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Ever since Covid-19 appeared in our lives, our entire view of the world and how we approach every day living has been completely turned upside down. Even tasks like getting groceries from the store or going out to eat require us to follow a whole new set of rules that for many of us still feels quite awkward at times.
Changing the way we approach our lives has also not circumnavigated Pilates studios and the requirements that are so urgently needed to ensure the safety and health of the clients and instructors.
In order to dig more into how Pilates studios are implementing their safety guidelines we decided to interview studio owners within the US to see what they are doing in order to keep their sessions fun and challenging while providing a protective environment.
We invited 7 Pilates studio owners to take part in a study to find out how exactly they had changed their businesses to accommodate the requirements of Covid-19 safety protocols. Each owner was given 8 questions to answer to describe their current methods in use when working with clients.
- Did you have to change the layout of your studio to allow for social distancing and new regulations. If yes, how?
- Did you have to change the format of the group classes/number of students?
- Are you using any specific measures to keep the studio well ventilated/ improve air quality?
- What is your cleaning protocol for the apparatus?
- How much time do you allow between the sessions to complete all necessary cleaning protocols?
- Do you require masks to be worn by clients and teachers?
- Are there any extra measures that you took to keep your clients extra safe when returning to the studio?
- How do you keep your personal sanity as a studio owner managing a studio in the COVID times?
Did you have to change the layout of your studio to allow for social distancing and new regulations? If yes, how?
Suggested NEW Safety Protocols
- Spread out equipment in the studio.
- Remove any small props and use them for individual use only.
- Clear out the waiting/sitting area and use it to have more room for the equipment or to prevent crowding inside.
- Use Plexiglass partitions/dividers for small studios that don’t allow enough space for social distancing.
- Weather permitting, move the sessions outdoors.
Related products for studio use:
Natalie Lepkowski, owner of the St. Paul Pilates Studio (St.Paul MN), had some really great ideas in regards to equipment storage and keeping a safe environment for her clients.
“We spread out the equipment to allow for optimal in-studio social distancing (6-10 feet). We store props (balls, rings, weights, pads) away from the equipment and only grab them for individual use. We cleared out the waiting/sitting area limiting chairs and spaced them accordingly. We also removed cups from the water machine and now offer water bottles or to bring your own water bottle as well as added sanitizing stations, disposable masks and gloves.”
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1st back in studio class worked out great last week. Let’s keep it going! Still room tomorrow (7/23) in the 5pm apparatus in-studio class with Christine. Check out our website (in bio) for covid guidelines and to sign up for class. More in-studio classes coming back in August. #pilatesduringcovid #backtopilates #stpaulpilates #stpaulpilatesstudio
Chantel Tauteoli, owner of A Beautiful SurpriZe studio said:
“We moved the Chairs to up front in a larger open space and moved the Allegro 2 Reformers with Towers so they are spaced over 6 feet apart. We also put all necessary props near the equipment so no one needs to leave their direct space.”
Kathy Brunelle from Personal Pilates Buffalo (Buffalo, NY) thought up a smart way to add more space to her studio to accommodate each client while practicing safe social distancing.
“I’ve always had a small studio, only four people for each group class, so I’m lucky because of that. I created stations by moving my convertible reformer tower units so they were each in a corner for the room and putting a wunda chair next to each one. It made it possible to have the equipment between 10 and 15 feet apart. Each client now has their own station! This helped save a lot of space.”
What are some of the safety measures we’ve taken? 1) The equipment is broken up into stations. This means each of the four class participants will have their own station with a reformer/tower and a wunda chair. You’ll stay at your station the entire class time, so there’s not much moving around the room during class time! Stay tuned for more…! #buffalony #buffalopilates #pilates #classicalpilates
Erica Walters of Pilates Fit Studio (Louisville, KY) even incorporated the use of plexiglass in order to provide a barrier of safety for her clients.
“I had to pull out a reformer, tower, wunda chair, and our reception area to make space for all of the distance we needed. I also hung plexiglass from the ceiling between the apparatus. Eventually, we had to make the decision to move into a larger space because we were unable to take new clients and accommodating the current clients was difficult by not being able to have more than two teachers in the studio at a time.”
