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WIN Page 24



THE GYM Explore the opportunities beyond the gym walls


The Pros & Cons of a Fitness Franchise


Tackle this emerging profit center







22 By Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo

By Joe Vennare

Obstacle Course Racing A new market awaits

Going it Alone: Private Studio or Tested Business Model? Is a fitness franchise the right decision?


18 By Carrie A. Kukuda and Alicia Streger

Featuring Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo

Take it Outside the Walls

One woman’s story inspires thousands

Outdoor workouts that give your clients an experience


Columns 08 Be Better The Best Way to Make More Money By Phil Kaplan

10 Treadmill Talk A Real Little Business By Greg Justice

07 Letter from the Editor: Move outside the gym and focus on the experience

25 Events Calendar 26 Company Profile: i-Form 30 New on the Market

11 Top-Notch Training Think Outside the Box By Tammy Polenz

12 Boost Your Business

Delivering the WOW Factor Outside Of the Gyms


By Bedros Keuilian

12 Supplements A to Z



O Out

Omega-3 Fish Oil Supplements By Chris Mohr






/ .com o r p


josh vogt OUREDITOR

lindsay vastola MANAGINGEDITOR


Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo, Carrie A. Kukuda, Alicia Streger, Joe Vennare FEATUREDCOLUMNISTS

greg justice, phil kaplan, bedros keuillian, chris mohr, tammy polenz CIRCULATIONMANAGER


chad griepentrog GRAPHICDESIGNER

kelli cooke

2901 International Lane Madison WI 53704-3128 Phone: 608.241.8777 Fax: 608.241.8666 Email:

SUBSCRIPTIONS are free to qualified recipients: $36 per year to all others in the United States. Subscriptions rate for Canada or Mexico is $60 per year, and for elsewhere outside the United States is $80. Back-issue rate is $5. Send subscriptions to: PFP, P.O. Box 259098, Madison WI 53725-9098; or call 608.241.8777; fax 608.241.8666; email; or subscribe online at For high-quality reprints, please contact our exclusive reprint provider. Scoop Reprint Source 800.767.3263 ext. 144 All material in this magazine is copyrighted Š 2012 by RB Publishing Inc. All rights reserved. Nothing may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher. Any correspondence sent to PFP, RB Publishing Inc. or its staff becomes property of RB Publishing Inc. The articles in this magazine represent the views of the authors and not those of RB Publishing Inc. or PFP. RB Publishing Inc. and/or PFP expressly disclaim any liability for the products or services sold or otherwise endorsed by advertisers or authors included in this magazine. PFP (ISSN 1523-780X) [Volume 14, Issue 2] is published six times per year (January/February, March/April, Spring 2012 Buyers Guide, July/August, September/October, November/December) by RB Publishing Inc., 2901 International Lane, Suite 100, Madison WI 53704-3128, 608.241.8777. Periodicals postage paid at Madison WI and additional offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to: PFP | P.O. Box 259098 | Madison WI 53725-9098.



EDITOR - Lindsay Vastola

Letter from the Editor

Move outside the gym and focus on the experience C               . The difference now is they are no longer simply looking for the newest cardio equipment or decked-out locker rooms with free towel service; they are looking for a fitness experience. Avid and aspiring fitness fanatics are looking at opportunities to incorporate fitness in their lives in a whole new way. Clients want to ignite their inner athlete and train for adventure fitness events like mud runs and obstacle races. They want to exercise outdoors, in parks and warehouses with tires, ropes and Russian kettlebells. There is a movement to create fitness communities by connecting members through social media, live events and membership websites. Getting fit is no longer a journey a client must embark on alone and there certainly is no longer a conventional way of getting fit. Our goal in this issue of PFP is to inspire you to look beyond the four walls of your gyms, studios and training centers and focus on your clients’ experience. The beauty of being a fitness professional, and much of the reason why many of us chose this profession, is that the core of what we do is serving others; we offer a truly personal service. You have the opportunity to create a client experience that is uniquely yours, without being confined by the walls of a gym.

There are more possibilities than ever to give your clients a truly exceptional experience …

Now on Functionally Fit

Twice monthly via our E-News By Brian Schiff

Column: You are Your Brand By Stephen Cabral

„ Joe Vennare highlights how to get clients excited about the trend in obstacle course racing. „ Think you have the next great fitness franchise concept or thinking about becoming a franchisee? Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo outlines the pros and cons of fitness franchises (she is also our inspiration for this issue’s Journey to Success feature). „ As spring rolls in, don’t forget to reinvigorate your workouts and enjoy the outdoors; Alicia Streger and Carrie Kukuda share three new workouts with you.

Go ahead and take a risk; look outside of the gym walls for new inspiration. Tap into your creativity to discover how you best resonate with your clients as you continue striving to give them an exceptional experience they can’t get from anyone else. Committed to your success,

Column: Get Clients to Pay You for Referrals By Cabel McElderry



Be Better

The BesT WaY To Make MoRe MoneY


was riding the escalator when a man and woman in warm-up outfits came trotting up the stairs behind me. “I was just telling my wife about your session.” The wife jumped in, “We’re going home with great ideas but . . . what’s the best way to make more money?” I wretched, gagged and vomited on their shoes (no, I didn’t, but I might have). I’m so often confronted with the “what’s the best way” question I’m a short distance from associating it with the gag reflex. The two partner-trainers were very nice people, and we spent 30 minutes talking. I believe I helped them understand why “the best way” doesn’t exist. Imagine a prospective client asks: “What’s the best way to cure hypertension?” You know that 95% of hypertensive cases fall under the category of Primary Hypertension, a multi-factorial result of lifestyle choices and stress interpretation. There isn’t a “best way.” There are many pieces of the puzzle that all must be pulled together. What’s the best way to lose fat? To build muscle? What’s the best way to catch a fish? We live in a myopic world where Twitter has taught us to communicate in 140 characters. We Google “the best way to cook hot dogs,” or “the best way to fix a garbage disposal,” and in some of those immediate need cases we find answers. When we talk about changing a body, or business, we’re looking at complex living entities that grow or deteriorate based on a number of stimuli. A careful examination of profits and losses, business practices, marketing energies, and revenues and expenditures can provide clues, and with those clues you might isolate three strategies you can change or employ to facilitate positive change. With clients you consider three elements: eating, aerobic stimulation and resistance training. When we add in rotation, kinesthetic awareness, postural improvement, etc. the complexity can prove overwhelming. Making three interrelated shifts is enough to put positive outcome in motion. I cannot give you “the best way,” but I can provide “the three best ways,” and you can pick and choose which best connect with your personal needs. Today, assuming you’re a personal trainer conducting one-on-one sessions with a foundation of clients, I’ll share the three best ways to earn more.

