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Gym Business Plan

Opening a gym can be an exciting prospect for determined fitness-loving entrepreneurs who want to put money into their passion wherever they are in the world. With over 4,880 gyms in the UK as of 2023, it’s clear to see that starting a gym business can have huge revenue potential.

In 2022, the health and fitness industry generated over £1.8 billion in revenue for the UK alone. With estimations that gym businesses, health clubs and fitness centres will continue to see exciting growth for the next five years.

Now you know that starting a gym or fitness business can be a great revenue drive, the next steps are to create a gym business plan to get the financial backing and strategy you need to succeed.

Understanding the sales and marketing strategy, pricing structure, directorship and management of your future gym’s business plan are core components to plan for. As the site owner, you will have a lot to take into consideration, but with the help of our gym business plan outline, we’ll help you through each step.

Gym business plan template

Is opening a gym for you?

As highlighted, the turnover for UK gym owners could be significant. But, with popularity comes high levels of competition and market saturation.

You need to be clear about your local competitors in the area you’re planning to open your gym and the fees that go along with it.

The first thing to start with is a gym business plan so you can gather all of your ideas and findings and start putting together your resources.


  • How many large health clubs are in the area (Bannatynes, David Lloyd etc.)
  • How many independent gyms operate within a 10-mile radius?
  • Existing brand affinity in your area.

How much does it cost to open a gym in the UK?

The average start-up costs to open a gym in the UK is between £80,000 – £100,000. The cost of buying equipment, leasing premises, insurance policies, employing staff; all adds up. Of course, there are ways to open a gym for less.

Such as buying remanufactured gym equipment or being the sole employee in the beginning until you are in a position to employ additional staff.

With this in mind, a gym business plan is how you can prepare for any financial obligations from the very start. We’ll help you figure out how to raise £100,000 in capital based on your current financial situation and existing funds.

What’s included in our gym business plan?

We detail every step you’ll need to take to open your gym. It’s essential that, if you’re planning to secure funds from a bank, the business plan for your gym is as thorough as it can be.

Included within our gym business plan template, you’ll receive:

  • A fully completed gym business plan
  • Break-even analysis (12-month analysis)
  • Complete business plan guide
  • Complete business plan guide Business plan template (.doc and .PDF)
  • Financial planning wizard

Not only that, but we’ll give you over 25 ways to market your gym for free included within your plan.

Download now for only £49

Below, we’ll walk you through an example of a gym business plan. Remember, this is only a guide. You should take the time to work through the business plan for your gym in much more detail.

It’s the old saying ‘measure twice, cut once’ well, we’re saying ‘over plan and deliver’

Step 1: Executive summary

This is your attention-grabbing introduction to your business. Treat this section as your pitch to investors. Banks and investors potentially see hundreds of applications every week. It’ll really pay off to put serious time into your executive summary.

Think about these three things:

  • How can you grab their attention?
  • What makes your gym more likely to be a success than a failure?
  • How can you assure them they’ll get their money back?

Remember, keep this concise (but pack a punch). Don’t overdo it with fluffy words or drawn-out explanations. Shout about what makes your gym (or health club) an incredible business opportunity.

Step 2: company overview

Your company overview is your opportunity to give more detail about the gym and the stakeholders. Give your investors an insight into the brand, the plan for your gym, who operates it, how you plan to make your gym a success.

Included in your company overview, you might consider adding:

  • Where has the idea of starting a gym come from?
  • Have you run any other businesses?
  • What is your current financial status and/or backing?

Again, bringing it back to: why would your investors consider putting money into your gym?

One pro tip we can give you is to think like a business person. For the purpose of the business plan for your gym, you need to think like an entrepreneur.

You need to show that you understand the fitness industry. By highlighting your existing knowledge and plans for the future.

You should consider:

  • Your local market.
  • Opportunities to expand your gym (spas, sports massage therapy, fitness classes).
  • How you plan to separate yourself from other gym applications your potential investors have seen.

Your goal is to deliver the blueprint of your gym to potential backers effectively, investors or partners via facts and figures, and showcase your people skills.

Feel overwhelmed? Not sure where to start? We’ve done all of the hard work for you.

Download now for only £49

Step 3: management and key personnel

Here is where investors can truly assess the potential behind the business. Having a fantastic idea for a gym is only as good as the people who are willing to execute it, and you’ll need help to increase customer service levels and stand out from your competition.

In the management section of your business plan, you’ll need to detail:

  • Roles and responsibilities in the gym
  • Previous experience
  • Salaries
  • Plans for growth (i.e., things like – are you planning to bring people into the business in the future?)

Don’t over-complicate this section. Investors are looking for a solid management structure that they believe will carry the business forward. As long as you can reflect that in your gym’s business plan and you’ll be fine.

Step 4: External analysis (market research)

Having a deep understanding of your market is critical not only for financial backing but for your own sanity. You need to know your competition, your target market and an understanding of the economy within the fitness industry.

Here you’ll really need to explore your target audience. Define them in as much detail as you can. This shows investors your gym has a specific offering; rather than a wide net without much focus.

Who’s going to join your gym (your target market)

Is it busy professionals who need a local, affordable gym close to their work? Or are you targeting athletes who need a more serious establishment to prepare for an event? You need to know who’s going to train at your gym so you can tailor your marketing, your equipment and your brand towards them.

Think about:

  • How do you plan to gain their loyalty?
  • What makes your gym better than your competitors?
  • How much does your membership cost?
  • What are the benefits of your gym membership?

How many local gyms are near you?

How do you plan to separate your business from other gyms in your area? You need to prove that market saturation isn’t a concern and that your gym has more to offer than anybody else’s within a certain distance.