And we’re off! Alycea Ungaro’s Real Pilates Teacher Training seminar 1. The next generation of classical Pilates instructors are working hard with Lead Teacher Trainer Karen Winselmann @purepilatesfl @therealpilates #realpilates #classicalpilates #pilatesteachertraining #louisvillepilates #louisvillefitnesscommunity #pilates #gratz #teamgratz #authenticpilates
Now that we are in a much larger space, will we change our studio offerings? No. We will still remain a Private and Semi-Private studio. We know that working out without a crowd will give you the results you need to accomplish full-body training. Our semi-privates are 3-4 people. It’s you and 2-3 other dedicated Pilatistas. #realpilates #classicalpilates #louisvillepilates #louisvillefitness #louisvillefitnesscommunity #louisvilleblogger #pilates #gratz #teamgratz #pilatesfitstudioky
Amy Hirsh the owner of Precision Pilates and Wellness had to make even more drastic changes to her safety protocols. Amy owns a private home studio in Smithtown, NY :
“COVID and NYS mandates forced me to change my space completely. 33% or 6 ft apart would have made my studio a Private only space. Once NYS permitted outdoor workouts, I moved outside to my back porch.”
Did you have to change the format of the group classes/number of students?
Suggested NEW Safety Protocols
- Limit the number of people in each class.
- Transition to teaching only private/duet sessions.
- Have a single instructor teaching in the studio at a time if the studio doesn’t have multiple rooms.
Andrea Nichols, owner of Pilates Cure (Fort Mill, SC), really went above and beyond in how she prepared her studio as well as instructors for the needed changes due to Covid-19.
“Prior to Pilates Cure opening back up, I talked with each teacher at the studio to get a feel for how they were feeling about the situation and coming back to teach. That, along with state regulations and guidelines, impacted the format of our classes, our class schedule, and how many people are in the studio at one time. Currently, the most we ever have in the studio at one time is six people. That would be all five reformer/tower stations full for a group class and one teacher.
But what I think has been a bigger adjustment and change for both the clients and the teachers is we have made it a point to only have one teacher in the studio at a time. In the past we would have multiple teachers in the large open studio teaching different individuals or groups. This means our schedules are currently a bit more restricted, but it was an important change for eliminating possible exposure of multiple teachers at one time.
This is important because we are a small organization and the impact of one teacher not being able to teach will be felt, but the impact of multiple teachers not being available to teach could temporarily shut us down again and that is not fair to our clients who depend on us to keep them moving.”
Whereas Todd Brashear who owns Wild and Woolly Pilates (Louisville, KY) has put his group classes on hold for the time being.
“We aren’t currently doing group classes, though I am thinking of adding some group equipment classes soon. The most I can have in a group equipment class is 4 so that will be a reasonable amount.”
Tuesday/Thursday 9 AM Group Equipment classes are back ! Due to client demand we’re going to try bringing these back with a couple of changes. Masks covering mouth and nose will be mandatory for all students. No hands on cueing, I will stay at least 6 feet away from students whenever possible. There must also be a minimum of 2 students (maximum of 4) signed up by 7 AM the day of the class or the class will be cancelled for that day. This is purely a risk vs reward proposition for me. I have never liked cancelling classes as most of you know, but in this case I believe it makes sense and I appreciate your understanding. As with the in person private lessons, I will continue to monitor the situation in regards to Covid and we will cancel in person events as necessary.
Are you using any specific safety protocols to keep the studio well ventilated/ improve air quality?
Suggested NEW Safety Protocols
- Weather and location permitting, take group sessions outside.
- Upgrade HVAC air filters.
- Have as much fresh air flow as possible in the studio (keep the windows open when possible to encourage air circulation.)
- Use HEPA air filters with UV light sanitizer in the studio.
