Q&A with the Leaders of #SweatSquad
Meet Savannah and Shannon, the dynamic power duo behind Sweet Sweat's Ambassador Program, officially known as The Sweat Squad. A quick search of the hashtag #SweatSquad will present you with over 30,000 pieces of sweaty, awe-inspiring, and motivational social content from an enthusiastic group of hand-selected role models. If you've been watching the program unfold since its launch in 2019 and wondered how the Squad grew from 0 to 150 practically overnight, what the team is doing in response to COVID-19, or how you can get involved, keep scrolling.
How were you introduced to the fitness world?
Savannah - I grew up around bodybuilding and fitness! My Dad is a well-known fitness photographer who owned and ran a bodybuilding magazine called IRON MAN for 28 years. I started sitting in the photographers’ pit and even shooting photos with him when I was just a little girl. So I guess you could say, I was destined to work in the fitness world!
Shannon - My father was the founder and President of Muscle Dynamics Fitness Network, a strength training equipment manufacturing company. Family outings and vacations for us entailed going to hotels and boutique gyms around the world schmoozing with clients to make sure everything was set up smoothly. I guess you could say my dad made sure we were a “walk the talk” type of family. Living a healthy active lifestyle was just the way it was for our family growing up. Also, my father was part of the original Sweet Sweat Team that toured the world demonstrating products back in the early eighties with Mr. and Mrs. Pedersen.
I was always asking my dad to go with him to the trade shows and to be on set for commercials and photo shoots so I could meet and learn from the athletes, celebrity fitness models and personalities he worked with. My dad actually worked very closely with Savannah’s father as well. Whenever a new machine or product line came out, he would go to Savannah's father Mike Neveux, a legendary fitness photographer, to produce top notch photo & video shoots. Eventually my dad started including me as a model, personality, and even as a global business representative for his company.
Tell us about your personal journey in health and fitness, what do you bring to the table?
Savannah - My Senior year of college, I decided I was done with the “partying” lifestyle and wanted to get healthy and fit. I joined a gym and started lifting weights, because I wanted to feel good, both inside and out. I found a passion for working out, and wanted to share the things I had learned, so I started my own blog, Muffin Top-Less. My blog & social media was a huge part of my life for many years... it motivated me to continue learning, improving and inspiring others to do the same. I became ISSA Certified and began working at Equinox as a personal trainer. Eventually, I found my way back to the influencer world, working here at Sports Research / Sweet Sweat as the Influencer Marketing Manager. Now I get to see what it’s like on the other side of the gram!
Shannon - I have been a competitive athlete and dancer for most of my life. I started off as a gymnast, dancer and multi-sport athlete in my younger years and went on to be Track and Field Pole Vault Captain for the University of Southern California while pursuing my BA in International Relations. Upon graduating I began to work for Lululemon where part of our job was to explore fitness resources in our communities. This inspired me to cultivate my love for dance and fitness in a professional way. During that time I joined an international dance company and became an AFAA certified fitness instructor and personal trainer while developing myself as a professional in the field of communications. I also created my own belly dance style training method, RAQSHIMMY.
I was recruited out of that world to help Sports Research build its Customer Experience Team and to help recruit talent for the rapidly growing brand. I thought it was once in a lifetime opportunity to help take a brand I loved and respected to the next level.
While working at Sports Research I started competing in fitness competitions as a way to keep myself involved in the industry and eventually earned my WBFF Pro Card in 2017.
What is the Sweat Squad?
The Sweat Squad is a network of highly motivated social media influencers who are revolutionizing the world of health and fitness and who embody Sweet Sweat's core values. We created a comprehensive tryout process designed to find positive role models who are actively inspiring their communities to live a healthy, balanced lifestyle and break a sweat everyday.
This program is meant to empower our Sweet Sweat Ambassadors to grow their communities, improve their content creation skills and expand their social influence while maximizing their partnership experience with the Sweet Sweat brand.
What do you look for in a Sweat Squad Member? Paint a picture of people that succeed in the program.
We are always looking for team members who embrace and share the Sweet Sweat lifestyle with their communities. Some of the key things we look for in a Sweat Squad member are a passion for helping others, enthusiasm for the brand and products, and motivation to build their social influence.
Individuals who succeed in the program are typically enthusiastic, proactive, innovative, inquisitive, and have a true love for a healthy active lifestyle. They join the program already using Sweet Sweat as part of their daily routine and are always sharing about it. Our Ambassadors get out of the program what they put into it so being proactive in taking initiatives outside of what is asked of them goes a long way. We designed the program to reward participants for their creativity and love of the brand.
What is your favorite part about the program?
Our favorite part about the program is watching our members blossom and discover their leadership power and social impact. They inspire us daily and help keep us creative and on our toes. It’s easy to get excited when you get to collaborate with such positive, enthusiastic and inspirational individuals.
How has COVID-19/ WFH impacted you and your #SweatSquad?
As a health and fitness centered company we have the opportunity to play our role in offering support and resources to people searching for tools to take care of themselves. We are paying attention and listening to our customers and social media followers to find out how we can best support our Sweet Sweat Community with the help of our Ambassadors. We are calling on our Squad to do what we do the best, break a sweat everyday, and empower others to do the same.
If anything, what's happening in the world right now has brought each of us and our Squad closer together in spirit, looking for ways to serve our community, each other, and reminding us all the importance and value of physical and mental health.
Whether we work side by side in our office or face to face through our computer screens, our mission remains the same.
Have you had to make any shifts?
A lot of our Sweat Squad members are avid gym goers. Due to the need to practice and responsibly promote social distancing as a company and as a nation, we have encouraged our Squad to share more home workouts, essentially shifting focus away from gym-based workouts to more home, body-weight and prop based workouts. We are also encouraging the Squad to share their Self-Care regimens with their communities as a resource to help empower anyone in need of inspiration for healthy habits during this unprecedented period of isolation.
Is breaking a sweat still possible at home?
You better believe it! In fact, some of our favorite Sweet Sweat style workouts are designed to be done from the comfort of your home, from sustained cardio like jumping rope in place, to building your booty using our Mini loop bands and Hip Bands, there are so many options. We are working closely with our Sweat Squad and Sponsored Athletes to compile all kinds of fun options to help you break a sweat everyday. If you have any special requests don’t hesitate to reach out to our support and social media teams and ask away. We want to help in whatever way we can!
How do you apply for the Sweet Sweat Ambassador Program?
While our 2020 Sweat Squad Tryouts have officially come to a close, we are still accepting applications for our team. We recommend filling out the application right away via the following link: Sweet Sweat Ambassador Program. When spots open up throughout the year, we will be bringing on team members who are a strong fit for the Squad.
Want to be a Sweet Sweat Ambassador? Fill out the application form here: https://sportsresearch.com/pages/athlete-ambassador-program