#PTonICE Daily Show – Friday, June 21st, 2024 – Programming for performance & profit

In today’s episode of the PT on ICE Daily Show, Endurance Athlete faculty member Rachel Selina discusses programming and starting to fill more of a coaching role that can be an excellent way to continue to help runners beyond formal clinical care. It can also be a fun way to diversify your revenue streams and supplement your clinic income.

Start thinking in 3 tiers for offering either endurance or strength programming (or both!)

1. Generic
2. Semi-custom
3. Fully custom/interactive

Take a listen to the episode or check out the full show notes on our blog at www.ptonice.com/blog

If you’re looking to learn from our Endurance Athlete division, check out our live physical therapy courses or our online physical therapy courses. Check out our entire list of continuing education courses for physical therapy including our physical therapy certifications by checking out our website. Don’t forget about all of our FREE eBooks, prebuilt workshops, free CEUs, and other physical therapy continuing education on our Resources tab.


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All right. Good morning, everyone. Welcome back to the PT on ICE Daily Show. My name is Rachel Selina, and I’m happy to be your host this morning. We’re here for Fitness Athlete Friday. And with that, we’re going to jump into the topic of programming, but not looking at it from like what the programming actually consists of. but more so kind of how do we, how do we market that programming and what is it as a service that we’re actually offering? Okay. So we, we talked about this at the sampler this year, um, about starting to find ways to diversify our revenue streams. Um, mostly from the standpoint of like avoiding burnout, but also like it brings you more income, hopefully doing something that you enjoy. Doing that’s kind of a change from your normal. I always think it’s kind of funny. I’m definitely someone who likes diversification So I end up having like I have like six different Roles or six different jobs and so trying to explain to someone like hey, I thought you were a physical therapist It’s like what I am but I also I also do this or I also do this I also offer this and to me that That helps me. I like being able to work with people in lots of different capacities. So as we’re talking about our endurance athletes, we’re going to look at how do we use programming, kind of both the endurance programming, like our aerobic training and strength training and offer that as a service. And one of them that we’ll dive into is like, yes, it can be an additional revenue stream. But I think from a performance standpoint, it’s also really helpful for our patients because if we think they’re ending formal care and we can send them out and still have a way of being in contact with them, like if we have designed their next training program, right, they’re done in the clinic, we’re not seeing them on like a regular basis anymore, but they’re following a program that we wrote, they’re more likely, if something comes up like, hey, my Achilles started bothering me, instead of waiting for it to be like a big deal, Um, I think it’s more front of mind if they’re following something you designed for them to think like, Oh yeah, I could reach back out to Rachel. Like I could ask her about this. Um, or just being in that more constant contact, but in a non nonclinical standpoint. So I think it, it helps our patients as they’re going back into their training, um, to just have that kind of touch point or remembrance, um, that we’re here, um, and we can help them with that. So from a performance standpoint, they’re going to, be involved with us and be in that more constant communication so things don’t go unchecked for such a long time. So that I think is helpful from the performance standpoint, but then there’s also lots of ways that we can offer programming and kind of our particular take on it and what good programming could look like. because we have that background, we have that knowledge instead of someone just going, not that there’s, you know, not good plans on the internet, but someone just going and getting programming from a random other person or from, you know, someone who’s not familiar as much with how to kind of work around injuries or prevent injuries through what our programming is doing. So if we, if we think of that, like our aerobic programming first, okay, like what’s the, How many days a week are they running? Are they training for a half marathon or a marathon? I think there’s really three levels of programming we can offer and I kind of think of it tiered as how much input it takes on my end. So the first tier would be I write a program and I keep it very general. Like it’s not for a specific person. It’s I have written a marathon training program and I have available whether it’s on my website or Instagram or whatever, however you want to sell it. Like I have available a half marathon and marathon training program that anyone can just buy. Um, or maybe I offer it for free. That’s an option too. Um, but someone just buys it and there’s no other input from me beyond that. I wrote it. Um, and I think with that, like it’s very hands off. Um, here, this is what you’re getting. This is what it is. Go do it. Um, I think with that though, like we’re in a good spot to be able to do that because we can design a program with all of those good like principles of progression, kind of making sure we’re not progressing too much, too fast, keeping pace under control, all of that, but it’s not specific, right? This is a very general. I think if you’re going to, even if you offer it for free, right? You could still have on that program, right? At the header or something like that. Like you can still have your name, your clinic info, something. to that nature, where again, every time that person looks at that program, they’re seeing your name, they’re seeing your clinic, and just being that point where you’re front of mind, right? They can’t get away from you, in a good sense. So that’s kind of our first tier, something very general that’s just put out there, anyone can buy, there’s no other input to it. If we take it a step up, okay, that next step, that next tier, I think is semi-customizable. There’s now a person in front of me who has a goal. So this now is Sarah, who’s going to run a half marathon. And Sarah wants to run it at whatever pace. She wants to run an eight-minute pace. I can take that program, that