Most weeks I teach around 12 indoor cycling classes between 4 different clubs.  I enjoy the variety of facilities, locations and different types of membership bases.  I also like to see how different group exercise programs are run and administered.  There is one trend I'm seeing that is starting to really bother me.

My job title in most facilities is Indoor Cycling Instructor and as you would expect my my job description includes all the various points of providing members with the best indoor cycling experience possible.  The trend that is disturbing is the addition of excessive cleaning and bike maintenance that has been added to my teaching duties.  In some facilities this extra cleaning is optional and, if done, is reimbursed.  The cleaning/maintenance rate may be lower than my instructor rate but I appreciate the fact that the administrators at these clubs value my time.  In other gyms the extra time spent cleaning is not optional, it's expected, and it's not reimbursed.  This is not simply picking up and tidying the room after class it's sweeping the floor, cleaning all the mirrors, taking out the trash or wiping down 10 or more bikes.  In most cases it's 15-30 minutes of extra, unreimbursed, work.  I know this doesn't sound like much but I don't believe anyone should be asked to work for free and if I was required to do an extra 30 minutes of unreimbursed work after all my classes it could quickly add up to 6 hours of unpaid time per week.

Have you ever done the math?  Below is a the breakdown of how all these little tasks can cut into your instructor rate.

  1. I assumed a rate of $30 per class.  If you get paid more, these extra tasks are actually more costly to you.
  2. I assumed 30 minutes of prep time.  If you spend more time preparing class your actually hourly rate will be even less.
  3. Most facilities and certifications recommend arriving to class 15 minutes early.
  4. Most facilities and certifications recommend being available after class to answer any questions or converse with participants for 15 minutes.
  5. If cleaning is required it takes at least 15 minutes to be done properly, sometimes longer.
  6. Some facilities are requiring a social media presence and want instructors to promote their classes on Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram.  I assume this takes an average of 5 minutes per post.

How Much Are Your Really Getting Paid Per Hour

As you can plainly see, your hourly rate can quickly be whittled away when all these uncompensated tasked are added to your job duties.

I often hear, from owners, managers or in customer service training workshops the importance cleanliness.  Administrators will say that cleanliness is their top priority and often their top complaint.  E-mail after e-mail will address that member complaints about lack of cleanliness are up and that "We all have to work together to keep the facility cleaner.  Take just a few more minutes after each class to make sure the room is spotless."  When something in my life takes top priority I'm willing to invest in it, whether it be money or time.  If a facility says that cleanliness is it's TOP PRIORITY then it should also be willing to invest in it and hire more maintenance staff or at the very least pay it's instructors for the time they spend making the room spotless after each class.

Dennis Mellon

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