Discussion #4093

COVID-19 Impact in Denver

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On March 23, 2020, we held a live webinar with Cara Reeser to discuss what is happening in the Pilates industry as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. She talks to John Marston about what is happening in her location as well as her studio. She shares how and when they started teaching live classes and they give advice to teachers and studio owners who have had to temporarily close their studios.

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Mar 24, 2020
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My name's John Marston. I cofounded plebes anytime just over 10 years ago with Christy Cooper and Ted Johnson. And for me anyway, up here is Kara. She's just above me here, but she's actually in Denver. And Kara Risa is a second generation polarities teacher and she's the one of the lineage carriers for Kathy grant. Uh, she's worked with [inaudible] tending time and I looked it up beforehand. You film 54 videos for us over the years. Kara, thank you. Yeah, you're welcome. And three of those videos, we did one in 2015, another one 16, another one 17. We're all about the business of polarities.

So Kara and I were chatting and just chatting about what's happened to our industry, what's going on. And we thought this really is a conversation that we should share with as many people as we can. And I would just say we've never done this before. So if we come off a little bit amateur, it's because we're learning how to do this and this world we're in is just new to everybody. So we'll do the best we can and please be patient if we don't understand the tech and things go wrong cause stuff happens. Tell me a little bit, Cara, what is happening in Denver?

Yeah, so, well in the last, I dunno, half an hour, the mayor announced that all liquor stores and pot shops will be closed. Oh my goodness. A little freaked out. Um, I mean I just like white wine, but the fact that this whole state, which relies on, um, it's recreational marijuana as well, or, um, yeah, so there's big lines all around the pot shops and liquor stores. Now, if anybody's from Denver, don't go running out right now because you've got, you know, a few more hours. But, um, no, but in all seriousness, um, we're on, um, the, the city now is asking for shelter at home. Um, just like many other places, the, the, you know, progression has been, you know, 250 gathering and then 10 and social distancing. And so starting today, not the entire state of Colorado, but the mayor has called for, um, I, I even tighter sheltered home type of, um, um, demand for the city of Denver. So that's where we are today. Cool. Can you just run me through what happened with your studio or, you know, the various things that happened? Yeah. Um, you know, at the, you know, gosh, it's all happens so fast, so I'd say maybe less than two weeks ago, um, when things started to really heat up, we, we sent out the first e-blast, you know, really asking, telling our clients what our protocols around cleaning and that we were going to not be doing a lot of hands on work and more far away queuing, um, that we had all of that under control.

And then probably within five days, um, we had to go to, um, a situation where we were limiting access. So we were only allowing, at first we were going to allow to, I have two rooms. So one teacher had client, one teacher and client put all the classes on live online. Um, that lasted about four days until we then had to switch that and close the studio completely. And within that really seven days, we moved all of our, um, all that we could on. I'm onto this platform on zoom, which is what we're now doing, um, Monday through Sunday actually. Cool. Uh, how are your clients reacting to everything that's happened?

Um, I, some of our clients are really still wishing they could come in and I'm sure a lot of people are having that experience also. Um, it's, it gets easier as the cities and the States get tighter because you can just say it's the law, you know? Um, but our older clients and people who are a little bit more, um, not as, as used to using the computer in this way or a little more hesitant, um, to get with us, um, they're missing the studio and missing their teachers and their workouts. Um, but they are being tremendously heartfelt and generous. Um, and um, there are many of them populating, um, ours what we're calling our zoom rooms. So yeah. So what's happened with your teachers? Um, right. So I have one employee, um, so she's currently still on payroll. Uh, the 12 others, our subcontractors. Um, and they are, there's a smaller group of them that are joining us in the zoom rooms doing privates and classes. Um, we sort of did a, a lot of meeting together on this platform as a staff deciding, um, you know, which staff members could actually afford to step back and give an opportunity for people whose livelihood really depended on the studio, which was really beautiful to watch. And my staffer, unbelievable. Um, women who, who organized around that. So I'd, I'd say, um, probably 70% of them are stepping back right now. Some of them have other types of jobs, um, and the rest of them are working to build their schedules on this platform right now.

Hmm. How are you staying with folks? Are you using email to connect with feed people? Tell them what's happening? Our clients, yeah. We use a constant contact as many people do and we've been pretty committed to staying very in contact with our clients. Each contractor is also made a connection.

I asked that everybody call and have a voice connection, not just be on the text. So we've all talked to our clients and we're planning on doing, um, kind of regular like every week or two, um, blasts, giving them updates, maybe giving them some, you know, stretch tips or some breadth ideas and, you know, just, I think people were part of their daily life, you know, and they want to stay in touch. So we're, we're working hard to continue that. Yeah. Right. I, one of the things I heard from some people is that they've reached out and asked their clients to buy packages and gift certificates. Have you thought about doing that? Yeah, we, I mean it's, it's interesting cause a lot of our clients are just like, like, you know, if they're taking a zoom mat class right now, they're like, just charge my equipment package. You know, because they have an equipment package, which means they're paying more, but they want to, you know, um, people have definitely offered to help out by packages. Um, we're thinking, you know, uh, one of the ideas that restaurants are using that we thought to borrow was maybe asking people a few weeks out from now depending to maybe purchase some gift certificates, right. That they could use for a lifetime. Um, different ways to kind of pay it forward and help us all stay open if we can after this. Um, I'm finding that many, many clients, um, are, are really wanting to help and wanting, um, to participate and keeping us all going.

