I Want More Adult Students!

By Mike Metzger


Now that we’re entering the new year, we should reflect on our business and ask how we can do things better. We should look to see how we can be better on the floor and on the business.


A frequent question that I get from school owners, specifically during this time of year, is how they can get more adults on their floor.


Most martial art facilities today have many more kids training than adults. Having more kids training is not a problem at all, but it’s always good to have adults training for several reasons.


Below are a three reasons why having more adults on your floor can be beneficial to your school.


  1. Referrals. Adults will bring in more referrals than kids will. Adults like training with friends and/or family members. Adults also enjoy sharing their experiences with others and, therefore, are more than happy to invite prospects to try a class with them.


  1. Easier to teach. Adults, for the most part, are easier to teach, for a few reasons. Adults know why they are there. For them, it’s not just for fun as it typically is with kids. They understand the values and benefits of martial arts training.


  1. Adults have kids. When you have adult students, you can easily get their kids to enroll. If you have adults that have kids already training, your retention is going to be much higher with the children. When families are training, retention is always higher.


Now that we understand a few benefits of having more adults, we need to know how to get more of them into training.


Marketing for kids is somewhat easier than marketing for adults. Adults will often spend money on their children before spending money on themselves. When marketing for adults, we are also competing with gyms, work/jobs, and the frantic activity of life in general.


Here are three ways to get more adults in your school without breaking the bank.


  1. An offer at every enrollment. When you enroll a child in your martial arts program, let the parents know that they get a free month of classes. If they take you up on the offer now, they will also get a free uniform.


  1. Ask, ask, ask. We must make sure to have great rapport with all the parents that sit in your school week after week and watch their children train. When you have established a great rapport, it becomes easy to hand them a free uniform and tell them it’s free if they try your adult program for one month.


Let the parent know there is no obligation, and that their child would love to see them training since it will motivate the kid even more.


  1. Limited-time trial. We all promote trials of some kind. Present a slightly different trial and offer a 12-week Beginner Course for Adults, for a low price point, like $249.


Let everyone know this is a program for beginners only, where the focus will be on self-defense and getting in better physical shape. Adults like a finite period of time, in which they can see exactly what they are purchasing. Make sure to detail out what they will get in those 12 weeks.


I hope these ideas can help you get more adults on your floor. I know there are schools that have only adults, or more adults than kids training. But these ideas can work for you as well.


If you’re a school owner who wants to build your adult program, there is no better time to do that than the 1st quarter of the year. Good luck and start building those adult classes!


For questions or comments, contact Mike Metzger via email at [email protected] or call the Martial Arts Industry Association at (866) 626-6226

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