Karla Sluis launched a career in fitness when she was 41 years young. With a national life expectancy of over 78, Karla believes that this gift of longevity is favorable to starting over and changing your career many times.
A self-proclaimed “gym rat”, Karla has had a passion for group fitness classes ever since she was teenager growing up in Southern California. “Back in the ’80s and early ’90s, I wore those crazy shiny tights, thong leotards and legwarmers.” Fast-forward one husband, two kids, a career and mortgage later…a friend asked Karla to be a sub for her dance-fitness class. That is when Karla discovered that teaching was her calling.
On Karla’s 41st birthday in 2010, she became licensed in ZUMBA® Fitness. Like many others, she fell madly in love with the program. At present-day, her love for ZUMBA® is now a strong, committed relationship. She currently teaches 11 classes per week.
She has taught ZUMBA® Kids in local schools, ZUMBA® Toning, and is licensed in the specialties of Aqua ZUMBA®, ZUMBA® Step and ZUMBA® Gold. Her certifications include AFAA Group Fitness, ACE Group Exercise Leadership, and ACE Health Coaching. In July of 2014, Karla added PiYo (Pilates + yoga) to expand her skills as an instructor and balance all of the cardio-heavy ZUMBA® classes she provides every week with low-impact flexibility and strength work.
Her business, ZUMBA® and PiYo with Karla has expanded to Metamorph Coaching & Fitness to offer a wider range of one-on-one and small-group health coaching. A self-employed LLC, Karla teaches independent classes in different rented locations around Durango, Colorado, including two dance studios, a martial-arts studio and an elementary school gym. She is also a part-time city employee, teaching one class at the community recreation center.
Metamorph Coaching & Fitness includes a health and fitness blog for local women in Durango, and ZUMBA® fanatics around the world. She also plans to host seasonal WOW workshops (Wellness Opportunities for Women). These workshops will be a half-day combination of fitness classes plus local speakers on physical and mental health topics.
For her growing business, Karla sought out a paperless bookkeeping and class pass app like PunchPass because she was tired of killing trees. In the past, she color-printed, trimmed and stapled 10-ticket books. She also wasted countless hours record-keeping.
Karla signed up for Punchpass’ Solo Plan after hearing about the app from a member of the ZUMBA® Instructors Network. She did her research on various options until she found that Punchpass was exactly what she needed. Even after having used the app for just a few weeks, Karla could see immediate benefits: The first benefit was for her customers. Checking in is easy and fast. She’s been telling her students: “One touch and you’re done,” and they almost don’t believe her. Prior to Punchpass, when Karla used paper tickets, she had different prices for different venues. Her goal was to streamline her pass system so the students that follow her from venue to venue could go to any class she taught, use the same pass and pay the same amount. She finds that Punchpass Solo keeps people informed and honest by showing their name in orange when they need to buy new passes. The second benefit is tracking customer information. Although she had a good e-mail list and a filing cabinet of liability waivers, she didn’t have a good system of emergency contacts, phone numbers, or birthdays accessible to her from her iPad or iPhone. After class, she admits she likes to geek out and generate reports to see who is coming most frequently, who stopped coming, and analyze her class numbers. “I didn’t have a system in place to track this before,” she said. Karla also loves that Punchpass integrates seamlessly with the card payment system Square, which helps her track income effortlessly. The third benefit is the online reservation system. When students have anxiety about getting a spot in various classes, they will be able to reserve their space online and can see if the class is filled. “It gives customers who are rushing from work a level of comfort, and it would also take the stress off me for taking last-minute attendance or turning people away.”
Karla’s favorite thing about Punchpass is that it makes her look smart. Her students are impressed with the ease of use. “Faster check-in + streamlined class fees + slick technology = a good reputation as a smart, savvy, environmentally conscious instructor. It separates me from the pack in Durango, and signals a high level of professionalism.” She loves making her students’ class experience better.
Karla is also very impressed with Punchpass’ customer service. “I peppered poor Chris [Patton] with a zillion questions on all kinds of things. He was lightning-fast, polite, friendly and clear in his responses.” She admires the way the program was designed for ease of use, and the fact that the team is constantly working to add features and improve it.
Aside from instructing part-time, which is physically demanding, Karla has worked full-time as a Magazine Editor at The Durango Herald, has two young teenagers, a husband, and a house that was built over 100 years ago. So she finds that her biggest challenge in life is managing her time wisely.
She’s excited to grow her business, and funnel her 20 years of experience in newspaper journalism into her fitness business through blogging and freelance writing for niche magazines. “I do what I love, and I love what I do. It is a blessing to share my passion for ZUMBA® and fitness with others.” Karla’s favorite part about owning a business is learning and growing. “It has been a life-changing confidence-booster in every area of my life, and to watch my following get bigger, classes get larger, and income increase every year is quite motivating.”
No credit card is required to try Punchpass. We offer free setup assistance and support to help you get started. Come find out why so many instructors and studio owners say they LOVE Punchpass!