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Whether they’re offering classes at a smaller capacity, holding classes outdoors, sticking with live stream, or just out of practice altogether, studios all over the country just aren’t operating how they used to. This means, now, more than ever, they could use our support. If your studios are still closed—or even if they’ve reopened—they’re likely doing everything they can to get back on their feet and bring their communities back together (including you!). Here are some clear (and effective) ways to help the studios you love.
How to Support Local Fitness Studios (whether they’re open or closed):
Seriously. Don’t cancel your memberships if you want to support. Studios rely on a steady stream of memberships to keep them running. If you’re financially able, maintain—and take advantage of—your membership (or find the right one to invest in if you don’t have one already!). These days, studios are getting creative and working hard to provide the best possible experience for clients in the studio, outside, or on-screen. By continuing your membership, you’re ensuring the future of the business and showing up for you. That's a win-win.
Thinking of buying some new yoga pants or a mat? Maybe you want some blocks and bolsters to improve your at-home yoga practice. Before heading online to big brand websites, check and see if your local studios have anything to offer. Often, they’ll have their own websites or photos of retail on their social media accounts, so you can buy it from home or stop by for a visit. Plus, you’ll pretty much be a walking advertisement for the studio—and maybe you’ll meet some new workout buddies wearing it!
If you tried out a live stream class during the beginning of the pandemic, odds are, it wasn’t the best (no offense, studios). But if you had a bad experience and gave up back then—or even a month or two ago—you might want to consider giving it another go. Studios and instructors are improving their live stream classes every day, learning and adapting on the fly to make sure you’re getting the best workout you can with all the benefits. For a lot of studios, this is the only form of classes they can offer right now, and they’re pouring their hearts and souls into it. So, check out the top 5 most-booked virtual classes... maybe it’s time to try something new.
Have a friend or family member’s birthday, anniversary, or just want to let them know you’re thinking of them? Show how much you care with a gift card for the intro offer at your go-to studio. Most intro offers are between $25-$75, so the price point is just right. Plus, it's a gift that keeps on giving—the recipient will have the opportunity to attend multiple (if not multiple weeks of) classes. Bonus points if you attend class with them—either virtually or in-person.
How do you find the best new studios (or restaurants, coffee shops, hair salons, etc.) to try? When looking for something new, you may start by browsing around in your area, and then check out the reviews to see what other people have to say about it (see How to Find the Top Yoga Studios and Classes in LA). Reviews are a great way to find out what a specific instructor is like, what you need to know before attending a class, and whether it sounds like what you’re looking for. Many studios also use these reviews to market themselves, sharing them on social media to attract new clients. So, if you have a studio you love, and you want to spread some love, shoot them some stars. They’ll appreciate it.
With some extra time on your hands, you might’ve been spending a little extra time on social media during the pandemic. And if you’re already there, you might as well use it to help! Most studios have Instagram accounts where they post schedule updates, news on opening/closing, photos of their instructors and awesome retail products, and even sometimes videos you can follow along with. If you want to help your studio gain some attention and attract new clients, follow, like, and share their posts! There’s nothing like an endorsement from a friend to let you know about a new studio, and many of your followers probably live local to you and the studio, so they’re the perfect contenders for new members.
Or follow us on Instagram to find new studios!
If your studio isn’t open for indoor or outdoor workouts, they probably have a lot of equipment laying around that’s not in use right now. And a lot of studios are renting out their unused equipment to those who are interested. If you have the space in your at-home workout room (garage, living room, backyard, whatever), consider renting some equipment to upgrade your space—and your online workouts.
When we asked our Mindbody community how you all can support them, one answer we got from a studio owner was, “Don’t buy a Peloton when the studio is closed. 😝” In all seriousness though, it’s been quite some time now, and you’re probably getting used to a new routine (that might not involve your pre-COVID studios). If that’s the case, we understand—and your studios do, too. One way you can support the studios you love is simply keeping them in your thoughts and hearts. Remember the community you were once a part of there, try to stay connected through social media and live stream classes, and let them know you haven’t forgotten about them and you hope to come back in as soon as you feel safe.
