The Chronicle caught up with Sophie von Huben from Sofit this week about how her business has been impacted by COVID-19. She also gives us some advice around staying fit at home during the lockdown period.
How and when was your business impacted by Covid-19.
Sofit was impacted around March 16. Up until this date, everything was running full steam ahead with happy motivated clients.
How did you have to adapt to rapidly changing situation?
It meant we needed to make an action plan immediately, firstly taking additional cleaning and sterilizing procedures of our studio and equipment.
We had a strict ‘wash your hands please’ policy on entry for everyone and made sure our clients were bringing along their own sweat towels for all sessions along with their drink bottles (a lot of common sense).
We utilized training in the outdoors which allowed for social distancing. Each day as things changed so did we. We made decreases in numbers to all of our Group Fitness sessions.
I started offering discounted 2:1 sessions for those who felt more comfortable training in much smaller settings. And as soon as alert 3 was issued SOFIT sessions from 1:1 to Group fitness were stopped immediately. We let our clients know we would be moving online ASAP.
How are you finding the experience of online delivery?
It is definitely different and not without its challenges.
It’s hard to not be there physically training people and makes for a challenge when needing to help make adjustments to the clients form and technique when as trainers we are so ‘hands on’ with our teaching.
But it’s still lots of fun, and feels amazing to be helping keep our community and clients stay healthy both mentally and physically at this hard time. It’s something NEW so we are all adjusting to our temporary normality. It’s definitely nice to stay connected with people.
What is the feedback from your clients? Why do you think these initiatives are so important right now?
I have had great feedback from everyone.
At the moment, like most others since SOFIT started online, we have been offering all our training services for FREE. (Vist Sophie’s Facebook page here.)
We are so big on mental health and feel that taking care of one another is where it’s at!. It is so important right now to be there for one another. Some of my clients have offered to pay, and kindly check in to make sure I am taking care of myself and my family also.
But for now we keep rolling as we are.
These are times of high risk to people’s mental health and create huge amounts of anxiety and stress. If we can help people cope a little better in day-to-day isolation then that’s what we will keep on doing!
I love getting selfies and messages of how my clients feel after their 1:1 or group Zoom sessions – usually all end in sweaty big smiles.
What other opportunities are there in the community for accessing sessions with trainers and Yoga and Pilates teachers?
Like myself, so many of the wonderful Raglan community have jumped on board the virtual train and are also offering their services for free.
The girls at the Space have online live Zoom, yoga and pilates classes even for the little ones and also pre recorded sessions you can follow at anytime on their website.
Eden and Raph from Lifted have daily pilates sessions via Zoom.
The Raglan Yoga Loft family have been running their yoga sessions via Zoom this last week and any koha received will be donated to someone in need affected by COVID-19.
RNR fitness,Rangi and Raewyn are ‘Essential’ services and their time is needed keeping us all safe.
They kindly gifted their equipment out to keep people moving over the lock down period and keep sending motivating and loving messages to their crew.
The team at Raglan physiotherapy are also offering FREE telehealth care and consults for the community throughout the Isolation period.