Think about:

  • Do you know everything there is to know about the gyms in your local area?
  • How many chain gyms are close by?
  • What is the average cost of a gym membership?
  • Can you list their amenities and services in comparison with your own?
  • Transport links to your gym – is it easy to get to compared to your competition?

We recommend using a SWOT analysis to determine where your potential strengths and weaknesses are.

Step 5: your business objectives

Treat your business objectives as milestones. Here you’ll outline to investors what your short and long-term objectives are (and how you plan to achieve them). Our advice would be to show you’re not naive enough to think you’re going to quadruple revenue and membership signups by month three.

Your objectives need to be:

  • Realistic
  • Measurable
  • Financially viable
  • Sustainable

For example, your first business objective could be to have ten members signed up to your gym by the end of month one. Alongside that, you’ll have the exact plan for doing that.
Are you planning to run local PR (public relations) campaigns to drive brand awareness? How are you going to build such a presence so quickly?

Show your creativity here. Impress your investors with a solid business plan that clearly defines measurable steps to attract people to your gym.

Step 6: services, gym equipment and, amenities

Detailing what you plan to fill your gym with will indicate the size of the gym you’re planning to open. It will also give your investors a clear idea of how much money you’ll need to buy the gym equipment and lease premises.

For example, you might buy:

  • Treadmills, rowing machines, cross-trainers.
  • Specialist equipment (CrossFit gym equipment, for example).
  • Food and drink for members to purchase while working out
  • Barbells, dumbbells, Olympic weights (rubber or metal).

There’s plenty to keep in mind here. Be realistic with your goals. If you don’t want one hundred members, then don’t overspend on gym equipment.

Next, consider if your gym is for lifting weights only or are you going to offer fitness classes? So, will your gym business plan filter over into a health club business plan, too?

Additional services and amenities to think about:

  • Lockers.
  • Fitness classes (yoga, Pilates, CrossFit, boxing, spin etc.)
  • Spas.
  • Massage room.
  • Swimming pool.
  • Sauna/ Jacuzzi.

The benefit to offering more is that you can charge more for people to join your gym (keeping in mind your local competition).

Step 7: financial forecasting and financial projections

Potentially the most crucial part of your gym business plan is your financials. Again, investors are driven by ROI (return on investment) and risk. If you haven’t thought about where every penny and pound is being spent, you’ll put yourself at risk of being turned away.

You’ll need cost estimations for:

  • Purchase estimations.
  • Hiring costs.
  • Building/construction work
  • Insurance policies.
  • Accounting.
  • Marketing.

These are only a few considerations. Planning your financials is one of the more complicated items of any gym business plan.

You’ll need to show the bank/your investors how you plan to recuperate the money invested. How much money will your gym bring in and from where? Do you know if gym memberships will be the most profitable or will gym classes?

You’ll likely need to provide:

  • Cash flow statements
  • Sales forecast

Don’t narrow yourself to a single source of income. You can (and should) diversify your revenue streams. Your investors will feel more comfortable knowing that you aren’t solely reliant on gym memberships but instead have clear ideas for expansion.

We’ve taken all of the hard work out of planning your finances for your gym. Download your gym business plan template instantly below.

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Step 8: funding

Your investors need to know where your start-up capital is coming from or if you have any existing financial support. Can you realistically get backing to launch your gym? Or do you potentially not have enough to get yourself off the ground with your current plan?

You might already have funding in the form of:

  • Personal loans.
  • Bank loans.
  • Partners or sponsors.
  • Family/friends.
  • Savings.

Make sure you’re incredibly clear about where the money is coming from, how much you need to borrow to start the business and if you’ve been rejected for any applications in the past.

If you have any ‘red marks’ against your name, it’s important you’re upfront from the start as you’ll be credit checked. It’s best to avoid secrets during this time!

Your free sample gym business plan

If you need an example of how a gym business plan might look, we’ve pulled together a small Word template that you can use to get you started for your gym business plan outline.

Included in this template, you’ll get:

  • An example of your executive summary.
  • Budgeting.
  • Products/services on offer.
  • Staff and management structure

Download .doc here

Summary and recap

Starting any business comes with challenges – not just fitness businesses. But a solid business plan is how you mitigate risk and set yourself up for success. Whether you need a small gym business plan or you have goals to open a franchise in the next ten years, you need to start here with a gym business plan outline and a plan.

A well-thought-out gym business plan will give you the security that you’ve thought of everything you could need to be successful. Think of it as an extra layer of security or a helping hand from people who have done it before you to kick start your fitness centre dream.

Gym business plan template

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“I needed to put together a long-term business plan to cover all aspects of my new venture. I read a lot of books and attended courses, but I was struggling. Then I came across Teneric and suddenly it was all there in a format I could use and in terminology I could understand. After that, it was plain sailing to the Business Department at my local HSBC Bank”

Jill Shilcock, Managing Director, SEAS Education Advisory Service Limited.

“I wanted ideas for the type of information that needed covering in a business plan, and this gave me a template for the document I submitted to the bank. The business loan we were after was approved. If you have never written a business plan before, then I would recommend your product. It was very straightforward and offered some good advice.”

Gordon Mitchell, UK

“I needed a business plan quickly. The template was easy to use, just fill in the blanks on the wizard and refer to the help guide if I wasn't sure. Your system is good value, and I would recommend them to everyone needing a plan. Attached is the basic plan I threw together in a day for the bank. They specifically wanted cash flow projections, and the Excel spreadsheets were really what I was after from your product.”

John Waterhouse, UK