Products for Studio Use
Amy Hirsch of Precision Pilates and Wellness put air quality as one of the top priorities for her clients in maintaining a safe environment by moving her classes outside. She has made and will continue to make big changes to her studio in order to make sure that the quality of air is at its highest at all times while not sacrificing the comfort of her clients.
“Air quality is huge. Precision Pilates will be staying outside for the long haul. Infrared heaters will be installed within the month to keep us going through the winter. To protect from the elements we will be installing Marine vinyl panels on the lower portion of the porch, with Roller blinds made out of the same material that will keep snow, rain and wind out when necessary. All with keeping 6 feet apart in nature. An air purifier with a UV light is in the old studio now for when restrictions are lifted.”
Being in New York state, Kathy Brunell has been required to upgrade her HVAC system air filters to MERV-13 while all other studio owners have upgraded their HVAC filters to high quality filters as well as part of their new COVID-19 safety protocols. Erica Walters also went a step further and added UV light filters in her studio.
What is your cleaning protocol for the apparatus? (do clients or teachers clean the equipment, do you recommend using personal loops/handles etc.)
Suggested NEW Safety Protocols
Most studio owners that were interviewed responded with similar approaches on how they cleaned the apparatuses for their clients. As is with most studios pre Covid-19, the client is required to clean their own equipment at the end of a session but post Covid-19 protocols have added additional layers of sanitizing. Here are some of the ways that are being used to achieve that.
- Cleaning cloths are not reused by clients or teachers. Each cleaning requires a new clean microfiber or cotton cloth/towel.
- Clients wipe down the equipment with water/soap solution.
- Instructors complete the second layer of cleaning using sanitizing solutions like Sol-U-Guard, disinfecting wipes, or a UV wand.
- All soft surfaces (loops, handles etc.) can be covered with vinyl for easy cleaning.
- Clients are encouraged (but not required in most cases) to bring their own loops, wear clean stick socks, and use Reformer non-slip mats for additional protection.
Products for Studio Use
Natalie Lepowski uses a 3 step process in making sure that her equipment is thoroughly cleaned.
“The client will spray the equipment initially (anything used including boxes and straps), and the instructor will sanitize. The first layer (by the client) is a dish soap, water, melaleuca oil solution and a new (cleaned) microfiber cloth for each cleaning. The sanitizing layer (done by the instructor and left on for 15 min) is Sol-U-Guard (a melaleuca product approved by F.D.A that uses thyme oil and is less harsh on equipment). Then, one final cleaning with the first solution again by the instructor to wipe residue off that the sanitizer can leave behind. All microfiber cloths are thrown into a laundry bin and taken home twice a week and washed and sanitized. The studio is also deep cleaned 1-2 times per week.”
Nicole Field, owner of Whole Living Pilates, incorporates the use of UV technology on top of additional cleaning methods to make sure that her equipment is safe to use.
“We have our clients wiped down their own equipment with a soap/water solution then our teachers wipe down all high touch areas i.e. loops, handles, footbars, springs etc with disinfectant wipes. Prior to reopening we added vinyl to all of our straps and loops in order to make cleaning easier. We also use a UV wand over our sticky mats.”
Amy Hirsch, living in NY state, has taken even extra measures to ensure a safe and clean environment for her clients.
“COVID has changed the way we operate. We now use Yombu for paperless forms, DTX for automation/QRcode for the daily Affidavit required by NYS and all members are required to bring (not wear) their sticky socks to the studio. Once they get here, we take their temp and if good to go, we send them to their reformer to get set up. We have hand sanitizer (shaman medicinal) at each area and everyone is asked to use it before we get started. All soft surfaces have been covered with vinyl for ease of cleaning. Our Sticky pads are one use and in the hamper and we wash them on the sanitize cycle daily. We sell loops from Good Citizen, Strapilates and I personally have made some for sale. We have not required our students to purchase these items but encourage it. After class we offer wipes to clients to clean but let them know we will be cleaning with our fogger. As part of the New York Fitness Coalition, I have adopted even stricter cleaning and safety protocols. I know Pilates by Design and Peak Pilates (the manufactures of the equipment on the Porch) suggests soap and water but we are using Selectrocide in a Fogger. If I have to reupholster after this, it’s worth it for the safety of my clients and myself.“
Chantel Tauteoli, studio owner in Herriman UT shared:
We have covered all cotton/polyesters loops with a soft vinyl cover to ensure ease of cleaning and killing any germs and viruses. We also sell personalized loops. Students clean everything they have touched and then entire frame after their session. Teachers wash all door knobs light switches and bathroom fixtures as well as under the equipment.
