Total Gym InsideLatest Information about Total Gym


Giving More Attention in a Small Group Setting

11 Ways to Make Your Small Group Training Program More Personalized

Elevate Line Brand Shoot_011394

“What is one of the first things that you would purchase if you woke up rich tomorrow?

That was one of the questions on the hit TV show “Family Feud”, where they survey 100 people and look for the top answers. There were 8 top answers and one of them was to hire a Personal Trainer.  Can you believe that?

That answer shows multiple key points about the fitness industry such as:

> The power of health and fitness.

> There will always be demand from reputable fitness professionals and facilities.

> That people desire a personalized experience.

One of the things that is NOT listed above is that people still think that Personal Training is REALLY expensive … and to their defense, it can be expensive depending on one’s income, who the target market is for the Personal Trainer, or what geographical area the Personal Trainer works in.  It’s all relative, right?

The fact of the matter is that not everyone will be able to afford your one-on-one service, even though they would love to have all of the benefits that come with a personal training session:

  • Motivation
  • Accountability
  • Structure
  • Customized Fitness Program
  • Nutrition Counseling and/or Diet Plans
  • Support
  • Expert knowledge

Even though there may be only be a small population who can afford personal training, offering a group fitness training program with personalized attention can become more affordable.  Maybe that potential client cannot afford $75 per session but can afford between $15 – $25 per session.

PiggyDepending on the gym and the format, you can squeeze anywhere from 4 – 10 clients into a small group training program. Now the small group training program becomes more attractive for not only the client but for you as well since you will be able to make more money per hour.  Would you rather have one personal training client paying you $75 per session or would you rather have 8 people paying you $15 each per session for a total of $120 per session?  From a business standpoint, it’s win, win situation.

However, before you start counting all of your extra money,  you will need to build up your special group of clients and figure out how you are going to add that personalized attention.  Here are some ideas to get you going:

>  Remember everyone’s name (this is a no-brainer, right?)

>  Get to know each client a little bit better. Find out their fitness goals, exercise history, injury history, medical history, favorite color, favorite music, neighborhood that they live, their strengths, their weaknesses, their favorite exercises, their least favorite exercises, organizations that they belong to, where they work, what are their favorite hobbies? Knowing all these things will go a long way with your clients because it shows you care, builds rapport, and helps keep the client/ trainer relationship strong.

Don’t just learn all of the above … remember the information you discovered about your clients and create motivational tactics from that information.

>  Communicate with your clients and really listen to them.

>  Make adjustments and modifications to accommodate them if they have an injury and/or limitation.Balloon on white background

>  Have inside jokes with each of your clients.

>  Remember and celebrate their birthdays & anniversaries.

>  Track their sessions.

>  Track their results.

>  Take group fitness related field trips such as hiking or participating in a local 5k or 10k.

Provide regular motivation and accountability to your clients on a regular basis. Use every opportunity, whether it be in person, on the phone, through email or social media.

Make every single session a “celebration” and extremely positive.

>  Have workout themes.

Take lots of photos in your workouts and hang them in frames on the walls of your fitness facility. You can also post them on social media and tag your clients … with your clients permission, of course!

>  Make sure they have lots of fun in every workout.

The unfortunate truth is that most people don’t like to exercise, so when people try your facility, they are going to need a variety of things to keep them intrigued and engaged and coming back. Just like when kids don’t like to go to school but they know that they have to, they look forward to recess, seeing friends, or even a favorite teacher.

As fitness professionals, we have to provide that same kind of X-factor for our clients to keep them coming to the gym, getting results, referring their friends, and just having a blast every time they step foot inside of your fitness facility and what better way to do that than to provide an unmatched customized fitness experience for them!

About the Author

Mike Z. RobinsonMike Z. Robinson is the owner of the highly successful personal training facility, MZR Fitness as well as Mike Z. Robinson Enterprises which features & highlights a myriad of options to help fitness professionals grow their businesses and careers. Mike was the 2015 IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year, is the author of the E-Book: “Fitness Up, Everything Up”, and he is also a Media Spokesperson for both the American Council on Exercise & IDEA Health & Fitness Association.


