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User Manual: FitGrid LIVE for Instructors

A comprehensive guide for fitness instructors on how to get set up for success when hosting virtual class experiences

Below we’ve put together a comprehensive guide on how to get set up for success as well as answers to frequently asked questions and best practices for hosting great virtual class experiences.


  • Overview

    How it all works

    FitGrid LIVE creates a bridge between Zoom, one of the world’s leading online meeting platforms, and MINDBODY, so that you can live-stream classes with ease and keep your community connected when cleints can’t make it to the studio.

    Here is how it works once your studio has turned on the Zoom integration in their FitGrid platform:

    1. Immediately after clients sign up for any of your studio’s virtual classes, they’ll receive an email from FitGrid confirming they are registered for a live-stream class
    2. 60 minutes before class, FitGrid sends clients their unique Zoom class link
    3. 30 minutes before class, FitGrid sends the Instructor their unique host link 
    4. At the time of class, clients are entered into a waiting room until the live-stream begins
    5. After class, use FitGrid follow-up messages to connect with clients post-class and gain insights on their virtual experience

     

  • Download Zoom

    Setting up Zoom is super-easy. Follow these steps and you’ll be up and running in 5 minutes
    • Step 1: Download the Zoom app for your computer or mobile phone by visiting https://zoom.us/download
    • Step 2: Sign up for a free account by entering your work email address and selecting a password
    • Step 3: Skip the screen that asks you to invite colleagues
    • Step 4: You now have a free Basic account

    Note: If you’re concerned about production quality, remember that your clients will understand—we’re all navigating new situations together, and most clients are showing up not for polished video but rather for the core experience of the instructor, method, and sequencing. That said, if you have concerns about audio or video quality with the tools we recommend, here’s an example of our awesome Client Services Lead, Jack, doing an impromptu live-stream from his apartment. Hopefully, you can see that it works using the tech tools that most of us already own.

  • Test live-stream

    You’ll want to do a dry run to test out the quality of your virtual experience

    We recommend that you test Zoom ahead of your first live-stream class–you will want to do a test run using the camera on your computer or phone.

    Ahead of testing, make sure you have done the following: 

    • Downloaded and set up a free Zoom account
    • Set up and positioned your phone or computer
    • Connected a Bluetooth headset, AirPods, or some other form of wireless headphones if you wish to use them

    Starting the live-stream:

    1. Log in to your Zoom account
    2. Go to “Host a Meeting” (top of the screen) and select “With Video On”
    3. Click on “Open zoom.us
    4. Select “Join with computer audio”
    5. You should see yourself (assuming you have a camera on your computer/phone)
    6. If you’re on your computer there is a little “i” at the top left of the screen. Click on that. You want to find your Meeting ID
    7. Copy that Meeting ID and send it to whoever is going to be your test client so they can see how the sound comes through

    On your test client’s phone (or computer):

    1. Go to zoom.us
    2. Click on “Join” (top of the screen)
    3. Enter the Meeting ID
    4. You should be able to see the video
    5. Take the test client phone some distance from your broadcast phone to make sure the audio is working
  • Accessing class links

    Hosting classes and understanding how to access live-stream class links

    Approximately 30 minutes before the class’s scheduled start time, FitGrid will send you (the instructor) an email containing a unique link that’ll make you the “host” of the live-stream. You can click it anytime to start setting up, but make sure another class is not in session or the you could run the risk of ending the previous class session. Pro tip: always double-check the schedule to ensure you are starting your class no earlier than 5 minutes before your scheduled start time.

    If your class is approaching and you haven’t received a class link in your email, check your promotions, junk, spam or trash folders. Sometimes emails coming from other email service providers (ESPs), such as marketing, auto-generated or bulk emails, are moved into the Promotions tab or sometimes spam. If your email did end up in one of these folders, you’ll will want to flag it or change the label (un-check promotions) so that the next time you have a class, it will go directly into your inbox. If you are still having trouble accessing your class link, your studio admin can access all class links and resend directly from within the FitGrid LIVE dashboard.

    What happens after a client signs up for a class in MINDBODY that has a live-stream option? 

    Immediately following registration, FitGrid will send the client an email confirming they are registered for a live-stream class. Approximately 60 minutes before the class starts, FitGrid will send the client another email containing a unique link that’ll give them access to the live-stream. This email will arrive within minutes if the client booked within the 60-minute pre-class window and class start time is approaching. Note, if the client does not already have the Zoom application on their device, they’ll be taken through a brief, step-by-step download process. Should the client access the live-stream before the instructor arrives, they’ll be placed into a virtual waiting room until the instructor starts the stream. 

  • Prep for live-stream

    Key tips to help you prep for your first live-stream class

    Ahead of your first live-stream class, make sure you have downloaded the Zoom App and tested your live-stream quality–you will want to experiment with doing a live-stream using the camera on your phone or computer.

