Setting up a Fitness Business
With awareness about fitness rapidly increasing, most people have some sort of an exercise regime fitted
into their daily schedule. Some prefer to work out at home, while others like to sweat it out at professionally
managed fitness facilities.
This growing trend towards keeping in shape has resulted in a rise in the number of commercial fitness
centers and chains across the country. So, if you want to get into the exciting and challenging business of
running a gym, now is the time to jump on board the fitness solutions bandwagon.
Like any other business, starting a fitness business also requires methodical planning and a handful of skills.
Read on for a step by step guide to setting up a profitable fitness business.
For anyone who wants to start a commercial health studio, having a keen interest in fitness and a strong
desire to learn more about the industry is a must. If you are not a fitness enthusiast yourself, it’s unlikely
you’ll be able to think like your health crazed clients and serve them in a manner they deserve.
You have to be aware of and constantly educate yourself on the latest trends in the fitness industry, newest
equipment to hit the market, and different types of training techniques. A knowledgeable gym owner will
instill the confidence in his clients that they are in good hands.
Next in line is to get the requisite fitness certifications and licensure in accordance with your state’s
regulations. If you are planning to hire fitness instructors, make sure they are adequately qualified and
certified to train your gym patrons.
You may also want to hire instructors who can teach multiple fitness classes like kickboxing, Yoga, or other
group workouts so you can widen the scope of fitness solutions offered at your fitness facility. This will also
help you get a competitive advantage over your rivals that provide purely equipment-based training.
Business Skills Are Vital Too
Your own fitness level and interest may be the guiding factors in your decision of starting a fitness business,
but never for a moment make the mistake of assuming that being a health freak is the only qualification you
Like any entrepreneur, you should be aware of, if not well conversant with, how to run a business. From
planning marketing strategies to tackling staffing issues, all business decisions will need your active
involvement. So, it may make sense to acquire these skills before you set up your fitness solutions venture.
Once these pre-requisites are in place, you should draft a fitness business plan that you can share with your
lenders in case you need to borrow the start-up capital. Make sure the cost of setting a fitness center doesn’t
come as a surprise to you. To provide you a rough estimate, starting a fitness business may cost anywhere
between $50,000 and $1,000,000 or more depending on its size and structure.
After you have completed all the formalities and acquired the necessary skills, you can start designing your
facility. Ideally, your fitness center design should include the architectural, infrastructural as well as aesthetic
But before you start acquiring and installing equipment, you need to decide the operating format of your
fitness studio. Is it going to be at a place that caters to all classes of exercisers or will you target it to a
specific group? Your target audience will determine the type of equipment to be housed in your gym.
Once your fitness facility is ready to start operations, you need to make a mega announcement to attract
business. Advertise and promote your offering using flyers, radio spots, local newspaper classifieds, and
whatever else works and fits your budget.
However, real success will come only if you offer your clients services that are par excellence through a
facility that’s hygienic, safe, and well-maintained at all times.
About the Author:
Paul Smith is a certified personal trainer and works at an uptown New York gym. He has a Bachelor’s
degree in physical education. He is a sports enthusiast and loves to play baseball. He is a health freak and a
recent convert to vegetarianism. He loves sharing his knowledge about fitness products and corporate
fitness solutions. When he is not training his patrons, you’ll find Paul playing video games with his son.