Top 5 Reasons Why Bodyweight Training is Important

GRAVITY Class Workout

Car buffs know that performing the required maintenance and taking proper care of a car can keep it running for many, many years. You don’t need to be a car nut to know what happens if you leave a car sitting for too long without running the engine or performing the necessary maintenance; it starts rusting and falls apart. The human body functions in much the same way: regular use can keep the body operating with minimal problems for decades, while avoiding physical activity or spending too much time in a sedentary, non-moving position can cause a number of negative health consequences, accelerating the normal biological aging process.

The human body was designed to move and is the best exercise machine ever created IF you know how to use it properly. Simply using your own body can be an effective and efficient strategy for helping you achieve the following benefits of exercise:

Strengthen Muscles

Muscles are designed to control physical forces in the human body. Muscles lengthen in response to an applied force and shorten to produce the force necessary for successful movement. Bodyweight exercises can help improve how muscles function to control the effects of gravity on the body. Gravity is constantly accelerating you into the ground; strength training with your own bodyweight improves muscle force production which can mitigate the effects of the ever-present downward pressure.

Improve Joint Range of Motion

Bodyweight movements help improve joint range of motion while lengthening the involved muscle tissue, both of which are necessary for increasing flexibility and reducing the risk of overuse injuries. Bodyweight exercises like squats for the legs, pulls for the back and pushes for the chest require a number of muscles to work together in order to control the entire range-of-motion of the involved joints which are essential for enhancing flexibility.

Help Joint Stability and Mobility

Joints in the body are designed to favor mobility or create stability; the ankles, hips and upper spine all allow significant motion while the knees, lumbar spine and shoulder blades are structurally designed to provide stability by allowing only limited movements. Bodyweight training can be effective for helping the stable joints to become more stable while simultaneously allowing the mobile joints to increase mobility.

Improve Coordination

Intermuscular coordination – all of the muscles and joints in your body are designed to work with one another and bodyweight training can help improve coordination between all of the different segments. Isolation training with weights can place too much force in one particular joint or muscle group which could be a possible cause of injury. However, bodyweight strength training allows many muscles to work together to produce and distribute muscle forces making intermuscular coordination a key component of improving overall coordination and movement skill.

Get a Cardio Workout

The more muscles involved in an exercise the greater the demand for oxygen; when more oxygen is required, the heart has to work harder to pump blood to the working muscles. Bodyweight exercises that use a lot of muscles and are performed for a high number of repetitions can be considered a great form of cardiovascular exercise. Regular cardiovascular exercise can help increase the size of the left ventricle, the structure of the heart responsible for moving oxygenated blood out to the body, while improving the efficiency of how many times the heart beats per minute. Both of these are components for improving cardiac efficiency, an important marker of overall fitness.

Bodyweight exercises that involve the knees, back or shoulders could cause pain if performed incorrectly. A cursory understanding of biomechanics is required in order to move with minimal risk of injury. Because of its design, which allows the body to move with minimal impact from gravity, a Total Gym can help you to experience the benefits of bodyweight exercises with a reduced risk of injury.

If you are looking for the best Total Gym exercises for your studio or gym needs, Total Gym videos are available to help you identify the most effective exercises and workout programs for your clients’ and members’ fitness goals.

By Muscle Group

By Body Position

By Workout

Total Gym Elevate Circuit

Pilates on Total Gym

About the Author

Pete McCallPete McCall is an educator, performance coach, personal trainer, author, consultant and host of the All About Fitness podcast. Based in San Diego, CA, Pete holds a master’s degree in exercise science and health promotion, completed a Fellowship in Applied Functional Science with the Gray Institute, is a Certified Personal Trainer and a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. Currently Pete is an adjunct faculty in exercise science at Mesa College, a master trainer for Core Health and Fitness, a blogger and content contributor for the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and online instructor for the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). 

