Ultimate Guide On How To Open A CrossFit Gym (Box)

How To Open A CrossFit Gym

If you are a CrossFit fanatic and have wondered how to open a crossfit gym then you’ve maybe become one of the many who want to take their love of CrossFit and turn it into a full-time business.

There is no doubt that CrossFit has become one of the top fitness movements ever. Now is the time to try to make your mark and open your own CrossFit gym, better known as a CrossFit box.

But how do you begin? We got you covered with our Ultimate Guide On How To Open A CrossFit Gym (Box).

Wondering How To Open A CrossFit Gym? Start Here

There are a number of key steps to starting your own CrossFit gym. We will look at each one individually in detail.

The basic plan is to become a CrossFit affiliate and have the following. A solid business plan, A prime location, financing, and of course have the correct training.

Sound like a lot? Well, in all honesty it’s not really that difficult if you keep focus and follow these basic steps.

Begin With Your CrossFit Gym Business Plan

CrossFit Box Business Plan

First, you need to know how your business start, and how it will operate. This is where your business plan comes into play.

Your business plan is going to provide you with the logical, step-by-step blueprint for not only starting your own CrossFit box, but also how things should ultimately progress over the 12 months that follow.

By creating your plan you will be able to look at the various costs that are involved in opening your gym.

You will need to spend time researching areas such as business and liability insurance, location costs, how much money you will have to spend on CrossFit equipment, marketing costs, and how you are going to take action on everything that is required to make your business a success.

You can get a detailed look at how to start a gym business in our Ultimate Guide To Opening Your Own Local Gym found here.

Business plans are dynamic!  You can refer back to it at any point.

You need to put in as much information as possible so that it can help you. Especially when you inevitably hit a point where you feel confused as to what to do next.

Getting Your Finances In Order

Financing is important as without money you have no business. There are a number of ways in which you can raise capital for starting your own CrossFit gym, and how you get the money together is entirely up to you.

You can use your own cash such as savings, or you can consider getting a business loan. However, if you are thinking about borrowing cash it is important that you have your business plan in order.

Specifically, have your financial projections for a minimum three years out as most lenders will use that to determine if they feel your business can support the payments on the loan for the long-term.

You should certainly spend some time checking out if you are likely to have the finances in place before taking it any further in order to avoid any potential disappointment or roadblocks with getting your gym opened.

Training & Becoming A CrossFit Affiliate

How To Become A CrossFit Affiliate

The next part to focus on is looking to becoming a CrossFit affiliate. Prior to even applying you need to have passed their Level 1 Certificate Course, which they run these classes for a number of times each year.

This course is really just an introduction to their methods and basic movements that make up CrossFit classes, so you can see why it is important to have this before you go any further.

It should also be noted that it is in your best interest to also then take their Level 2 course as this teaches you more advanced moves and will make it easier for you to coach others in the way of CrossFit.

After you have gained your certificate you then need to apply to CrossFit to become an affiliate. Part of that process is to write them an essay that is intended to convince them to accept you as an affiliate. This essay is your chance to tell them more about you as well as why you want to become a CrossFit affiliate. Look at this as your chance to sell both yourself and your potential business.

After you are accepted you will need to pay the annually renewable fee of $3000 in order to be allowed to use the CrossFit name and brand. That just means that you can then include it in your marketing and this is actually a small price to pay considering it is the label that powers your business.

All that is then left to do is for you to have your very own website up and running so that they can then link you to their official website, and open the door for you to start marketing yourself to potential clients and members.

Finally, after you are an affiliate you get private access to the affiliate-only section of their website where you can chat to other CrossFit affiliates, exchange ideas on marketing your gym, and also just get general help on building your CrossFit business.

There are people in the member’s area that have been running their own CrossFit gym for a number of years and the experience they have is truly invaluable.

They can help you progress faster than you ever would be able to on your own.

Additional CrossFit Training

CrossFit offers endless training possibilities for your box members. There are additional training classes available to you that can help you provide specialist classes as part of your gym’s offerings.

Through CrossFit training, you can learn about movements for kids, endurance athletes, football, gymnastics, and many other specific groups.  This will help to increase your knowledge base, and allow you to provide better classes for your members.

Check out the CrossFit website in order to learn more about all the additional training and resources available to you.

Business Start-Up & Logistics

At the start of this next phase you should have been accepted as an affiliate, have been linked up to the CrossFit official website, and can look at how you can get your business logistically started.

Your main concern here is having a location, having the proper CrossFit equipment, and then marketing your CrossFit gym to start getting members and clients.

Finding A CrossFit Gym Location

CrossFit Gym Locations

The first thing that you need to do is to work out where your CrossFit box will be located. It is true what they say…location, location, location.

You are going to be confident in building your business, and believe that it will be an instant success, but you still need to keep your feet on the ground when it comes to choosing a location for your gym.

