When budgets get tight, or even when studio owners just want to boost their bottom line, it’s not uncommon to start looking for additional ways to breathe new life into their dance businesses. One way to potentially bring in new clients and increase profits your company may be to start teaching adult dance classes. The question is, should your studio offer dance classes for adults?
Below we’ll cover a few things to think about if you are considering adult dance classes as a new addition for your studio’s offerings. Hopefully, by the end of this post, your decision will be an easier one to make.
Fast Facts About Adult Dance Classes
Even if you normally only teach children and young adults, every age can benefit from dance classes. The physical fitness aspect, along with the joy of learning something new, truly makes dancing a win-win hobby. And, being able to hold your own at the dance floor at parties, reunions, and weddings certainly never hurt anyone. Here are some fast facts about adult dance classes that may or may not help you decide whether or not to offer them:
- According to Arthur Murray dance studios, the top 3 genres of dance for adults are ballroom, social, and Latin dancing. However, The Active Times reported that dance genres like pole dancing, Bokwa (a South African style of Zumba), and the original Zumba dance classes are still trendy for people seeking adult dance classes as of 2019.
- People are turning to adult dance classes for their fitness regimen because it’s more fun than a “traditional” workout. For example, jogging can be boring, and the 30 minutes you spend dancing can burn just as many calories if not two or three times more than jogging can.
- One trend that doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon is the desire for wedding dance classes. Blame it on those fun first dance videos going viral on Youtube and social media if you want, but people understandably want their first dance at their weddings to be a memorable one.
Couples know that this is the time their guests will be focused completely on them, taking pictures and videos that will end up on Facebook for all to see, so they want to look good. Add to that the fact that studios can charge couples as much as $500 for 5 lessons or more, therefore wedding dance classes can be quite profitable for a studio looking to make additional revenue.
- As Open Dance Academy states, “Trends vary unpredictably... If you realize that the trend has already been about for quite some time, think seriously before following it. ”
That is why if you choose to chase trends to bring in new clients, you’ll need to be able to adapt quickly.
- Most adults work during the day and are therefore looking for night time classes. If your studio is done with instruction around 8 p.m, that could be the perfect opportunity to add hour-long adult dance classes.
Of course, there are stay at home moms and senior citizens who are looking for daytime dance classes when children are in school. Since you might not be able to offer classes to kids during school hours anyway, why not add some day classes to bring in some extra cash?
Besides, when classes are not in session, your studio just sits there, not making any money. Even if you have to hire another teacher to teach new classes, as long as you’re turning some profit, an open dance studio making some money is better than not making any at all.
What You’ll Need To Offer Adult Dance Classes in Your Studio
The most important thing you need to start selling adult dance classes is people who actually want them.
This might seem obvious, but the excitement of creating something new and/or chasing trends can sometimes blind a dance studio manager. Just because your competitor down the road or in a nearby city is offering adult dance classes, doesn’t mean you will have people that want to sign up for them with you.
A great way to determine if it’s something you should add to your list of services, is to start putting out feelers. You can start with the parents of the kids you’re already teaching. Ask them if they would have any interest in learning how to dance. If they say yes, inquire about the type of classes they would like to take.
Head to social media as well, and ask your fans and followers the same questions. Send out emails to your database too, to find out how they feel about the idea. The more research you can do ahead of time, the better. These investigative actions are mostly free and could prevent you from wasting significant time and money. After all, there’s nothing worse than doing all the work up front and creating classes, only to learn later that no one wanted them in the first place.
You’ll need a teacher skilled in the genre of adult dance classes your market wants.
Let’s say you do all the market research, and learn that your market wants salsa lessons. Now, what if no one on your staff knows how to teach salsa? You could learn it yourself and then teach it, but by then the desire could fade out. Instead, you might need to hop on the demand and hire a salsa teacher. Strike while the iron is hot, right?
You may need additional equipment, music, and even lighting.
If you decide to offer pole dancing classes, for example, you’ll need poles, mood music, and possibly dimmer lights. The lighting, of course, depends on the mood you want to set in your studio for the classes.
If new fixtures of any kind need to be installed, you then have to deal with the questions of:
- Will they be permanent fixtures, and if so how will that look during the day to your non-adult dance class students?
- Will you need a separate room dedicated to your adult dance classes?
- Should you purchase chairs and props?
- What other costs will be associated with offering a new style of class?
You also have to decide how often you will offer adult dance classes and how you’ll structure them.
Will you be offering classes every day/night of the week? Will this be a seasonal thing or a year-round offering? You also need to consider whether each class can stand on its own, or if they will build on each other.
For example, if you’re teaching different choreography each week, some of your students might want a class pass that allows them to show up when they feel like it. However, if each week is a different piece of choreography from the same dance (like in more traditional dance instruction), they might need to attend all the classes to keep up with the lessons.
Then again, you may find that adults just want classes for fun, and are not entirely focused on the techniques and form. Because of this, you’ll need to treat it more like a fun experience, than a strictly educational one.
Back to the Original Question - Should Your Studio Offer Dance Classes for Adults?
Maybe, but maybe not. As much fun as it may be to consider creating adult only dance classes, the reality is that there are a variety of logistics you may need to work out based on the types of classes you will offer. After considering the additional purchases, the addition of a new teacher, and any other associated costs, you have to ask yourself, will it be worth it to your studio to offer adult dance classes?
Perhaps a trial run would be in order. You could start with a dance party night or even a limited set of group classes, and then take things from there. Who knows? After your trial, the demand could be high enough to justify making them a permanent offering. On the other hand, your trial could crash and burn. Still, as long term success in dance studio ownership is about adapting and evolving, it never hurts to keep seeking new revenue streams.