3 Tips for Starting Your First Kids Program (when you don’t know WHERE to start!)

Maggie Bugg Kids/Teens Programs

Sharing fitness with the younger members of our communities can be fun, rewarding and profitable. So, what are you waiting for?!

Here are three tips to get you started on the right foot:

1. Gauge interest within your membership

It’s a common concern that if you start a kids program, you won’t have enough kids to fill the class. Not only is a 3-kid class a little boring for the athletes, it likely won’t generate enough income to pay for the trainer! So the first step would be to connect with your members. Whether it’s through a survey (try a service like Survey Monkey), a post to your Facebook page, a tally on the whiteboard or a question on the bathroom wall, starting with the folks who already believe in what you’re doing and support your business is a smart first step. Ask them the following:

  • Are you interested in a kids/youth program?
  • How old are your children?
  • What other after-school activities are your children regularly involved in, and when?

The results of this Q&A should give you a solid indication as to the level of interest within your box, what age group would be ideal to start with, and, potentially, what schedule (days/frequency) would be ideal.

2. Start small, keep it simple

Good science means controlling the variables. To know whether or not your program is improving the fitness of the children, bringing financial prosperity to your box and creating a positive experience for staff, members and participants, you might want to start with just one age group and observe the results.

→ Choose the age group where you’ll be able to offer a class to MOST of your interested members’ kids. How to best arrange age groups is an important topic, but one for another post.

→ Choose a day of the week, maybe 2, a time, and a price.

→ Roll up your sleeves (or encourage a Trainer on your team to do so) and get ready to have some fun! Don’t worry — most kids won’t bite.

3. Seek inspiration and support

You don’t need to reinvent the wheel with your program; there are a wealth of resources out there to ensure your success. As a start, WUWO offers programming for kids and teens and the CrossFit Journal has great ideas for games and coaching cues. If you’re struggling with details specific to your affiliate or would like further support implementing or expanding your kids/youth programs, please don’t hesitate to reach out! We would love to see you succeed in sharing your passion for fitness with our younger generations.

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About the Author
Maggie Bugg

Maggie Bugg

Maggie Bugg is Co-owner of CrossFit Qualicum Beach on Canada’s rugged and beautiful West Coast. She has been running CrossFit Kids programs at her affiliate since 2015 for members 5-18 years old. A trained Elementary School Teacher, Maggie has her Bachelor of Education from the University of Victoria and teaching experience in both private and public schools locally and internationally. As a member of the WUWO Tribe, she hopes to share her passion for working with children and youth by helping others establish, improve and expand their programs.

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