Identifying Client Needs in Fitness
The first thing that comes into our minds when we think of aging is the physical aspect. We believe that as we age, our bodies change and lose their functionality.
However, some scientists argue that age groups are not mostly due to how old the person may be, but because of what they experience throughout their lives. They argue that an individual’s physical attributes are determined by how their life experiences affect their bodies.
There can be little argument, though, that as we get older, we start to face physical issues that most younger people don’t face. Much of the process of aging is caused by our lifestyle choices or diet. This brings me to the two ‘buckets’ of people over 50:
Those who are active and in good shape but aging like everyone else
People who have never been active and want or need to be
Depending on which of these buckets a person falls into, they will have different levels of current fitness and different requirements for their fitness programs. Do you want to know how to identify client needs in fitness?
Here are five tips that you can roll into your fitness business for active agers. The ways to identify client needs in fitness that I discuss here will help to make your fitness studio a more inviting environment for active agers and ensure that your content marketing is targeted at this demographic.
Help active agers realize their potential to be fit
Whether having been a regular gym-goer all their life or working out for the first time, you may find that people over 50 have a low appreciation of their physical potential.
Training them to be positive is crucial. Encouraging them to try a little more is vital. Choosing the right exercises and fitness regime is essential. Over and above all this, remember that you and your gym will be sending out subliminal messages.
Look at your promotional material. Does it really speak to active agers, or is it all pictures of poses performed by 20- and 30-somethings with gym-perfect bodies? Give people a realistic vision of what they can achieve, and you are more likely to see them achieve it over the long term.
Understand that they do have underlying health issues
A lifetime of abusing the body cannot be reversed in a single session. And even those active agers who have led a life enlightened by regular exercise may have health issues that you must consider.
Make sure that you check in about their health, and talk about things that matter to them. This might include the best way to be active with grandchildren, or the best food to eat to help lose a few extra pounds, or perhaps exercises they can do to warm down after an afternoon on the ski slope.
The important thing is to consider their likes and dislikes and cater toward those. Send them a healthy eating recipe by email. Include grandparents playing with grandchildren or retired couples enjoying traveling excursions in your newsletters. You get the picture – and so should they.
Personalize fitness assessments
Active agers want to exercise because they want to enjoy their life. For them, it’s not about having the buffest body on the block. It’s about being fit enough to live the lifestyle they desire and do the things they want to do while they still can. They want to get and stay fit to have more of life.
Fitness assessments should be an opportunity to get to know your new active agers and stay updated with your current over-50 members. Learn what their goals are, and relate your exercise regime to these.
Explain how certain exercises will help to keep up with grandchildren, or breathe more easily when they are running their next half marathon, or keep moving all the way through to the last tune at the dance club.
Look out for physical limitations during assessments, too. And don’t be afraid to ask about any you notice so that you can adjust gym sessions accordingly.
And for marketing purposes? Discuss how keeping fit enables people over 50 to remain active longer. Make it relatable to your audience. Why not highlight a different member each month, on notice boards or in newsletters? Let them tell their fitness success story, and demonstrate how you have helped to achieve their lifestyle goals.
Go low-impact to make a big impact
Some of your active-aging members will be wary of instructors trying to make a big impact with high-impact exercises. Show that it is possible for low-impact exercise to make a big difference.
Adjust rudimentary exercises such as star jumps to be low-impact versions of themselves. Remove the jump. Take away arm pumps from aerobic exercises. Keep things simple. Explain why you are reshaping exercises, and build up slowly.
Don’t fear sending content that shows how simple exercises performed at home – or even walking the dog regularly – can help to transform fitness in the long run. The more helpful your marketing is to people over 50, the more loyal they will become.
Keep it regular
There is no single formula for exercise that a person over 50 should do, but a key to staying fit is to exercise regularly. And that’s like marketing.
There’s no fixed formula for marketing you should send, but keeping it regular is key.
Regularity of marketing will help to keep your sales in shape. Reaching out two or three times a week, in different formats, will pay dividends in the long term. But, just like exercising to gain fitness and remain in shape, the content you publish must be relevant and targeted to achieve your goals.
Don’t think you have time to produce marketing content to benefit from active agers? Think again. With incredibly low pricing, you can start creating fitness content automatically today.