So that's very sweet and feels good. Yeah, I've seen a lot of my friends, um, actively supporting the restaurants that we all enjoy, just trying to help people through these tough times this together. And, and all of the clients I've talked to absolutely know that. Not to mention many of the people who are in this panel right now who are taking the pro classes that I'm offering, you know, seeing the professional community get together and also support. So, um, that's also really beautiful. Kara, how are you doing it, Kara? Well, I just want us to disclose that anybody on this panel who knows me is like really Kara's using a computer all by herself. And you know, the answer is yeah, I had to figure it out really fast.

I am one of the least technical people and um, I when you know, it's funny when push comes to shove, how, how you figure it out. Um, so, uh, yeah, we are using zoom, uh, this exact platform and my studio, um, we are running our online classes through the studio, which means people can sign up using their mind, body online, um, get into the classes. We've, we've, uh, I have to make a shout out to Laura Karpinski. When I say we, I mostly mean Laura who does everything like that has also set up so we know where people are. If they're at home, if they're going to teach in the studio space, we're still leaving that alive for, for, for us to go in. Um, so it's working out quite well for us and I can't really even remember what your question just was. So keep, so you're, you're booking it through mind, body online, um, that you're doing them in your house, in the studio. What are you using as the camera? What are you doing for sound? Yeah, so, um, I think we that several of my staff members who wanted the freedom to just do it whenever they wanted to got their own zoom accounts. So one of the things you want to know about zoom is you can't use the, that one account at the same time. So we couldn't have two people teaching off of the plots aligned account.

So we have an account for plus aligned. Several of us have our own accounts so we can just teach at our freewill. Um, S some of us are, I'm going into the studio to do equipment classes. I was just there doing a chair class. Um, that way I can have the equipment there. I don't have equipment at home, but a lot of my staff are choosing to do it at home, particularly privates, which are very easy to do at home. So it's a little bit of a mixture for us, but we are keeping social distance in the studio and not allowing more than three of us in that space at a time. And we've all been together pretty much, uh, prior to this. So. Right. How big is your space?

A 3000, 500 square feet. So you've got a thousand each. Yeah, I think you can stay six feet apart. And then when it comes to the camera, you're just using your laptop. Yep. And I buy this set up. And what about the sound? The audio?

Same thing. I'm not actually even teaching in this headset headset. I'm just talking to the computer. Um, and uh, it's, it's working out really, uh, fine. I'm able to really see my clients clearly correct them, especially in the private setting. My clients have a little bit of a hard time figuring out how to angle their camera. So it's, that's taken a little coaching. I think it's really fair to give your clients a good 10 to 15 minute tutorial for free on how to use the setup. Um, don't just start right away because there's too much time wasted in the fumbling. So we're doing a lot of training our clients on zoom as well.

And I'll make a shout out to my staff who are really, when I say we again, I, I'm not really talking about me a lot of the time. I if you're doing a like a group, Matt, talk about the format use there, you doing the exercises yourself or how does that work? I'm opting not to demonstrate as much. Um, I really want to be able to see the, the students who are taking the class and try to give corrections. So we've been, I had like today in my or my mat class, I had Laura and Jody behind me. Um, so you could see them doing the work, but I wanted to keep watching, um, the, the students if I could. I had kind of a lot of people in my pro class. I couldn't see everybody clearly. But um, yeah, that's how I'm doing it.

But I think some people do really well with demonstrating. I think it can be a little hard to hear sometimes when you're demonstrating as you're teaching. So, um, there's that. Yeah. Are you charging the same amount for your online? Yes. And I, I'm just going to say that I think that's absolutely. Um, it's what we need. It makes it easy. People don't have to buy a new package.

They're already in the system and no, not one of our clients have complained. Most of our clients are willing to even pay more frankly right now. So I know that it often feels like, Oh, this isn't worth as much, but we're all in this together and I think everybody wants to do their best to help out small businesses like a lot of studios. So your advice would be stick with the existing pricing. Yeah.

It also makes it easier for you to sort of tally what you're going to be making, really watching your [inaudible], your revenue streams as they come in and out. Um, and not having to fuss with your mind body. It's one of the reasons we were up and running so quickly. And because Laura is amazing, people are going to ask if she's available to help her. Yeah, yeah, I know. I know that's already happened. Please leave her alone. Everybody, I mean poor baby. Um, yeah. Cool. Why did you pick zoom over the other platforms you use?

Skype and things. Yeah, I, I know zoom, uh, just recently, um, my business partner Jeremy and I started fussing with it. Um, and I just think it's a really, uh, it's clear the camera's clear. Um, I never get this quality out of Skype or FaceTime and I've never tried a YouTube option so I don't know about that one. Yeah, yeah. Our experience we picked through and we've used zoom for our internal work stuff, I don't know, a couple of years now and we found it to be a re, I'm not selling zoom, I don't take any money out of doing this. We found it as a really good solution. Um, pretty easy to use.