Consulting with organizations like the World Bank, Reebok, 24-Hour Fitness, Core Health & Fitness, the Institute of Motion and Fit Pro, Pete has experience identifying needs and delivering solutions. Frequently quoted as a fitness expert in publications such as The New York Times, Washington Post, U-T San Diego, SELF, Glamour, and Shape Magazine and featured as a fitness expert for TV news outlets including WRC-NBC (DC), Fox News, Fox 5 San Diego, and NBC7 San Diego, Pete is a sought-after media resource for accurate, in-depth insight on how to get results from exercise.


Trainers – How to Cue for Breathing

Cuing for breathing

Top Tips on Teaching When and How to Breathe.

Teaching class participants how and when to breathe during exercise can be one of the most challenging areas of our training sessions. I find that as a trainer myself, most people are very shallow breathers and sometimes if they focus too much on their technique they forget to breathe completely!

Effective ways to keep breathing

The one exception where the breathing pattern may change in weight lifting would be in the overhead press. Here it makes more sense to inhale: expand the diaphragm as you press the bar up.  Otherwise, try these breathing tips.

1. Breathing along WITH your clients/members helps tremendously.  They can hear your breath and follow along easily.

2. I do hear some trainers telling their clients to “blow out the candle” as they are forcing a movement which also works well.

3. It is standard with resistance training or weight lifting to exhale during the exertion phase. I always remind my clients to think of the letter “E” for Exertion and Exhalation.

4. In a functional setting (higher than 15 reps), it is best to just breathe naturally but I find that when a client has too much to focus on ie., breathing, technique and form etc., it can be overwhelming. I watch their lips and when I see them clamped shut, I literally say, “please open your mouth and B-R-E-A-T-H-E.”

Importance of the diaphragm

If we want to truly help our class participants achieve overall health and function, we must take a look at the importance of the diaphragm. Most people, being shallow breathers, have never learned how to breathe effectively. Breathing with efficient oxygen saturation with full diaphragmatic involvement is the cornerstone of health and well-being. Whatever muscles we are strengthening, the ideal breathing motor patterns is crucial. The diaphragm must be the prime mover in the breathing process. Because of the lumbar spinal attachments of the diaphragm, stability and mobility in and around the thoracic and lumbar spine is vital.

Through naturopathy, I am able to help my clients understand the importance of breathing even more. I explain that the more oxygen you get into the body, the more carbon dioxide poison you will eliminate from the body. When oxygen replaces carbon dioxide, there will be greater purification of the blood, cells and organs of the body, for better health and stronger results from training efforts.

Have you ever experienced suffering from “a stitch” when warming up in a jog or a run? What a stitch really is, is a sign of unused lung air sacs trying to open and receive fresh air that you are pumping in. The sharp pain is due to the air forcing these cells apart. Continuing to breathe deeply will help and the distress will pass. At this point, the unused lung cells become reactivated. Teaching our older and beginner exercisers how to use their diaphragm to breathe deeply will help them avoid these discomforts and faulty movement patterns while training.

Diaphragmatic breathing has a tranquilizing rhythm, stimulates your circulation and helps rejuvenate the body. This type of breathing is a natural method designed for the body, yet if not taught how to use the diaphragm properly, many people have trouble. We commonly see too much chest breathing as opposed to breathing deep into the diaphragm.  I use the following exercise to help my clients use their diaphragm more efficiently.

Try this warm up breathing exercise

> Have your clients stand and locate their diaphragm by placing one hand at their waistline and the other hand up with their palm facing their mouth.

> Ask them to blow imaginary dust off their palm, feeling a strong muscular contraction at their waist when they blow. This helps locate the diaphragm.

> Then to warm up and direct the focus to the breath, I often start a workout with them walking around the room on their toes while reaching high over their head.

> I ask them to raise their diaphragm as high as their strength will allow while still breathing deeply. I ask them to feel the chest and stomach muscles as they breathe deeply.

