Where were you this time 10 years ago?
Most people have high hopes for the coming year, making all kinds of plans, but around this time a decade ago, the bottom was about to drop out of my world – that turned out to be a time that changed everything…
In 2010, the economic crash of a couple of years before hit my business – hard.
I was working as a mobile Personal Trainer, specialising in posture correction and injury rehab.
It seemed like in a matter of a few months I’d gone from a steady 15-20 sessions a week, to just 7. There was no way I could live on this wage. I knew I had to take action.
I had the idea of setting up a referral network with all the therapists I’d developed good relations with to see if I could get more work that way, but what actually happened was the catalyst that led me to developing the SMARTT® methods.
Rather than setting up the referral network, I actually trained to become a soft-tissue therapist myself, thanks to an enthusiastic meeting over coffee with an old contact.
Instead of using the industry standard painful methods (with the intention that creating more pain triggers the body’s healing mechanism), she was using very gentle, relaxing methods and getting amazing results.
I’ll be honest, the thought of oils and semi-naked bodies wasn’t appealing at all, but when she told me that this practice was done fully clothed, I was in!
I was swept along on this current of new and exciting learning, absorbing everthing I could from this new world of feedback through my hands.
It was fascinating.
I was so hooked that in 2012, I made the choice to stop the Personal Training work to become a full-time therapist.
But it wasn’t everything I’d hoped for.
After a few years, I realised that I didn’t like being stuck standing at the table all day. I missed getting people moving.
By chance, whilst searching the internet for something else, I discovered 3D dynamic stretching (stretching in different planes of motion) and again, it set my imagination on fire!
This time though, I wasn’t learning from someone else…I began taking the injury TREATMENT work I’d been doing on the table and translating it into multi-directional MOVEMENT.
I finally understood that movement was the key to stopping injuries from coming back, but although I tried for a couple of years to find different combinations of providing both table-based treatment and movement to my clients, it really didn’t work.
The best combination seemed to be a couple of movements at the end of a treatment session, which I started putting on videos for my clients to follow at home.
Although my clients were getting relief from their symptoms, my business was once again dwindling.
The movements I was giving people were so effective that they stopped coming for treatment! They’d say things like “my pain came back, but I did those movements you gave me and it went away again”.
It was frustrating and satisfying at the same time.
I was pleased that their pain had gone, but frustrated because I knew that wasn’t the end of the process.
The gym I was renting a treatment room at wasn’t doing well either and eventually the manager gave me two weeks’ notice that they were closing.
And while it broke my heart to leave my few remaining clients, I knew I had to explore just how far I could take this movement stuff.
The last four years of this decade have whistled past while I’ve been committed to continuing to test, refine and develop the SMARTT® methods.
And here we are on the brink of another decade…and it’s so exciting!
These extraordinarily simple ideas, teamed with some creative movement patterns are proving to be far more effective than I could ever have dreamed of – and I can’t wait to see where they take us all over the next decade.
Already, the small number of Certified SMARTT® Coaches are making HUGE differences to the lives of their clients and countless people are experiencing the freedom that a great ability to move can bring.
There’s some exciting developments in the works for 2020, with some of them almost complete already!
So, do I have any advice for you this coming year?
Follow your heart, explore your own movement and spread the love!
Together, I truly believe that we can be the change the industry so desperately needs!
I hope 2020 is everything you hope it will be – and more.
And if you’d like to join the growing number of Certified SMARTT® Coaches, there’s a course starting online on Friday 3rd January, and there’s still a few places left! Find out more here