Whichever route you choose, be sure to shop around, says Florez. The market for exercise equipment is very competitive and you may find some steals.
Because injuries may happen, experts advise that you sign up for insurance. Make sure the policy covers the studio space and, if you have staff, the instructors. If your teachers are contractors, they must have their own policies.
How to Grow
A studio can only hold so much equipment and juggle so many classes. And you can only teach for a certain number of hours before being physically burned out. So how can you keep the momentum going? You can invest in another space, add a retail space and sell clothes, or develop DVDs and write books.
Another option is to franchise, like Fowler. For Warshay,the answer was to branch into training golfers and holding clinics at the golf hotspots. "That way, I am not married to a physical space," she explains. "I'm trying not to put all my eggs in one basket."
Know the Bottom Line
Starting your own fitness studio is not a cheap endeavor. If you dream of being the state-of-the-art, go-to studio for your market, expect toshell out $500,000, says Florez. But if you're creative, it could be as little as $30,000. How creative? Florez says when looking for a space, consider a mixed-use building and then barter with the landlord: You'll teach the tenants for free or at a discount for no or low rent.
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