Snehi Shah’s fitness journey was largely unplanned. It began two years ago when she created the Ssassqueenss account on Instagram to share funny workout videos as a side hustle. But she soon became more enthusiastic about sharing workouts and tips and realized how much she enjoyed exercising regularly and sharing it with others.
Soon after, Shah moved to New York with her husband and decided to get certified to be a personal trainer. Just the thought of having a positive impact on someone’s life kept her motivated. During the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown, she found a unique opportunity to use social media to expand her clientele; now she trains people from all walks of life around the globe.
In March and April, Shah offered free online group or individual training sessions. After that, many participants stayed on. People largely found her through her daily Instagram posts, with her follower count increasing by more than 1,000 people during the lockdown. Her fitness sessions are now a round-the-clock effort for her, since she works with people in all time zones.
“I wanted to do something that helped people who were feeling low at home and living relatively unhealthy lives,” she said. Just this weekend, she inspired SEEMA’s followers with a Saturday Instagram takeover.
A Different Take on Fitness
If you sign up for an individual or group fitness session with Shah, prepare for an experience that’s very different from anything you might find at your local gym.
Shah is an ACE and Animal Flow Level 1 certified personal trainer whose workouts merge dance, calisthenics, and stretching, all with an emphasis on body movement and mobility while primarily using your own body weight for resistance. Her training style comes from studying exercise science to become a personal trainer, but also from years of ballet and Kathak dance training as well.
Shah maintains a fitness diary for each of her clients. She revisits the diaries daily and learns about the person’s overall goals, and emphasizes focusing on small steps and short-term milestones that create motivating small successes along the way to a larger health goal.
A Love of Digital Marketing
Shah earned her bachelor’s degree in Management Studies in Bombay and her masters in International Marketing at London’s King’s College. Soon after graduation, she worked at a social media firm and later her with father’s diamond business. She enjoyed her work, but always felt something was missing.
Luckily for her, Shah comes from a very fitness-focused family, where sports and exercise were of utmost importance. As a child, she practiced ballet for eight years and completed her Kathak Rangmanch Pravesh.
“With my family, we were always active. Sundays we would play badminton, and we were always outside. I didn’t even watch television until 9th or 10th grade,” she said.
Right now, she is unsure if, in the near future, she and her husband will move back to Bombay or stay in New York. In the meantime, she is focused on growing her following and client base through social media, and studying nutrition so she can help others even more.
“My goal is really to be a one-stop destination for people who want to start living a little healthier,” Shah added. “To me, it’s not only about fitness, but feeling better, and helping people make healthier, sustainable choices.”