There's a few things a little bit complicated, but generally it's been really successful for us. Um, we talked a little bit before about legal waivers for teaching online. Do you have any thoughts on that? Yeah. Um, I did see today the PMA came out with, um, a, um, email about the insurance and it, it, it speaks to the waivers. It's basically saying that, um, if you're recording your classes, it's a little bit more important to have, um, that waiver up. Um, but that in, in most cases that were already covered by our waiver. And I think that the PMA, I'm offered a downloadable waiver example and I know that flood is anytime you guys were thinking about sharing yours, which is what my attorney suggested, is that somebody, a company like you guys probably have a waiver that suits this environment more than the waiver that I currently carry.

But the PMA did not seem particularly concerned about that today and that people are insured, um, for what they're doing, which is great news. Cool. Do you have any thoughts? I've seen people streaming on Instagram and Facebook live. Do you have any thoughts about those platforms? Um, I, I'm probably, uh, I don't really, um, I, I think that in those cases, those platforms are free of charge, isn't that right? Yeah. So I think that's a beautiful offering. Um, I think it's a really, um, for me, it would not meet my community of clientele who are mostly 70 and up.

Um, they need this like type of situation that we're offering. You know, I think keeping the community together by doing stuff on Instagram and, and Facebook is, is nice, but I think if what you're trying to do is hold your business together, you need to be with your clientele. And I'm sure everybody here knows that and I don't even hardly have time to post and any of those, well I heard they ever do anyway. But, um, yeah. So that's my feeling. I dunno. Do you have a feeling about that job? Yeah, I kinda think it's, it's always nice to give away some, some stuff to people. Um, but it's also really hard to pay your bills if all you're doing is giving away your, your content. Yeah. Yeah. Like one, one thought is like with plays aligned always has a community class that's free.

Um, and I, we're going to keep that going as part of our, um, platform here so that still the customers that, that need a little break and maybe we'll have a whole lot more of them and I hope so, but I think we could all be doing that also. Um, which is a great idea. Cool. Just a quick reminder, if you have questions for us, please put them in the Q and. A. um, she has just messaged me to say, you know, people are adding it to the, the chat. So the Q and a is the best place to put those things. Yup. 30 questions sitting there so far I think we're going to be popular. Yeah. Thought so on Facebook and Instagram live is, you know, it's part of your marketing. It's great for awareness. It's those things.

It's nice to share that. Um, but people need to pay their bills and that's probably a good cue into talking about business. Um, what's your first piece of advice to give a studio owner? Oh gosh, you guys, this is a hard time. You know, we're all feeling it. I have had a healthy studio debt-free for 20 years, and, uh, this is really taking me to my max. Yeah. Uh, the first thing I want to say is, one of the things I read in the wall journal yesterday is that most businesses like ours and like restaurants and bars and salons, et cetera, don't have more than a two month, um, stockpile of cash to actually pay their sort of general overhead. So if you're finding yourself in that position or even with not enough for one month, I think that's normal. And I think that we should all just understand that is the nature of this type of business where the revenue in and the, the revenue out is part of a weekly flow that we're all tracking.

To have it stop is hard. So, um, there's a couple of avenues. I think first of all, everybody needs to talk to their landlords immediately. Um, be really transparent and let them know, um, I, I, I'm gonna need your help. My landlord was like, Karen, no problem. We'll make this work. The worst thing that could happen to him is if all of his tenants bail. He has about five, um, shop's in his, um, yeah. So, um, I have a couple, you know, I think everybody needs to dig in, really see where their finances are, which I'm sure everybody's doing.

I'm surprised looking through my credit card bills, how much kind of automatic payments go out for various things that I immediately was able to cut off. You know, my web engineer, my cleaning services, the water logic bill, like there's a lot of little $24 here, $24 there, it adds up. So we're, we're canceling everything that we don't need. Um, and I think there's a lot of other things that you could stop payment on for a while. One is your tax withholdings. Um, you know, I've canceled my tax withholdings for the next three months. That's gonna save me. I don't really want to say out loud, but a lot. Um, keep a lot of cashflow in is what I'm saying. Not safe. Uh, if you contribute to your IRA on a monthly basis, you can stop that for a while. That's not gonna kill you and your employees, IRAs. Um, so things, things that you do, this discretionary or things you can put back into place.

I get off those bills, get out, get, get that to stop flowing out as soon as you can. Would be something that I would say. Yeah, we chatted before about, you know, really understanding your Phantom financial situation. You're being really on top of the bills. Um, just understanding how much run time you have. Am I, I'm in the process of negotiating with my landlord and it's amazing, like totally this point you made about we're in this together so he doesn't want to make us go bankrupt. He doesn't want to do that. And yeah, it's what's happening. But I think that one of the things that we all have to do is be really gracious.

