You’ve probably heard of hot yoga but have you heard of hot pilates? If Selena Gomez and Hailey Baldwin are anything to go by, Hot Pilates is the fitness class of the moment. The brains behind this new workout is Shannon Nadj, who recently treated Topshop customers to two special workouts at our Los Angeles stores. We chatted to the entrepreneur to find out how she turned her workout obsession into a business…
How did you first get into pilates?
Mari Winsor was my inspiration and private instructor. I loved how pilates lightened, lengthened, and toned my body, and I knew it was the practice for me.
How did you go from student to studio owner? What inspired you to take that leap?
I’ve been a business owner before (I owned a boutique when I was 16 years old in Canada) so I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit and business mentality. I decided to take the leap when I came up with the concept of a heated pilates mat class, which had never been done. It was a unique concept, and I knew it would have the power to transform bodies and innovate the fitness space. I didn’t have a passion to just open up a regular pilates studio – I knew I wanted to bring something new to market.
What’s been the biggest learning curve for you as a business owner?
Finding the balance between teaching and running the business, delegating to my team, micro managing, and finding good classically trained pilates instructors. A good instructor is an essential component to the Hot Pilates experience (and it should be at any studio!) and I hold very high standards.
What advice would you have for anyone trying to work in the fitness space and start their own business?
Find something that you are passionate about! Love what you do! Passion will drive you to keep going, work hard, and never compromise quality. It’s a lot of long days, but I wouldn’t trade them for the world.
Tell us about some of the most exciting successes of the business?
Seeing our clients’ bodies transform! Our clients getting stronger – not just physically but mentally. The most exciting and rewarding success is seeing our community of clients getting stronger and achieving their goals.
Tell us one quick pilates move we can do everyday at home?
I love the teaser. It combines all of the pilates principles packed into one challenging move! And for a Pilates principle that you can incorporate into your everyday life… focus on practicing good posture at all times throughout the day. Shoulders back, abs in, lifting upwards.
What’s your ideal workout outfit?
I like to keep it classic and simple, black high waisted leggings, black sports bra with good support, and a hoody to stay warm… I like to sweat!
Tell us what you liked about the three looks you tried on for the Topshop blog.
I liked how feminine and classic the pieces made me feel. I can dress them up or down. They take me from a meeting to dinner with my girlfriends!