Today’s Behind the Business story is one that never fails to make me smile!
I talked to Taryn Kukle, the mastermind behind Fit Girls, a fantastic fitness program that is targeted to girls between the ages of 8 and 14. Fit Girls not only aims to help keep girls active and fit, but to help give them inner strength, confidence, self esteem, and positive body image – all of that is super important too!
Taryn is not only a superstar when it comes to fitness, but as an ambitious entrepreneur, she is also a great role model for her young clients. I asked her about her action plan, her inspiration, and the impact social media has had on her business – check out our conversation below!
Tell us about your business in as much detail as you can. What is it that you do and who are your customers?
Fit Girls is a boutique studio that offers small group personal training and boot camps to girls aged 8-14. We focus on healthy physical activity and fitness while instilling positive body image, self-esteem, and confidence, and healthy nutritional patterns and behaviors. We believe that fitness, education, and fun are a powerful combination and have developed a complete program that includes all three aspects!
Fit Girls provides a pro-girls and girls-only environment that is physically, socially, and emotionally safe and that confirms that girls can succeed and deserve to be taken seriously for the people they are now and women they will become.
Our 50-minute boot camp class is comprised of a 40-minute circuit training workout along with a 10-minute age-appropriate lesson. The workout portion utilizes age-appropriate equipment and focuses on coordination development, postural improvement and correction, body flexibility, cardiovascular fitness, and core strength. The lesson portion will focus on a different age-appropriate topic each week including fitness, nutrition, self-esteem, self-confidence, body image, and girl empowerment.
What made you choose this path? Is it a family legacy or are you a pioneer? Did you go to school for it or are you learning as you go?
Fitness has always been something I have been passionate about. I did a certification in Personal Training a few years ago but never did anything with it. Over the last year, I have been looking for a fitness program for my 9-year-old daughter to participate in. She doesn’t like sports, dance, or gymnastics and I really felt that she needed to be more active. Most gyms and fitness programs do not cater to children under the age of 14-16. So I decided to go out on a limb and create one!
Since making this decision, I have completed a Youth Fitness Trainer certification through the International Sports Sciences Association in the United States. I have also completed a certification in Healthy Eating and Weight Loss Coaching and am in the process of completing the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Coaching certification.
They say that to be successful you have to be passionate, so share what drives you every day. Why do you love what you do?
As mentioned above, I am extremely passionate about fitness and nutrition and have been all of my adult life. Through my own dedication to a strong, healthy, and fit lifestyle, I realized that I needed to pass this on to my own children so that hopefully they can strive to live a healthy lifestyle. Now through Fit Girls, I can make a positive impact on young girls and hopefully make an impact on the quality and longevity of their lives. Our mission is to inspire girls to be healthy and confident while exercising and having fun. I’m excited to be able to have an impact on the lives of young girls.
Has it been smooth sailing or have you overcome adversity to get where you are?
Thankfully I have had a great life surrounded by very supportive and loving family and friends. I have had a few obstacles which I’ve needed to overcome but as they say: “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger”. I try to look for the positive in these obstacles, which helps me to move on.
What do you do with your time off? Are you familiar with that concept?
Although Fit Girls keeps me very busy, I make sure that I have “me” time. My day would not be complete and my mood wouldn’t be very good if I didn’t go to the gym. I enjoy spending time with my 3 beautiful children and husband. Between homework and extracurricular activities, we don’t have too much time off, but we do get to spend time together! I also try to get in some fun adult time with friends to unwind and relax.
I also have a lice removal clinic called The Lice People which I started about 5 years ago. We do in-clinic treatments as well as school visits. So my time off is very limited!
This is the age of the social network. How important is social media to your business and how do you make it work?
I believe social media is very important to any business today. To be honest I’m not very techy but I’m learning (with the help of my kids!!!). As of now, social media is the only advertising I have done for Fit Girls and I am really impressed with the number of families I have reached. So obviously it’s working!
I have started to reach out to bloggers and social media experts who have really helped show me what social media is capable of. I still have so much to learn!
How are you involved in your community?
I spend a lot of time volunteering in my synagogue and children’s schools. Whether it be arranging events, organizing meals for families in need, or coordinating volunteers for programs within the schools, I feel it’s very important to be involved in your community. Making a difference in someone’s life and building a wonderful community to live in is important to me and my family. My children are involved in many of these community-based activities as well and it makes me very proud!
What does the future look like for you and your business?
My future and the future of Fit Girls is all very exciting! My vision is a world where girls can be strong and confident and feel good about themselves enough to be able to pursue their dreams. I can only hope that Fit Girls can ignite a spark in young girls and empower them to live life to the best of their abilities.
Do you have any advice for aspiring business owners just starting out?
My advice is: If you are passionate about something and you work hard at it, you can achieve it. Life doesn’t come without its challenges, but a positive attitude is a choice and a good one to make! Put in the time and effort, hold your head up high and go for it!