Jacqueline Pollock - Inspiring Instructor

February 23, 2018

Jacqueline Pollock - Inspiring Instructor

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Lately we've been working on tons of collaborations and community events.  We wanted to introduce everyone to someone who we've been working with throughout the process.  Jacqueline (or Jax for short!) grew up in Boston and after attending college, is back and already making a huge mark on the local fitness industry!

Jax does double duty as an instructor at Rev'd as well as a event coordinator/manager at Lululemon Burlington.  We caught up with her to ask about how she balances both roles, the differences between influential local and national brands, and the trends she sees in retail and wellness. 

Jax has an awesome story and a truly unique perspective - we can't wait to see what else she has in store!

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Tell us the story of how you became involved in the fitness studio and wellness industries!

Jax - I originally began my teaching career at the Recreation Center at UMass Amherst. I was in a really negative place in my life, riddled with anxiety on a constant basis and completely unhappy with the way I was living. I knew that I needed a change but I didn’t know what that change would be. One day a friend of mine dragged me to a spin class and the rest was history. After I walked out of that room I immediately felt empowered to take on anything and for the first time in a very long time I felt relief from the anxiety I had been harboring. I knew at that very moment that I wanted to change people’s lives and give others the same feeling that I experienced from exercise. When it was time to graduate I knew I had to continue my journey as a professional instructor and I was familiar with Rev’d Indoor Cycling because a co-worker of mine had taught there. She connected me with Meaghan, one of the owners, and the timing worked out perfectly because they were getting their Burlington studio up and running. After going through the development program I started teaching in March of 2017 and have been so happy ever since!

How do you balance your roles at lululemon and rev’d? Is there a lot of crossover between the two brands?

Jax - I’ve been so lucky to have had the opportunity to work at such incredible companies. I am currently a Key Leader at lululemon and it has been an absolute dream to work for a corporation that has values that align so closely with my own. Within our Burlington store I oversee the community pillar, which is easily the best part of my job. I get to collaborate with local fitness studios in our area and put on events to highlight all the big things they already have going on. Within the past six months I’ve had the chance to collaborate with Rev’d on several occasions - creating events that incorporate both spin and other fitness studios such as Sweatfixx and Xtend Barre. It’s so exciting to foster these meaningful relationships and offer members of our community the opportunity to sweat and try new things!

What is it like working for a big organization like lululemon vs a local company like rev’d?

Jax - Although lululemon is a massive company, they empower each and every store and employee to make entrepreneurial decisions. One of the biggest mantras they instill in us from the beginning is to “act first and ask for forgiveness later.” The company is structured in a different way than most - instead of having a direct boss to report to we are encouraged to make decisions in the moment. If they fail, we take away learnings from them and move forward with the knowledge of what we can do better the next time. At Rev’d, because it’s such a small company everyone is like family. We are all so close with the owners of the studio and it fosters a great environment because we are all able to have such a strong genuine relationship with one another.  

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What do you think is the next wave/trend in wellness?

Jax - I think that group fitness is one hundred percent the future of wellness. It’s so motivating and inspiring to be in a room full of people all working towards a singular goal. I think mental wellness is another big trend that will be addressed more explicitly in the fitness industry. I know that as a person that struggles with anxiety it was my initial motivation for exploring fitness and I believe that moving forward the industry is leaning towards helping individuals tackle stress, depression, and anxiety head on. With this being said, I can see local businesses begin to create a new wellness category all together, hopefully coming up with innovative ways to obtain emotional wellbeing and overall bliss.

What do you like most about the fitness/wellness industry? What do you think could be better?

Jax - My favorite part about the fitness/wellness industry is the positivity and the people that I get to interact with on a daily basis. There is nothing that makes me happier than walking into a packed room of riders and going on a 45-minute long journey, pushing, challenging, encouraging, and inspiring them to give it 110 percent. The energy that I am lucky enough to receive every single day is so powerful and it’s something that I haven’t encountered elsewhere.

Community is so important for both lululemon and rev’d - how do you and the organizations as a whole help foster this?

Jax - As the community lead at lululemon Burlington, my main job is to go out into the community and take classes, interact with studios, and foster meaningful relationships with instructors. We create store sweat challenges every month to encourage our employees to go and work out together in new environments. Not only does this create genuine friendships among co-workers, but it also supports local studios and inspires everyone to venture out of their comfort zones! If it wasn’t for lululemon I never would have explored the possibility of practicing yoga, which is a routine that has really helped me both mentally and physically.

What do consumers respond best to in a retail setting? With the retail world changing, how do you think companies can create an environment that encourages people to visit the physical locations?

Jax - This is such a good question and probably one reason lululemon has been so successful as a whole. Instead of referring to people that visit our stores as customers, we view them as guests. We try and have genuine interactions with everyone that walks through our doors and we always put our guests’ experience first. If a product isn’t performing well, we do whatever we can to come up with a solution - whether that means swapping the product out, sending a damaged tank top to our seamstress to repair a hole, or simply hemming a pair of pants free of charge, as a company we try and go above and beyond for each and every one of our guests. I believe that is what differentiates us from other retailers and that is what keeps our guests coming back into our physical stores time and time again.

What do you some of your health strategies look like? What do you do to stay healthy and happy?

Jax - I’ve been a vegetarian for 5 years and I’m slowly (but surely) going vegan. I’ve found the most success in breaking up the days I eat a vegan diet vs. the days I eat a vegetarian diet so currently mon-wed I’m vegan and thurs-sun I’m vegetarian. The biggest hurdle for me has been cheese, specifically goat cheese. But I’m a firm believer in living off of a plant-based diet. Since going vegetarian it’s boosted my mood and I’ve felt so much stronger. People often ask me if I miss eating meat and I always answer “no” because once you eliminate it entirely, it becomes second nature. I also have been in getting into the habit of cross-training, which has helped me tremendously. As a spin instructor I’m constantly on the bike, teaching at least 6 classes per week so adding in weekly yoga and personal training sessions has helped my body a lot!

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What do you look for in your health and wellness products/what is important to you and why?

Jax:The biggest thing I look for in wellness products is if they are plant based and cruelty free. I only want to contribute to companies that stand for similar beliefs that I have. If I can help stop even a fraction of the torture that animals unfortunately experience so often then I feel good about supporting a product.

Where do you see yourself in the future/what do you want your career to look like? 

Jax:In the future I hope to eventually become a store manager at lululemon ideally in a warm climate and continue to teach spin and inspire others to lead their best lives!

Do you have any exciting collaborations coming up? (Maybe with a certain local company)

Jax:Ah yes, I’m so glad that you asked. I just so happen to be collaborating with a pretty rad company called VitalFit ;) On Friday, March 16th from 2-4 we’re holding a trunk show at lululemon in Burlington to showcase all the amazing plant-based products you guys have! If you’re in the area it’ll be a great opportunity to come by, shop around, sample, and snag some natural supplements/protein powder!

What products would you like to see from us in the future?

Jax:I’d love to see more vegan protein powder flavors! I’ve tried so many vegan powders and it’s been difficult to find one that I genuinely enjoy and packs as much protein as Vitalfit’s! The consistency is something that I always struggle with (typically they’re too chalky and sweet) but Vitalfit’s is so smooth and natural tasting, which makes it my favorite! I’d love a mocha flavored powder or even a green tea matcha one!

If you'd like to learn more about Jax, check out her schedule at revdindoorcycling.com or find her on instagram @jumpinjaxd.  Thanks so much to Jax for collaborating with us - we can't wait to collaborate with her at the Lululemon event on March 16th! 


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