Things You Need to Consider before Buying a Fitness Franchise in Canada

Things You Need to Consider before Buying a Fitness Franchise in Canada


With the recent consumer focus on living a health conscious lifestyle, investing in a fitness franchise has become a very lucrative business opportunity. Low overhead costs, resistance to seasonality and multi-unit ownership possibilities are just a few reasons that that fitness franchises are great businesses… provided you have the right skills to operate this type of business. Now is a better time than ever to capitalize on the demand for fitness centers and increased focus on personal health.

The industry is thriving more than ever!

The baby boomers, which make up the biggest chunk of the Canadian population, are becoming increasingly focused on their health and appearance. Younger adults are making health and fitness a part of their lifestyle, as opposed to just a quick fix when extra pounds show up. The surge of home fitness regimens, dietary innovations and mainstream as well as specialty fitness centers is testament to this fact. What this tells us is that health, wellness and fitness looks to be a trend that will be here for a long time, making now a very attractive time to consider purchasing a fitness franchise.


Anyone who owns a fitness franchise must commit to building and maintaining a strong base of members. While most clubs look for long-term contracts, some franchises offer monthly contracts. In either case, if members are not having the experience they expect, they’ll vote with their dollars and go elsewhere. It behooves the would-be owner to research what it takes to attract new members (the franchisor’s advertising strategy contributes to this effort), and more importantly, to keep existing members coming back! With a strong franchise system, the franchisor’s business systems and processes are constantly being refined; in addition, you have the support of the other franchisees in the system who share their experiences on generating more business; as well as how to avoid costly mistakes! This is a huge plus in comparison to independent gyms, which must develop and implement marketing strategies by themselves.

Variety of franchise concepts

Fitness franchises offer plenty of business opportunities including yoga, cross-fit, weight training, Pilates and specialized centers that focus on men, women and children. This variety offers plenty of opportunity for people interested in ALL aspects of fitness, so you’re bound to find something that fits your interests.

Some concepts make great passive engagement businesses

If you are looking for a franchise that requires minimal supervision and engagement, some fitness franchises are a prime choice so long as you appoint proper management that you can rely on. Overseeing the daily activities of a fitness center is not a highly demanding job and with trusted management you can easily use this to your advantage and focus your time on other things such as expanding and multi-unit ownership. Be careful though – while some franchisors claim that their business can be run “passively”, when you talk to successful owners, they’ll tell you a different experience.

You don’t need industry experience

It’s not necessary to be a fitness buff to successfully run a fitness franchise; many are not overly complex to operate. . Furthermore, franchisees will have all of their equipment chosen out and set up for them, contrary to independent gyms where industry knowledge is more crucial. You do want to make sure that you understand the core roles that drive success… marketing, selling memberships, hiring good trainers, good facility management and GREAT customer service to name a few.

They are relatively unaffected by seasonality

Although the business of many franchises can vary depending on the season, fitness franchises remain consistent throughout the entire year. Exercise is a necessary part of many people’s lives, and thus customers utilize your services all year round.

Multi-unit ownership

Thanks to the passive engagement possibilities of some franchise concepts in this category, owning multiple fitness centers is a great way to leverage your money and build long-term wealth.


From their lower overhead costs to their resistance to seasonality, fitness franchises are a surprisingly reliable business. The opportunity range in this sector of franchising is significant and is well-suited for both passive and active business owners. If you like having a positive impact on people’s lives; if you’re passionate about fitness, or are just looking for a stable business, consider investing in a fitness franchise.


About Gary:

Gary PrenevostGary Prenevost is one of Canada’s leading franchise experts and has been an entrepreneur for more than a quarter century. He has been involved in a variety of successful non-franchised and franchised self-employed businesses. By exploring the ideal solutions that fit an individual’s desires and strengths, Gary helps senior and mid-level executives take a step back and objectively look at whether franchise ownership would be a viable and positive career choice. By playing to the individual’s transferable skills and passions, the franchise owner can enjoy less stress, greater success, more fun, and improved quality of life.  For more information visit or call 905-405-6300. In addition to being one of Canada’s top franchise matchmaking experts, also co-owns a master franchise and unit franchise for Alair homes, a custom home building and renovation company, so he is intimately familiar with the home improvement marketplace.

Feb 5, 2015