to be centered around fitness and people who are interested in using it for themselves or for their clients.

We’re gonna have someone talking about focus and how you really stay focused and hone in on your business and a host of another fantastic podcast I can’t I can’t remember them all because honestly, there’s like a dozen people who have just reached out to me to hop on the podcast now that we’ve been ranking I think in the top 50 for our genre here and fitness. So thanks for listening to the Trulyfit podcast send any messages, questions, or concerns to social@trulyfit.app.

Steve Washuta: Thanks for joining us on the Trulyfit podcast. Please subscribe, rate, and review on your listening platform. Feel free to email us as we’d love to hear from you.

Social@Trulyfit.app

Thanks again!

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