Even with the best club operator at the helm, the gym can be an intimidating place for some members. Recovering from an injury, working on shaking a little extra weight or interested in a new kind of class, many members don’t feel prime time ready for a busy activity class, and some never will. But the convenience — and privacy — of on-demand fitness classes and content can be a simple and efficient answer to reaching and engaging these members in a way that builds their confidence.
Why and how does it work?
Very few club members get to the gym to take a class or workout as much as they would like, thanks to conflicts and busy work or family schedules. But for some members who are self-conscious about their fitness or experience level, another factor keeps them away. The perception that current class members are “experts” or their ability level is unreachable.
It’s not practical for an instructor of that class to meet with and reassure every new member wanting to join the class. But want-to-be participants should be encouraged to try the class or something similar for themselves. On-demand classes and content allow members to be introduced to particular moves or exercises before they try it live for themselves. This can be done in-studio at an off-peak hour, or streamed to a device or a TV at home for total privacy.
Some classes, like yoga or Pilates, have a long list of terms and positions that must be learned. Other sequences of exercises and moves in high intensity classes can be complicated and demanding. Learning these moves can be off-putting to any newcomer or novice, and also an easy way to get injured.
Many instructors now recommend adding on-demand workouts and class familiarization to new members getting up to speed with the physical and coordination challenges that come with some classes and activities. The more on-demand practice a member gets, the more confidence and muscle memory they build and the safer they stay in live classes where both timing and form can be critical to staying safe.
Any instructor or experienced gym member knows cross-training is king. Varying your workout type and exercising or isolating particular muscle groups on a rotating basis can help members overcome plateaus in their workout goals, and also lead to greater satisfaction with their club experience.
It might be impractical for members to sign up for alternative live classes outside of their current class schedule just for the purposes of cross training, but on-demand fitness offers endless possibilities for 24/7 scheduling and a wide variety of specific muscle group workouts or other class types that complement current activities. The very best instructors know this well, and familiarize themselves with a club’s content offerings to give their class participants the very best virtual and live in-club experiences possible.
Andrew Evenson is the senior director of operations and brand strategy at FitnessOnDemand, the leader in the provision of the world’s best fitness content, collected, curated and delivered to leading health clubs and other fitness organizations across the globe. FitnessOnDemand offers omni-channel content provision to customers through in-studio, device and app-based services. Evenson has more than 10 years of broad-ranging fitness industry experience. He can be reached at email@example.com.