The Three Best Ways to Give Yourself a Raise Look at the value you deliver.

Consider what an hour of your time is worth, based solely on the value you deliver. Once you’re secure with a fixed number, look at your income over the past 90 days and determine what you actually get paid per working hour. If the answer is lower than what you’ve determined your value to be, grab hold of your sensibility and realize you deserve more than you’re receiving. Then, raise your rates. How? Choose 10 clients and tell them that as of a given day your rates are going up $4 a session. That will bring you the confidence to recognize it’s OK to ask every client to pay you in line with


| March-april 2012 |

the value you deliver. With 30 sessions weekly, the simple $4 increase brings near $500 extra per month without any additional work, and in most cases you’ll see your way clear to raise rates by significantly more than $4.

Ask clients to train more frequently. We often get caught up in “what is” and neglect to consider “what may be.” We sometimes build twice-per-week relationships with clients, but within a matter of weeks, our value is clearly established. Rarely will personal trainers pose the question, “Would you like to train more often?” There is an art to posing the question so it feels non-threatening. “Judy, I have three slots I’m going to fill with new clients, but before I bring in anyone new, I wanted to see if any of my current clients would like to take advantage of this opportunity. Would you like to work with me an additional hour per week?” Will everyone say yes? No, but somebody will. If you charge $60 per session, three more sessions per week brings you an extra $700 per month, an $8,000 annual raise without needing to go on an aggressive client hunt.

Make up “the gift of health.” This is the only one that requires a small investment in marketing material, but it need not exceed $100. The return can be tens of thousands. The gift is actually a nicely printed card, tradable for one session with a new client, ideally in an attractive branded envelope. Ask some local fitness, nutrition or athletic clothing shops if they’d like you to add their promotional materials to your marketing. Require that they give you a certificate that fits in your envelope offering a discount (15% off is fine or “buy one get one free” is OK). The gift is a certificate for a training session with you, value enhanced by money-saving opportunities with local merchants. You don’t call it free. You make it apparent that the person buying the certificate paid for it and you include the value. For example, “The person granted this Gift of Health can use this card for one personal training session (value $60).” Sell it to existing clients at $9, and they gift the certificates to friends and associates who would benefit from your services. Nobody perceives that you’re discounting your rate, clients see extreme value in the gift purchase, and the person who receives and uses the gift is a strong client candidate. Let all of your clients know “The Gift” is available. You’ll be surprised how many opt to take advantage of this gift repeatedly. Phil Kaplan shares his insights into improving profitability and potential in his ASPIRE program for Personal Trainers. Go to www.everypersonaltrainer. com and request, The Three Best Ways to Attract the Unwell Market, and The Three Best Ways to Develop Career Security available as a pdf download. Find additional materials at

Treadmill Talk




hether you’re running an outdoor boot camp or have an indoor facility, it’s important to run your business in a professional manner. When I started my business in the mid ’80s, most trainers were “gym rats” without any formal education or business knowledge, just a bunch of “muscle heads” that liked to workout. One of the first things I did was to develop a formal business plan and formally incorporate Kansas City’s original personal training center and ran it like a real business. I hired an accountant and a lawyer and built a team of formally educated fitness professionals. About three years into the business, as one of my clients was leaving, and several clients and trainers were mulling around the studio, she said to me “Wow, this is turning into a real little business, isn’t it?” With that statement, it was clear that her perception of my business had been elevated to a higher level by the professional structure I had developed. Sixty percent of small businesses – most of which fail – begin because the owners want to make money from a hobby. They see their recreational activities as social and financial opportunities and expect to enjoy spending the week engaged in their favorite activity. Businesses do not often succeed based on this idea because businesses have one purpose: to make money. To succeed financially, you do need to know your “hobby” inside and out – but that is a small part of running a business. Knowledge of accounting, marketing, customer service and other business components are essential. If you are not able to handle these things yourself, you need to have the capital to hire accountants, attorneys and great salespeople in order to run a real business. Upon entering your establishment, an employee who can provide an established pricing structure based on detailed descriptions of everything that your business offers should greet potential clients. They should also be given brochures or printed packets detailing the information you give them. Included should be client recommendations, employee credentials and certifications, and your contact information. Most importantly, it should direct them to your website for additional information. If you don’t have a website, your business is not taking advantage of a low-cost way to reach a large portion of potential customers. The success or failure of your business is largely influenced by how it is perceived. These days, consumers are knowledgeable about researching companies and have expectations that you need to meet in order to even be considered as their choice provider. Demonstrate knowledge, professionalism, training and a history of success and you will retain and increase your client base. Greg Justice, MA, CPT, is the founder of AYC Health & Fitness ( and the Corporate Boot Camp System ( He has been actively involved in the fitness industry for more than a quarter of a century as a club manager, owner, personal trainer and corporate wellness supervisor.



