4 Ways San Francisco Fitness Businesses Can Support the LGBTQIA+ Community
By Denise Prichard
It’s Pride Month, a celebration for the LGBTQIA+ community all over the country. As a San Francisco fitness business owner, you are well aware this month is full of parades and events that aim to support equality, and it’s important to make sure you show support and welcome everyone in this community.
You’ve worked to build your space as a welcoming place for your clients—somewhere they feel comfortable and really feel like they’re a part of the community. And you know how important that is. To some degree, we have all known what it feels like to not belong somewhere, and your fitness studio can act as a safe place of inclusivity for everyone—particularly those who haven’t had that sense of security and welcoming. As a fitness business owner, have you ever asked yourself these questions? Have you ever been nervous about attending a fitness class before? How about scanning the room and feeling the urge to compare yourself to everyone around you? Have you ever worried you’re too different to be there? Do you wonder if there are other people like you there? If you’ve ever asked yourself these questions, you might see where I’m going with this.
People who are part of communities that have traditionally been underserved or ignored can feel ostracized when participating in any public event—including fitness classes, so it’s essential you open your doors to every person that expresses interest in your studio offerings. It’s important to remember that Pride Month represents something that should be celebrated all year round. No one wants to be exploited or catered to just because it is popular or politically correct to do so during a particular month.
Take this month to recommit yourself to creating a welcoming space for all. Keep in mind, your customers, particularly diverse ones, want to support businesses that demonstrate they are interested in building a long-term relationship with them and their community. Here are some ways your fitness business can support the LGBTQIA+ community during this month and all year-round.
1. Be a vocal ally
In previous posts, we have discussed the importance of having a presence on social media. Since over 500 million people scroll through Instagram on a daily basis—and just under 1.5 billion use Facebook each day—why not use these platforms to interact with your clients by showing your support for the community? Remember that being an advocate means expressing your support at all times. Don’t let fear hinder you from speaking up in support of all the customers you serve at your fitness studio.
2. Include the community in your promotional campaigns
What better way to show your support than to include all your customers in your marketing efforts? Use inclusive imagery in your email promotions, social campaigns, and throughout your fitness studio. If your studio happens to create videos make sure they represent every community that frequents your studio.
3. Host a class that donates funds to the LGBTQIA+ community
Here’s a fun way to get involved—host pop-up events throughout the entire year to help raise money for charities that support the community, like The Trevor Project. Events like these bring all communities together and will help all of your clients build a stronger bond with one another. Hey, we’re all apart of the #fitfam, right? Let's be in this together!
4. Participate in San Francisco Pride
San Francisco Pride is hosted on June 29-30 this year, so there is still plenty of time to get involved and show your support. Last year, nearly 1 million people gathered to show their pride and be vocal about the community. Encourage your clients and your staff who want to get involved to participate in an exciting event that was created to evoke positive change. To learn more about how you can get involved, visit their website.
These four tips don't only work in San Francisco. No matter where you are, use this list to support your local LGBTQIA+ Community.