1 Month Of Running A Gym

Wild Training has been running since 2010, and I’ve been doing this job for nearly 10 years. Working in private studios, health spas, local authority gyms, big commercial chain gyms, my own personal training studio, as a director for a gym chain. That all teaches you some good stuff and thanks to the variety you see a lot of different approaches to achieve a very similar thing.

We started a small Wild Training studio in 2013 and the programs and membership really created a big buzz and we got a lot of free PR out of how we used the space to deliver some very unique classes for our members. Now that small studio has closed because we have bought a much larger gym, where we plan to use the same model on a bigger scale with some new innovations too.

We are 1 month in and so far, it’s been an exciting adventure for sure. Mostly implementing more efficient systems for membership and day to day stuff and getting everything set for a massive refurb. The most exciting thing about this gym is that there is no one else involved, which means we get to do exactly what we want without needing to compromise it.

The design of the downstairs of our gym. Personal Training Zones and Urban Strength Training Facility for Calisthenics and functional training. 

The design of the downstairs of our gym. Personal Training Zones and Urban Strength Training Facility for Calisthenics and functional training. 

Sometimes people miss what Wild Training is about, because they see the Wild In The Park outdoor classes or the functional style of exercise that we do and think we don’t do weight lifting, or cardio, but the fact is we do it all. Our gym will be made up of the systems that have given all of our members such epic results, given me the level of fitness I have and the Wild Trainers have and have created the success Wild Training has achieved.

I feel like if I compromised that just because people expect to see some treadmills and machines now we have space to deliver a proper gym service I’d be going against everything I’ve learned working in the fitness industry so far.

Our new studio, showing how the Urban Strength Training Facility gives members dedicated exercise zones for when they want to workout on their own, knowing we have enough equipment so they never need to wait around to use what they want. 

Our new studio, showing how the Urban Strength Training Facility gives members dedicated exercise zones for when they want to workout on their own, knowing we have enough equipment so they never need to wait around to use what they want. 

People can come in and workout on their own, instead of always doing Wild Training exercise classes or personal training. Instead of expecting them to do non skilled exercise like using a cross trainer or sitting on some resistance machines, our Wild Training model is all about teaching our members how to exercise properly. Showing them how to get the most out of our facility, the way we have designed it to be the best possible set up for the widest variety of people to enjoy and achieve their goals. 

Apple is a global super brand. The Apple journey is an amazing story, from Mac to Ipod, Iphone to Iwatch. I remember one thing that Steve Jobs said was;

“A lot of times, people don't know what they want until you show it to them.”

One day I saw a guy using a piece of exercise equipment in a questionable way, so I went to talk to him about it to find out what he was training for and then see if I could show him some relevant exercises for his goal and fitness level. He said "I don't know what I'm doing but I'm ok". I said I'd show him some concepts around what it's best used for ... and he said no. He just didn't want my help. Why?

Why don't people want to learn how to exercise more effectively from people that have dedicated their lives to understanding it properly to help others gain the most from it. Have we butchered the fitness industry so badly that people think they should inherently just know how to exercise effectively?

We have an expectation now that everyone is perfect, no one needs to learn, they just do with confidence so no one questions. That’s why around 34% of the home fitness market is home exercise dvds.

People feel the need to have a step before they join a gym to get fit. They can get a dvd, and while they aren't confident in their fitness or body shape they can exercise at home. Then after a while they can join a gym as "a fit person" and have the perception that people think of them as fit. They don’t see the gym as a way to get fit.... But a way to be perceived as being fit.

Over years the fitness industry has been engineered in to a very aggressive sales industry... when in reality it's a service based industry. This guy thought I wanted to sell him something, when in my mind I just wanted to help him get more value from the membership fee he has already paid for.

That membership fee isn't just money to use the facility. It's a membership to a supportive community and an environment that cultivates positive change. Without good staff, a gym membership is just an expensive way of using some machines.