Top-Notch Training




usiness has evolved over the years due to technological advances like the internet, which has increased the mobility of our business life. Most companies are unable to survive without this flexibility. When it comes to fitness, how can you use this concept to grow your business? I’m going to ask you to think outside the box … the box of the four walls of your gym. Typical fitness industry entrepreneurs focus on building a client base within these four walls. Most marketing efforts are geared towards bringing more people to them. This marketing approach makes a lot of sense since you cannot necessarily take your equipment to each and every client. That is unless you add more services that allow you to do so. Corporate wellness is the buzz word in today’s healthcare market. If you have not heard it yet, you will soon. Companies are looking to improve the overall health and wellness of their employee population. The goal is to impact their bottom line by lowering medical care expenses the company incurs from its employees. You and I know as fitness professionals that the best way to improve someone’s health is to get them exercising and eating healthier. So, how does this allow you to work outside of your business walls? Companies are looking to implement on-site fitness and nutritional programs. The demand for qualified professionals has increased exponentially over the last few years, especially in the corporate setting. Companies are investing in choices that aid in the improvement of their employees’ overall well-being. Some of these choices include off-site corporate gym memberships, Health Risk Assessments, group classes, behavior modification programming, weight management services, staffed fitness or nutritional coaches, and even gym design and management services. Fitness is an evolving industry. Professionals in the trade need to modify their business models in order to remain current with the latest trends. Keeping up with “out of the box” trends, like corporate wellness, can add additional revenue streams to your current business model – something you as a business owner may not have investigated in the past. To find out more about corporate wellness programs, go to http://www. This website has information on how to start a wellness program from start to finish. Sometimes all it takes is a little “out of the box” thinking to grow your business.

Tammy Polenz, CPT, has been actively involved in the fitness industry since 1991 as a personal trainer, club manager, corporate wellness consultant, and gym owner and designer. She is the author of Think Fit 2 Be Fit, founder of Vedas Fitness in Cleveland, and Wellness Director for Cleveland Hopkins Airport and has been featured in numerous fitness magazines and media. Learn more about Tammy at WWW.FIT-PRO.COM | MARCH-APRIL 2012 |


Boost Your Business Delivering the

WOW FactOr

Outside Of the Gym



Supplements A to Z

Omega-3 fish Oil supplements


he biggest challenge that most personal training gyms face is not a matter of prospecting, lead generation or marketing – rather, they face a problem of retention. Client retention boils down to two simple factors: 1. The results you deliver. 2. The experience they get. Now it goes without saying that as a trainer you know your stuff and can deliver as promised. But where many personal training gyms fall short is in the “experience department.” Like it or not, your clients and members expect more than just fitness and fat loss results. The experience you deliver makes all the difference when it comes to retention and referral generation. By experience, I mean making each and every client feel appreciated. Keep their workouts fun and engaging. Delivering service that goes above and beyond their expectations. The truth is people can workout anywhere. They have plenty of options when it comes to burning fat. It’s the EXPERIENCE they get with you that will keep them deeply committed to your program. Believe it or not the experience you deliver is one of the most potent marketing strategies you can deploy, plus it’s highly appreciated by your clients. A simple handwritten thank you card mailed to a client’s home can go a long way. Just reaching out to your client on Facebook and giving them recognition for a job well done during their workout session will leave a lasting impression. As humans we have several basic primal needs and wants. For most people the higher needs such as food and shelter are non-issues and part of everyday life. However, tops on the list of basic human needs are recognition and appreciation. In a nutshell, if you can deliver the “wow” factor in addition to results, you will have a client for life. A random phone call, email, or even a text message can go a long way if it’s genuine and truly unexpected. Now before you start thinking about automating these things let me stop you. If you’re going to congratulate a client, don’t text them through a mass texting service. If you’re going to email them a note of appreciation, don’t use a mass email program. Those things are fine to market with, but nothing beats the real deal. Nothing beats a personal text message, phone call or email. In fact, Dr. Robert Cialdini, the author of Influence, says an unexpected and meaningful gift is of the highest value to a client or customer. I can tell you from first-hand experience that nothing could be truer.

ish oil supplements, also known as omega-3 fats, are one of the most popular supplements, with more people buying than ever. This shouldn’t come as a surprise; with over 15,000 studies, fish oil is powerful in reducing the risk of heart disease, triglycerides and maybe even helping with weight loss, among other benefits. When determining a quality fish oil supplement, it is important to consider several key factors: 1. All fish oils are NOT created equal. 2. You shouldn’t burp up fish after taking capsules (and, no, putting them in the freezer isn’t the answer — they shouldn’t taste rancid in the first place). 3. Quality fish oil should provide a high concentration of the “good stuff ”: EPA and DHA. These are two of the three omega-3s that are tied to most of the benefits of fish oil as a whole. Quality fish oil products should be regularly tested for oxidation — in other words, is the fish oil spoiled or not. There are a handful of measures for oxidation. The question is how do you, as a consumer, look for oxidation in a product? Simply, you must ask. Don’t ask the person running the supplement store you’re buying from. Ask the company if they have third party, independent lab tests to prove this to you. All companies have websites. Look up their contact information and call; if they don’t offer third party testing that they are willing to share with you, I’d suggest finding another brand that does. I don’t think you want to take mercury, PCB’s and other toxic ingredients when you think you’re doing something good for your body. Here is something else to be sure to research: EPA and DHA content. These are two acronyms for very long words that aren’t important for this piece; they are two of the three omega-3 fats. For other nerds like us, the third is ALA. You get EPA and DHA from animal sources (e.g., fish and fish oil) and you get ALA from plant sources. There are exceptions to that rule, but few and far between. When you are deciding on a fish oil product, you want to look past the number of total omega-3s and instead add the DHA and EPA. These two numbers need to add up to the dose you’re looking to take. EPA/DHA should, at minimum, make up at least 50% of the total number. What is the overall daily dose suggested? See the guidelines below, but be sure that you (or your client) speak with a physician for individual recommendations. General health: minimum of 500mg EPA/DHA Heart disease or family history of heart disease: 1,000-2,000mg EPA/DHA High triglycerides: 2,000-4,000mg EPA/DHA

Bedros Keuilian is known as the “hidden genius” behind many of the top earners in the fitness industry. Visit his blog at for free tips, ideas, and strategies to grow your personal training business.

Dr Chris Mohr is the creator of Dietary Supplement University (, the leading resource for the most up to date reviews of ingredients and dietary supplements).

