Nancy Trapp of Studio NT
How did you start your business?
While I was completing my comprehensive training in Pilates, I kept thinking about where I wanted to work when I was finished. There are a variety of studios around town that offer group sessions, but the more I experienced the method of Pilates, the more I realized I wanted to work one-on-one with clients.
Individual attention helps clients get the most out of their session. Everyone comes in with different issues, whether it’s lower back pain, tight hamstrings or weak abdominals, and I want to make sure they are addressed during each session.
Another reason I started my business was to stay true to the classical Pilates method. Classical Pilates is based on the original body conditioning system established by Joseph Pilates. It is a systematic and integrative approach that uses many different pieces of equipment to strengthen and stretch the body.
Many people think Pilates is just like yoga and all you need is a mat—this is not true. I decided the best way to teach Pilates the way I want was to start my own business.
How did you come with up the idea for your business?
I had been taking group Pilates sessions for a couple of years and was completely surprised at how it changed my body and improved my posture. I had a great teacher and started questioning her about her training. I was at a crossroads of what I wanted to do career-wise, so I looked into getting certified to teach. The training that I received was fantastic and the instructors that I’ve meet along the way have been so supportive.
What resources here did you take advantage of and how did they help?
The resource I’ve tapped into the most, and continue to look to guidance from, is Julie Toren at BodyMindBalance
where I received my training. She has been running a successful Pilates studio for years and is a great resource for small business ideas as well as Pilates-specific issues.
My other great resource is my husband who has had great marketing and advertising ideas. I run everything by him first.
What does a typical day in your business look like?
I see clients starting at 8 a.m. Monday through Saturday, with some evening hours. In addition to private equipment classes, I teach four group mat classes a week that are a lot of fun.
I have clients ranging in age from 30-75, and every hour is different because everyone’s body is different. That’s one of the things I love about this job: You’re not doing the same exercise for everyone all day long.
It can also be like a puzzle. For example, if someone comes in with neck pain, I have to eliminate all of the contraindicated exercises while still making sure they get a good workout and leave feeling better than when they came in.
What’s next for you and your company?
To continue to grow by gaining new clients through referrals and hopefully the reputation of giving quality Pilates instruction. I would like to get out into the community to teach some more mat classes to expose people to the classical system.
Interview by Robin Donovan