> After this, we bend over, drop the head below the heart, arms reaching towards the floor, compressing out every bit of old toxic, carbon dioxide-laden air.

This is a great way to set the tone for breathing during the workout and is a super lung cleanser. I find it also helps to rid their mind of stress they may be bringing to the workout.

On the other hand, Yoga breathing is very different. It is nose breathing and there are different types.  On of them, the Ujjayi breathing technique is best explained here.

Focusing on the breath is the best way to connect with your body before a workout. As trainers, we all have our own unique way of getting our clients to connect with the breath. Whatever your preference is, my best advice is to include some breathing exercises in a warm up.

“Just by paying attention to breathing, you can access a level of relaxation and health that will benefit every area of your life.” Deepak Chopra 

About the Author

Frances Michaelson

Frances Michaelson is President of exercise equipment company Muscle Up Inc., a licensed Naturopath and a Personal Trainer. She is passionate about helping people attain optimal health through proper diet and exercise. A self-described health-o-holic, she motivates others to move well and eat well to keep their bodies’ cells dancing and singing.

Based in the West Island of Montreal, Frances is a frequent conference presenter, author of BYOB: Bring Your Own Band and Replenish, Regenerate and Rebuild Your Cells. She blogs for Total Gym and is a regular contributor to IHRSA’s “Ask an Industry Leader.” With her broad knowledge base and over three decades of experience, she is widely recognized as a leader in the health and fitness field. Frances is committed to helping others make positive lifestyle choices that create stronger bodies, healthier minds and more fulfilling lives.


How Total Gym & Pediatric Care Go Hand in Hand

Watch the video

The Total Gym GTS Helps Children with General Body Strengthening

Here at Cindy Miles and Associates, we are a private out-patient therapy practice specializing in pediatrics. We are dedicated to providing individual, high quality, hands on physical, occupational and speech therapy. One of our primary goals is to build on each individual’s strengths, allowing them to achieve their maximum potential.

Total Gym treats patients with spina bifida

Improving Muscle Strength

No matter what their ability, age, or genetic make-up, individuals make important progress with the Total Gym and have fun doing it. Our primary focus is on the pediatric population, from birth through to young adult, including young athletes with sports injuries. We strive to build on strength to allow them to achieve their maximum ability and provide accessible equipment where individuals can work on their physical performance; including muscle strength, cardiovascular endurance, functional ability and mobility. This allows each individual to be the best they can be! For us and the children, Total Gym is a huge part of that process.

We upgraded to the Total Gym GTS about 8 years ago and we made sure to purchase the extra wide Squat Stand.  The GTS is great for loading lower extremities to get the glutes to work.  We even use the GTS for babies as young as 6 months old for strengthening as they love to jump.  For the orthopedic kids that we treat with Cerebral Palsy, Spina Bifida and Autism we put anti-skid pieces across the glideboard so their feet don’t fall and that gives them a different sensory input.

Total Gym helps children with Cerebal Palsy

Lower Body Strengthening

We treat several different needs:

> Brachial plexus injuries

> Cerebral Palsy: Hemiplegia, Diplegia

> Spina Bifida

> Hypotonia

> Hypertonia

> Developmental Delay

> Down Syndrome

> Children with autism who need deep pressure

> Young athletes with sports injuries

We can treat patients for a year or an ongoing basis, dependent on their type of disorder.  For children with Cerebral Palsy we might see them one or two times per week or more. If they have had surgery they are going to visit more.   We have individuals who are patients from birth through to their 30s – these cases keep making progress so we continue to see them especially in their formative years.

Here are some examples of exercises/activities we use on the Total Gym.


> Hands on “uprights” with squat stand removed with nose close to hands to complete push-ups moving into elbow extension.

> Prone to pull down on triangle bars into shoulder and elbow extension.

> Prone pull ups at horizontal bar with hands pronated or supinated.

Total Gym helping children with Spina Bifida

Hands on “Uprights”

Seated/Seated lateral

> Level glideboard working on static sitting so clients can touch the floor.

