The students in Atlanta train for free.
No, that’s not an advertisement for student in Atlanta.
It’s a theory I have found works time after time.
Now, maybe it’ll change, in the future as the gym grows, and then it will become the instructor group train for free.
People think I’m crazy.
But let me explain why I have this theory….
First, let me throw some statistics at you:
The most common complaints about a gym according to the Better Business Bureau:
contract disputes (41.5 percent)
billing issues (31.7 percent)
being billed after the member felt their contract had expired (22.3 percent).
over promises made by the salesperson versus what the membership actually included (23.8 percent)
consumers whose fitness center either closed up completely or changed management shortly after they joined (15%)
Those are daunting numbers when according to most statistics, around 20% of the American population has a gym membership…
I had a conversation the other night with a very fit, high energy young lady who is coming on with Pramek to train. When she asked how much it is (she is paying a very high price to her personal trainer) she was very surprised when I said, ‘Free.’
Then I told her why, and it’s what I’m about to tell you.
You can judge a student’s willingness to learn based on if they don’t feel any obligation to train.
If someone is paying for something – they will feel obligated to go, and to train. I don’t want students who feel obligated to train.
I want their obligation to be for their need to train, to educate themselves.
Part of being a teacher is knowing the limits of students, be it mental, physical, spiritual, or financial.
Financial obligations can create a resentment. I have seen it for years. Soon teacher begin to give more attention to the students who pay more. The guy who is paying $40 is treated differently than the guy who will pay $200. It’s the nature of business – go where the money is.
That is, at the end, no way to start an instructor group, a core training group, or to keep one.
The most successful training groups I have ever seen (and have run under ROSS, Kadochnikov System, K-Sys, etc) were when no one was paying – they were there because they loved it. And when the time came for them to move to other obligations (family, jobs, etc) it was done without resentment…no, ‘Wait, you still owe $50 for last month).
I close with this…
Money is to be made, and I won’t deny it. Will I charge for a seminar – yes. Will I charge for videos – yes. Will I charge for going out of my way – of course. But, will I charge someone who live 5 miles from my gym, has two jobs, and wants to train so hard they can’t stand it?
I’ll eat a little less, work a little more on better videos or manuals to make up for his lack of payment.
Business is word of mouth – and I’d rather have students that want to be there than students who are there because they spent the money.
And no one will ever choose another school because ‘Pramek is too expensive.’
It’s a theory – but it works.