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One woma woman’s woman ’s story ust two years ago, Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo took a chance and left a successful 15-year career in media and technology and began working from her dining room table with a vision and a drive to change lives. The vision is now promising to become one of the fastest growing and most popular fitness franchises in the country. But her journey has been far from conventional; a battle with bone cancer, divorce, raising two young children and a career change propelled her into this chapter of her life. Daniella is one of the powers behind iLoveKickboxing. com. If you haven’t come across one of their 236 nationwide locations or heard of their studio in Chelsea, New York City, you’ll be hearing of them soon. The movement has enrolled more than 82,000 participants in the past two years, and Daniella doesn’t see this trend ending anytime soon. Daniella became interested in fitness in her 20s when she started taking martial arts lessons. She was inspired to get her personal trainer certification and a specialization in martial arts conditioning but never considered it would be a career path at any point in her life. She helped coworkers in her company gym with proper technique and offered fitness advice purely because she enjoyed helping others. She moved away from fitness for some time, and when she was 39, two months after the birth of her second child, her passion for fitness was reignited following emergency gallbladder removal. Daniella calls this her “come to Jesus” moment. Realizing the importance of focusing on her health, she was determined to get back into a lifestyle of fitness. After losing about 40 pounds, she discovered a tumor on her rib; had she not lost weight, she may not have discovered it. After doctors removed the rib, Daniella was diagnosed with bone cancer and began radiation treatment – not exactly the plan of life anyone expects. Daniella not only vowed to maintain fit throughout her treatment, but committed to inspire and educate others undergoing cancer treatments and those suffering from other life-altering conditions. She knew her story

By Lindsay Vastola



inspires thousands and spirit of recovery could serve to connect with others during a time when patients typically have discouraged spirits and little hope. Following a successful recovery, Daniella was offered an opportunity to get involved in the martial arts industry on the technology side; a perfect fit to combine her career in media and technology with her passion for fitness. She hasn’t turned back since. Initially, she redesigned and developed the fitness kickboxing website for a friend’s martial arts school. They soon realized the untapped potential in offering adult fitness kickboxing classes as an opportunity to make fitness accessible for adults as well as offer a new profit center for martial arts studio owners. Daniella credits one of her best business decisions as partnering with the same friend who asked her to help him promote his school. As business partners, they complement each other’s unique set of skills and that continues to be a key component to the brand’s success. With her technology and fitness background combined with his martial arts marketing background and connections within the industry, the two were able to introduce the best fitness kickboxing program to the masses while revolutionizing the martial arts industry. initially started as a marketing vehicle for martial arts schools and has morphed into a completely systematized program that can be easily replicated and implemented. The business offers complete online presence for the martial arts schools that participate in their program and also manages enrollment so new members come to their first workout already having purchased an introductory membership. is a model that is a win-win for the business owner and the fitness client; a model that Daniella realizes has the potential to become a dominant global brand. Daniella is committed because she knows the business model works; it works for business owners because it is systematized, structured and turnkey. And it works for clients (82,000 and counting) because it’s not just a fun workout, but also an effective fitness program. Currently, programs are found primarily in martial arts schools (more than 200 nationwide), and Daniella and her partner recently opened the first corporate standalone location in Chelsea, New York City. This was the first step in taking the business to the next level: franchising the business and opening franchise opportunities to other industries and entrepreneurs. Amidst these exciting steps of rapid growth, Daniella finds one of her biggest challenges is balancing the consumer and the business sides of being a fitness entrepreneur. Her typical day starts at 4:30 a.m. to get in her workout, get her kids ready for school, and get to the office to focus on the business. She still manages to meet her son and daughter at the bus in the afternoon, and finishes her day communicating with clients and members through social media outlets. Daniella credits her ability to be productive because she schedules everything and more importantly, knows her priorities and understands that being flexible is key. She also realizes that she has been given a unique privilege through her illness, her story and her experience to understand what is truly important in life. That allows her to keep it all in perspective … she doesn’t sweat the small stuff.

Daniella advises that in order to succeed in your business you must deeply believe in your concept. Without 100% belief in your concept, your efforts will be fruitless. Secondly, target and saturate your niche market; once you find success within that niche, look to expand to other markets. If you decide to have a business partner, be sure your partner is complementary to your skills, not in competition. Daniella also stresses the importance of implementing systems in your business so it can be successfully replicated. She also emphasizes the importance of systematizing every aspect of your business: your curriculum, sales strategy, client conversion, marketing, websites and other internet and social media marketing, and training manuals. And ultimately, don’t corner yourself into any one particular focus. You want to be focused on your vision and goal, but don’t underestimate the power of flexibility and openness to new concepts and ideas that can take your vision to fruition. Daniella and her business partner are excited about what the future holds. They are in the process of franchising and will be opening up franchise opportunities and more corporate studios. On a more personal venture, Daniella still has a passion to work with cancer patients and survivors to motivate and encourage them to remain active. She has the greater goal of educating the medical industry of the need to incorporate fitness and activity during treatment and recovery. A successful business such as or the career of someone like Daniella is rarely about happenstance or pure luck. This is why we title this feature “Journey to Success.” From the outside looking in, we aren’t always privy to the stories, the experiences, the challenges and pitfalls, the money lost or relationships broken that have been instrumental in defining a journey to success. But we should be encouraged to look at a story of success and truly appreciate the journey and the experiences that define it. Daniella’s story, her journey and her experience truly mark her ability to connect with people and to follow a vision and a passion. She is shaped by her story and because of this she will undoubtedly create a legacy of having a profound impression on thousands of lives. We should all be inspired by Daniella as a reminder to not forget our own stories and the experiences that shape and define who we are and that serve as our own catalyst of success.

Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo What is your current title? President of FC Online Marketing Inc./ Co-owner of 27th Street Kickboxing Inc., Chelsea, NYC What is your company name? 27th Street Kickboxing Inc. aka and FC Online Marketing Inc. What is your favorite piece of workout equipment? Training bags used for Kickboxing What is your favorite healthy snack? Natural peanut butter with Fuji apples What is your favorite quote or saying? “Today we are the shapers of the world of tomorrow” – Walt Disney WWW.FIT-PRO.COM | MARCH-APRIL 2012 |





cross the country, a new breed of athlete is in training. You can find them in the gym, on a wooded trail or pounding the pavement. Upon first glance, it may appear as though these individuals are training for a half-marathon or maybe a triathlon. However, a closer look leaves onlookers puzzled. Why is she wearing a weighted vest? What exercise is that? Is he going to flip that tire? Curiosity prompts one to ask: “So what are you training for?” The response does little to clarify the inquiry: “Imagine a 5 to 10k course over rolling hills, scattered with military style obstacles like rope ascents and wall climbs, and finished off with mud, fire and water hazards.” This intriguing and challenging formula has become all the rage among fun seekers and fitness newbies, veteran runners and former college athletes; all electing to test their skills in an obstacle course race. Because obstacle course races combine elements of recreation, fitness and competition, a diverse group of participants can partake in these events. The success and attractiveness of events like Spartan Race and Tough Mudder have resulted in an increase in the number of individuals seeking to train for and compete in obstacle course races. Whether the intent is to finish while enjoying the experience or contend for a spot on the podium, the demand for training programs focused on obstacle race preparation has created a market primed for fitness professionals to tap. Capitalize on the opportunity and take advantage of this training niche to generate new revenue streams, attract new members to your facility and increase member participation in your fitness programs.

Become an authority: If you are going to develop training programs for obstacle course races you have to be able to walk the walk. With that in mind, take a look at the race calendar and register for an upcoming event.



Competing in a race will build your clout among trainees and your firsthand experience will assist you in prepping others. If the hands-on approach is not for you, attend an obstacle race as a spectator or exhibitor. Talk with competitors about their experience and reach out to the race promoter about advertising and marketing opportunities. At minimum, spend some time researching the events. Familiarize yourself with the race course, various obstacles and components of the event. It is helpful to know that many of these races come in varying levels of difficulty. There may be a “sprint” version of a race that covers three miles, while the full-length race covers a much greater distance over multiple days of competition. Preparing yourself with the appropriate knowledge of events and obstacles will allow you to guide clients through the entire obstacle course race process from registration to training and on to competition. Acquire the tools of the trade: After gaining a thorough understanding of the physical and mental rigors of the race day experience, conduct an inventory of the exercise equipment you have on hand. While exercise machines and a universal gym can be used to build baseline fitness, training for an obstacle course race requires some non-traditional training tools. Along with the basics, like an Olympic weight set and dumbbells, look to acquire kettlebells, weighted sandbags, tractor tires, a weighted vest and a push/pull sled. If space and specifically ceiling height is not an issue, consider adding a pair of gymnastics rings and/or a climbing rope. Aside from the type of equipment you utilize, you should identify locations outside of the gym to conduct training sessions. Obstacle course races take place outdoors, in the elements. It can be helpful to replicate the race day environment during training. This can be accomplished on an off-road running and hiking trail or at a local park. Take workouts into the field to acquire and improve the skills associated with obstacle race training. Devise a plan: Now that you are properly equipped, prepare yourself

and your clients for the launch of your training classes and programming. It is important that you make a detailed plan that is easily followed and understood by potential participants. First, identify an upcoming obstacle course race in your area. Contact the race promoter to create a team or group for the race. This will help with organization, but will usually lead to the race promoter offering a discount code or rebate. Once the registration process has been handled, consider a launch workout for your clients. Create some excitement for your program by holding free demo workouts that will allow members to sample the type of training you will be conducting. After this introductory period, develop small group, boot camp or circuit-style trainings of 5 to 10 individuals. Training sessions should be planned over the course of 8 to 10 weeks leading up to the race. Get to work: A successful training program for obstacle course racing should be designed to improve general fitness, then address skills specific to the event. Focus on functional and dynamic movements that will assist in building relative strength. Competitors need to be able to move their own bodyweight over, under, around or through obstacles. Bodyweight exercises such as pushups, triceps dips, pull-ups and squats can be used to create a foundation of strength. Next, kettlebell swings, plyometric exercises, and non-linear movements should be implemented. Adding explosive movements like jump squats, burpees and box jumps into training sessions will teach individuals how to initiate athletic movements, land after jumping and recover or maintain an off-balance position. Finally, do not overlook the cardiovascular components of preparation. To ensure success for your clients, include resisted sprints, hill climbs or stadium stairs into the plan. Depending on the distance covered during the race, it may be necessary for participants to complete training runs outside

of structured training sessions. Additionally, target race-specific skills by preparing participants to transport an awkward load or object, build grip strength and practice rope climbs to build confidence along with upper body strength. This is where your new equipment will be put to use. Wearing a weighted vest during training, carrying a weighted pack or using kettlebells to complete a farmer’s carry will be essential to building specialty skills. As participation in obstacle course racing continues to grow at an incredible rate, the opportunity for fitness professionals to create innovative training methods and programming for these events intensifies. Taking a creative approach to program development and marketing, fitness facilities and trainers can use obstacle course racing to create new revenue streams, increase member satisfaction and attract new members. General health seekers, viewing the race as a recreational experience, can use the event as a source of motivation to get or stay fit. Former athletes and weekend warriors will be attracted to participate, hoping to satisfy their competitive desires. Regardless of the ability level or motive, everyone will benefit from the camaraderie, accountability and sense of accomplishment that comes with setting and achieving a new and unique goal. Joe Vennare is a successful entrepreneur and accomplished fitness professional. He is the co-founder of Hybrid Athlete and co-creator of Race Day Domination, a training manual designed to prepare competitors for success in any obstacle course race. Learn more at


| march-april 2012 |

Outdoor workouts that give your clients an experience By Carrie A. Kukuda and Alicia Streger

Boot camps seem to be found on every corner now, since they are a much more affordable option compared to one-on-one personal training. As we know, they are not all created equal. Now more than ever, it is important to develop a well-designed exercise program. You must be able to achieve measurable results from your programs or you will not have clients or a business, period. Today, something else has become almost just as important … the client’s experience! Clients and campers want more than just a place to go and exercise, and you can provide this with your boot camps. Offering your campers challenging workouts, adding variety through exercise selection and formatting, using a little competition in your program, integrating team building exer-

cises (everyone likes to feel a part of something) and simply making it fun! We’re all kids at heart but even the best of us can get worn out by all of our responsibilities. You have the opportunity to give them back some of their childhood excitement, remind them how to experience fun and adventure, and help them to awaken the competitive bug they still have buried deep inside. Continue to change your exercise programs regularly. Get outside for fresh air and new changes and deliver an unparalleled experience (one they won’t forget). The whole group environment helps break boredom, gives them someone else to “complain” with, builds friendships and can help set you apart from the rest. Get out from beyond the four walls of your gym and try these three challenging and fun workouts and listen to your clients beg for more!