> Pull across trunk, holding both triangle bars.

> Holding triangle bar pull down using shoulder adduction/abduction.

> Seated rowing, using triangle bars.

> Sitting with both legs over same edge and triangle handles held together, keeping elbows extended and rotating trunk and bringing hands together to one side to work on core activation.


> Pull down over head, holding triangle bars return.

> Total knee extensions, progress to jumps.

> Work on squat to stand with support.

> Post op – prop one leg while the unaffected leg works on strengthening.

> Introduce jumping to clients who lack the strength to tolerate full body weight jumping.

> Bilateral LE jumps, unilateral jumps, jumps while playing catch.


> Kneeling to perform bicep curls and seated rows.

> Tall kneel: and work on scapular retraction or shoulder extension while keeping abdominals contracted to maintain balance.

Standing Upright

> Standing next to unit, with foot on platform and lunging forward to push glideboard up incline.

> Small toddlers use the glideboard to learn to walk up the incline.

The GTS is a great adjunct to any child’s program.  I teach a two-day course around the country and I tell everybody that Total Gym is one of the most important pieces of equipment that you can buy because of its versatility.

Pediatric clients love Total Gym and Pediatric Physical & Occupational Therapists love the versatility for all ages and abilities use it in their daily treatments. Pediatric therapists can do what they do best:  invent games, diversions and make therapy fun!

About the Author

Cindy MilesHaving served the pediatric population since 1977, Cindy Miles, PT, PhD. PCS, CNDT established her pediatric private practice in 1981. Dr. Miles is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, School of Health Related Professionals and East Stroudsburg University with a Master of Education in exercise physiology. She also holds a PhD in Pediatric Science from the Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions. Her doctoral research was on potential risk factors related to the diagnosis of Torticollis. She is Board Certified by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties as a Pediatric Clinical Specialist, specializing in treating children from birth through to young adults. Dr. Miles held the title of  SOP Treasurer and Treasurer Elect and is presently the Co-Chair and Meeting Planner for the Academy of Pediatrics Physical Therapy Annual Conference (APPTAC). She presents nationally on the pediatric private practice and reimbursement as well as nationally and internationally on Torticollis, Plagiocephaly, and Fitness for All Abilities. She has published in peer review journals and written books on topics related to pediatric physical therapy. or


5 Reasons to Encourage Your Members to Row

Indoor RowingTotal Gym Row Trainer - On the Cardio Deck is a Great Cardio Workout 

A major benefit of joining a health club is having access to a wide variety of cardio machines that can help improve health and exercise variety. How many times do members show up at their health club for a workout, only to see that all their favorite cardio machines are busy? And let’s be perfectly honest, while they can burn a lot of calories in a relatively short period of time, many cardio machines, like the treadmill, elliptical runner or stationary bike, are simply boring to use for more than a few minutes at a time.

Encouraging your members on how to use different cardio machines can give them more options for their workout. For people who don’t necessarily enjoy running in place for extended periods of time, my advice is to pick 3 or 4 machines and have them do 10 minutes on each one. This can keep their workout more interesting and reduce the risk of burnout.

Row Trainer - part of the Total Gym Elevate CircuitThe rowing machine is sometimes one piece of cardio equipment that is often sitting all alone just waiting for some attention, which is unfortunate because it can really be one of the most beneficial and effective pieces of equipment in a health club.

Teaching members how to use the rowing machine can provide some important benefits. Unless they grew up on a body of water they probably don’t have much experience rowing, but rowing is a great form of exercise that can give them a really good cardio workout in a relatively short period of time.

Here are 5 reasons why your members should row:

Rowing burns a lot of calories in a short amount of time. The body burns 5 calories of energy to consume one liter of oxygen. Any exercise that uses a large amount of muscle mass will increase the amount of oxygen consumed in the body. Because the muscles of the upper and lower body are working together, rowing is one of the most efficient ways to burn the most calories.