How much time do you allow between the sessions to complete all necessary cleaning protocols?
Suggested NEW Safety Protocols
- Most studio owners allow between 10 minutes to a maximum of 20 minutes between sessions to make sure all their equipment is thoroughly sanitized and ready for the next client(s).
- The major difference between the amount of time was simply based on whether it was private or semi-private classes.
Amy Hirsch takes more of a systematic approach in rotating between classes and making sure everything is clean.
“I have kept 15 minutes between semi-privates. The schedule for the most part is set up to have a virtual class piggy backed by a “Porch Pilates” Semi-Private or Private. This allows time for me to clean, spray and let the product sit for the dwell time and be dry before the next in person. Privates are on the uptick. I keep 15 minutes between sessions so I can clean, spray and wash my hands in between. While one station/reformer is drying I use the other. On the off chance that I need to do a back to back semi-private, I add an extra 15 minutes between [sessions]”.
Do you require masks to be worn by clients and teachers?
The answers that we got back from this question vary obviously between the local State laws where the Pilates studio is located and/or personal preferences of the client or studio owners/ instructors.
Face Masks that Are Most Comfortable for Teaching
(these are masks that teachers use, most of them are not medical grade and they have not been tested for the level of protection that they provide.)
Natalie Lepkowski has a good approach to her face covering safety policies in that she offers her clients masks for a small cost that are comfortable to breathe in while they take their classes. Since the masks are locally made and help the clients have a better experience, it is a win/win situation.
“Yes, at all times! Additionally, we do offer disposable masks (at no cost to the client), and we have some locally made cloth masks ($10 and made by a local nurse) that I personally have found work well while exercising. I found it hard to know which masks I could breathe comfortably in and which ones I could not until I was exercising. So, I imagine others might have the same experience. This way we have options to meet the comfort and needs of the client. We also require grippy socks and no bare feet at this time as part of our safety protocols.”
Andrea Nichols and Erica Walters have similar approaches to their mask/face shield policies and stated the following:
“Teachers at Pilates Cure always wear a mask when in the studio. Clients must wear a mask when entering and exiting the studio as well as when they are any of the common areas of the studio. It is their choice if they would like to remove their mask once at their individual station for their session.”~ Andrea
Masks/Face Shields are to be worn by all teachers. Clients must enter the studio in their mask and may only take off the mask (if they choose to) when they are on their apparatus. When cleaning and moving to a different piece of apparatus clients must put the mask back on.” ~ Erica
Nicole Field’s state location has a mandatory mask requirement but she also allows for an exemption to certain clients under her state laws.
“Yes, we are under a mask mandate in the State of Colorado and require all staff and clients to wear masks to enter the studio. We do allow for an exemption to those clients who have breathing or medical issues that make it impossible for them to exercise with a mask. These clients workout in our private space adjacent to our group room which keeps them in their own space away from other clients during their session.”
Joseph Pilates always intended us to breath in and out through our noses while practicing Pilates! Masks can actually facilitate that! Time to flip the script and look at the positives of wearing this mask. Short on time? Watch our story for a captioned version that you can click through even faster.
Are there any extra measures that you took to keep your clients extra safe when returning to the studio?
Suggested NEW Safety Protocols
The responses to this question are super interesting because it shows the creativity of each studio owner and how they have gone the extra mile in order to make their clients feel safe and secure while keeping the goals of staying healthy and strong.
- All clients are required to wash hands upon entering the studio.
- Using a touchless hand sanitizer dispenser and soap dispenser.
- Require clients to wear grippy socks during the session.
