Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I Need Your Opinion

This is a dilemma that I've debated off and on for over a year now. Does the term "boot camp" scare people off?

I had one adviser flat out tell me not to use the term because it was too intimidating to most people and it would scare them off. At the same time, one Body & Soul member who owns a marketing company told me that I should stick with "boot camp" because the style of training is trendy.

The teller at my bank said I didn't look mean enough to run a boot camp. One of my new campers was explaining to her stylist that she was dressed to exercise because she was going to boot camp after her haircut. The stylist's response? "That sounds painful."

Here's the thing. I use the term "boot camp" because I think it gives people an idea of what to expect. To me, "boot camp" conveys the fact that it's going to be tough. It's pretty clear that it's not for people who are looking for the easy fix and aren't willing to challenge themselves. To be blunt, whiners and slackers aren't welcome.

On the other hand, I don't want people to think they have to be G.I. Jane or G.I. Joe to join.
No Pink Dumbbells Boot Camp has been around for over a year now and, during that time, I've worked with people of various fitness levels. For those who need it, I adapt the exercises. Boot camp is not about being the fittest person in the room; it's about being fitter than you were yesterday/last week/last year.

So, help me out. Would you hesitate to inquire about exercise sessions called "boot camp"? Leave a comment below and tell me if I should I continue to call this training "boot camp" or should I go with "group personal training"?



Vicki said...

People who are intimidated by the term boot camp are probably your whiners and complainers who wouldn't put forth the effort to last more than one class or even show up at all. The people who say "what is bootcamp?" Would probably be those who have an open mind and have the heart and resolve to give it a try. In otherwords don't change it. I would rather see you get committed people than those who's attitudes would bring down the rest of the class.

Mickey said...

Thanks, Vicki. Yesterday, someone suggested I take a poll among my current boot campers. I told her that wouldn't help because I doubted any campers would want me to change the name.

My boot campers are proud of how hard they work and their perseverance. My guess is that "small group training" wouldn't convey their accomplishments like "boot camp" does.

That said, I don't want anyone to assume they couldn't participate because of the name. The person I was speaking to suggested that, before they answer, campers think about how others react when they tell them they do boot camp. Are they intrigued or scared off?

That's actually what prompted this blog post. Rather than just asking current boot campers, I opened it up to the public because I was curious what "civilians" would say.

Fr. Russ said...

I met you years ago through Assets and just came on line looking for something to help me improve my health, after ten years of neglect. The term "boot camp" caught my eye because it sounds like exactly (make that EXACTLY) what I need, a jump start in a program that is more about exercise than socializing. I checked other web sites, including the Y, and they seem more geared to "family fun" than to seniors or organized, tailored exercise. I'm going to join, and want to be in the next boot camp start-up.