ASSESSMENTS - A Linchpin to Long Term Success

Everyone remembers their first muscle up.

It’s a powerful moment, and one to celebrate. Beyond that, it’s a very quantifiable accomplishment. Most of us started from a place where a muscle up was a tall order. But you set the goal, work hard, and meet the goal. That is one of the big things we all chase in life, right?

On top of that, in a group class environment, those around you know you are working toward the goal. They share in the excitement you have for accomplishing that goal. Videos are taken and posted online. The first muscle up is a right of passage that people receive huge recognition for.

Few feelings are more fulfilling or more motivating.

What if you could consistently create that type of moment for your members over and over again?

First, they won’t leave. They are always shooting for the next goal and will invest to do it. They get the most out of being in your gym (results and relationships), and you get the most from being a gym owner (freedom and fulfillment).

Everyone wins.

We don’t want to leave all of that up to chance. We want to build a system around that concept.

And this is where the power of a good goal session strategy comes into play. Your retention rate and revenue per member will be much higher, and everyone in your community will be constantly accomplishing goals… making a very fulfilling experience for all.

“I’ve never had a member leave when I’ve had consistent goal sessions with them” - Mark VanderMeer, Crossfit 7070

Goal sessions not only motivate and create commitment, they also develop the member relationship and connection with you and the gym -- plus, they’re an integral part of the prescriptive model.

But, remember, goal sessions are the second part of the system. The first part is knowing the starting point, and having the client be excited to get from point A (starting point) to point B (result)...

We do that with ASSESSMENTS. They are the fundamental first step in a sound goal session system.

They are the starting point that leads to more desire.

A good assessment establishes several baselines and identifies areas that need improving. It puts things in perspective.

The InBody is a great example of a body comp assessment. For fitness, it can get more tricky. Within the Level Method, we have baselines are already setup and established -- quantified. The client can visually see often unidentified and therefore neglected opportunities to generate that long sought PR or first muscle up feeling.

There are multiple ways to accomplish effective fitness assessments… and below are the two primary ways the Level Method recommends and provides tools for. Each comes with different advantages depending on what your current needs and goals are within the gym.


Anchor Point: Calendar

Description: You set it on the calendar, and plan for it like any event. The entire community comes together and powers through a series of assessment tests in a defined period of time. In our case about 3 weeks.


Lots of Buzz. The experience is often compared to the “CrossFit open” where it brings the community together and has a high energy and accomplishment generating feel. It also establishes gym wide levels quickly and efficiently which provides a ton of data for programming, workshops, and other group upsell opportunities.

It is a spring board for a mass set of goal sessions immediately following as all of a client’s baselines are set at once.


The downside is it takes an organized and concerted effort to do effectively. It can be taxing on the staff to plan and execute. It also puts responsibility onto the member to fit in all of the tests during the allotted time period.


Anchor Point: Group Programming

Description: Assessments and reassessments are dripped out in daily programming over time.


Much less organization and effort. It’s less disruptive to a members normal workout flow.


Not as much fun or buzz, and clients can feel more isolated. Data is more difficult to aggregate and there is diluted impact as one baseline is established at a time.

The Level Method provides assessment baselines, and are neatly programmed for all levels of fitness without the need to scale them.

If you don’t use Level Method, you can use strength numbers and/or benchmark workouts to do something similar -- it’s the CONCEPT THAT MATTERS.

Ultimately as long as a member can walk away with an understanding of what areas of fitness they need the most work in... the assessment is effective.

The goal session is where they get the plan and get motivated to work on those weaknesses as that information meshes with other goals in life such as competition, sports outside of the gym, work, keeping up with kids and so on.

Here is some more information that may be helpful for those looking to work on creating successful goal setting sessions:

IMPORTANT: We are huge fans of Two-Brain, and since 2016 we’ve found the most successful gyms within Level Method have disciplined leaders at the helm who have a solid understanding of business fundamentals. More often than not they're Two-Brain gyms. The Level Method is NOT a get rich quick scheme… it’s not a bandaid to fix a bunch of problems… our best gyms have the basics down pat, and are looking for ways to accelerate growth by building systems. If you are a Two-Brain gym (Incubator Graduate), we have a special offer for you.

Here's a quick snippet of Scott Rammage and Gavin Martin discussing Level Method for Goal Setting and Retention