- Encouraging clients to use as many personal items as possible (loops and handles, Reformer mats, grippy/sticky pads etc.)
- Limit hands-on cues during the session (especially in group classes.)
- Take client’s temperature upon entering the studio.
- Change the cancelation policy so that the client is not charged if they cancel last minute due to any COVID-related symptoms.
Products for Studio Use
Kathy Brunelle has some great ideas that help ensure a safe workout environment while also providing value to her clients.
“I’m requiring clients to wash their hands upon entering the studio. Shoes are to be taken off before entering the studio, and everyone must wear grippy socks. The equipment is more than 6’ apart. My hand soap and hand sanitizer are all in touchless dispensers. One of the things that the Department of Health liked was the fact that I’m selling mandatory Personal Pilates Bags. The bag has a pair of handles, foot loops, and a grippy pad (ok, so it’s actually just a drawer liner that I cut to be the size of a grippy pad, but I was trying to keep costs down!). I also am selling non-stick reformer towels (from SferaFitness.com) that aren’t mandatory but people are loving them. If anyone is looking for foot loops in fun colors, I’m making them and they’re being sold on SferaFitness.com.”
What are some of the safety measures we’ve taken? 3) Worried about touching surfaces that can’t be cleaned between clients? We thought this one through so you don’t have to worry! Check out our Personal Pilates Bag! It’s a pair of handles, foot loops, and a grippy pad, all in a bag with your name on it that we store for you right here in the studio. It’ll be ready and waiting at your station when you arrive to class! 4) Looking for even more barriers between you and the equipment? We have that covered! Literally 😐 Take a look at our optional Personal Reformer Towel! It’s grippy on the underside, and plush on the top so you’ll feel safe and comfortable throughout your session! It fits in nicely inside the Personal Pilates Bag, so you won’t have to worry about what to do with it between sessions. Stay tuned for more…! #buffalony #clarenceny #williamsvilleny #pilates #buffalopilates
🎉 New Pilates Reformer towels are in stock!! 👀 Beautiful @coreconcepts_pilates studio is featuring sFera reformer mats in their new space. 👉Reformer: Peak Artistry Reformer 👉Reformer Mat Size: Wide Our reformer mats are made out of premium durable materials and combine function with comfort. 🌟Non-stick rubber backing will keep the towel in place no matter what exercise you are doing. 🌟Personal hygiene to keep you safe. 🌟No more hair caught in the crease of the headrest! 🌟Comfortable soft feel that absorbs sweat (no more cold slippery vinyl!) Link to purchase in profile. Have questions about the right size for your Reformer? DM us #pilatesstudio #pilatesreformer #pilatesteacher #peakpilates #pilatesstudioowner #pilatesworkout #personalpilates #pilatesreformerworkout #pilatesinstructor #pilatesclasses #classicalpilates
Natalie Lepkowski has incorporated several extra safety steps for her clients and instructors to make sure that everyone has a comfortable workout environment with the reassurance that all reasonable safety precautions have been met.
“Yes. We limited the studio to only one instructor and one client at a time. We asked that no one come in early or stay late past the 55 minute appointment time. We asked clients to use restrooms & change before they came to the studio, if possible. We take a forehead scan temperature of everyone that comes through the door and ask everyone to wash hands upon arrival or sanitize. If anyone has any symptoms of feeling ill, we’ve asked to please cancel or reschedule (and we changed our cancelation policy to allow for this and not charge the client). We slowly started offering one in-studio class to see how it would go and so far, so good. The instructors were able to come back into the studio as they felt comfortable to do so. No one was forced. I still have one instructor that only prefers to meet clients virtually. It’s a hit on the studio financially, but my instructor’s and client’s comfort and safety comes first.”
Amy Hirsch even hired a 3rd party certification company that exceeds government standards for Covid-19 sanitizing to verify that her studio is safe.