Rowing improves coordination between the upper and lower body.  The rowing motion begins with the legs and finishes with the arms and back which means that most of the muscles in the body are being used with one relatively simply movement. Pushing with the legs and pulling with the upper body helps coordinate the actions of the muscles which can improve overall movement efficiency.

Rowing can help lower blood pressure and improve cardio respiratory efficiency – the ability to move oxygen around the body. While it is often associated with weight loss, it is easy to forget that the purpose of cardio exercise is to improve the efficiency of the cardiovascular system responsible for moving oxygenated blood to the working muscles of the body. Because so many muscles are involved, rowing is an excellent way to increase the strength of the cardiac muscle responsible for keeping the blood circulating efficiently.

Rowing is more joint friendly than most other pieces of equipment and this can be particularly beneficial for some if not all members.   Rowing is done in a seated position which reduces stress on the knees, hips and back. Gravity accelerates you into the ground so when you jog, you can feel a lot of pressure radiate through your body. But sitting in a rowing machine means that you’re not placing downward pressure on the body, allowing the muscles to work without the effects gravity-caused impact.

Total Gym Row Trainer Group ClassesRowing allows you to measure each individual workout and overall progress with specific metrics. Rowing machines have an ergometer which measures distance, time, calories and power. Any one of these can be used to monitor your member’s training intensity and measure their progress. Encourage members to change it up: see how far they can row in five or ten minutes or time how long it takes them to burn a certain amount of calories. Challenge them to sustain a certain work-rate (wattage) for a specific amount of time. Setting quantifiable goals (and achieving them) is a sure-fire method to help establish long-term adherence to an exercise program.

If you want to add rowing to your members’ workout routine, or if you want to consider starting rowing group classes, check out the budget-friendly Total Gym Row Trainer – a new spin on rowing because you are rowing on an incline.   Adding rowing to your members’ workout program can help them reach their fitness goals without placing too much stress on the body. Call 858-764-0078 for more information on the Row Trainer.

About the Author

Pete McCallPete McCall is an educator, performance coach, personal trainer, author, consultant and host of the All About Fitness podcast. Based in San Diego, CA, Pete holds a master’s degree in exercise science and health promotion, completed a Fellowship in Applied Functional Science with the Gray Institute, is a Certified Personal Trainer and a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. Currently Pete is an adjunct faculty in exercise science at Mesa College, a master trainer for Core Health and Fitness, a blogger and content contributor for the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and online instructor for the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). 

Consulting with organizations like the World Bank, Reebok, 24-Hour Fitness, Core Health & Fitness, the Institute of Motion and Fit Pro, Pete has experience identifying needs and delivering solutions. Frequently quoted as a fitness expert in publications such as The New York Times, Washington Post, U-T San Diego, SELF, Glamour, and Shape Magazine and featured as a fitness expert for TV news outlets including WRC-NBC (DC), Fox News, Fox 5 San Diego, and NBC7 San Diego, Pete is a sought-after media resource for accurate, in-depth insight on how to get results from exercise. 


Maximize Your Clients’ Workout Results

Mindful Training:  Maximize Your Clients’ Results and Improve Your Value as a Personal Trainer

JayDee Cutting and mindful exercise

Your clients pay you the big bucks to get results, right?  Exercise and training the body is like anything else that is done in life: the more you focus, the more successful the results.  Improve your clients’ cognition, body awareness, proprioception and overall results.  And here’s the bonus:  providing these benefits for your clients will improve YOUR value as a fitness professional.

Mindfulness and meditation seem to be popular buzz words and all the rage lately.  Your clients have surely heard that ultra-successful people like Oprah, the late Steve Jobs, hip-hop mogul Russel Simmons, and Ellen DeGeneres, as well as tons of top athletes and CEOs are daily meditators.  So let’s be a part of the buzz and incorporate mindful techniques into our training.

