The Business of Owning a Fitness Center

Posted by on April 13, 2011 in Business Management [ 0 Comments ]

Registering Your Fitness Center, Getting a License, Health Inspections, Fire Codes, and Insurance

When opening a fitness center or gym, it’s important to plan ahead. Before you make the mistake of investing in something that won’t be compliant you should do your research. If you plan on offering any type of fitness classes (aerobics, spinning, or weight training) then you will likely need to register for a teaching certificate and have certified trainers to lead your classes. Both the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA) and American Council on Exercise (ACE) offer certification classes for a few hundred dollars.

Aside from personal training and group exercise certifications, your trainers and exercise coordinators will need basic teaching qualifications like up-to-date CPR and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) training. After you find qualified trainers that either already have these certifications, or you put them through the programs yourself, time and attendance systems can help track your employee and personal training hours automatically.

Again, before you announce you are open for business, check and double-check with your city government that your building is qualified for business. Requirements like fire codes, occupancy numbers, and plumbing regulations can differ greatly from city to city as well as zone to zone (for example, building a gym in a smaller residential neighborhood shopping center will have completely different regulations than opening one in a busy shopping mall downtown).

If you plan on having a booming fitness center (which you should), then also plan on your liability costs. When plenty of fitness aficionados come hustling and bustling through your gym during busy hours, it’s good news as long as your covered– anything that happens at your gym will be on your private property and can be blamed on your practices. Business insurance for your fitness center will be vital in preventing any accidents from bankrupting any of your investments.

Depending on the type of fitness facility you want to open (boxing gym versus aerobics studio), you may have a hard time finding a company to provide business insurance for cheap.  Many businesses end up settling for premiums as high as 10% of their monthly income – in any case, it is important to back your business no matter how high the cost.

Image Credit : Beta Daily

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