“I signed up for Trusted Safe to have the studio graded for cleanliness and cleaning protocols. Once a month we have to send in samples of high touch areas to make sure we are doing our part. I am not sure what else we can do besides bubble wrap everyone or workout in hazmat suits. Prior to COVID, I think all the boutique studios were doing their part. Maybe we were not using N list cleaners, but I know I was vacuuming daily, cleaning the equipment, and having my AC serviced.”
Clean as a whistle (well a brand new never used one) Thank you @trustedsafe and Kevin Godfrey We had the studio tested today Kevin spent time to explain how electrostatic sprayers and N rated disinfectants work Thank g-d for amazon bc ours will be here next week Precision Pilates studio passed and is certified as a safe place Look at those numbers. The guidelines are below 250 😀we were un the 40s hospital grade numbers Even outside where thungs like pollen can sku the data. #pilates #smithtown #precisionpilates #smithtownpilates
Todd Brashear also takes a nice step with checking the temperature of each client before a workout as well as implementing a no-hands-on-cues safety protocol during each session.
How do you keep your personal sanity as a studio owner managing a studio in the COVID times?
This question got a lot of thought-provoking feedback from each studio owner and also provides some great insight into how people working in the Pilates industry are managing with the drastic changes that have been brought into their lives because of Covid-19.
1. Learn to let go and unplug
Natalie Lepkowski has a very interesting take on things as well as some great support behind her.
“Ha. That’s a fun question. Therapy (I have a great counselor I talk to a few times a month), movement (lots of it), and gratitude (being grateful for the many gifts I have each day). I have a 2-year-old and a 16-year-old, and believe it or not, they keep me grounded. It’s amazing how easily they adapt to the new norm. As an adult, I think more experience can sometimes make us feel stuck in the past. They remind me that there’s always growing and adjusting to be done. I also “let go” of a lot. With zoom and schedules and constant text messages and emails and trying to figure out the puzzle and how it all works, I “let go” and “unplug” more often. I have to. That means I’m not as punctual for my business, I don’t always answer emails or calls in a timely manner. Clients and instructors know to text me if they need immediate responses. Instead of building my business, I’m focused on maintaining my current client relationships.
Some words of inspirational mantras currently in my head:
You can only control your efforts, not the outcome. (Heard from my therapist)If it could have happened differently, it would have. (Also heard from, my therapist)
Are we havin’ fun yet?! (My late father always use to say during stressful times and it always brought a smile to my face)
Age is the reason, not the excuse! (My Uncle Charlie)”
2. Set a routine with enforced boundaries and realistic expectations
Andrea Nichols has learned to take more control of her boundaries while making sure her life stays in balance as much as possible.
“I feel a bit hypocritical answering this question because managing my own mental health over the last seven months has been hard at times. The most impactful change for me was to set boundaries. As simple as it sounds, setting a routine with enforced boundaries and realistic expectations has worked best. I schedule time for work, time for my family, and time for myself and I stick to it. My routine is not always balanced in terms of work/family and I think it is unfair as a working mom to feel like balance should be the goal.
To me, the relief came when I accepted that I am in control of the boundaries and the balance and I am the only one who gets to decide where my attention and focus goes at that moment despite all the changes that are swirling around everyone. Things that I have decided not to compromise on are starting my day with a few minutes of reflection, getting enough sleep at night, and a few minutes outside each day. It never goes as planned but I feel much more capable with those boundaries set in place.”
3. Practice extra self-care and get plenty of movement
Nicole Field provided a look at which methods she is using to cope with the changes that have come into her life since the changes have taken place.
“This is an extremely difficult time to be a studio owner and it’s so important to practice extra self-care during this season. Here are all the ways I have worked to take care of myself over the last several months:
I keep strong boundaries in terms of when I work/teach and take time off to rest and recover.
I started therapy in July to help with the anxiety and stress that was starting to feel overwhelming. I meet with my therapist once a week and will continue for as long as needed.
I make sure to get outside several times a week in nature. I love to hike in CO and being in the beauty of nature always helps to soothe my soul.
I move my body with Pilates and walking/hiking consistently every week.
I’ve also added craniosacral sessions to help calm my nervous system.