Dynamic Warm-Up – 3x7

Circuit 2:

7 Push-ups 7 Squats 7 Full Sit-ups 7 Reverse Lunges – Left Leg 7 Jumping Jacks 7 Reverse Lunges – Right Leg 7 Reverse Flys

Workout: weights recommended; modify times and weight as necessary for your participants.

Circuits: 90 seconds work, 15 seconds rest before moving to

the next exercise

Circuit 1:

Step-ups with Knee High and Overhead Press – Left leg Step-ups with Knee High and Overhead Press – Right leg Decline Push-ups (legs on bench) Bench Crunches Bench Jumps (modify to alternating Step-ups if needed) Bench Dips – legs at 90 degree angle 2-3 minutes rest

Step-ups with Side Leg Lateral Raises – Left Leg Step-ups with Side Leg Lateral Raises – Right leg Incline Push-ups – Hands on Table Top Bicycles off the Bench Reverse Lunge followed by a Step-up with Knee Raise – Left Leg Reverse Lunge followed by a Step-up with Knee Raise – Right Leg

2-3 minutes rest Circuit 3:

Step-ups with Leg Kickback – Left Leg Step-ups with Leg Kickback– Right leg Bicycles off the Bench Split Lunges (foot planted behind on bench) with Bicep Curls – Left Leg Split Lunges (foot planted behind on bench) with Bicep Curls– Right Leg Bench Dips – Legs extended 2-3 minutes rest


with a ¼ mile easy run Cool down and stretch (5-10 minutes) | march-april 2012 |


Walking Push-ups (20 feet) #1

Sprint (15 feet) #2 Jump Rope


You Need: 5 Cones 6 Circles 1 Ladder Medicine Balls Timer

25 Medicine Ball Squats

Backwards Jog (20 feet)

Bear Crawl (25 feet)

Obstacle 600

hop through circles

Start at cone #1 End at cone #2 Time Each Round 5 Rounds Total

25 Full Sit-Ups


25 Burpees Sprint (20 feet)

Hop through ladder


Find the tools you need to start or build your business. Check out page 27 for our Boot Camp & Group Training Resource Spotlight.




Side Shuffle

Square Builder You Need: 4 Cones Dumbbells Lebert Equalizers (or you can sub with dumbbells if you do not have Leberts)


First Round: 10 Reps Each Cone Second Round: 20 Reps Each Cone Third Round: 30 Reps Each Cone Rest 2-3 minutes between rounds

Overhead Walking Lunges #1 Spiderman Plank

#2 Push-Ups

#3 Squat Jumps


Butt Kicks




#4 Bent-Over Rows

Alicia Streger and Carrie A Kukuda, better known as the Boot Camp Girls, each own a personal training fitness business and have teamed up to help other fitness professionals excel in the industry. They provide donefor-you workout programs and a 21-day meal plan program, coaching services and a membership site for fitness professionals. To learn more visit


P r i v a t e S t u d i o o r Te s t e d B u s i n e s s M o d e l ?

Is a Fitness Franchise the Right Decision? | By Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo There comes a time in most careers when you contemplate your next step. Do you stay in the rank and file and continue to hone your skills, strive for a management position, executive status or perhaps strike out on your own as an entrepreneur? The fitness industry is no different. You may have started in a health club, corporate gym, outdoor boot camp or some other conventional setting for beginner trainers, but now you want more. This is probably the point you have thought about opening your own gym or studio. You wonder, “Do I have a big enough following for people to come with me? How do I buy the equipment I need and pay the bills until I have enough clients? What kind of marketing would I do? How do I build my client base among all the big-name health clubs and gyms out there?�



First, you need to ask yourself some hard questions - and be honest with yourself; your success or failure will only be determined by you. The BIG question is: are you willing to do what it takes to build your business and be successful? Most people will say, “Of course I am.” But are you truly willing to give up nights with your significant other, spouse or children if need be to take care of business? Are you willing to not just do the things you love, like training clients, but also do the accounting, opening the doors, closing the doors and cleaning the bathroom because the guy you hired last week called in sick for two days in a row? It takes a lot more to run your own business than just showing up to turn the lights on every morning. You have to be willing to do whatever it takes to succeed, or the business won’t. Now, you think to yourself, “I like training clients one-on-one, but I like the idea of owning a big facility also.” But nobody knows Joe Smith and there is a well-known health club a town over. How does your small no-name studio compete with that? That is when you might start playing with the idea of buying a franchise. Like anything else, there are pros and cons to consider when deciding to become a franchisee. Depending on what kind of business you want to have and where you want to take it will determine your best course of action. Do you want to own a women’s only facility or a boot camp franchise? A health club-based location or perhaps a powerhouse hard-core gym might be more up your alley? Do you want to be hands-on or just own a fitness facility and pop in once in a while? There are several benefits and positive aspects to buying a successful fitness franchise that many aspiring business owners find very attractive.

Somebody else has done much of the hard work for you. They have tested the system, written the manuals and branded the product. And guess what? It typically works. As long as you follow the system, it should work for you. They know the best methods to get new clients, have the advertising worked out and provide you with all the information and resources to get out there and open your doors. The franchise provides training and teaches you much of what you need to know to be successful. They will literally ‘hand you the manual.’ Your job is to study it, learn it and apply it. You do not have to reinvent the wheel. The franchise may provide discounts on supplies and services. Some may offer advertising and marketing materials and resources. Often times, there may be automatic fees involved in this, so again, do your research, but for a brand that has been proven to work, it may be worth your investment rather than trying to figure it out on your own. After all, your business is fitness. Depending on the franchise, the name is already branded and established. Clients have heard of you and are coming to you with their money willingly. Even if you go for a niche market, the franchise company is getting the name out there. It gives you double exposure. Buying into a franchise may also mean a territory comes with it. This does not mean a competitor will not open nearby, but another location within your franchise cannot, so the devotees to your brand in that area are coming to you. You will have support from your new franchise community to help you grow the business; there is an opportunity to create relationships with more experienced franchisees.