Like I must have told my landlord in that conversation, I appreciated him, you know, seven times. Um, because what, you know, if we get too fearful and we get demanding, then we're going to hit that sort of edge that everybody's so tense underneath. So I think coming at it with a lot of generosity, a lot of, um, grateful, uh, to anyone who's willing to help or listen. I mean, even though like Airbnbs I've had to cancel, they're not giving me full refunds, but I just keep typing back to the host saying, thank you so much and I hope you'll consider maybe giving me a little bit more of that money back. Um, so yeah, those types of things. Yeah. Um, have you thought at all about if you need to borrow money where you might go? Yes. I, number one have to borrow money. Um, I don't expect this to end in the next two months and I don't have more cashflow than a couple of months left here. Um, I'm looking at number one relief that will be coming through the state of Colorado and through the feds. But as we can tell, uh, that's taking time and I can't wait around for that. I need to keep the money. I need money in now so I can budget. So I'm looking at, um, small business loans, um, through the banks here in Colorado.

Um, I'm having a terrible time, um, getting anybody to stay call me back, even though I've been with his bank forever. Um, but there are small business loans, they're non-secured, um, the interest rate is higher and um, they're not going to want to give those out as easily. I think a lot of people are looking, if they own a property to go through a he lock a home equity line of credit option or a refinance option, um, which are at a little bit lower interest rates and small business loans are going to be. Um, and, and finally, I'm hoping many of of the, the participants here have rich family members and friends, uh, because they'll often do that at a no interest or um, or, um, maybe small. Um, but I am, um, very clear that I want to see a large reserve, a cash in my studio as soon as I can to, um, not tank out. I'm not willing to not pay the bills. Um, and some of us will also have to look at the people on payroll and if it's an option to have them go, um, to half pay or, or to lay them off until we can bring them back and have them collect unemployment. So for those people haven't employees, that's, that's another way you can look into that. Yeah, I think it helps if the seven employees in the U S anyway that qualifies them for unemployment. Yes. But of course unemployment is probably 50% or less, you know, and the subcontractors are in a terrible situation here. Um, and I, I make a shout out to all of you who are here who are subs. Um, I, I do think there might be some relief now that they brought FEMA in for 10 99 contractors. But again, you know, all this is going to take a lot of time.

Yeah. Well thank you, Kara though. That was my set of questions. We said we'd go about half an hour, which we're kind of on the half hour here. Wow. How about that? Um, okay, let's see if we can answer some of these questions. Do you see the window there? They open it. Yeah. Open the window. Okay. Are we just going, should we start at the top and just work our way down and people have been up voting them. So the ones that are most popular at the top here, so the first one is from Kim Taylor.

Do we need a liability release to teach online? Um, so I think we answered that right. Um, what I'm hearing is that the waivers that you're currently using are fine. If you're recording, I think you might need a different type of waiver. And if you don't have that note from the PMA today and thanks. Um, several people sent that to me for this webinar. Um, you might want to check on that. Yeah, we'll put a link to it in the chat, in the email that we send out in the next couple of days or where that is. Uh, what are you doing with the clients that really need the equipment to move safely and they have little to no crops at home?

Yeah. So I, we're, we're trying to be creative and use as many kind of inhouse prop things that you can find. Um, so, um, and I'm doing a lot more standing work, um, stuff that you can kind of, um, add in that they might not usually be doing, um, stuff they could do in a chair. Um, so I think it's really about just getting creative and kind of getting on your own thinking of ways you can side bend and twist, et cetera, sitting in a chair, things like that. Um, you have to make some new protocols, I think is what's happening here. If they have equipment, obviously teach them on equipment, but of course most don't. Yeah. So Jenny just added, we use soup cans and bathrobe ties. That's fun. Yeah. I think there's a lot of improvisation gonna to go on here.

Yeah. It's beauty and that's the good thing here. Yeah. And the next one is from Robin. Thoughts on safety of teaching private sessions, how to charge online to private clients. Uh, for 30 minute FaceTime sessions. I think Kara answered that. She feels just charge your normal rates and people understand it at the moment. Yeah, guys, there's no reason to apologize here. This is a service. It's really helping people are trapped in their houses.

I would keep people on 55 minute privates if you can. Um, there's plenty of stuff you can do there. Even just breathing and stretching regimes, um, and safe, um, they'll stay safe. I mean, they're not gonna they're less likely to do something dangerous. I think in your, um, they're more likely to do something dangerous in the studio than they are in their own surroundings. So I think, you know, just make sure the space around them is clear. What kind of props do you use for zoom? Privates? Whenever people have whatever they have, we pulled out hand weights, we pulled out stretch bands. I use books for yoga blocks. Um, you use towels, um, for, um, stretch or for, you know, balance tasks. Um, there's um, you know, we're just like soup cans for weights.

Like people were saying, just whatever people have I think is great. So there's, Sarah Edwards has a question here. I'm delivering live classes on zoom from tomorrow for my clients. Um, my insurance said that it should be for the existing clients own, but I'm thinking there is an opportunity to serve a wider audience. Any thoughts? Experience? Yes. Yes. Um, uh, I'm not sure about your insurer. Um, and what he's saying is that bringing in a new client at this time is less secure insurance wise, but, um, we are, we are definitely picking up people in classes from, you know, from all over. Um, and I think it's prudent to make sure they sign a waiver, um, as part of your registration process. Um, but, um, I think if you could bring in new people and support people around the globe, that's awesome. Um, yeah, that's the best I have on the insurance stuff.

We all have different insurances and I don't really have a sense that anybody's going to Sue me right now for the service. I think people are pretty much grateful. What I tend not to go there. Oh, this is from Rebecca. Is it ethical to keep your studio open after state mandated closures?

