257.5 – How to Adapt your HIT Business to COVID-19 with Adam Zickerman, Luke Carslon, Melinda Hughes and Skyler Tanner

COVID-19 Live Q&A
Adam Zickerman (top left), Luke Carlson (bottom left), Melinda Hughes (top right), and Skyler Tanner (bottom right).

Adam Zickerman, Luke Carlson, Melinda Hughes, and Skyler Tanner join me on a Live Q&A to discuss how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected their business, response strategy, a huge shift to virtual training services, and much, much more.

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Show Notes

  • 2:40 – COVID-19 impact on HIT industry
  • 10:20 – Leasing challenges and solutions
  • 19:28 – Virtual personal training
  • 31:23 – Handling employee pay, furloughing, layoff, etc
  • 36:20 – Will virtual training devalue studio personal training?
  • 42:00 – Is virtual training a great long term opportunity?
  • 58:45 – Recovery strategies
  • 1:07:40 – How to price virtual training
  • 1:13:45 – Is virtual training a threat to the studio business?
  • 1:19:54 – Does virtual training increase risks of trainers going rogue?
  • 1:23:05 – Virtual training workout design
  • 1:32:40 – Rapid fire time-critical tips

Selected Links from the Episode

Comments 6

  • It seems virtual training is a good idea! It is another option.
    One problem never discussed is the potential sexual harassment accusations with one-on-one studio personal trainings.

    • Thanks Marc. I have discussed how to avoid such accusations during a training session, but I did this with David Gschneider (VP of Operations, Discover Strength) inside HIT Business Membership. The overall gist is to remain professional at all times and tell the person how and when you are going to touch them during an exercise, like manual resistance training.

  • Very interesting discussion, from a variety of viewpoints:

    * I’m not friends with anyone who owns a small business, so it was enlightening to hear first hand what kinds of issues they have. I has to be incredibly frustrating and anxiety producing to see the product of many years effort (a successful business) threatened by the biological equivalent of an astroid strike.

    * The economy is not like a military unit that can be quickly redirected from the top down. The invisible hand operates through a complex network of fragile connections. The networks can fall apart quickly.

    * I’m impressed at how nibble some have been at switching to virtual training. That surprises me, because as a consumer looking at this from the outside, I tend to think of the availabilty of specialized equipment as part of the value proposition that such businesses provide.

    How we come out of this depends, in part, on how the the epidemic plays out.

    If this is a one-time thing, that is declared over and done in 2 or 3 months, then there should be a pretty sharp rebound, one that is restrained by the carnage of bankruptcies, debt, and reduced wealth, but cushioned by liberal bailout money (though not uniformly distributed). That isn’t out of the question. We may come up with treatments that let us arrest severe cases early, thus relieving the burden on the hospital system, or we learn more about how it is transmitted and come up with less economically damaging control measures, or the virus mutates into something less dangerous, or who knows…

    However, the possibility exists that the epidemic lasts for 12-18 months, until herd immunity or vaccines are developed. Then it will come in several waves, with periods of relaxed restrictions, followed by renewed lockdowns. In that case, people will emerge with deeper psychological scars, as well as reduced wealth and entirely different spending patterns. In modern economies, a lot of people make a living off of other people’s discretionary spending. How people think about their discretionary spending will undoubtedly change, in ways that will be difficult to predict.

  • Great observations Greg. Some really thought provoking statements.

    Just one thought I have about one thing you said:

    You’re an exercise / HIT nut and you’re not a typical HIT studio target market, because, as you said, you want to use the great equipment and have a particular interest in it. Conversely, the clients in question, don’t care as much, and just want supervision, a great experience, and results.

  • Thanks Lawrence

  • Thanks Lawrence

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