I have to thank retired psychologist Dr. Michael Mantell for this blog idea.  Dr. Mantell is now a Transformation Behavioral Coach and highly involved in the fitness industry.  He is a former consultant for ACE, a frequent guest on national TV shows and also a contributor for Total Gym, as well as dozens of fitness publications.  Dr. Mantell was presenting at Rancho La Puerta Fitness Spa in Mexico where I am fortunate enough to work.  He was in the gym while I was training a guest and he later approached me saying something like, “I was so impressed with how much you incorporated mental cues into everything you had your client do physically.”  His comments were flattering and it got me thinking about how my training style has evolved over the past 22 years.

Meditation has taught me to live more mindfully (and more peacefully) and thus more focused. This new style of living has increased the quality of my client interaction immensely.  Pilates has taught me the invaluable principle of always focusing on the muscle, not the movement.  Instead of cuing my client to move equipment from A to B, I instruct them to contract the muscle we’re working and the body moves as a byproduct.  It may sounds simple, but this small change in perception takes an exercise from mindless movement to mindful training of a client’s body.

Here is how I would teach my client Suzy, a simple standing biceps curl.  Let’s start with getting Suzy present by having her focus on what I call an “athletic” posture.

“OK Suzy, soft knees, hips back, equal weight through all four corners of your feet and show me a strong, neutral spine.”

“Next, before you contract the working muscle, simultaneously start your exhale and “set” your core by gently drawing your navel to spine and engaging the pelvic floor muscles.”

“Now Suzy, focus on the muscle that is creating the movement and start your biceps contraction. Feel the biceps begin to shorten as you contract.”

“Throughout the biceps contraction, continue your exhale with a relaxed face while you accentuate the navel drawing to the spine and lifting of the pelvic floor.”

“At the peak contraction, give the biceps an internal “squeeze and hold” for a good second and the navel and pelvic floor one last tug.” (see video for this one!)

“Visualize the biceps lengthening as you lower the weight down with a long, deep inhale through your nose.”

I will often have Suzy close her eyes on a few reps to truly feel the work from the inside as well as minimizing external distractions.  In addition, I will use touch for tactile feedback especially during the “squeeze and hold” phase.

I am constantly giving my clients things to focus on to keep them present.  If they’re focused on their body, breathing, the muscle contraction etc., guess what they’re not focused on?  Something they did at work, the kids, what they’re making for dinner, grocery lists or anything in the past or future.

One last thing.  The practice of meditation will enhance mindful living.  I specialize in teaching meditation to people who think they could never meditate, because that was me once.  Now I give credit and thanks to my daily meditation practice (of also 22 years) and my extensive Pilates training.

My CD, Mindfulness Meditation – A simple, practical guide to a profound, powerful practice has helped thousands.  Please contact me if you’d like more focus and peace in your life.

About JayDee

JayDee Cutting III, MBAJayDee Cutting III, MBA is an Educator for the American Council On Exercise and holds 12 fitness certifications including Pilates, yoga, personal training, lifestyle and weight management.  JayDee is a Total Gym master trainer and spokesmodel since 2004.  He lectures and teaches wellness at Rancho La Puerta Fitness Spa and is featured in over 10 fitness DVDs and over 40 fitness television programs.  He developed his own Coregolf Fitness Program and founded the NiceDogYoga Company. His mission statement is: “My passion is inspiring people to enhance their lives through wellness, creating healthier, happier, higher qualities of life.”


How to Finance Your Own Gym

How to get Financing on a New Fitness Studio

Just like the old adage says; “it takes money to make money.”  And it’s true.  No matter whether you are in the startup phase or if you are looking to expand your business, you’re going to need MONEY!

1411097Questions to Ask Yourself

How much money do you really need to get started? Do you want to lease your equipment or do you want to purchase it? How many employees do you need? Do you even need employees at the start? How much will it cost to lease a building? What is a gross lease? What are triple net (NNN) fees? Do you want your business located in a retail center or in a warehouse? What kind of permits do you need to start your business?

