After offering free online classes for 9 months at the start of the pandemic, I found it difficult to ask people to pay for the classes I offered. It almost felt like a bad word or a plea for help.
I was conflicted – how can I say I “care” and then ask people for money? In short, was I expecting too much? I mean, many of this fit fam have become my dear friends. Can I really do this?
Then it hit me. For years I had been coaching social entrepreneurs and repeating to them “no money, no mission” and here I was dwindling my own knowledge base, cut from being paid for my profession of instructing and truly “fearful” that I wasn’t being authentic if I positioned myself to be be paid for what I did to improve my friend’s lives.
Before the pandemic, I was sheltered from the transaction of payment thanks to being an employee of the gym that I love and grew my instructor career with. Now it was time to figure out a way to do this solo because this pandemic accelerated the new reality of the online phenomenon. How can I remain transformational AND transactional to keep instructing? How can I still thrive in spite of this struggle?
I had to find a way to keep my professional knowledge base alive…stay up-to-date on my numerous certifications, learn a whole new way of teaching with technology, attend conferences, spend hours researching yoga and fitness to keep my classes innovative and, invest in ways to deliver the BEST possible experience to those I serve. When I considered how much time, resources and money it takes in order to keep relevant, offer wellness to humans I care deeply about, something had to change.
When some other fellow instructors also started to realize this, we joined together to make an affordable offering to those we care deeply about. Just like you, we craved the community of our fitness family and have found a way to stay connected. Albeit we aren’t catching up in the change rooms, or around the entrance of our gyms, we still learn about the latest life happenings in our lives. It is a community.
Now with our membership base growing, we are too – thanks to constant feedback and finding out what works best for those participating. Ultimately that’s why we do this.
Impact of a different kind
A very important part of this plan is to offer to women who are marginalized a way to be physical. With that in mind, we are now working with a special group of women in London to provide online fitness to these women. This direct interaction, creating a different kind of positive impact is not only rewarding, but lends to the social fabric of a healthy community – for all.
I look forward to meeting you again in the gym – our home for years and years – I really do. And I know we are setting ourselves up in every way possible – that means we’ll be doing fitness at home too – until something changes – again.
In the meantime, I will be here to help you prioritize your health and wellness – a value I share with you. And that’s worth something.