Spend time looking at a variety of potential locations.

Consider contacting a commercial real estate agent, and tell them what you are looking for and they will help guide you towards locations that fit your needs and most importantly, your budget.

You have to think about a few things when looking for your gym location.

First, you need to have enough space for not only your CrossFit equipment, but also for the classes themselves. However, you need to strike a balance between having enough space and being too big.

Having too big a space can be very expensive at first, but having room to grow your membership base is important too.

You’ll need to think about the little things when deciding on a gym location. Things like: changing and shower facilities, parking, and neighboring businesses can impact your member’s experience so don’t take them lightly.

Also double check the lease agreement with the landlord to avoid being tied down for an extended period of time, especially if you feel that the space might be on the small side.

You need to have some kind of freedom to switch locations or ‘upgrade’ if your gym does really take off without being hit for a lot of money to get out from under the terms of your contract.

Getting CrossFit Equipment For Your Box

So you have a location sorted out and now thoughts turn to getting the right equipment for your gym.

When you first open your CrossFit gym, you might have very few clients and members. What that means is to start off with the basic CrossFit gym equipment necessary to power through your WODs and build from there.

Clearly you need a range of weights, medicine balls, battle ropes, kettlebells and several other key items. You will get a better idea of what basics are required after completing your initial CrossFit affiliate training.

We also recommend looking at buying used CrossFit gym equipment to save some money at the beginning. This will save you a small fortune and help you save some budget for other important expenses.

Right now your main aim has to be providing a quality service to capture the attention of new clients.

As word spreads and your box membership grows, you can reinvest money into expanding your range of equipment and updating your facilities.

Marketing Your Box & Getting Your First Clients

Starting A CrossFit Gym

Getting those all important first box members isn’t going to be easy, but it is also doesn’t have to be difficult either with a little planning.

There are a number of things that you can do when it comes to marketing your brand new CrossFit gym, and some will be in part of the promotional materials you get from CrossFit themselves.

Keep in mind when marketing your CrossFit box is to not rely only on one method of advertising. More marketing channels increase your likelihood of growing your membership base faster.

Your website is one of the first things people see when they find out about your gym. Make sure that your website is full of useful information about CrossFit, and what people should expect from your classes when it comes to their fitness levels.

You also want to include ways to contact you and/or your gym, testimonials about the CrossFit approach, and make the experience as exciting as possible while showing your enthusiasm for what you do.

Aside from marketing your website, it is now important that you build your social media following and use it to your advantage to reach and interact with CrossFit enthusiasts in your local area.

The bigger your social media following, and the more engaging you are with them, the faster you will build trust and rapport in your community.

Advertise locally, use word of mouth to your advantage, and make full use of all of the help that CrossFit offers you in order to kickstart your business on a fast track to success.

You can use financial incentives initially as you build your membership. Think carefully about what you charge and consider an opening trial offer just to get initial members in the door with as little financial risk to them as possible.

You need to remember that this can be a competitive market, especially if there are many gyms to choose from in your local area.

You can greatly improve your chance for success by getting additional insight from the CrossFit business plan, which shows you how a CrossFit business should ideally progress.

Putting Your CrossFit Gym All Together

If you are interested in starting your own CrossFit gym, these are the things that you need to do in order to turn your dream into a reality.

Start by creating your CrossFit business plan, and giving serious thought as to how you will raise the capital before going any further.

Once you have the business plan put together, and an idea of how you will finance your business, pursue the CrossFit certifications needed to apply as a CrossFit affiliate.

When you are ready to apply, make sure that you really sell yourself with the essay you are required to write. Explain why you are a good fit for CrossFit, and what it would mean to you to be affiliated with the CrossFit brand.

Once accepted, pay the $3000 annual fee to gain access to using the CrossFit brand, run classes, and use their marketing materials.

Make full use of the private section of the CrossFit website that is purely for affiliates in order to learn more about how to make the most out of your new CrossFit business. You should also consider trying to complete as many additional courses as possible to improve your skills as a coach and trainer.

Then, be sensible with your gym’s location, and consider starting off with used CrossFit gym equipment to stock your gym while being smart with your budget.

As your membership base grows, so does the opportunity to upgrade as you need to accommodate your growing business.

Anything you are able to do to prevent running into money problems at the very beginning of your business, the better.

Finally, don’t forget to save budget for marketing your CrossFit box both online and offline. The most important thing at this point is making sure that your name is out there so that people know you exist.

Opening your own CrossFit gym does not just have to be a dream, nor does it have to be difficult.

Rather, it can be a reality as long as you are willing to work hard, put in the required time and effort to make it a success, and leverage the proven CrossFit business formula.

You get a lot of help direct from CrossFit themselves, and as long as you follow what others have previously done, then there is no reason why your CrossFit gym can’t be as successful.

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