This is just a sample list but there are a lot of questions that you have to ask yourself before starting your business…and this list above isn’t even all of the questions that you need to ask prior to starting your business. So assuming that you have done all your homework in regards to planning for your new studio, it’s now time to focus on the numbers and get the money you need so you can reach your goal: signing up your first member at your own fitness studio!

Here’s a Look at Some of your Startup Costs: Stressed out

  • Deposit on the Building Lease
  • Fitness Equipment
  • Business License
  • City/Building Permits
  • Liability Insurance
  • Payroll & Workers Compensation Setup
  • Office and Studio Furniture
  • Membership Software Setup
  • Accounting & Legal Fees
  • Telephone/Fax
  • Office Supplies (i.e. computer, desk)
  • Website Setup

Here’s a Look at Some of your Ongoing Monthly Costs:1825100

  • Monthly Rent
  • Liability Insurance
  • Payroll & Workers Compensation
  • Membership Software Maintenance
  • Accounting & Legal Fees
  • Telephone Services
  • Website Hosting
  • Marketing
  • Quarterly Taxes
  • Utilities

Obviously everyone is different and the cost will vary depending on location, needs and wants, along with the overall preferences of the owner, but to give you a starting reference point, you are most likely looking at a minimum of startup of $10,000 for a quality fitness studio with basic equipment.

If you have the minimum of $10,000 in savings to get your business started, then that’s great and you are already ahead of the curve. However, the average person usually needs some type of assistance with financing their new venture. So let’s look at the 3 most popular options for acquiring capital to help you accomplish your goal of opening your very own fitness studio.

1410525Family or Friends 

Many people first tap the shoulders of those around them for help with financing their new business. It can be your parents, siblings, grandparents, friends or even kids that you may ask for financial help…and why not, you know that they love you and have your best interest at heart, right? This option works out really well assuming that you hit all of your financial goals once your business is operating and you’re able to pay them back in a reasonably and/or agreed amount of time.

However, it should be mentioned that you should PROCEED WITH CAUTION with this route because things can go bad really quickly. If you aren’t able to repay your debt, then how do your loved ones recoup their money? In a worst case scenario, they can sue you or have your wages garnished.  They can stop talking to you and could even hurt you. obviously putting a huge damper on your relationship. As these things can happen more often than you think, make sure you seriously think about this option before you choose it.

1269785Bank Loan

This is probably the most common way to start a business from a financing standpoint because unlike borrowing from friends and family, this financing option is very legal and will hold you more accountable. When you borrow money from a financial institution, you will have to submit some form of collateral (i.e. your house, life insurance, equipment, etc.), have a minimum acceptable credit score, have at least 10% of the requested amount available in your checking or savings account, and go through a very thorough credit application process to determine if you are credit worthy or not.

Although it is a more rigorous process, it allows both sides to be protected moving forward. It also allows you an opportunity to grow your business from infancy with “seed money”, benefiting you in the long run with a growing relationship that will help you should you need to borrow more in the future.


Another popular option nowadays is crowdfunding. Websites such as Kickstarter and GoFundMe allow you campaign online to raise money for your business venture. The most intriguing things about crowdfunding is that you can potentially go right to the core audience to help fund your project. The process is not as rigid as getting a bank loan and it’s not as emotionally risky as borrowing from family and friends but just like receiving money from anywhere, there is a risk and a huge expectation for you to perform on your end too.

So with all of that said, there are pros and cons to every option, so just do your homework and find which option works best for YOU. Good luck with getting your new business financed, getting the doors opened and preparing for massive success!

About the Author

Mike Z. RobinsonMike Z. Robinson is the owner of the highly successful personal training facility, MZR Fitness as well as Mike Z. Robinson Enterprises which features & highlights a myriad of options to help fitness professionals grow their businesses and careers. Mike was the 2015 IDEA Personal Trainer of the Year, is the author of the E-Book: “Fitness Up, Everything Up”, and he is also a Media Spokesperson for both the American Council on Exercise & IDEA Health & Fitness Association.

Copyright © 2017 Total Gym. All Rights reserved.