    Here are a few things to note as you prep for your live-stream class:

    • Test the speed of your internet connection to ensure a quality experience–greater than 5Mbps for both download and upload speed is recommended
    • Set up the device and position your device 
    • For better audio quality, try using a Bluetooth headset, AirPods, or some other form of wireless headphones so your voice won’t sound far away from the microphone and clients can hear you better over music
    • Check your email up to 30 minutes before class to ensure you have the Zoom link for the upcoming class
    • Remember to turn on your device’s audio and microphone before you begin class. Your class will begin when you click on the link (please note that it begins with your camera on, so make sure you’re ready for action)
    • To see all of your class attendees at once, click on the “Gallery View” located on the top right of your Zoom screen
    • Your clients will also have the option to “Chat” with you during the session, so be sure to check periodically or after class for questions!

    For further assistance with Zoom, check out these helpful articles and videos to help you get started.

    1. Getting Started With iOs
    2. Getting Started With Android
    3. Getting Started on Windows and Mac
    4. Meeting Controls Video
  • Optimal Audio & Video

    ENSURE YOU LOOK & SOUND GREAT ON YOUR LIVE-STREAM

    Any mobile phone, laptop or desktop computer with video capabilities can work for live-stream video content, but make sure you are familiar with its functions and are fully comfortable using the equipment to avoid technical difficulties (especially when live-streaming). Charge your phone or computer as well as any headset or earbuds you might be using. Set up a tripod, or create a makeshift tripod out of stacked books or boxes. You may want to film a few test shots, to make sure you are fully in the frame but close enough to the camera so that clients can clearly see you.

    Video

    When it comes to selecting the backdrop of your live-stream, pick a simple environment if you can, too, such as a clean, bright room with limited furniture and clutter. Clients will have a much easier time focusing on your instruction without these distractions in the background vying for their attention.

    To freshen up your look, you can implement one of our favorite insider tips- Zoom’s “beauty filter” which ads a soft filter to your screen for smoother appearances. To do this, click on the bottom left button on the Zoom screen, “video settings,” and click “touch up my appearance.” 

    Lighting

    Most fluorescent and overhead lighting do not work well with videos. It creates a flickering effect that can distract the viewer and interfere with the quality of your video. Film your workouts with natural light if you can, propping the camera near the window and facing towards the source of the light. The light should illuminate you so that you stick out from the background of your video, and so clients can clearly see your movements to imitate your form for each exercise.

    Audio

    In most cases, the camera, webcam, or smartphone you are using to record your videos does not have the greatest quality audio. If you are live streaming a workout, try to limit your speech to only necessary instruction, and make sure you speak clearly and slowly, enunciate each word, and project your voice. Avoid rooms with echoes or noise drifting in from nearby family or friends, if you are quarantining together. 

    You could also use a wireless microphone or Bluetooth earbuds, such as AirPods, to achieve higher quality audio. Be sure to fully charge your mic in advance, so they do not run out of battery in the middle of class and disrupt the audio!

    Zoom allows you to share audio from sources like Spotify, Pandora, Youtube, etc. while allowing the instructor’s voice to layer over the music, the steps you need to take to do this are listed below.  

    At Home Audio Setup

    What you’ll need:

          • A Bluetooth-enabled laptop with a webcam
          • Wireless earbuds with a built-in microphone
          • An internet connection with download/upload speeds above 5Mbps

    How to get started:

          • Step 1: Connect your wireless headset or earbuds to your computer via Bluetooth 
          • Step 2: Click “Stream Class” in the email you received from FitGrid to launch Zoom
          • Step 3: Select “Join With Computer Audio” when prompted
          • Step 4: Select “Share Screen” at the Bottom of Zoom to share your device’s audio 
          • Step 4: In the pop-up window, select the following: Advanced > Computer Sound Only > Share Computer Sound > Share
          • Step 5: Visit your go-to music streaming app, such as Spotify, Pandora or Youtube and select your music (note: like in a studio environment, you are legally responsible for obtaining rights and permissions to stream music during a virtual class)
          • Step 6: Switch back to Zoom and start your class

    In-Studio Audio Setup

    What you’ll need:

          • A mixer with…
            • Input for music
            • Input for a wireless mic
          • A video camera with an audio input and HDMI output
            • Converter cables allowing you to send your mixer output directly to your camera’s audio input
            • An HDMI cable
          • A laptop with…
            • An HDMI input OR
            • An HDMI converter cable

    How to get started:

          • Step 1: Connect your music player and wireless headset to the mixer
          • Step 2: Connect mixer output to your video camera’s audio input
          • Step 3: Connect your video camera’s HDMI output to your laptop
          • Step 4: On your laptop, click “Stream Class” in the email you received from FitGrid to launch Zoom
          • Step 5: Select “Share” at the bottom of Zoom 
          • Step 6: In the pop-up window, select the following: Advanced > Content from Second Camera > Share
          • Step 7: Visit your music streaming app on the device connected to the mixer such as Spotify, Pandora or Youtube and select your music (note: like in a studio environment, you are legally responsible for obtaining rights and permissions to stream music during a virtual class)
          • Step 8: Switch back to Zoom and start your class

    There are many ways to configure your audio and visual setup for great performance, regardless of which route you choose, make sure to test your setup before your first public class–every piece of gear and software application operates slightly differently.  