Lastly, I try to make time for play and fun with my family. Everything feels so heavy and serious this year and this helps me to remember to let things go that don’t matter.
Remember you are not alone. Reach out for support and know that you matter.”
4. Keep up the drive to get to the other side
Erica Walters feels the toll of COVID in 2020 but it doesn’t stop her from moving forward. Despite all the uncertainties and difficulties of this year, she was able to move her studio to a new bigger space, continue to be a host studio for Real Pilates teacher training program and is launching an online fitness portal featuring local Louisville fitness trainers. She has the drive to move forward, do you?
The weight of COVID is heavy. Will we shut down again? Who will teach the virtual lessons while I homeschool and will people return to virtual? How many clients will I lose this time if we shut down a second time? The worry about sustaining is heavy and I wonder when I will be able to grow the studio again – not the size of the studio, but the inner growth of new clients and teachers. This isn’t for the faint of heart and it takes a lot of courage to keep going through these times. I’m tired but I have the drive to make it to the other side.
5. Set and enforce your studio boundaries.
Kathy Brunelle is doing her best to turn lemons into lemonade by using the current situation for improvements and to make her studio environment better by setting boundaries.
“I’m loving it! I found that this was a great opportunity to take my power back within my studio and create major boundaries! I’ve been able to enforce protocols that I had tried to enforce in the past, as well as new ones I had wanted to do (such as no discussion of “hot button” topics). The more in depth you make your protocol, the less likely it is that you’ll have someone walk through the door who will try to test your boundaries.”
6. Stay connected with the other teachers while practicing self-care
Amy Hirsh is a busy mother and studio owner so finding time for her passions and movement helps her stay grounded.
“Gosh that’s a tough one–Self care is so important. Don’t we all struggle with that?. Working from home, having my children remote 1/2 the week and never really getting away from the studio definitely has its toll. I have a neighbor who I workout out with 3-5 days a week, I run, do the Peleton, and of course Pilates. Gardening is a passion, so it’s nice that I can see the garden from the outside studio, and pop in when a client is late. Plus I share the bounty with my members. I try to take continuing ed and stay connected with other Pilatistas”
7. Use the downtime to grow and really focus on how you want to run your business.
Chantel Tauteoli used her downtime to take a step back and really focus on how she wanted her studio to grow and how she could help her students even more.
I am meant to teach Pilates and I keep that at the forefront of my mind and heart. I think of all the people relying on us to stay open for their mental health and emotional health as much as their physical self. Once I became very clear on my purpose and knew at that start of March that I would not be defeated; that A Beautiful SurpriZe would come out of this stronger than ever – that decision changed everything. My business has literally doubled. I am now offering The Rossiter System sessions within my Pilates 1:1 sessions and have watched students over come years of pain and immobility in just a few sessions. Had we not been mandated to close and then open for just private sessions to begin I don’t think I would have discovered this way of teaching. I am also in training for EFT, am looking at products to help students as well as the environment and am creating workshops. I appreciate the down time when mandated to close because it allowed me to take the step back and decide how I really want to own, operate and teach to best help all my students…and that not only keeps my sanity, but has allowed me to THRIVE.
8. We all need to cut each other some slack!
Todd Brashear realizes that both teachers and clients benefit greatly from keeping things more upbeat and less demanding.
“I’m not as worried about form as I used to be (still plenty worried) as it’s hard to teach without hands on cues, especially for brand new students. So I go easier and correct less. I also feel that people are going through a lot of stress so I try to keep things even more upbeat and less demanding, as we all need to cut each other some slack!”
The new norm of Covid-19 has created many challenges for Pilates studio owners but has not stopped their determination to keep pushing forward in order to provide their clients with the opportunity to keep working out. Like any new challenge that faces us in our life, our ingenuity and attitude can take us a long way in making even the darkest clouds not look so scary.
Each of these studio owners can be commended for their abilities and determination to continue providing value and health benefits to their communities while adapting to a new way of life that we couldn’t have imagined a year ago.
Do you have additional safety protocols that you took at the studio? Let us know in the comments below!