If you have a love for sports or training, the thought of opening your own sports center is probably very appealing to you.
Many sports lovers, athletes, and personal trainers choose to open up their own training facilities. It’s an exciting journey to embark on and it enables you to continue doing what you live while also increasing your income.
Gyms and sports centers are thriving at the moment as people become more health-conscious. There’s never been a better time to set up your fitness business than now!
But there are complexities with opening up any kind of business. However, opening up a sports center comes with a number of extra challenges that you must overcome.
Not only do you need to think about the basics of starting a business, such as location and staffing, but you also need to think about health and safety. As a sports center, you’ll have several safety protocols to follow in order to keep your members safe.
To make your new venture a little simpler, here are five key things to consider when you are opening up your own sports center.
Find the Right Location
Location is one of the most important factors for fitness facilities. The perfect location is one that enables you to attract and retain members while also turning over a profit.
Your sports center needs to be easy to spot so you can attract new members. Most of your members will be using the gym or sports courts multiple times a week, so it also needs to be in an easily accessible location.
Being located on a high street is the perfect place if you want to establish yourself and gain new members regularly. But high streets will also have the highest lease prices and they are often too expensive for new businesses.
Determine and Purchase Equipment
Depending on what types of sports and training sessions you’re going to provide, you will need a range of different equipment.
You’ll also need to consider the types of flooring to use in each area of your facility. Your courts will need sport court flooring and your gym area will need foam or vinyl.
You will probably upgrade your equipment every few years and you can always expand the equipment that you have available as your business grows. However, to begin with, you only really need to invest in the basics.
Some general basics for every sports center include nets, balls, dumbbells, barbells, benches, and office-based equipment for your staff to use.
Be Aware of Health and Safety Regulations
There are several health and safety regulations that every business must follow. However, for sports facilities, this number is much higher due to the increased risk of injury during heavy weight lifting sessions or high-impact sports games.
Before you open up your facility, you must ensure that you have implemented the necessary health and safety measures to keep your employees and members safe. Reducing the risk of injury should be a major operational focus.
You should also formulate a waiver for all of your members to sign prior to using your facility. This will protect you from liabilities and legal expenses.
It’s almost impossible to completely mitigate any kind of injury in a sports facility. However, following all of the necessary health and safety protocols and covering yourself legally will significantly reduce the frequency of accidents in your gym.
Establish a Business Plan
Your business plan establishes the foundations of your business. It will be used by all employees to ensure the ongoing success of your sports center.
Your business plan may be several pages long and it covers every aspect of your facility, including:
- Aims and objectives
- Main competitors
- Market research
- Marketing and promotional elements
- Action plan
- Budget and financial projections
- Technology and cybersecurity plan
Your business plan is subject to change based on the success of your initial launch and any feedback that your members provide. Make sure to regularly reassess your business plan and make adjustments when necessary.
Invest in Great Software
Business management software helps you to stay organized and on top of your daily operations. It will become particularly helpful as your facility expands and you have an increased number of employees and members to manage.
Your software can be used for:
- Optimize resource management by identifying when new equipment is due for replacement
- Managing memberships, including new sign-ups, renewals, and late payments
- Employee management, including organizing rotas and streamlining wage payments