The last thing that stood out in the responses from our Mindbody community was the need for us all to adhere to safety protocol. Specifically, wearing masks. Studio owners and staff aren't mandating masks maliciously or out of spite—they’re just trying to keep their spaces as safe as possible so they can protect all of us, slow the spread, and keep their doors open so we can all keep doing what we love. It’s temporary (we hope), and it’s really not that hard. So, please just roll with it—it will make your instructors’ and studio owners’ lives a whole lot easier (and safer).
All-in-all, our studios need us. And there are so many different ways you can support them besides just going into the studio for a class. So, hop on a live stream, share on social, do all the things to let them know you haven’t forgotten about them—and you still care.
Ah, 2020—the year that truly put our sanity to the test. On top of that, something that most people use to navigate through a tough time has essentially been stripped away from us—our normal workout routines. I don’t know about you, but even skipping a week at the gym can send me into a tailspin. But several months of sheltering in place and being forced to adapt to this new normal?
That’s a different story.
While I think we can all say we’re grateful that fitness studios were quick to offer virtual classes when COVID-19 hit—there is something about constantly working out by ourselves that may trigger some of us to hit pause on our workout routines and start turning towards less robust habits. *Reluctantly raises hand*
The other day I came across a stat that really set off some alarms. According to a recent study, Americans are spending an additional two hours each day on their couch since March 2020. As of recently, I can say I’m totally guilty of a little too much R&R. While an evening of Netflix and wine once sounded like heaven on earth for most of us, I think it’s safe to say the repetition of this is starting to get kind of old. Also, Schitt’s Creek is over now, so I really don’t have any excuse to not dedicate my free time to jumping back into my at-home workouts.
I started pondering what made dial back my fitness routine in the first place? Was it a lack of motivation? No, not really. Screen fatigue? I think my Netflix history outlined above would tell you that’s a solid ‘no.’ Then it hit me—the thing that motivated me to stay on top of my fitness goals was being around other people with the same goals. Pre-COVID, going to my favorite spin studio and the local yoga hot spot was how I typically spent my social hour during the workweek. I realized the best way to amp up my at-home workout routine was to re-connect with my workout buddies and start doing virtual classes together to create that sense of community I craved.
If you’re also experiencing some form of live stream lull when it comes to your workouts, then getting a virtual workout buddy may be exactly what you need. Here’s why:
Just like in-person workouts, making plans to sweat it out with one of your friends motivates you to show up and be your best self. According to the Mindbody Wellness Index, 25% of the folks we surveyed said they found it difficult to hold themselves accountable to their workout goals on their own—and an additional 20% of people said a lack of support was responsible for missed workouts.
Everybody enjoys a little friendly competition, right? Maybe you have a friend who is a powerhouse at virtual HIIT—try signing up for a class with them to help you take your workout to a whole new level.
Getting a workout sesh in with a friend is the perfect time to try a new exercise such as virtual yoga or virtual barre. Trying something new can be scary—I get it. But by trying a new type of exercise with a friend, you can both give each other a confidence boost by acting as each other’s personal hype man.
Look, we’re all craving human interaction these days—and I know I’m not the only one who is missing weekly happy hours with friends. Luckily, fitness studios are getting creative with their virtual offerings post-workout, too! When we asked members of our MindbodyOne Community how they are keeping things interesting for their students in the virtual space, they said they are hosting monthly virtual wine dates to share fitness stories and personal victories. Not only do you get to drink wine, but you and your buddy get to meet other like-minded people at the same time.
As 2020 winds down (thank goodness), you have a unique opportunity to reconnect with your friends and take your workout sessions to the next level with a virtual workout buddy. So, why not start now? Book a virtual fitness class and encourage your friends to show up for you and themselves today.