After 25 years in corporate, my sister and I launched a funky little fitness studio. 12 years later, I realize it was the best thing I ever did. If you are evaluating the prospect of owning a fitness studio, here are a few of the things we found attractive about this kind of business.
1) People become passionate about your place and in many, many cases you are making a real difference in their mental and physical health.
2) For most studios, your hours are limited to the times there are classes, it is not a business where you need to be physically present for long consecutive stretches (like retail or restaurants)
3) The financial model is a good one…..IF you can reach a certain attendance level. Extra revenue has little associated cost.
4) Your clientele becomes a close community. Because of your business, they interact with you and with each other in a wide variety of ways. We’ve connected with schools, charities and other local causes in a powerful way over the years. We’ve also built genuine new friendships with customers.
5) It’s a highly automated business administratively. Virtually 100% of your customers pre-pay for services, and most of that payment comes online. Thus, no worries about cash in the studio, and no billing or accounts receivable issues. These models are great for cash flow.
6) Decisions you make every day directly impact the success of your studio.
I could go on. Owning a business is not for everyone, and fitness studios have their own special challenges. But if you find yourself suited, if you enjoy the challenge, and if you execute well in key areas — it can be an awesome business. It has been for us.