general program, and adapt it to what Sarah needs. So I can put specific pace goals in there. I can put… you know, Sarah works late on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, so she needs shorter workouts on those days. Like I can, I can change some aspects of that program so that it is specific to the client or the patient. But then beyond that, it’s not, there’s not anything else beyond that. I’m not, you know, I’m not in weekly check ins or anything like that. It’s here’s a program that’s Tailored now for you. So semi customizable I think is that mid mid range and then if we were to go one more step Okay, like someone who wants everything I think of fully custom training programs And this is where they’re bringing you on a more of like a coaching role. So I’ve written their programming But I’m also now having regular checkpoints, right? It takes a lot more on my end because I can’t just do it and be done. It requires a constant kind of back and forth and checking in on how the training is going. Are they progressing appropriately? How are they tolerating it? And making those kind of week by week changes. And this, I’ll think of using this if someone has very specific goals, like it’s not just here’s the race and here’s the pace I want. But if there’s a lot of elevation involved, or altitude involved, or multiple disciplines, or just something very, very specific. Or if someone really wants that more constant touch point, this is where we’ll start thinking of fully custom programming. And then in terms of, like, you’re obviously going to charge different. Like I said, that first tier, if you’re just putting a general program out there, you might choose to have that be a free resource for people. because you know they’re going to keep seeing your name, and that might be all you get from that, which is perfect. For a semi-customizable one, I usually think of charging per the time it takes me. So if I usually have a set cash rate in my clinic for an hour, and writing a custom training plan takes me an hour and a half, I’m gonna charge an hour and a half of what my usual clinic rate is. So I’m making sure that I’m compensated for it, and it’s not taking away from my other my other revenue generation. And then fully custom, I think you have a lot more flexibility here for what what you want to charge, because it’s going to depend on how much of your time it’s going to take. So that can be I think you can either do it on a month to month basis or think of it as like a training block, which is usually helpful with our endurance athletes because they’re usually training in those blocks of like, I have four months of you know, training for this one particular event. So maybe you do a particular like four month payment for whatever you think your time will be for that, that given goal. So that’s kind of our that’s our aerobic training. I think we can also look at this for strength training. And in a similar sense, like I’m not going to break it down quite as much, but you can have different levels, like you can have just a general program of know two days a week of strength training that someone’s going to do and they’re going to do the same thing each week as kind of your lowest tier non-customized. But then you can take it up a step or and think of like I’m going to write specific workouts every week for again for Sarah. Sarah is going to get two workouts from me each week that are you know taking into account her strength level her progression and that would be a different a different cost, a different level than just that generic. Or you can also think of doing like a class. Like if you have the space to do a class, maybe you start to offer a strength training for runners class that meets either once a week or twice a week. And you have people commit to that timeframe, right? Because then you can block out that time in your schedule. You have maybe one or two hours during the week that you know are dedicated to that and getting people to sign up for that bigger block of time. But again, they’re just they’re all different ways to offer something that we have the skill set to do and probably do better than a number of people that are out there doing it just because we can take into account proper progression and loading principles. And if we’re doing some version of the custom programming, we know how to monitor tolerance to training load and whether that adaptation is occurring how we want it to. We know how to modify Or work around injury and then if we’re constantly involved with that person, right? How much more likely are they to to come to us earlier? Which is the goal like most people don’t seek out care for an injury until it really stops them from running So if we can get to people earlier, right? We can hopefully keep them going just like we say we we don’t want to like leave the gym when we’re injured we we want to use the gym to help us with our injury and We can think of it the same way for running, like we don’t want our runners to have to stop running. We want them to be able to work through that and keep running so they’re not losing that capacity. And like I said, just determining your cost, like you have to decide what your time is worth and how much time each type of programming is going to take you. But I think it can be a really good way just to be able to think differently, to kind of activate a different part of our brain. Um, and it’s really rewarding to be able to help someone meet their specific goal, um, and kind of see them from that whole, that whole longer term process. So just some food for thought, um, different ways you can start to diversify your income working with endurance athletes in a way that benefits you, but also really benefits your patients. Sweet. Um, we have some injured runner courses coming up. So if you are interested in our online course, that one, our next cohort starts July 9th. OK, that’s our eight week online course. We meet every Tuesday. And then we have now several options coming up for Injured Runner Live. Our last two for this year will have the beginning of September in Maryland. And then we just added a beginning of November course here in Michigan in Grand Rapids. So we’d love to have you out at one of those if you’re looking to dive deeper. into working with your endurance athletes. So that’s all I have. I hope you have an excellent Friday. Hey, enjoy your weekend and hopefully get out there and go for a run. All right, bye everyone.

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