6 steps to becoming a successful CrossFit gym owner
CrossFit is a high-intensity fitness program that has gained significant popularity over the years. Incorporating various functional movements, such as weightlifting, gymnastics, and metabolic conditioning, CrossFit workouts help individuals achieve overall fitness and wellness. The CrossFit brand has become synonymous with high-quality fitness programming, as such, many are interested in opening their own CrossFit gym. In this guide, you’ll learn the steps required to start a CrossFit gym, including affiliation requirements and fees.
Step 1: Obtain certifications
The first step in starting a CrossFit gym is to obtain the necessary certifications. It’s a CrossFit requirement that all affiliate owners and trainers be certified by the company. The certification process involves attending a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer course, which is a two-day seminar that covers the foundational movements and concepts of CrossFit. This certification is required for anyone who wants to become a CrossFit affiliate owner or trainer. After completing the Level 1 Course, you must pass an online exam to demonstrate your knowledge of CrossFit training principles. The cost of the course is currently $1,150 (which includes the exam).
Step 2: Choose a location
Once you have successfully earned the necessary certifications, the next step is to find a location for your CrossFit gym. Look for a space that is easily accessible, has ample parking, and is in a high-traffic area. Ideally, you’ll want to look for a space of at least 3,000 square feet, with high ceilings and plenty of room for equipment.
Step 3: Purchase equipment
It goes without saying, you’ll need to invest in gym equipment before you can open your CrossFit gym. The equipment needed includes barbells, bumper plates, pull-up bars, kettlebells, medicine balls, and rowing machines, among other items. You can purchase equipment from a variety of sources, some of the most popular include Rogue Fitness, Again Faster, and FringeSport.
Step 4: Affiliation requirements and fees
To run a CrossFit gym, the primary requirement is to be affiliated with CrossFit, which involves meeting certain standards and requirements set by the company. The process of becoming an affiliate is not necessarily strenuous (unlike the workouts!), but it does require dedication, time, and financial investment.
In addition to the certification and training mentioned above, here are some other steps and requirements to become a CrossFit affiliate:
- Purchase an affiliate membership: To become a CrossFit affiliate, you must purchase an affiliate membership, which costs $3,000 per year. This membership gives you the right to use the CrossFit name and logo, access to CrossFit programming, and other benefits.
- Meet the facility standards: CrossFit has specific facility requirements for affiliates, including minimum space and equipment standards, safety measures, and other guidelines. Some of these other guidelines include: maintaining liability insurance coverage, ensuring that all trainers are certified by CrossFit, and conducting business in an ethical and professional manner.
You must not only meet these standards to become an affiliate, but you must maintain your affiliation status to keep your gym open.
- Adhere to CrossFit standards and practices: As a CrossFit affiliate, you must adhere to the company's standards and practices, including programming, coaching, marketing, and other aspects of running your gym.
It's important to remember that running a successful CrossFit gym requires hard work, dedication, and a commitment to your clients' health and fitness.
Step 5: Marketing and promotion
Once your CrossFit gym is up and running, it's time to focus on marketing and promotion. Fitness is a highly competitive industry, and you will need to work hard to attract and retain your gym members.
One of the best ways to promote your CrossFit gym is through word-of-mouth advertising. Encourage your members to invite their friends and family to try out your gym. Offer referral discounts to members who bring in new business.
You can also use social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram to promote your gym. Share photos and videos of your workouts and engage with your followers to build a sense of community.
Step 6: Reaping the benefits
Running a CrossFit gym can be a rewarding experience that offers a variety of benefits. Here are just some of what you can expect:
- Fulfilling career: Many CrossFit gym owners agree that running a gym is both a fulfilling and rewarding career. As a gym owner you get to enjoy helping people improve their health and fitness and feel a sense of pride and accomplishment when your clients achieve their goals.
- Flexible schedule: With gym ownership, you have the flexibility to set your own schedule. You can choose the hours that work best for you and your clients, and you can often set your own schedule for vacations and other personal commitments. It’s not always easy to achieve such a balance with a regular nine-to-five job.
- Strong community: CrossFit gyms often have a strong community of members who support and motivate each other. You can help build and foster this community, creating a sense of belonging and support among your clients.
- High demand: CrossFit has become increasingly popular in recent years, and there is a high demand for gyms that offer this type of training. This means that there is a potential for a steady stream of clients and a profitable business.
- Personal satisfaction: Seeing your clients achieve their fitness goals and improve their health can be incredibly satisfying. As a gym owner, you have the opportunity to make a positive impact on people's lives and help them be healthier and happier.
- Creative freedom: Running a CrossFit gym allows for creativity in programming and workouts. You have the freedom to create your own unique programs and training styles that align with your personal coaching philosophy.
- Continuous learning: You will always be learning and growing in your knowledge of fitness and health. This can be both challenging and rewarding, as you stay up to date with the latest trends and research in the industry.
Protecting your CrossFit business
As with any business, there are risks involved in running a CrossFit gym, and it's important to have insurance coverage to protect yourself and your business. Here are some insurance policies that might be needed:
Professional Liability Insurance: Also known as Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance, this type of insurance protects you in case a client accuses you of making a mistake or error in the performance of your professional services. This policy can cover the cost of legal fees and settlements or judgments against you.
General Liability Insurance: This type of insurance protects you in case you are held responsible for a third party’s bodily injury or property damage that occurs while working on the job.
Business Owner's Policy (BOP): A BOP is an enhanced insurance policy that combines general liability insurance with coverage for your business property, like equipment.
Cyber Security Insurance: If you offer virtual classes, accept credit card payments, or store sensitive health and personal data, cyber security insurance can protect you against the costs of a data breach or ransomware attack.
At Hiscox, we can work with you to help you assess your risks and recommend the appropriate types and amounts of coverage you will need to safeguard your CrossFit gym. Get started today!