Let’s take a look at what many consider to be some of the restrictions of investing in a franchise fitness business. You have no autonomy. Your business is not John Smith’s Awesome House of Abs. You are owner of Big Brand Fitness in My Town. If you have a specific idea of how you want your programs to run or want to label your own new way of training with your name on it, then buying a franchise may not be the right path for you. When you buy a franchise, you often need to have a good chunk of money upfront. You need to play by their rules which you must agree to when you sign your agreement. You will also likely be required to follow their structure. In some cases, the franchise must also approve the location you pick for the facility. You will be paying a royalty fee each month. This structure is different for each franchise so it is a good idea to look at the franchise documents for a few companies for comparison. You want to be sure that you are comparing apples to apples; for example, you should not compare a gender-specific fitness facility to a hard-core powerhouse gym as it would not be an equal comparison. There is a term for the franchise agreement. Are you willing to make a 5-year or 10-year commitment? If you have a specific location you are interested in and cannot get a 10-year lease, you may not want to buy a franchise that signs you to a 10-year term. In that case, you may consider a different franchise. There are usually minimum requirements for equipment you must purchase before you open which add to your start-up costs. In some cases you must purchase equipment through the franchise. Even if you might be able to buy the equipment cheaper somewhere else, many require that you spend upfront for that franchise’s choice of supplier.

Buying a franchise is a big decision and there is a large monetary and long-term investment to consider. Talk to your accountant, business adviser, lawyer and trusted family members. It is critical that you also take time to do extensive research before finalizing any decisions and be fully committed to your venture as a franchisee. Resources for fitness franchise information and comparison:

YOUR RESOURCE SPOTLIGHT Find the tools you need to start or build your business. Check out page 27 for our Franchise & Group Training Resource Spotlight.

Daniella Cippitelli Abruzzo is President/Co-Owner of FC Online Marketing Inc., and 27th Street Kickboxing Inc. For more information on and future franchise opportunities send inquiries to



Follow @PFP_FitPro Anyone who signs up to follow PFP on Twitter (@PFP_FitPro) during the month of March will be eligible to win a prize giveaway including:

$100 Gift card from Power Systems Lebert Equalizer Lebert Buddy System Lebert Stretch Strap PFP uses its Twitter account to share helpful fitness tips and articles. It’s the one Twitter feed you need to grow your business and maximize fitness results. A winner will be selected at random at the end of the month and notified via private message to their Twitter account




Events Calendar MARCH-MAY 2012 NIRSA 2012 March 27-30 | Tampa, FL By NIRSA

ACSM’s Health & Fitness Summit & Exposition March 27-30 | Las Vegas, NV By ACSM

California MANIA March 30-April 1 | Burlingame, CA By SCW Fitness Education

DCAC Houston April 12-14 | Houston, TX By DCAC Fitness Conventions Inc.

YogaFit Mind Body Fitness Conference April 12-15 | Monroeville, PA May 3-6 | Toronto, ON June 13-17 | Minneapolis, MN By YogaFit

NSCA Personal Trainer’s Conference April 13-14 | Las Vegas, NV By NSCA

Functional Movement Screen Seminars April 13-14 | Atlanta, GA By Perform Better

FitnessFest Conference & Expo April 19-22 | Scottsdale, AZ By FitnessFest

FIBO - International Trade Show for Fitness, Wellness & Health April 19-22 | Essen, Germany By Reed Exhibitions

Florida MANIA May 3-6 | Orlando, FL By SCW Fitness Education

IAFC 2012 – International Aquatics Z Fitness Conference May 14-19 | Orlando, FL By Aquatic Exercise Association

For a complete listing, see our online Events Calendar at WWW.FIT-PRO.COM | MARCH-APRIL 2012 |


Product Profile


By Kyle Germanton, Vice President, Advanced Fitness Technology, Inc.



Years of kinesiology research, targeted consumer interest surveys and technology integration has culminated in the development of the i-Form, a compact strength training unit that actually employs an Apple iPad as the user’s personal trainer. Already used by leading fitness organizations and personal trainers for their own satisfied clients, the i-Form is the perfect addition to any commercial gym or personal training studios. Trainers appreciate that the computerized system allows them to virtually work with more than one client at any given time. Clients become more confident that their workout is giving them the desired results because they receive instant feedback as desired. i-Form with its robust commercial quality structure integrates seven commercial quality machines into one, enabling you to train every muscle in your body. i-Form employs upper, mid, and low cables; leg extensions; leg press; abdominal triceps, and low auxiliary cable. The machine is strong, sturdy and solid, giving users the full experience of a complete gym workout on one piece of equipment. This is the perfect addition to facilities with limited space, and the serious home gym. What sets this system apart from imitators is users have their own personal trainer right there with them – via an integrated Apple iPad. The user



or the trainer inputs his or her goals and the iPad will guide you through your personalized routine that is continually tracked and upgraded as necessary. An integrated internet program allows users and trainers to track progress anywhere and anytime. That gives trainers more time in the gym working out with their clients and less time doing paperwork. This seven-in-one piece of equipment is priced at about the cost of two single station machines, making it as cost-effective as it is space-efficient. One trainer. Many clients. Unlimited opportunities. That’s what the i-Form offers. To learn more about the i-Form, a revolution in training equipment, log on to Kyle Germanton, Vice President, Advanced Fitness Technology, Inc 7 Fieldstone Drive Kinnelon, NJ Phone: (973) 838-1967

boot camp & group traININg resource spotlight Sure Victory—The No. 1 Fitness Bootcamp Kit

The World Leader in Fitness Boot Camps

“All the Information You Need To Successfully Run Your Own Profitable Bootcamps...All In One Place” Sure Victory is the most comprehensive turn-key approach to getting started with your own profitable and successful fitness bootcamps you’ll ever find. If you’re tired of trading your time for money and want to start earning more without adding extra work, Sure Victory shows you exactly how to do just that!

