Please state your name, your position, and a bit of your Business.
My name is Ryan Daniel Beck and I am the owner & Creative Director of BodyART Training Studios. bodyART is a functional movement training system designed by Robert Steinbacher that balances your strength, flexibility, and mental concentration and holds public classes at Lululemon Soho, Athleta, Limelight, Broadway Dance Center NY, NeXa, Refinery Rooftop and WOOM Center and corporate events for companies like Louis Vuitton, CitiBank, and Wellth Collective.
How did the business start?
Originally from Los Angeles, I had an extensive performing career dancing for Beyoncé, Black Eyed Peas, MOMIX, MTV and more. I produced and directed content for ABC, BC/EFA, Good Morning America, Celebrity Cruises, and Hard Rock Cafe, among others. As a sought-after movement instructor, I’ve traveled to over 30 countries and I’m on faculty at the world-famous Broadway Dance Center in NYC. In 2011, I was introduced to bodyART by its creator, Robert Steinbacher, and then brought the concept to many NYC studios. Seeing the market potential for bodyART to be a consumer-facing model, I was granted exclusive rights to open, manage and operate all bodyART-branded studio locations in America.
What are the challenges you met and how did you manage to cope up with these challenges and reach your current status?
Founders must always be cautious of “well-intentioned doubt”. This advice comes from close friends and family members, who love and care about you but have never personally gone through the start-up process. They will often distract you and make you second guess yourself because they “care about you and don’t want to see you fail.” However, even though their doubts are well-intentioned, they can be incredibly distracting and cause you to lose focus and drive.
Who influenced you in this industry and how did he/she influence you?
I was very influenced by Ruth Zukerman of Flywheel, Danny Meyer of Union Square Hospitality Group, and Seth Godin. Each of them brings a different perspective on how to engage your guests and create a world-class level of hospitality.
How did you manage to market your business and compete with other agencies in your niche?
People always ask if we’re the next SoulCycle or Barry’s. No, we are the next Hamilton, which took boring American history and made it exciting and relevant. We took academic, science-based physical therapy exercises and made them highly engaging and addictive. The fitness industry is a racetrack that encourages people to speed from one high-intensity class to the next. We think of ourselves as the pitstop where you get everything prepped and realigned to continue doing the workouts you love to do. So, truthfully, we are not in true competition with other popular workouts. Our goal is to help keep runners running, yogis stretching, CrossFitters lifting, cyclists spinning, dancers dancing, boxers punching, fighters kicking, athletes competing, grandparents mobile, and bodies maintained in a holistic, sustainable way which is pain-free and prevents injuries.
What Best Practice/s can you share to our startup readers?
As Danny Meyer says in his book, “ABCD…always be connecting dots.” I’ve had many conversations throughout the years with colleagues, who did not even consider going to a mixer or attending a pitch session, because they could not see any immediate value to their own objectives. However, I have found that many of my most valuable connections have come by “chance encounters” which were the result of me going into an experience or situation, without any preconceived objectives or ulterior motives. By simply engaging people in the community, getting to know what they are passionate about, I found many doors of opportunity for myself opened “magically.”
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