It is known and well said that 'A man's health can be judged by which he takes two at a time - pills or stairs' Joan Welsh. Thus, with growing health concern and need to remain fit, an idea of starting a fitness center itself sounds promising. However, there are deeper aspects to take a look at before one practically gets engaged with the financials.
The following introductory steps will help you engage in the basic thought process that is required to stimulate your mind and decide about your fitness center –
What do you wish to cater- This is the first step that needs not just your line of idea but also ample research. Do you wish to start a fitness center that caters only to obese people, or to women's health, or which provides a combination of activities like, yoga, aerobics and gym? What age group are you looking to target? Do you want your fitness center to be known for something new, like introduction of Bollywood dancing or something more novel? Make up your mind initially to what you wish to offer as fitness solutions.
Marketing- There are several ways by which you can market any product. General marketing involves word of mouth, advertisement in the local newspaper, using radio, etc. However, if you are going to accommodate to a specific group like just women, it has to be done entirely in a unique and distinct way. Marketing for women would involve promotional tools that can grab the attention of women, for example, spreading the word around at parlors, residences, malls, etc. with information that again caters specifically to women's issues such as weight reduction, flexible timings, spa services, etc. Marketing your fitness center is idea-specific and must be strategically planned.
Location- This is another vital facet of planning your fitness center. A fitness center that is easily accessible and is in the vicinity of a good locality is primarily essential. The ideal location again depends on the kind of people you wish to attract apart from how much you can really afford. A noisy and an unclean environment can never be suitable for a fitness center. Keep in mind that people residing in and around your decided location are going to be the ones who will pay you a visit.
Equipment and financials- Again, depending on your idea of fitness solutions, you may require the requisites for a fitness center. A yoga center will require an investment into nothing more than basic infrastructure of yoga mats, mirrors and a good music system. But when it concerns setting up a gym, a heavy investment is needed for all the requisite gym equipment and other machinery. Get an idea of what all you may need from similar fitness centers, check out for leasing companies that provide equipment on lease, and get a rough estimate from your local bank to check deals on loans and other payment options.
Other additional provisions- These could include the staff that you wish to hire and the salary you will need to pay them. Personal trainers, dieticians, staff to clean and maintain the fitness center, taxes that you may be required to pay, fees or membership that you wish to charge, money required for the upkeep and for any wear and tear of the fitness center, electricity and other costs, hiring a professional to design the layout of your center, etc. are other things that must be kept in mind.
These are the fundamental steps that will help you get started and make a business plan. Once all these details are put on paper, things will become more clear and easy to map, step by step. With fitness solutions making headway into several homes and people's routines, it is an idea that can turn to a lucrative business. Careful planning and anticipation of future needs will make the business plan, a successful venture. Introduction of new offers is yet another aspect that could be challenging but profitable. Launching novel schemes and offers are not just beneficial and attractive, but also fun to carry out. Some of them could be-
Providing free consultation for diet and other fitness solution parameters like BMI, calorie intake requirement, etc.
Starting something latest. A short or a fast track, complimentary course in meditation or Bollywood dancing or even any holistic cure technique, like Pranic healing, Reiki, etc. can attract many people. A tie up with spa services, or other such fitness facility, can also be inspiring.
Flexible batch timings.
Separate batches for women and children, etc.
Whatever your idea, if crafted with a motive to provide fitness services to people, it will be a success.
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.