Adam Kessler is a speed expert who is also a USA Weightlifting Sport Performance Coach, a USATF Level 1 coach, and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. Adam has 16 years’ experience in the industry and now runs his own personal training company.
The team at Fitness Planning Consultants, Inc. offer customized personal training, speed, and strength programs for athletes and individuals throughout Central Ohio.
Their speed, strength, nutrition, and personal training programs have produced results for hundreds of athletes, as well as everyday citizens looking to improve their health and fitness.
BusinessInterviews.com: What are some ways that you separate yourself from the competition?
Adam: I learned a long time ago that you can’t be a jack of all trades. The only way I was going to be different then the other trainers out there was to try to become an expert in a specific niche. I have a passion for helping athletes get better, so I chose that route and because of my track background niched it further into speed training. In a business that seems to be moving towards a group training type industry, I chose to do semi-private training (maximum 3 clients per trainer) and the focus is quality not quantity. I understand the potential money to be made with group training (big numbers in per session, lower entry costs), but speed training is a very specific skill that needs to be individualized as much as possible. Every athlete is different and might need different training methods to improve their speed. We pride ourselves about really understanding the biomechanics of running so we can get each and every athlete faster.
BusinessInterviews.com: What advice would you give to someone contemplating opening their own fitness facility?
Adam: Make sure you know all the numbers. Costs for utilities, rent, insurance, rent or buy equipment. There are a lot that you don’t realize. If you are signing a lease what will the landlord cover in case something breaks and what is your responsibility? But, I think the biggest piece of advice I would give would be this: is it absolutely necessary you have your own stand alone facility? I’ve had my own location. Unless your marketing is sound and you have a steady flow of leads each month, it can really be stressful making all your bill payments. Currently, I rent space from a business that does basketball instruction. Their name is on the lease, but I get access to the entire facility. We have a great arrangement because I could never afford the rent payment for a facility this size by myself. Plus, we are joint venture partners. Meaning, my services benefit their clients and some of my clients can benefit with their services. I pick up a decent amount of clientele by being there. I like this relationship a lot better. I still have my own business, I have a good lead source from their business, and I have a lot cheaper expenses because of the arrangement we have. There are pros and cons to both situations, but having done both I prefer my current situation a lot better. Finally, learn as much as you can about business. If you want to own your own fitness facility then you have to be an expert on selling fitness and running a business. I don’t care how good you a trainer you are, if you don’t understand about business, you will fail.
BusinessInterviews.com: With the right training can you improve the speed of any motivated client that comes to your facility?
Adam: Absolutely! Everybody’s starting point is different, but everybody can see improvement. Now not all improvements are the same. A high level athlete is pretty finely tuned, so we have to really dial in the right program to get that athlete faster. Their room for improvement is a lot smaller than say a younger, inexperienced athlete. Most of our huge gains are from athletes that weren’t particularly fast and hadn’t had years of training. When they get introduced to what we do, their body responds to it amazingly. Now, we can get any athlete faster, but just how fast is determined a lot by their genetic potential. I can make any athlete faster, but if they don’t have the right genetic makeup they aren’t going to be beating Usain Bolt anytime soon.
BusinessInterviews.com: How has the business changed and evolved since you first launched 14 years ago?
Adam: I mentioned it earlier, but when I first started training back in the mid to late nineties, one-on-one training was it. Boot camp classes were just starting to come around. Now, I think one-on-one training is starting to become antiquated. I see trainers at other gyms and they are doing small groups. At my facility, we do all semi-private and I like that because I can lower the cost, but it is manageable enough for my staff to still provide a quality, individualized workout for people who are just sharing time together. I’m part of a mastermind group of personal trainers and I would say 2/3 of the trainers in my group are primarily boot camp focused. Overhead is less, you have fixed hours throughout the week, you pack in the group for a lower cost, and all you need to do is fine some group leaders to run those classes. Plus, you get to impact more people’s lives which is ultimately why most trainers got into this business.
BusinessInterviews.com: Can you tell our readers a bit about the e-product that you’ve been developing?
Adam: Basically what I did was take the speed program we use for our clients at the facility and converted it into an online program. I did change a few items around, but the biggest change was making sure that an individual could do as much of the speed program as they could without a whole lot of special equipment. I think if they needed to purchase anything, I kept the total under $100. Now, if they had access to a gym and a few other items, there is an upgrade to the program that designs it so all of those items could be incorporated into the program. The e-product consists of about 7 instructional videos and an e-book which has all the workouts written in it. All the stuff is digital so essentially you could take your ipad to the park, connect to the internet, and do your workout right there. If you needed clarification on how to do a particular drill, you can just watch the appropriate video. Eventually, I would like to expand on this into online coaching or a membership site for athletes, parents, or coaches.
BusinessInterviews.com: What are some common misconceptions that you encounter when it comes to speed training?
Adam: I already touched on the biggest misconception which a lot of people think that you either are fast or you are not and that it can’t be improved. A person’s speed can always be improved. I can get anybody faster than what they are, what I can’t get them is Olympic speed fast if they don’t already have some initial talent. Another misconception is that younger athletes shouldn’t do this type of training. Nowadays, younger athletes NEED to do this type of training. Kids are getting traumatic injuries at younger and younger ages (the specialization of sports at younger ages is one of the reasons). So, if these kids are going to start training year round for one sport, then they need to start working with people like me to reduce the chances of injuries happening. I require that an athlete be at least 10 years or older with our training. What I do with a 10 year old will be different than a high school student. But, I can still improve the athleticism of the 10 year old, which in turn will make that individual faster.
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