Spa business planning to combat weight stigma
While dismantling fatphobia and negative bias is complex and requires work, it doesn’t all need to be overly complex! We’ve compiled a list of relatively easy steps to take, to start your journey towards creating a spa that embraces body diversity, without taking a ton of time.
1: (Re)assess the furniture in your waiting room and other spaces.
You want your clients to have a relaxing experience from the moment they arrive at your business. Consider including a variety of sitting arrangements and furniture to accommodate a wide variety of bodies.
Some folks rely on chair arms to help them stand; others are better off without, to have room for wider hips or big bellies. All clients deserve dignity and comfort in your space, so consider having seating with different accessibility options, or even (re)movable arms to provide options for everyone!
Finally, don’t forget to account for passage space between furniture for people who use mobility aids like walkers or scooters to be able to navigate through.
2: Size up your linens, towels, and robes.
Imagine arriving at a hotel expecting the promise of a crisp, clean bed, only to have to explicitly request that pillows and sheets needed to be brought up to your room after you already checked in. It would be pretty uncomfortable, or even annoying, wouldn’t it?
A key action in your day-to-day operations should be ensuring that the right size of linens is available for your clients, so that they don’t have to ask to be accommodated after the fact. Many people whose bodies fall outside of a conventional standard can often be made to feel like they are burdensome, or being too demanding, and avoid the possibility of being denied by not asking for what they need at all. This is especially true of women, who are socialized to sacrifice their comfort for others all the time!
Show your client that you are thinking about their comfort, and be intentional about providing them the luxurious experience they deserve and you strive for!
3: Incorporate inclusion and accommodations in your booking forms and website
Just like in our last example, you wouldn’t want to have to ask for sheets for your bed after you already checked in, so consider giving your clients the option to specify their needs ahead of their arrival, so they can start relaxing right away at the time of their treatment.
This could include:
- writing questions on your booking forms about the size of spa robe or slippers your client needs, so you can prepare (or acquire) them in advance
- providing information about the spa, such as weight capacities of your equipment, and accommodations you are able to provide to ensure a dignified, relaxing experience, clearly on your booking website
- soliciting feedback from clients, or potential clients, through a submission process to inform your future planning to create even more inclusion moving forward!
Ready to get started? Access your FREE Larger Luxury Size-Inclusive Spa Checklist today. This essential tool is purpose-built for spa owners like you, designed to help evaluate the inclusivity of your business practices towards clients in larger-sized bodies. By applying the insights from this checklist, you’re well on your path to crafting a spa that exudes inclusivity, making sure every client, regardless of their size, feels authentically cherished and welcomed.
If you’re eager to discover effective strategies for reaching and growing your audience, attracting new clients, and boosting your revenue, visit MT Consulting Group’s newest offering, Larger Luxury: The Size-Inclusive Spa Course.
Kristin Michelle is a small-fat, feminist, freelance writer. She can be found reading, writing, and fibercrafting at [at]ramblereader on Instagram.