Customer Retention Why Fitness Clients Quit — And How to Keep Them

Why Fitness Clients Quit

We’ve all seen this sticky situation in one way or another. Your client is so excited and ready to begin their fitness journey with you. They start strong then sometimes they start to fall off the wagon. Workout completions decrease, client engagement drops, and overall your revenue starts to feel this negative shift.

Sometimes your client will give you a laundry list of excuses as to why they are not adhering to their fitness or nutrition plans. These lists usually include things like not having enough time, work being too busy, family concerns, or perhaps just lack of motivation.

As a trainer in this field for about ten years, I’ve heard all of these excuses. Now, injuries are very serious and need to be taken care of with rest and recovery. Sometimes clients might need to take that leave of absence in order to heal! But as for the other excuses, I have a few tips that will help with both client program completion and client retention.

Tough Love

As your client’s trainer and main source of motivation, it’s your responsibility to make sure your clients are sticking with their plans. If they are not checking in for workouts, complying with nutrition, or not adhering to habits—call them out. Sometimes the “tough love” theory really works. They are counting on you as their accountability coach and they need that fire under their rear ends to get them up and going.

I know when a client signs up with me the first thing they say is “I need you to push me, I need you to tell me to get up and go.” So that’s exactly what I do. They are usually thankful for this assertive coaching. And a more assertive approach yields better program adherence and leads to better results. Some clients are more motivated than others and some really need your assertive guidance to ensure they understand what you expect from them as your client.

Plus, with our all-new Apple Watch App powered by Trainerize, motivation can be seamlessly integrated into your clients’ day-to-day lives.

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Accountability

How are you keeping your clients accountable? Yes, you can see when a client has completed their workout in the app as well as watch their nutrition compliance, but what are you doing on your end so they know you are vigilantly watching and taking care of their needs? As for me, I do three things: Automated messages, weekly coaching calls, and 24/7 messaging.

I want my clients to know I am monitoring their adherence closely and that if they need anything I am there to assist as their trainer and coach. Automated messages can be set up in the Trainerize app, they can be a simple mid-week message asking them to list their wins for that week. This allows both them and you to celebrate and keep their energy high. These automated messages spark conversation as your client will know you are always there.

As for weekly coaching calls, I simply set up a time to chat with my client over the phone and ask how their program is going. This is a great time to get to know your client on a more personal level which increases client adherence and retention. Use this time to ask them how they are doing and how you can continue to help with their program.

With 24/7 messaging, make sure your clients know you are only a message away. If they need your help, need motivation, or have a question, you are always on the other end and ready to show all your support. Clients need that personal connection and will show you more adherence to their programs leading to increased retention and program completion.

Up-to-date Plans

This is a big one! Make sure your plans are current, up-to-date, and fun. I know for some, we don’t usually associate working out with fun… but as long as you’re mixing up the workouts and getting creative, your clients will love the mix up and continue to stay motivated.

Bonus Tip: Create new workouts with different combinations.

If you have the same workouts but want to keep it creative, simply mix up the combos or maybe even create new exercises. Sometimes clients quit because they get bored. Kick the boredom and make them excited to check in and see what new workout lies ahead for them that day. They’ll love to message you to say things like “those runner’s crunches were tough, but great.” Keeping your workouts up-to-date will lead to increased client retention and program completion.

Don’t give your clients a reason to quit, make them as excited to workout just as when they began their journey with you. Keep them accountable and stay connected. The more you care, the more they care. Your clients want to make you happy as you want them to succeed. Make it a mutually beneficial relationship and keep your revenue growing!

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