I want to open a gym!

How much will it cost me?

If you work in the wellness field and you train people, surely in the past you’ve come across this theme and perhaps, like in the 90’s, you didn’t take part in a business adventure due to a lack of money for the investment.

Today things have changed. Despite the difficult sanitary crisis and the negative consequences on the economic system, the road for small fitness entrepreneurs is always more accessible and in the next paragraphs I’ll explain why.

The layout of the multi-discipline big gym isn’t the only possibility.

Many smaller gyms are now being created, specialized and often dedicated to just one activity. These fitness boutiques offer efficient courses in limited spaces, and, as a result, can be equipped with a limited budget.

In these cases success is guaranteed through the training method and not through the abundance of weight machines.

The bureaucracy has adapted.

10 years ago it was difficult for the first pioneers to explain to those who grant authorizations and permits the formula of the small training space, but it’s no longer like this. The micro-gym, small functional training centers and the Cross Training boxes have been diffused in a capillary manner across the nation, creating case studies and precedents that administrations can tap into. Among the costs, keep in mind also your time, since a few hours between publics offices and copious paperwork will be the price to pay that you can’t escape from.

The value of properties.

One of the biggest costs of your functional center is represented by the cost of renting the property. In 2020, investments were reduced by more than 30% on the previous year and this did nothing but affect the commercial buildings sector. As a result, right now is the best time to find, negotiate and obtain an advantageous rental contract.

The institutional communication resulting from the health emergency has changed people’s behaviors, and perhaps even their emotions. The widespread certainty that has made its way, perhaps in a slightly too subdued and sometimes unconscious way, is the idea that in order to overcome disease it’s important to be in good shape.
This is a helpful message that’s making a breakthrough after a challenging period for our sector.

I know what you’re thinking right now…

A new, collective knowledge about the importance of physical activity.

I want to open a gym!

“Okay, you’ve convinced me that now’s the perfect time to open a gym, but I still don’t understand how much it will cost me to open one.”

You’re completely right. In the next 7 points I want to give you a clear idea about the costs to open a center that’s about 200/300 m2 with a functional area of about 120/180 m2 and the rest dedicated to locker rooms and services.


It’s obvious that trying to save is strategic for your business, but this shouldn’t sacrifice the basic principals of a good location.

Have a clear idea of what you’re looking for, define in advance what type of place you want, the correct location (city center, in the outskirts, industrial zone) for your target client and you’ll see that solutions come forward if you’re proactive.

Furniture and restyling of the space.

500 – 60.000 € lump sum

This cost is truly impossible to generalize and contain in a restricted range, that’s why it’s so strategic.

Sad to say it, but this is the best moment to take over premises that were used as a gym but forced to close down due to succumbing to the pandemic tsunami. In these cases, a few thousand Euros would be enough for a simple restyling of the color of the walls and some non-structural changes to obtain an optimal result. Contrarily, when they rent spaces that don’t have locker rooms, the work to be done could cost up to tens of thousands of Euros.


10.000 – 80.000 € lump sum

There’s a difference of the technical point of view between equipment necessary for a Cross Training center and that for a functional training center, although the investment is similar.

This site is the right place to further discuss the subject of equipment, but I don’t mean by entering in the technical details, I want to concentrate only on some important suggestions.

I want this article to be truly useful for those that read it and not an excuse just to write how Xenios USA is a trustworthy company with top products (for this, you can ask our clients or take a look at this site: link a https://www.xeniosusa.com/it/migliori-installazioni/). 

Be sure to look for the following:

  • Find a partner instead of just a manufacturer;
  • Receive technical and project consultancy;
  • Ask for guarantees about the availability of the merchandise (some brands purchase equipment that they’ll manufacture for you with the money that you’ll give in advance);
  • Evaluate in advance the after sales service (I assure you that there are many ways to judge this aspect, beyond the standard things that the seller will tell you);
  • Verify how many years the business has been active, and above all, the reputation of the brand.

Here’s the final recommendation in regards to equipment: don’t look for the lowest price. There’s a proverb that says “those who spend more, spend less”  and although it isn’t always true, it would be a shame to realize the truth to this proverb after a few months of being in business and being forced to make unexpected investments due to naïve purchases that give an advantage only to scamming businesses.

General cleaning and services

1.000-1.600 € per month

In this cost category the main cost regards the daily cleaning of the space and of services, but includes other services like the WI-FI line, the POS for payments, telephone plan and the indispensable management APP for clients to make an appointment online.


300/400 – 1.000 or more € per month

For a Globo Gym this cost will be what could make a company efficient or end in bankruptcy. In my career I’ve seen gyms close due to poor management of water, electricity and gas consumption or due to an inability to estimate correctly these costs in advance.

Referring to fitness boutiques, these substantially fixed costs with a small part of variability are much more manageable.

It’s important to foresee all the possible ways of saving money during the project phase, getting help from thermal-technical experts and using common sense.

Tax advice

500 – 3.500 € per year

The accountant you choose depends a lot on the type of tax regime that’s linked to the legal form of the company. In our sector there are many variables, from the Amateur Sports Association (a formula that’s not really suitable for those who want to do business seriously), which requires relatively low costs, to joint stock companies, more expensive to keep up and running, by going through partnerships. These costs relate to mere bookkeeping and do not take into account any strategic business consultancy.

I want to open a gym!

Marketing costs

600- 6.000 or more € per year

Here we open a conceptual chasm on the term Marketing. I could quote Kotler and give a definition of marketing according to the most accredited authors, but I won’t.

Marketing is simple; it shouldn’t be confused with advertising, social media management, branding or other activities that perhaps are part of it.

Marketing is simply the art to acquire clients and should be managed by experts.

I’m sure you have a “cousin” that could help you; maybe a web agency managed the Instagram campaign of your sister’s laundromat.

They could give you service, but you need a marketing manager in your company.

Therefore, it’s necessary to go to a specialist that’s constantly concentrated on finding clients through the most efficient and budget-friendly way; an expert that knows your field very well and the services that you offer; a competent person that’s able to explain why someone should workout in your gym instead of your competitor’s.

Do you know who would be the perfect person for this role? You would!

Yes, you understood well. If you want to open a micro gym that works, you should become a marketing expert. This doesn’t mean learning to manage sponsorships on FB, but taking responsibility every day to attracting clients through efficient actions that are compatible with your resources.

I wrote this article with the intention of helping people build their very own fitness business and you, that you dedicated your time to arrive to the end, you’re one of these people, you deserve a prize.

Ries (one of the American branding gurus) defines the entrepreneur as a marketing expert who knows how to read a balance sheet.

Welcome to the fantastic world of those who do business.



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