Running a Youth Fitness Program

Hi Brian –


My name is Brett and I’m a PTA, ATC, CSCS.  I recently purchased the Youth Fitness Specialist – Level 1 and currently going over it.  I work in a busy outpatient orthopedic physical therapy clinic and we will be moving to bigger space in June.  aprrox 10,000 square feet.  We are looking to develop a youth fitness program at our clinic and I had a few questions to see if you could help out.


1.  Do you have different levels within each age range? For example, do you stay with the same program with a 8 year old who is way ahead of the other 8 year olds or do you have to create another level for those kids that are mastering the activities?  Or does that age range always stay together regardless of skill mastery?  What do you use for a objective measurement to progress these kids to the next level?


2.  Do you have a business model on how much to charge for group sessions, i.e., do you charge more for  older kids vs the younger ones?  Do you give discounts if they pay up front for multiple training sessions?  Anything that you have will help in this area.


3.  Marketing strategies?  Talking to schools, parents or flyers?


4.  Would you have any interest in doing a seminar in California after our new clinic is set up in June?  If so, what  would we need to do to make this happen?


Thanks for you help




Hi Brett,


Thanks for the email.  My answers are numbered below:


1) Chronological age is one way of categorizing kids into a training system – and likely the easiest method.  But training age (how much experience the child has in formal training) as well as biological age (maturity level) or also key factors.  My suggestion is that if you see an advanced young athlete in a group, follow this criteria in order:


a) Provide them with progressions to the exercises you are offering that group
b) Advance them into an older group


2) The IYCA Business System is built upon a long-term, inclusive model.  In that, we advise that you create programs that are a minimal of 3-months in duration and charge a flat fee per month, allowing for ‘x’ number of sessions for that fee.  A varied time schedule per age group is helpful so that parents/families don’t have to be restricted to one specific time each day.  Our fees don’t change based on age – a flat fee, that applies to everyone.  For more information on the specifics of our system, I suggest that you become a Member of the IYCA and gain access to our entire Business System — www.IYCAMembers.com


3) Your best source of marketing is through an active network.  Referrals are incredibly powerful and 100% free.  In fact, in the several facilities I have run over the years, I have never spent one penny on marketing.  Our Athletic Revolution franchise is built upon the same principles.  Talk to the parents of your current young athletes and provide incentives for them to refer you new customersneighborsrs, teammates, etc).  Again, www.IYCAMembers.com would serve you well and provide an incredible insight on how we run our ‘250 List’ Network System.


My travel schedule will likely preclude me from doing a seminar with you in 2010.  Thank you so much for the inquiry, though!


Be well!

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