Uh, is it ethical? Well, it's, it's, uh, no, I mean this, um, I, I mean, I don't know what I mean. W I mean it's not legal if the state has mandated it. And, um, I don't know if somebody got, um, sick in your studio, whether or not they could prove that it was in your studio, this viruses everywhere right now. So I would be less afraid of liability. Rebecca says it's a competitor. It's not hers in the comments there. Yeah, no, I think it's a case of you need to close it.

We're all in this together. Do our best to try and minimize the transmission. Yeah. I think, um, you know, let's also understand that maybe people who aren't doing it are, are closing or in denial or somehow think that they can keep the space free of, of the virus. And I think it's one of the reasons that we're seeing cities do this shelter in place at this point because they know that some people are having a hard time kind of stepping into this moment and that's why the States are going to get involved. So I think once there, uh, I, I think everybody should be in that. Yeah. Meredith said, um, have you worked out how to link a mind, body and zoom? Do you want to talk about how you're going to do it? Um, I, I can't because Laura does everything cause she's amazing. Um, but we did it and it's working great.

Yeah, we're gonna talk to Katie Santas, um, who some of you know, she's a mind body. She has a studio up in the Bay area in San Juan, California and she's a mind body consultant. I talked to her about this at the weekend. Said mind body is going to release something that makes it much, much easier to do it. But I believe today is mostly a manual process. Oh yeah. It's manual. And we've done things like, um, you know, put a lot of different types of rooms in so we know where people are, we know what computer they're using, what account they're using and that kind of stuff is really important. One of the things we did learn today, John and everybody, is that if you, we had three of us on three different accounts in the same space, one in one room, one in the other. I was in my office and we overwhelmed our, um, our band width.

So we learned today that it cut off the yoga class, that we can't have more than two people in the studio with our bandwidth. So be cautious of that as well. Yeah, yeah. We've got some employees working from home and what worked for, you know, casual internet browsing doesn't work for us running our business. So we've had people had to upgrade their internet, um, to something faster and generally, you know, the internet provider has been able to support them in that.

Yeah. I mean if you can get through to any provider right now, it's tough isn't it? I'm sorry, I'm just looking at the questions. Yeah. I wanted to, I see Jenny's question here. You know, Jenny, you and I can talk about this later, but um, what I'm hearing is that once the president created a position for FEMA to be in charge, that it, that something about that allows for some potential positioning for people who are contractors to get, um, some support. And I don't really know what that correction is. It's something I just heard on, um, public radio and saw somewhere else. So, um, we all need to look into those types of things. Yeah. Just for the, all the folks that are not in the U S and impacted by U S laws.

If you're an employee, there's one set of legislation and if you're a contractor working for a company, there's a different, and basically you don't get unemployment if you're a contractor and that contract to an end or that, that's kind of what we're talking about here. Um, yeah, I listen to the same thing on MPR. I don't think they've decided what they're doing yet. Okay, great. Good. Glad I wasn't hallucinating. Um, Tammy asked a question here. Lots of instructors I know are giving free classes because we care about our clients. But is it possible to make dollars on soup map classes?

Oh yes. Yeah. So Cammie for instance, um, my class last Thursday that was filled with [inaudible] professionals who I am so grateful to, um, had 36 people in it and 36 people and times, uh, whatever mat classes at my studio, which I think is like $19. Yeah. That really helps my business right now. Um, and um, yes, you can make money and you can make money teaching privates as well. And I think it's great that people are doing stuff for free, but we need to stay alive. Um, and we need to be taken seriously as business owners and people need to pay so that we can all just like, I want to pay for my local restaurant and my local liquor store, you know, uh, particularly my local liquor store. I'm just kidding. I already did it. I already did it. Um, there's a little thing from Helen here in answering that thing as well. Yes.

They're offering it at the same regular studio fee. And then Stephanie mentions ever sports, uh, booking system. I'm not familiar with. I guess it's from somewhere else in the world. I'm sorry. I don't know, but that's great for whoever's around. Stephanie does hear that, right? Because we want to make resources for people outside of the U S to um, or who know other things.

Hi Victoria asked, where should I put my camera laptop to get the best results. Um, well I would do that. This is before we had this session. Karen had, I had a whole sex, Cara and I had a whole sessions of whereabouts in her kitchen. She should put her laptop and all of these kinds of things we chose by the modern art here. Um, you know, you don't want something super bright behind you so you can't see. You want to be able to see the thing. And I think it's part of, Cara mentioned 15 minutes of kind of online tutoring. Um, uh, and you know, just to move it around and try different things.

Try it with the curtains pool, try it with the lights on. Um, you know, it's just a matter of trial and error here. I don't have any particular advice. I advice the carer for this session was that she stands out. I'm also standing up here just cause it's easier to project your voice and do all of those things. So we ask Kara in this meeting to put her laptop on her kitchen tops.

