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Things I should know about starting up classes
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wellington womble



Joined: 08 Nov 2004
Posts: 14982
Location: East Midlands
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 1:58 pm    Post subject: Things I should know about starting up classes  Reply with quote    

I have finally got permission from work to use the pilates studio at a staff rate to start up classes on a self emplyed basis (Hurrah - didn't take long!)

I'm going on a course next weekend, which will qualify me to teach pilates in a class environment (I already use it in my day-today practice), and also give lots of advice on the technicalilties of planning and running classes, and bit of marketing bumf as well. I have insurance lined up, there is a reception desk at work who will field people my way and plenty of parking and I'm almost ready to go.

Does anyone have any experience or sagely advice on things I may not have thought of, should do first, or problems I might run in to? I'm very excited, and think I may finally make a profit at last!

chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35928
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 2:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

*furrows brow in thinkful fashion*

... health and safety questionnaire-type thingy for each new student, to cover you in case any of them break their wooden leg and try to sue you? Although I should think that that's the kind of thing your course will cover?

IT is a bit different to Pilates, so trying to think of common ground .

hedgewitch



Joined: 26 Nov 2005
Posts: 5834
Location: Daft wench GHQ
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Chez wrote:

IT is a bit different to Pilates, so trying to think of common ground .


Half your class will think they are much more capable and knowledgeable than they really are and half your class will think they are rubbish but are actually quite good?

sally_in_wales
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 06 Mar 2005
Posts: 20809
Location: sunny wales
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

A dance class I go to always starts with the teacher making a stock statement about being sure we've told her of any changes to our health etc that may affect the instruction she gives us. Might be worth writing something like that into your lesson plan to make sure people remember to tell you if their circumstances change, shows you're being vigilant.

Might be worth doing your own risk assessment on the venue too and keeping that on file, again, its a point of good practice.

gil
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 18392

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I've been very cautious with my mixed-age, mixed-ability, mixed-health class, and always have a warm-up at the start and a cool-down at the end.

These exercises are interspersed with comments about not to do particular parts of the warm-ups if people have trouble with (especially) hips or knees.

When people look as though they are finding it a bit much, I alternate slow dances with fast; or within a single fast dance, give a break between sections to give people a rest without making it too obvious (while explaining /showing movements to them, or even just talking about the history of the tunes).

alison
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 12918
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Do you have to have any licences for public performance of music, or is that covered at the venue?

Mrs Fiddlesticks



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 10460

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 3:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

does the studio have all the equipment you need like mats or bands or similar or do you intend that your clients bring their own?

Have you worked out the class sizes?

Are you running ones at different levels - beginner, improvers etc etc?

What Alison said about music and are you providing it?

We have a form to fill out at the beginning of term about health and drs etc. We also pay for a term at a time not each lesson, so that you can see numbers from the beginning.

chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35928
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 3:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Mrs Fiddlesticks wrote:
We also pay for a term at a time not each lesson, so that you can see numbers from the beginning.

Yes, that's a good idea. Or get people who pay lesson-by-less to pay a bit more!

alison
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 12918
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

My mum pays monthly DD for jazzercise

gil
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 08 Jun 2005
Posts: 18392

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Get people to pay upfront for a 'term' at a time, however many weeks that will be. Gives them a reason to turn up, and gives you money upfront to pay for the hall etc., and to pay yourself.

kaz



Joined: 09 Sep 2006
Posts: 189

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Good luck WW

wellington womble



Joined: 08 Nov 2004
Posts: 14982
Location: East Midlands
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Oh, thanks guys - lots to think about. Lets see:

Cost will be 8 for drop ins/outs and 30 in six week blocks for everyone who's committed. I may not offer the drop ins, after all, actually. And to make things fit better, I might start after half term.

First session is an introductory session, and will be free. Most of the chit chat will be done then

class sizes are limited to 12 by my qualifiying body

Studio has mats and towels, and I won't be using any other equipment at this level - I use that as progression later

just begginers at the moment, and then I'll progress them to intermediate, and start another beginners (probably on a second night)

I have music that's exempt from liscence from another class. Does anyone know if you can use radio without a liscence?

I don't know if I need a form - I'll check with my course next weekend. If it needs doing, they will probably provide one, if not it's pretty simple to do.

warm ups and cool downs will be included, but most of the work is lying down, so it's not so important

I can't really see what there might be to risk assess. It's an empty room with a mirrored wall. I'll have a look at it again before we go live, though.

most of the class will think they are good - it's quite easy to superficially look good at pilates, while cheating madly (often without even realising it) Unfortunately, I know what I doing with movement analysis (and would be in frightful trouble by now if I didn't!)

I have two sets of insurance if anyone tries to sue me, but really I can't see how they could. It's virtually impossible to hurt yourself doing pilates at this level, except by doing it really, really badly and making an existing back problem worse - I will give out written material about monitoring self performance and not working through pain - it's their own silly fault if they do!

It seems there is only corporate polo shirts remaining, then! Where's Penny?

Mrs Fiddlesticks



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 10460

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

are you Miss Womble's Pilates Classes or have you a snappy name in mind?

chez



Joined: 13 Aug 2006
Posts: 35928
Location: The Hive of the Uberbee, Quantock Hills, Somerset
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I think it *is* worth offering a drop-in option - Arvo is looking for a Tai-Chi class and can't find a drop in one; there's simply no point in him signing up for anything on a termly basis because of his erratic work-schedule. You might catch a few people in that way who can commit to termly later on? So long as they don't expect you to give them one to one in what they've missed ... maybe do it for beginners but not for the other levels?

I am pondering out loud now .

I think that strictly speaking you should have a PRS licence if you use the radio. However, my Entertainment Industry Advisor (currently drinking beer on the other side of the table) says that a) you are probably pretty unusual if you bother and b) the gym may already have one anyway - it is their responsibility. See: http://www.mcps-prs-alliance.co.uk/

alison
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 12918
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 08 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

http://www.active8music.co.uk/

http://www.ppluk.com/ppl/ppl_lf.nsf/PDFs/$file/PPLinfoSheet5playingMusicInPublic.pdf

http://www.fitpromusic.co.uk/shopping/ProcessRequest.cfm?fuseaction=FPMusicUKHome.

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