"People with passion have the power to change the world", Steve Jobs. Trying to sell what we do by talking about the product is about as useful as comparing the amount of cushioning you get in a Nike trainer against a Reebok trainer. No one cares, or the more detail you talk in, the less people listen. It's not about exercise programs, or the equipment we use. It's about our values.

Wild Training values:

  • To make it fun
  • To keep it effective
  • To include everyone

When something is fun, people want to have a go, and choose to keep doing it.It’s easy to make exercise effective initially. Keeping the results coming takes smart, progressive varied training. Like Wild Training.People that love fitness, love Wild Training, but we also have Wild Training members that hate gyms, hate group classes and generally have never enjoyed activity.That’s what makes Wild Training so special. We help so many different types of people.

We only work with passionate people. What we do isn't rocket science, but it does take a lot of time to develop knowledge, skills and abilities to enable you to deliver the service at the level required.

Realistically the only way someone will train, study and practice enough to get good enough as a trainer is if they are passionate about fitness, as often the money you earn to do the job is hard to rationalise if you think about it all logically.

Through passion, you can create magic, and then success follows. Otherwise you have to put up with selling rubbish for less money to more people. That can work in some industries but for health and fitness you just end up delivering no change to people that only want change, and long term get them to disengage with the fitness industry completely. Nice strategy. 

The Fitness Industry is all about change. Changing health, changing body shape, changing your mind set. For an industry focused on creating change, it hasn't adopted change for a long time. We are masters of adaptation so when our environment and behaviour change and the way our skills and abilities allow us to interact with that change we see the greatest change in ourselves.

So if our industry is focused on change, surely the way our industry operates should change. Steve Jobs would never run a gym the way it has always been run before. He would find a better way to serve the people that want us to deliver change. Do you want to use an 80's flip phone... Or do you want an Iphone. Wild Training is that change.

"The people that are crazy enough to think they can change the world... Are the ones that do".

I hope Steve Jobs got that right, because I feel like a crazy person most days. Time will tell.

We are accountable for your results. If you come to Wild Training you will get results you can see and feel and enjoy. You just need to be willing and ready to make something happen.

The Wild Training systems have been tried and tested for years and there are examples of every type of person that have transformed their lives with our programs. Young ,  old , thin , fat , fit , unfit , amateur or pro athlete.

Our systems work, but more than that they really will help you enjoy fitness. We love what we do, but you don't get born loving fitness. You learn to love it because you get to experience how rewarding challenging your body is and seeing your effort get you the results you want.

We will show you how to love exercise and enjoy it as a regular part of your lifestyle. Come and train with us for a week. If after a week you don't believe me, and you don't think Wild Training will work for you then we will give you the money back for your week trial.... but I bet you will be as excited about coming to your next Wild Training session with us as I will be about seeing you come back.

You don't need to fit in to a system. You should never have to do that. You are an individual. Fitness is more than getting results. You don't have to be judged on your strengths or weaknesses. You can just love exercise. Love activity. Enjoy its rewards on your own terms. Be part of a positive network of friends that you regularly share fun with.

If you are thinking you don't like exercise... you might just be looking at it the wrong way. It's a guaranteed way of getting more out than you put in, as long as you do it for you, for your reasons.


 James Griffiths, Founder of Wild Training

Why choose Wild Training

What we do

  • Give our staff the best training in the industry
  • Give our staff customer service targets
  • Develop all of our own personal training and group exercise programs
  • Give all our members nutrition, lifestyle and motivational support to ensure they get the results that want.

 What we don't do

  • Give our staff sales targets
  • Ask for large joining fees (because our business model is based on keeping members, and not making money out of signing up new members)
  • Sell sugary brownies, drinks and other snacks. We promote health, not junk food.
  • Get our staff to clean our gym. We pay professionals to do that, so our staff have more time to do what they have been trained to do, help you LOVE getting the best results possible and having the most fun getting them