So she sits on her counter in her kitchen. I want to pipe in on this question. Uh, also John, which is to say that in the privates, the hardest thing that I've had is uh, to get the client used to changing their view. Um, so that I could continue to see them, but I'm also not worried if I can't see them every second because I already know them and I know they might be holding tension in their jaw and I know that they need to take a deep breath and I know that they, I want them to straighten their legs fully. So there's, I'm letting a lot of time go by where I don't have a full view so I can keep the flow and I'm not ruining the lesson with fidgeting around. I can't see you. I can't see your feet. I can't see your now. I can see your head. I've taught somebody today for 40 minutes. All I saw was her like knees and it was fine.

She didn't know that cause she was, had her eyes closed and she was working. Yeah. Um, yeah. Well it's a chats going on here. Okay. [inaudible] yeah, we will put some links to the zoom tutorials. Thank you Rebecca for pointing that out.

I assume has some great materials to teach you about how to set things up. Uh, Jennifer asks, how are you ensuring that only participants that paid for the class are jumping onto your zoom class? Uh, in zoom, when you invite people, there's a variety of options. You can password protected. Um, you can do different things, but you could also see when people join and you can see who's joined. So, um, you know, it, it's not too bad. One of the things that is really, really good to learn if your classes populate pretty fully from my body, that there's this really nice way that um, Laura and my staff taught me how to, you know, pull all the emails at once and copy them and then drop them into that zoom invitation so you don't have to cut and paste one-on-one. So for those of you who might have big groups, get somebody to just show you how to cut and paste everybody on your MINDBODY list to drop into your zoom. It's very helpful. Um, our clients that are used to equipment based class is happy with virtual map classes. I think that the answers, you know, there's a couple of people commented here that also said the same things.

I think one of the things for me is it's weird just being at home on my own all the time. Absolutely. I am such a social person. I know if it wasn't for zoom and me having the chances, and I'll just share something completely off topic here, but uh, on NAMI and maybe geo or somebody can put that in. The chat is Japanese for online drinking and I have, I use my zoom account in the evenings to have an online drink with my friends. So we, um, we just sit in front of our laptops and drink and chat. So I think there's a lot of desire for kind of normality of meeting your friends.

Yeah, exactly. Um, yeah, I know lots of people who are playing on games, on zoom with their families, um, which is great. Yeah. Tammy asked about people teaching live small classes. Uh, I think certainly if your state as bandit, it's time to stop that. I think we kind of touched on that one earlier. I couldn't agree more. Um, for studio owners, I'm assuming this one's if a U S studio and has any information on unemployment for teachers, um, if they're employees then they can claim unemployment. If they're 10 99 or contractors, then it really depends on what happens with this legislation, which has not been passed yet. Correct.

How many clients do you allow to register for the zoom class? Um, because we bought, uh, the, the, a certain package with zoom, we can populate our classes up to 100. Um, so I'm letting the mat classes fill up as much as they want. Um, with equipment classes, I wanted to be able to see people and correct them. So today in my chair class, I think I had 12 of you. Um, and I was still able to really see everybody and give corrections. I think the girls would agree, most of them are on here right now. So, um, but I think, you know, we're, I'm seeing volumes of like anywhere between five and 18 or my classes a little bit bigger or maybe at my studio right now. Cool. Christy Cooper cause she's my partner so everybody knows him.

My business partner, not my, um, whatever the other word is. Now I want to know how tough it was to engage in zoom as a facility in an attempt to maintain their prep and an attempt to maintain their practice. It seemed like it was pretty easy for you, Kara. I think it's going great. People are like both my first two clients that I taught privately are both women in their seventies and uh, they both have money and they're both lovely. One on mat, one on reformer and they both said afterwards, Oh I want to do this more than once a week. How about twice or three times. That was great. So I think it was easy. I think they were satisfied.

And again, something to do besides stare at their husbands. Um, and their pets. Yup. Krista asked about the free level of zoom only allows you to go for 40 minutes before at times. I, um, I would encourage you to buy the basic yeah, yeah. The 1499 a month one, that's, it gives you a lot more things. And, um, I think that's, that's the answer there guys. Keep your programming the same. Like we were even keeping like the fifties plus class, the yoga class, the, you know, all of our spa are our strong bones classes where we're trying to keep as much of what goes on in our studio with the same teacher there so that our clients feel like they still have their routine. They're not having to, um, they're seeing each other, they're staying in their groups. So I'd say keep it as, as, as, um, as, um, as, as the same. That's not a good sentence, but I can't find the word, um, as what you're doing in your studio. That would be my suggestion.

Cool. And Tatum, just, sorry, Laurel. Laurel Silverman just shared, there was a code from zoom called happy 50. Just gives you 50% of the price. I guess we will certainly put that in the, uh, um, in our email. We'll check it works and then we'll, um, I thought I was going to answer the questions. The questions are coming in faster than we're answering them. Yeah. So I, I, let's, let's talk to Christie here. What would you suggest for those studios who don't?

This is Christy Cooper again, who don't use an online service. Um, okay. It's a great question, Christie. Um, I, I think that there, um, depending on what state you're in and what your, um, governors and mayors are suggesting, um, you could do, you could do house calls, you know, that's a personal choice to go over to somebody's house and keep the distance. Um, the, the States aren't saying that you can't see a person. Um, but I certainly wouldn't touch them. I certainly wouldn't use any props that you see that aren't hard surface that you can't clean. Um, so I think, um, but it's, it's much more challenging if you're not using an online situation just to make any revenue right now. Um, whoever added the Megan, if you know what the code is for optp, please send it to us and we're happy to share that with folks. Yeah. Somebody said, um, you know, if you're going to do it in a kind of a manual way, just get paid via Venmo.