  • Audio Troubleshooting

    TROUBLESHOOTING AUDIO CHALLENGES

    Ahead of troubleshooting, make sure you have the Zoom mobile app on iOS or Android (available on Apple App Store and Google Play).

    Troubleshooting Speaker Issues

    If you cannot hear other participants in a Zoom meeting, follow these steps to troubleshoot the issue.

    • Ensure your speaker is turned on. If you see the speaker icon in the top-left corner is turned off, tap it to turn on your speaker
    • Increase the volume on your mobile device using the volume buttons or notification panel. Even if the speaker is turned on in Zoom, your device’s volume might be set to mute or vibrate only.
    • Try using earphones.
    • Restart your mobile device.
    • Reinstall Zoom from the Apple App Store or Google Play

    Troubleshooting Microphone Issues

    If you are experiencing issues using your microphone with the Zoom mobile app, follow these steps to troubleshoot the issue:

    • Ensure the microphone is not on mute. If you see the muted Audio icon in the meeting controls, tap it to unmute yourself
    • Ensure you have connected your mobile device’s audio. If you see the following Audio icon in the meeting controls, tap it and select Call via Device Audio. If prompted, allow Zoom to access your microphone
    • Try using earphones with a microphone
    • Ensure Zoom has access to your device’s microphone:
      • iOS: Go to Settings > Privacy > Microphone and switch on the toggle for Zoom.
      • Android: Go to Settings > Apps & notifications > App permissions > Microphone and switch on the toggle for Zoom.
    • Ensure that no other applications are using the microphone at the same time:
      • iOS: Double-tap the “Home” button to view apps currently running. Swipe up to close an app
      • Android: Tap the multitask button (the square icon usually in the bottom-right corner) to view apps currently running. Swipe left to right to close an app.
    • Restart your device.
    • Reinstall Zoom from the Apple App Store or Google Play
  • Video Troubleshooting

    TROUBLESHOOTING VIDEO CHALLENGES

    We recommend that you test Zoom ahead of your first live-stream class – you will want to experiment with doing a live-stream with a camera through your desktop computer, phone, and/or laptop. If you are ready to live-stream your class and your camera is not showing up in the Zoom Settings or it is selected and not showing any video, follow these tips to troubleshoot why it may not be working.

    Desktop

        1. Make sure that all other programs that utilize the camera, (Photo Booth, Facetime, etc. are closed. 
        2. Restart your computer.
        3. If the camera still does not work in Zoom after restarting, check if the camera works in a Mac app, such as Photo Booth or Facetime, or Windows app. If it works elsewhere, uninstall the Zoom client and reinstall the latest version from Zoom’s Download Center. If it does not work in any application, contact Apple support. 
        4. Note: If you are on Mac OS 10.14 Mojave and are still having difficulty accessing the camera, check your operating system permissions to confirm that Zoom has access to the camera. Windows 10 also has a privacy feature that may block Zoom from using the camera.

    iOS Device

        • Attempt to start your video by tapping “Start Video”
        • Tap the camera icon at the top of your screen to switch between the front and back cameras
        • Ensure no other apps are using the camera
          • Double-tap the home button to view all open apps
          • Swipe up on any apps that may be using the camera
        • Confirm that Zoom has camera access
          • Open your iOS settings
          • Tap “Privacy”
          • Tap “Camera”
          • Toggle Zoom access to on (green)
        • Restart your iOS device
        • Delete the Zoom app and reinstall it from the App Store
          • Hold down on the Zoom app icon until it starts to move and an X appears
          • Tap the “X”
          • Confirm that you want to delete the app by tapping “Delete”
        • Open the App store
        • Search for “Zoom”
        • Tap the cloud next to “ZOOM Cloud Meetings” to download it
        • Once it’s finished downloading, Zoom will appear in your apps
        • Confirm that the camera is working in other iOS apps, such as the Camera app
          • If it works in other apps, contact Zoom support
          • If it does not work in any app, contact Apple support

    Android Device

          • Open the Zoom App
          • Attempt to start your video by tapping “Video”
          • Switch between the front camera and the back camera by tapping “Switch Camera”
          • Check if any other applications are already using the camera
            • Open recent applications–how to open this varies by device. On some devices, you can hold down the home button and some have a “recent applications” key 
            • Swipe right to close any applications that are using the camera
          • Check that Zoom has permissions for the camera:
            • Open the device settings
            • Tap “Applications”
            • Tap “Application Manager”
            • Tap “Zoom”
            • If it does not list access to take pictures and videos, uninstall and reinstall the app as shown below
          • Uninstall and reinstall the Zoom app
            • Open your device settings
            • Tap “Applications”
            • Tap “Application Manager”
            • Tap “Zoom”
            • Tap “Uninstall”
            • Confirm Uninstall
            • Open the Play Store
            • Search for “Zoom Cloud Meetings”
            • Tap “Install”
          • Restart your Android device

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