Pam Downing, owner of Pam's Pilates, is one of many who saw all of her business cancelled in March when the country was put into lockdown as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
But thanks to some innovative thinking, the 52-year-old decided to take lessons online, enabling her regular clients to continue their weekly sessions.
Within a few weeks, 30 people who would normally attend her classes at Ellison's Studios in Faraday Drive had subscribed to her 12 recorded classes, aimed at all levels of fitness.
Now Pam, who has been a Pilates teacher for nine years, is taking on new clients and is planning to add a further 12 classes.
“It’s been an amazing learning curve for me to take my lessons online, but I believe it’s made me a better teacher as I have to provide very clear instruction,” she said.
“I never would have thought I’d be able to do these recordings and was nervous at first but it has been great. The reaction from people who have signed up has been really positive and they’ve been excited and motivated to be able to do their classes again."
With help from Birmingham-based Barques marketing agency, Pam has now set up an online log in for fitness enthusiasts to use from home.
She added: “Setting up the system to do it was an investment but Barques did a great job and, crucially, I don’t have to do anything other than record my class and upload it. I’m pleased I did it because not only has it given me an outlet to continue doing Pilates lessons, it has also meant that about half of my clients have also supported me and been able to do their usual sessions.
“Thanks to the success of the first 12 classes I’ve recorded, I’m going to do another set of 12 over the next few weeks and hope even more people will sign up for them.”
Katie French, digital project director at Barques, said: “We’re so pleased to have been able to help Pam get online and continue her classes online. As an agency, it was up to our experts to ensure we got Pam’s lessons online quickly and easily. Her keenness to adapt in what has been a difficult situation means she has provided her service to her usual Pilates clients, who are welcoming that continuity while classes cannot continue in person.”