Last week I caught up with Dale Sidebottom to help me announce the winners of this year’s Bootcamp Ideas competition.
We met in a busy cafe on his side of town during his lunch. Dale works during the day as PE Teacher and moonlights with his successful PT and Bootcamp business, Bottoms Up Fitness, so meeting during the week is always a bit tricky.
Dale was his usual chirpy self, shaking hands and saying hello to what seemed like every single person who worked in the cafe.
Having met just a few month’s ago via a one off email, we’ve become friends quite quickly. The level of our friendship was made pretty clear as we sat there talking when suddenly Dale stole a chip right off my plate without asking.
Since meeting Dale, we’ve launched a podcast together and collaborated on two live training workshops. It was pretty easy to do as we’re on the same page with our beliefs about fitness, training and how we want to run our businesses. We think fitness should be fun, social and our approach to business is one of integrity and honesty.
Running a business can be a lonely and isolating endeavor so having people you can chat to about your business while also talking about the deeper subjects of life and philosophy are people worth seeking out.
Recently I realised the importance of this again. Over December and January you may have noticed I was largely absent from Bootcamp Ideas with minimal updates. I was having a bit of a rough time which meant putting a lot of the projects I was working on on hold, including several that I was working on with Dale.
Fearing I would upset him I stayed quiet, burying myself in anxiety instead. I needn’t have worried, when I finally opened up to him, Dale was unwavering in his support of my getting back to a good headspace first before looking at those projects again.
It’s so important to have Dale’s in your life because as business owners, it’s great to have people we can share that interest with.
In simpler terms: People need other people.
Which is where I’m going with this story (thanks for holding in there). The desire to be around people who share a similar value to us is part of our DNA.
So if we apply that to your bootcamp, if you can create a bootcamp community were people who share a similar value can come together and exercise, you’re on the right track to a thriving bootcamp.
3 Mistakes Trainers Make When Running Sessions
Most trainers, certainly myself included in the early days, make some critical mistakes with their sessions which ends up costing them valuable clients.
1. Getting Stuck Doing The Same Workout Over and Over
When I was starting out, there was no Bootcamp Ideas! Man, you guys are lucky. I knew nothing about AMRAPs or EMOMs or fun ways to do circuits so I would end up planning the same variation of a workout every session. After the initial buzz of my new bootcamp wore off, people moved on to something else because I wasn’t providing that variety from session to session. We all get stuck doing similar workouts over and over, at those times it’s so important to inject some new ideas into our bootcamps.
2. Creating Unbalanced Workouts
Once you’ve been running your bootcamp for 6 or more months you’ll notice that the fitness levels and abilities of your campers will be at all different levels. Most generic workout planning calls for everyone to be doing the same thing, without some clever planning you’ll end up with advanced clients getting bored and moving on and/or beginner clients being overwhelmed and feeling like a failure at your sessions.
3. Ruining A Workout By Being Too Strict
When I got re-certified as a boxing instructor my boxing sessions became the most despised sessions at my bootcamp (and not in the good ouch-what-a-tough-workout way). While the sessions were technically very good, they had lost the fun element of the rest of my workouts. While technique is important, we can wrap that important element in a fun, interesting workout.
So what’s the solution?
The answer is to use workout ideas from a variety of sources. Like anything in life, new experiences, people and training will improve what you do.
And this is where Dale Sidebottom comes back in.
Dale’s workout style has built him a thriving bootcamp business and in a moment I’m going to share with you how you can get some of his workouts for yourself.
But first, Dale is not just some friend of mine, he’s also highly qualified to be giving advice.
Badass PE Teacher:
Dale is not just any PE Teacher, he teaches at an elite school for cricket, training up and educating the next generation of professional cricket players.
Working with teenagers is the ultimate challenge and over the years Dale’s worked out many sneaky fun ways to get his students to train. He’s also highly sought after by school’s looking to educate their PE teachers having presented at the ConnectedPE World PE Conference last year.
When I started my second, successful bootcamp attempt I started in an area with no other bootcamps. Dale did the opposite, starting in one of the most competitive suburbs in Melbourne.
Pretty quickly though he worked out that with a few modifications he could use what he had learned in becoming an awesome PE teacher in his bootcamps. Applying these concepts made his bootcamp unique and connected his campers into a tight knit community which quickly grew his bootcamp in spite of the many other bootcamps and group fitness options in his area.
Dale’s High Energy Workouts:
Have a watch of this video from a recent workshop we ran together, look at how engaged the trainer’s we’re working with are:
Here’s a short video of Dale in action at a recent workshop.
Dale’s New Bundle
During the recent competition on Bootcamp Ideas, one of the prizes was Dale Sidebottom’s collection of bootcamp workout ebooks including 3 brand new ebooks.
These books show you how to take simple items like dice, cards, icebreakers, team sports and stories and use them to create really engaging workouts.
We wanted to give you guys a chance to get your hands on these books too and Dale’s kindly offered a special bundle deal for this week only.
Here’s what you get in Dale’s Bootcamp Book Bundle:
3 Brand New Books:
Amazing Fitness Icebreaker Activities
- Run these at the start of your sessions for a month and watch your community grow
- These 15 short drills can be fit into any workout to get your campers laughing and getting to know each other
Sports Based Fitness Sessions
- 10 easy to learn workout sessions based on camper’s favourite sports
- Great for use during grand final season
Story Based Adventure Workouts
- You’ve never seen a workout idea like these brand new nuggets
- 10 epic adventure workouts to take your clients on
- Increase session engagement (and ab-working giggles) with this fun workout ideas
2 Best Selling Books:
Card Games That Will Blow Your Mind
- Create entire workouts just using a simple deck of cards
- 13 card games included spanning from 10 minutes to 30 minutes in length
- Use these as fun warm ups, finishers or entire workouts
Dice Games & Challenges
- Got dice? Here’s how to use them
- 10 new fun workouts and games to use at your bootcamp sessions
- Use these as fun warm ups, finishers or entire workouts
Plus, a bonus Brand New Book:
- Learn how to make your boxing workouts fun and interesting again
- 18 brand new boxing workouts and drills
- No more dull boxing combos
How To Start Using These Books
You can get this entire bundle for one low price here.
Here’s a recap of what ebooks you get:
- Amazing Fitness Icebreaker Activities
- Sports Based Fitness Sessions
- Story Based Adventure Workouts
- Card Games That Will Blow Your Mind
- Dice Games & Challenges
- Boxing Games
All up that’s an awesome 66 new drills to add to your repertoire
Individually you would have to pay over $400 for these ebooks, for the next 4 days though (until Friday March 28th, 2017) you can get this entire bundle for just $99.
Yep, that’s a 75% saving.
Prepare to breath new life into your bootcamp sessions:
Disclaimer: There are two things you need to know about buying this bundle. First is that these are digital books, nothing physical will be sent to you. Instead you’ll get instant access to download them after purchase. Second is that I am an affiliate for Bottoms Up Fitness which means I get a commission if you purchase the bundle using my link. That said, I support these books and the sessions in them wholeheartedly. I’ve used Dale’s ideas at my own sessions to great effect and wouldn’t recommend it if I didn’t personally think they were ace.
P.S. Here’s the link to Dale’s bundle again: http://bootcampideas.com/go/dalebundle
Kyle Wood created Bootcamp Ideas in 2010 when he was hunting around on the internet for workout ideas. He ran a successful bootcamp in Victoria, Australia and spends his spare time managing this site, adventuring (or lazying) with his wife and find new ways to make bootcamps even better.