T Nation

Starting My Own Gym Business

I am looking at starting up a personal trainer’s gym in the next 8 months or so.
Basically i know where i wanto go and where to expand i just got to get your opinion on what are some things i need to do.

What do you think are the items i need, i dont want to have all machine weights, basically i want it old school with a part of new school, so bench, leg press, squat rack, dips, boxing bags, what else you think would be needed

As i am renting out a location do you think that it would be best to buy specialized flooring, but something easy to move somewhere else maybe a type of those jigsaw mats.

Rent of Buy Equipment:
Do you think i should rent or buy equipment, basically i can cancel my membership and work out at the gym what i will have, say for instance if its $400 week for all equipment thats close to $20,000 in equipment per year, so would it be best to buy it all first?

What costs do you think would be involved in basically getting it up and running, ie building rent, equipment, advertising etc.

What i will be offering: Weight Loss, Muscle Gain, Group Classes, Eventually Competition preparation but not yet, Nutritional help and maybe eventually kick boxing/ boxing.

I will be doing it all myself as its going to be a quiet location where people who arent comfortable to get out there, or who are beginning or someone who wants to come to a gym workout hard. Basically going to be there to motivate them, spot them, show them correct techniques etc.

Also if i buy a commercial fridge etc do i have to lock in a contract with a drink business or can i buy my own stuff like bottled water, protein shakes etc and charge what i want, within reason ?
Also on that topic would i be allowed to have protein there for customers to use say if they are on a bulk and charge say $1 - 2 per shake or is that illegal ?

Making Money:
As i don’t have the money i will be getting a loan from a bank etc so i am wondering with a private one on one gym how much should i be offering per client within reason ans with that how long would it take on average for me to make enough money to pay back the loan as i dont care how much i make just wanting to get this business off the ground and working full time on it.

There the only details i have at the moment as i am just brainstorming still.
Have about 6-8 months to get it worked out.
Any help will be appreciated


You’ll have to make a business plan.
How many clients do you think you can attracks? How much would you charge? What would be your income in the starting up fase? How would it grow from there?

You probably won’t be making a profit the first months. Where will you live from? Perhaps you need to borrow more money to tie you over?

There’s only one person who can answer these questions.

In short, set up a business plan and let someone smart you trust take a look at it.

THEN go to the bank. Don’t trust the bank. They are eager to over loan you. They really wouldn’t mind if you have to work the rest of you life, just to pay off the loan.

What are you doing right now? Are you currently a trainer at another gym? Do you have a client base that will follow you or are they tied up in their current gym contracts?

Getting clients will be hard without some good word of mouth references.

Likes already been said, you need a good business plan in place still. Where will you be located? whats the rent, sq footage, etc? you know what you want to offer, so what equipment do you need to do that? whats the cost difference and the break even point on the equipmenmt you need in buying vs renting? Those answers are specific to your area