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Greg Twombly Interview

Greg's new CIA 9900 series productions are due out in February 1999. He is most recently featured in CIA 9803 - Two Workouts in One.

WNK: Did you always plan to make a career of fitness? How did you get started?

GT: Yes, but had no experience in video production. My degree is in Exercise Physiology. My initial idea for my company was to service aerobic instructors with new moves on video. I knew the concept would work an I took a chance and shot my first video, CIA 1001 in 1988. From there I started learning more about video production and quickly started filming more videos for CIA.

WNK: In the early years of fitness videos, the name Greg Twombly was in the credits of nearly all of them. How did you become such a pioneer in fitness video production?

GT: I can actually take the credit for being the pioneer of "Instructional Videos for Aerobic Instructors". By putting out my instructional videos, this led into advanced consumer workout videos with some of the best instructors in the US. The demand for good moves and choreography was at a all time high in the late eighties for instructors. This made it easy for me to choose the best people for my videos. The videos not only were good for instructors but made great hard workouts for the consumer market.

WNK: How did CIA (the company) get started?

GT: I attented my first fitness conventions in 1986 and 1987. It was impossible to write all the choreography down and remember what was being taught by the instructors. So I had to find out away to put these instructors and their moves on video. I then used my own money and a great pre-selling concept to start Creative Instructors Aerobics. I took out two ads in magazines and raised enough money to pay for the production of CIA 1001.

WNK: Tell me about the first fitness video you ever filmed.

GT: The video was CIA 1001. I knew nothing about production and it took me 2 days to film four 25 minute segments. I used one camera and shot things twice. It seemed very time consuming to do things this way. I quickly learned the tricks of the trade about video production and learned how to film exercise videos very fast. Time is money in production work.

WNK: Do you own your studio and equipment?

GT: No I rent all of my production equipment, studio, and staff. I have different clients who have different needs. I do own my own aerobic floor.

WNK: How many videos (CIA and other) do you produce each year, on average?

GT: 10-20 videos, demos, and small infomercials. WNK:

How do you select the instructors for your CIA videos?

GT: We select them by their popularity in the instructor training market. If the instructors are out there presenting all the time, they can sell videos. This helps promote CIA. We also select local people and unknown people and turn them into stars. Most of the CIA Instuctors have gone on to star in fitness TV shows.

WNK: Are CIA instructors typically full time fitness professionals or do they have "day jobs?" How hard is it to make a living in the fitness industry?

GT: More then half the instructors are full time fitness consultants and presenters. The others are great instructors in their city who also work as private trainers, directors, and club owners. Most of the local talent I use are part time instructors and full time moms. Its really not hard to make a living in fitness, if you are good and can market yourself, you can make some money.

WNK: Which has been your best selling CIA video?

GT: The best selling CIA Video to date is 9809. The kickboxing craze has made this happen. It is also the best one. I have had alot of successful videos because I try to stay ahead of everyone. If I see something that is in demand, I will put it on video faster than anyone.


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