Adventure Boot Camp has been attracting top fitness coaches for over 14 years. With over 400 thriving locations in 9 countries ABC is famous for helping trainers earn their first 6 figure incomes, bring them extraordinary media attention and the opportunity to live the lifestyle of a professional. The program includes everything you need for rock star success with 12 CD’s and DVD’s, the support of Fitness Fortunes coaching, logos, sample ads, nutrition seminar, and access to the other ABC coaches through a private coach forum. 570.288.2409

MMA Conditioning Coach & Business You can train top level athletes or fitness enthusiasts who just want to train like an MMA champion. Join the leading association for MMA conditioning that gives you cutting edge education, a certification of distinction, and business skills for your financial success. Offer one-on-one conditioning or MMA boot camps and crush your competition. 949.713.5319

Bootcamp Quick Start Solution The B3: Bootcamp Business Builder system is a complete turn key solution for fitness professionals who want to start their own high profit, low hassle fitness bootcamp or those who already have a bootcamp that they want to grow. PFP readers save 50% off the normal $197 price. 949.713.5319

See YourSeLF Here? put the spotlight on your solution in the next issue. Contact Josh: for details.

A Turn-Key Group Fitness System IMPACT – Intense Mixed Performance Accelerated Cross Training is a complete done for you fitness and business group training system developed by fitness industry legends Dr. John Spencer Ellis and Kelli Calabrese. Trainers earn their investment back in their first month with the proven methods to run an extraordinary small group training business complete with marketing materials, business forms, body changing workouts and the support of coaching through Fitness Fortunes. 949.713.5319


Exercise Spotlight

Exercises designed by Power Systems Education Team. For more information, visit or call 800.321.6975.

TRAINING RINGS They’re not just for gymnasts! Challenge your fitness level and enhance your bodyweight training like never before. Perform pull-ups, rows, muscle ups and other suspended exercises on the independently hanging rings. This unstable environment will call in more muscles to assist in almost every exercise. Includes (2) easy-to-grip rings, (2) 1” W x 14’ straps with 2 heavy duty secure buckles

SUPPORT „ Grasp the handles with hands facing in towards the body. „ Hoist yourself up above the rings from the floor or by using a small plyo-box. „ Sustain your body weight and hold the position. Keep arms straight and not resting against the straps. „ Hold the support position for the desired amount of time, relax and repeat.

L-SIT „ Grasp the handles with hands facing in towards the body. „ Hoist yourself up above the rings from the floor or by using a small plyo-box. „ Bend at the hips and raise the extended legs until they are horizontal to the ground. „ Lower back to the starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.



Ring Row  Position the rings so they are at a height that is appropriate for your skill level.  Grasp the rings with hands facing in towards the body and lean back. The feet can be on the floor or on a small plyo-box.  Allow the arms to fully extend to start the exercise.  Inhale and pull the chest up towards the rings as high as you can and hold the position. Exhale and lower the body back to the starting position.  Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Ring Dip  Position the ring height so that your feet do not touch the ground between reps.  Assume the “Support Position” – with your body above the rings and arms straight.  Slowly lower the body by bending the elbows, keeping the arms and shoulders close to your sides.  Once at the bottom of the movement, press the body back up to the starting position and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Ring wiDe gRip push-up  Position the rings to the appropriate height for skill level and grip the rings with an overhand grip.  Position the hands outside your shoulders with legs fully extended behind you. Feet can be on the floor or on a small plyo-box.  With back straight and core engaged; slowly lower yourself down until the elbows are at 90 degrees.  Press the body up to the starting position making sure not to lock out the elbows so tension is maintained throughout the exercise. | march-april 2011 |


New on the Market

Lindsay’s Review 411FIT COACHING SOLUTION One of the greatest challenges facing fitness professionals is how to help clients beyond workouts while increasing business and leveraging time. 411Fit provides the perfect answer. 411Fit has developed a 24/7 web-based coaching interface that gives professionals the ability to reach more clients while making the client experience more personal and meaningful. This web-based software is far from generic or template tracking websites; it is truly customizable for both the coach and client. The 411Fit software was designed at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte and has been tailored by 411Fit’s Director of Wellness, Briana Boehmer, to offer highly customized fitness and nutrition programs, track and grade client progress and goals, generate reports and alerts, and ultimately to allow consistent communication between coach and client all in an easy-to-use and attractive website. 411Fit offers a 30-day free trial of the Coaching Edition and offers an incredibly affordable option for fitness professionals looking to take their business to the next level. Check out the new Coaching Edition and other 411Fit coaching solutions at



The Lateral Elliptical is an approach to

arrival of our second pro-

the traditional elliptical cross trainer, from

gram, Kids Kamp Chal-

Octane Fitness. With 3D movement that

lenge (KKC). KKC is a fit-

goes from a vertical elliptical stepping

ness program created for

motion to an active side-to-side motion

kids and dedicated to the

that adjusts on the fly, this one-of-a-kind

health and fitness of all

cardio workout trains the body in new

kids. We help fitness facili-

directions for greater challenge, better

ties, school districts and fitness professional’s launch the KKC program

performance, and total-body transformation. New programs, such as Thigh-

so they too, can impact the next generation. The Kids Kamp Challenge

Toner, QuadPower, and MMA, plus 30 resistance levels, deliver motivation.

program incorporates education, team building, and super fun workouts.

Add muscle confusion to your cardio floor and embrace a new direction.


i-FORM II STRENGTH/WELLNESS EQUIPMENT Here are seven space-saving, interactive machines in one low cost, commercial quality, Apple iPad controlled unit. Combines: Upper Pulleys, Mid Pulleys, Low Pulleys, Leg Press, Abdomen Triceps, Leg Extensions and Low Auxiliary Cables. All of these features in an advanced unit with new dimensions of profit for studios — now, a one-on-one personal mode allows training of multiple clients at the same time.



VicteliB announces the


and want it to be seen here?

Send us a 70-85 word write-up, contact information and a high-res image for an opportunity to be featured.

Email Josh:

PFP March April  

PFP March April