Um, the, that's so great. Yeah. Oh, online service, is that what she's talking about? Is that what she meant? I'm sorry. Mind body. You could just pay through Venmo. Absolutely pay for them or there's so many other Apple pay.

There's so many ways you can do that. I don't know how to do any of those things. So this is Lori. I as a studio owner, are you decreasing the percentage contractors pay you with this economic challenge? No, of course not. Uh, no. Everything remains the same. I mean, actually my, my staff who, who are populating their classes are making more on their classes because we can't fit 16 in my class, make studio. And if they can fill their mat close to 50, I'm happy to give them their percentage, which they need desperately. So, yeah. So I'm gonna check, sharing, sharing what you got.

What financial health should we be looking into for both studio owners as well as independent contractors, renters? Um, I think you kind of explored a lot of that before when we were doing the presentation. Your talk to all the people that are your suppliers, whether it's your landlord, look at the bills you don't need to pay. And then the small loans from people and the government, certainly the U S government anyway, certainly hasn't sorted out what they're going to do in terms of financial support for people. Yeah. And if you are trying to get through, I mean I submitted a form that the other day for the state of Colorado. I haven't heard back. I haven't heard back from my banker. I haven't heard back from anybody but my accountant. Um, so it's going to be slow.

Yeah. Debbie's asked the question about Colorado. There some gyms were ordered to close in Colorado. How can you see clients in person at your studio? Do you know if only classes were banned?

No, we're not seeing any clients in person or studio. We are closed. We are using the studio to teach online. Um, nobody should be in Colorado right now should be doing that in my opinion. Uh, Christie asked the question about assuming we want to have housekeeping in the studio, how should we plan to support them? But I would just say the cleaner who comes to my house and I'm really missing her, I'm still paying her because I'm able to, even though she's not coming into my home to clean anymore. Um, do you have any thoughts on that, Kara? Yeah, these are hard personal choices. Um, I am not in a position to pay my housekeeper right now. Um, I, I'm, I need to pull all my resources too to help align, stay open.

Um, but when I get a little more flush, I will certainly help him out. Um, so I think it's really dependent. Um, you know, I, I have clients who are paying their, um, massage therapist still, uh, and they're manicurists still. Um, for me, I have to do the hard thing, which is say I can't afford this right now. Um, and I promise I'll do my best to give you the biggest bonus next time I can. Um, but I have to save my money right now. Cool. Are you Stephanie here? Are you recording your sessions to allow for payback playback later?

Can clients record their sessions? Yeah, I'm not doing that right now. Um, I have enough live sessions and people want to see me live. Nobody's asked for that. People who are really challenged who don't want to do online, I might send them some videos of things that they do in the studio that they can do alone. But we're not recording our mind body stuff yet. And I'm not sure we will.

I had Lorraine pointed out, the zoom has some really good tutorials and we'll definitely put the zoom tutorials in the email that we send out. How do you take a recording of a class to zoom? So I presume that is that you have got a video and you want to broadcast it over zoom, um, as a screenshare option. So you play the video on your own computer and then you use the screen share to share it with them. That would be how I would suggest doing it. Or you could just send the link to that person and they could just watch it. Um, yeah, things like YouTube is a great way of streaming video or Dropbox or Dropbox. Yeah.

Uh, my studio, this is from Theresa. My studio isn't letting a center, the studio for fear of contamination. Are you concerned about that? Um, the only people who are entering my studio are three of us. Um, three staff members, Laura, myself and Jody. Um, so far and maybe a couple of the other girls, we, we have been together, um, during this whole process quite a bit and have agreed that we are exposed to each other. Um, we're not letting anybody else in that studio get exposed to us. So it's kind of like there are, we're family, right? Like some of you are hanging out with your spouses or whatever. Um, there are a few staff members and I that have stayed with each other. So, um, but we are not touching each other and we're not, and we're cleaning and we're washing our hands and sanitizing all those things. Of course.

Uh, [inaudible] here. How long do you think the studios will be physically close for? Oh, I wish I knew the answer to that. I get answered that, asked that every day. And I, I asked myself that and I don't know. We're, we're currently, um, shut down till May 1st in Colorado. Um, and so we'll see. Um, but it could be a long haul, which is why I think everybody needs to get, they're lending.

Even if you think you have cash flow right now, you don't. Um, I mean, unless you're super wealthy and that's awesome, but if you, well, if your bank account looks like, Oh yeah, I $50,000 in my bank account right now, uh, that's going to be gone real fist fast. Um, so, um, yeah. Yeah. What I think is, how did you break the news to your employee or your team? Uh, I don't know if they will, you know, here in con for you in Denver, they can be contractors and obviously varies state by state. California is very different, but how did you get them motivated to step up and help you through this time? Um, Oh, I see what you're saying. Um, you know, Jared, we, uh, we zoomed, um, a lot. Uh, we met at the studio before, you know, that that was not allowed.

