Client: Pratique Yoga
Project: Client Testimonials
Purpose + Audience
Pratique Yoga specializes in premium one-on-one therapeutic yoga; the studio hired me to produce three client testimonials for its city-wide advertising campaign, “Yoga Is My Health Insurance.” I interviewed several of the studio’s clients — a symphony musician, a salon owner, a nonprofit director — then crafted testimonials for the studio’s website.
This project required professional communication not only in dealing with my customer — Pratique — but also in representing the studio favorably to its own clients. To prepare, I met with Pratique’s owner to discuss her clients’ histories and clarify what points she hoped they would address in their testimonials.
My preparation and journalistic experience allowed me to set the clients at ease, guiding conversation toward the desired topics. I then transcribed and condensed the interviews, taking care to retain each interviewee’s speech patterns and personality.
My final documents pleased both the studio and its clients. The testimonials form a central part of Pratique’s current website and have earned me additional freelance assignments.
Richard Butler, Inclusion Manager for US Rowing
“A moving target” is Richard Butler’s apt self-description — and yoga, he says, is what keeps him moving. A lifelong Pittsburgher, Butler teaches kickboxing, spinning, sports conditioning at Extreme Fitness in Robinson and multicultural perspectives and organizational ethics at Robert Morris University. An avid cyclist, he also serves on the board of Bike Pittsburgh — and these are just his hobbies! Professionally, he’s the inclusion manger for the United States Rowing Association, working toward bringing diversity to the sport.
“All the things that I enjoy that I call my hobbies are all veryphysical activities,” says Butler; “I know for a fact that I would notbe able to continue doing them without the help of Lilith.”
Not long ago, Butler suffered from extremely painful back spasms,despite muscle relaxers, pain pills, even trips to the emergency room.While getting coffee every day at Crazy Mocha, he’d see Pratique Yogaacross the street and think, “Hmm, I want to talk to that woman overthere!” He’d taken traditional yoga classes on and off over the years,and had low expectations. “I thought, ‘OK, I’ll go to a yogainstructor and they’ll put me through various sequences and poses, andhopefully that works.’” Instead, sessions were designed tospecifically address his back problem.
“We started working one-on-one very specifically first, to get rid ofthe spasms, and then to strengthen the weak areas by using variousyoga poses,” he says. “Now it’s preventative — I’ve not had a backproblem since.”
An unbalanced physical regimen was partly to blame. “The rowing maynot have caused the back spasms, but it contributed,” he says. “I wasprobably doing something incorrectly, or pulling too much on one side— that causes imbalance. Lilith, with her great skills, took a look atmy back and said “Whoa, this side is way overdeveloped!” She couldlook at me and right away identify it.”
This kind of targeted therapy simply would not be possible in a largegroup setting. Butler emphasizes that Lilith’s individual sessions area beneficial addition to anyone studying yoga, not just those withinjuries. “We get lazy and we get sloppy, and the-one on-one,eyeball-to-eyeball, you can’t. You could be doing everything right,but you could also be doing it better, and she can show you how.”
Most important for an athlete like Butler — who has “been in thefitness business for longer than she’s been alive” — is trust.
“I’ve worked with Olympic athletes, professional athletes, plus one ofthe trainers and mental coaches for U.S. Olympic teams,” he says. “Forme to trust my body with her puts her up there as one of the reallyelite,” he says. “I believe she is the best in that area.”
The inclusive attitude and professionalism he’s experienced with Bailey-Kroll reflects the values he works toward with the RowingAssociation, and particularly praises Pratique’s donation classes andfree outdoor yoga in Schenley Plaza. “Rowing is considered an elitesport, and my job is to get rid of that — to open the doors and makeit affordable, accessible and diverse. And yoga can also have thatstigma — Lilith has made sure that it’s accessible and affordable, andthe door is open for everyone to give it a try.”
“She’s more than just the other yoga studio on the corner,” Butler concludes. “She’s the yoga studio others should be striving to be.”