What Does Your Gym Pay You?

A dumbbell on a stack of cash - what does your gym pay you?

What does a top gym owner earn?

How much can a gym owner make?

We call this Net Owner Benefit: the sum of everything you earn from the gym. To learn how to calculate it, click here.

Most of us didn’t get into the fitness business to make money. In fact, it was kind of an afterthought.

But eventually, the bills come due. Eventually, you have to eat. And you deserve to eat.

A graphic showing owner benefit stats from the top 5 Two-Brain clients around the world.



Here’s how the top five gyms in October posted these incredible numbers.


1. Metrics

Key: Focus on high-value clients (high average revenue per member per month or ARM).

Owner: “Over the course of the closure (100+ days), we made a big switch from a focus on group fitness to private training and online personal training. When we reopened, we pushed PT hard and held back on the reopening of group for an additional two weeks (we staggered reopening to favor PT). The pandemic really helped make that switch.”

Owner: “We focus on the health + mental health, a holistic approach; so way more focus on overall health. Nutrition first, and a focus on marketing nutrition to people outside of the membership (prospects).” Client results have been so significant that their doctors ask what they’ve been doing and then refer other patients.

Owner: “Our nutrition revenue has gone from $56,000 in all of 2019 to already over $115,000 in 2020 (with still 2 more months to go!) by switching from macros to habits coaching.” Read more here.


2. Goals

Key: Start with what you need to make in mind and work backward to build a profitable business.

Owner: “We started the gym as mature adults, with families, and had to make enough money to keep their standard of living. We use a Profit First concept of paying themselves first. We need to drive up revenues to pay ourselves more each year.”


3. Expenses and ROI

Key: Regularly audit expenses. What’s giving you a good return and what’s costing you every month?

Owner: “During the lockdown, we completed our Profit First accounts. We did an expense audit. We eliminated all the deals and got strict on payments with our coaches. We did this gracefully, by explaining the 4/9 Model and having Career Roadmap discussions, where we talked about growing a PT business with them.”


4. Owner’s Pay

Key: Use a strategy like “Profit First” to ensure the owner’s paycheck.

Owner: “During the lockdown, I set up my Profit First accounts. Now my draw is automatically withdrawn from the business account—scheduled on the staff pay day.”


5. The Value Ladder

Key: Manage your time to work on high-value roles and tasks. Read more: “The Value Ladder.”

Owner: “During the lockdown, 3 team members stepped into new roles: CSM, programmer, and scheduler. This shift saved me some mental bandwidth, and I got smarter about managing my time.”

Owner: “I actively put the people in the right seats on my bus. I failed other times … , putting people into seats that didn’t really fit, and learned from that.”


6. Mentorship

Key: Hire a mentor. Aside from their Two-Brain gym mentors, some owners also seek local accountability and connection.

Owner: “We have a Board of Directors—4 board members giving an outside perspective. They ask us questions that make us uncomfortable—for example, they ask about pensions. They offer their connections, and this allows for access to mentors locally.”


Family First

My mission is to make 1 million fitness entrepreneurs successful. Not because the fitness industry is ripe for plunder but because no one deserves it more. That means finding the people who are already successful, taking their best lessons and teaching those lessons to everyone else.

The fitness industry is full of “fake success.” Marketers use fake data to convince us the wrong people are successful. But what really matters isn’t how many clients you have or your gross revenue or how many leads you generated last month.

What really matters is how much your family benefits from your hard work and stress.


Other Media in This Series

“By the Numbers: What Gym Owners Earn”
“How Successful Are You as a Gym Owner?”

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