Um, we, I had some chocolate, uh, from Japan that was delicious that we shared before the contamination, um, issues there. Um, but we, um, I don't know. I just have a, uh, you know, aligned is a really special place. But I, I definitely tried to listen and reflect back their fear and their nervousness, um, and to, um, really, um, be open to their fear and, and um, and compassionate to their situations. And, um, that's seems kind of like regular, um, your regular vanilla style Buddhist advice, but I think it's a worthwhile, yeah, I've had some friends, um, and their businesses, they've done a variety of things to kind of, uh, talk to their team and employees. Mostly it's just being really honest about what's, what's happening and we're in this together and this is new territory for just everybody on the planet. You know, perhaps the last pandemic was 19, 18, 19, 19. So there's not many people that are still alive that we're conscious of that. Um, there's just working together to sort it out. And you know, I know the team that I work with, it's, it's tough. You know, we're going through all kinds of things. We've got family members that are potentially vulnerable to this virus.

You know, they have compromised immune systems economically. There are people that are going to struggle through this time. So we're trying to do what I can here. My, my view on this is you explain the reality of it and how are we going to help each other and communicate and communicate. And for a lot of the parties, any art time team they live at, they live alone. And this is lonely times. So, you know, I was kind of talking about the online drinking, but I also do a cup of tea with John every day and anybody who's an employee can join me for a couple of, that's a great idea. That's a great idea. Yeah. We're going to, we're going to have game night at my house with my staff and now that's not going to happen. So we could maybe do something on zoom too. Um, yeah.

And Jared, if you want to talk more, you know, we can talk, uh, anytime. Yeah. But I, I said that we would wrap up at 4:00 PM and it's 4:00 PM here in California. Um, thank you so much Cara, for your, your time here. Yeah, my pleasure, John. Thanks for thinking of this and thinking of me. Um, and I just want to say to all of you that, um, you know, we'll all get through that through this and some of us will probably lose clients, maybe lose our studios, lose our businesses, things will have to get rearranged, we might have to downsize. Um, but I think moving forward we need to be creative and thinking of ways that we can kind of utilize each other. Um, you know, and, and still keep the community together. Um, this is a really a time to embrace each other and not divide. Um, I can imagine if small studios in my area closed, I have 3000 square feet, 3000, 500. Come on over guys. Let's, let's figure out a way to keep us all going. So, um, that's my sort of hope for all of us during this hard time.

I am sorry for everybody's struggles right now. Um, and thanks a lot John for, for having me. You're welcome. And thank you everybody that came online to hear us here. We are going to have another session at least one more session this week. You're going to talk to other people. I'm hoping we finish this with a guest opinion guest appearing space, carers cat here, but we will definitely, that's a big Norwegian forest cat right there. Um, we will totally, uh, share this as a video and we will, I'm going to work with the team here and we're going to try to answer as many of the unanswered questions that we had. Uh, when I started we had 52 questions.

We now have like a hundred and something questions I've started, we ran out of time, but there's more sessions this week and we will answer through that please. Anytime for right? Or what, what was that thing you were saying down before? We're going to send out a video with this attitude. We're going to do some blog posts with all these questions and try and summarize them for the people that are interested in the video sets are set up. I'm going to ask one of our team members to make a little video of how she would set it up in her house and the things she'd think about. Um, we'll share that.

That's probably gonna take us a day or two to make. Um, but if you have other things that you want us to try and do, um, support at parties anytime is always a great place. That's, that's where we do all our customer service. And we will do our best to answer as many questions as we can and we'll keep on communicating. And I would say thank you for all the people from all over the world that came in today and look forward to seeing you soon. And you know, I love to everybody. I'm wishing you stay healthy and thank you. Thank you, Kara. Kara, you're welcome. Goodbye. Bye everybody. Bye.

Comments

4 people like this.
Thank you 🙏🏻 I’m sitting alone and the thought came “ go to Pilates Anytime “! Yeah😊 Great interview and so appreciate the candor of the interview John had. Blessings to All at a Pilates Anytime 💜
Thanks so much for this - it was really valuable to be part of the webinar and support each other in this community. It is such a difficult time, but also one for reflection and perspective. Sending love x
3 people like this.
Thanks for sharing this video. Scary times for all. Take care and keep healthy!
Thank you for providing this teaching community. Jon mentioned maybe offering a tutorial on how to setup camera for virtual classes- would be super helpful :) Stay well
1 person likes this.
Peggy ~ We haven't filmed it yet, but we will let you know when we are planning to do it so that you can attend it live!
1 person likes this.
Thank you.  I am grateful.  Great cat!  Do our clients have to buy zoom as well if I want to offer the full hour classes?  The basic version that you mentioned...?  
2 people like this.
This was awesome! Thank you so much for doing it! Extremely helpful! Blessings to you all!
1 person likes this.
Awesome video.. thanks for sharing ...I can completely relate and like you have closed my studio.
I would love to learn from y’all on how to be on a Pilates Platform ... Living part-time Denver and part-time Dallas. 💕
I can't thank you both enough for this excellent information.  I've been wanting to do live online sessions with my clients, but I didn't know how to do it, and it's just me at my little studio.  
2 people like this.
Thanks so much for the interview and sharing with our community, very  helpful as we all are trying to work things out to keep our businesses running. ❤️
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