I just got another great email regarding the new gym…and by great I mean completely idiotic

I just got an email accusing me of being a ‘rip off artist’, of charging ‘extortionate’ prices, of expecting people to pay a ‘ridiculous’ amount of money for a simple gym membership.

I want to clarify a few things:

1. If you join right now you get your membership for €200 a year…correct me if I’m wrong…but that’s the least expensive gym membership in the country? So until all the €1000 5 year memberships are gone I just want it to be noted that far for being extortionate we are in fact running the cheapest gym in the country.

2. If after all those memberships are gone you join for a year you are paying about €65 per month…have a look around town…I think that compares pretty favourably. How much individual coaching are the globo gyms offering? Did you say individual coaching every single day….I didn’t think so. If you want to pay by the month it’s €20 a week…or the equivalent of 4 pints…€20 a week for access to what we intend to make the best facility in the country or you can have 4 pints? Which do you think will do you the most good? Notice I didn’t say which will you enjoy the most. Do you want to know how many times a week the majority of people in the current gym train? I would say 4 at the least and I’ve some that do 6-8 sessions a week. So for the type of members that we are going to attract…it works out to be €2-€4 a session. I think that is pretty reasonable considering that everyone that joins our gym is actually training and being coached…no one is turning up and just doing ‘abs and guns’…as much as I love writing those programs…the people that join us will be telling us what they want to do and we are going to be dragging them kicking and screaming if needs be to that goal…every single session will be planned and documented. We are going to appeal to a very particular market and I think to that market we are going to provide absolutely amazing value.

3. If you want to compare us to those globo gyms then do a proper comparison…when you go in tomorrow ask the instructors on the floor how many Olympians from how many sports in how many different countries they have worked with? Ask them how many World Championship competitors in how many sports and in how many countries they’ve worked with? Maybe that is setting the standards to high…ask them how many national championship competitors in how many sports they’ve coached? One of the many things that I’ve been most excited by about by this project is quality and experience of the coaches and trainers that I’ve had emails and calls from asking me if and how they can be involved. Even if I told you now you still wouldn’t really get it. That’s not a tease or advertising and marketing speak…I’m just being straight up. The quality of people wanting to do internships with us has been astounding as several of them are qualified and experienced coaches already. There is a lot going on behind the scenes and you are all going to realise how different what we are doing is when umpteen people try and copy and replicate what we are doing once we open. So if you are going to compare us to one of the globo gyms…please compare like with like. We are going to make sure that every single program for every single member in this gym is exactly what they need to be doing and have over 20 years experience and knowledge that comes from working predominantly with professional and elite athletes from a multitude of sports behind us…ask the staff in your globo gym if they can say the same?

4. I get asked this next one a lot…’If you are so good why have I never heard of you?’…my answers always the same…the reason that people have never heard of me is because for the past 10 years I’ve never had to apply for a job let alone had to advertise or market myself…athletes and clients come to me. For personal training I charge €105 an hour and people pay that. A single consultation…that’s €55. The monthly training fees in my other gym were €220 a month and people pay that and think that’s a bargain. So now I am in a position to drop those fees and expand my client base. The funniest thing is that I won’t actually be making more money doing this…I’m doing it because I will enjoy it even more. It is actually that simple. We’re not building this gym with the banks money or with investors money. We are building it with our money. We’re investing in Irish sport because we believe in it and we want to see it succeed. We’ll be completely open about what we do and how we do it with our members and the people working with us. We’re going to provide a place where people looking to get into the industry can get a start in a supportive environment and where people already established in the industry can make a proper living…I was talking to a trainer the other day and I had to explain to him about 6 times what we are doing for personal trainers because he just couldn’t ‘compute’ it. In that if you are a personal trainer and you want to bring your client to our facility all you have to pay is €20 a visit…that’s it…your client pays whatever any individual who walks through the door to do a session would pay…that’s it. Go and see how that deal flies in any other gym. We want personal trainers to be able to make a living and to be able to provide a quality service in a quality facility. We want to support this industry not squeeze every last penny out of it.

5. Informed Performance is going to more like a club than a gym because unlike other facilities we’re not looking for 18,000 members and hoping none of them show up. Instead we’ll be looking 300 or so members and hoping they’ll all turn up…not at once…but that they’ll be training and doing their program every week.

6. Informed Performance is going to be different things to different people…let me give you some examples:

The Fighter – They’ll test…we’ll look at their strength…what they squat, deadlift, bench and chin. We’ll measure their power…how fast they can express their strength. We’ll measure their speed, agility and fitness. The team at Informed Performance will look at the physical strengths and weaknesses as well as their technical/fighting strength and weaknesses…then they will have a program constructed based on all their data and their likely fight schedule. Their weekly training will involve not just their fight training but all their mobility, speed, agility, strength, power and fitness work. Some fighters may have 7 days a week to train….their program will be based around that…some may have 3 or 4 days…and their program will be different. To give you an idea of a day for a fighter in the gym…they come in…they have their warm up and mobility drills to do. Then they might have an area of weakness to work on so they do some specific work around that. They then head upstairs for some BJJ or MMA and finish off downstairs with some supplementary core work and a cool down. Every single person coming through our door…fighters, athletes or general trainees will be treated the same…you’ll be trained as an Informed Performance athlete.

The Athlete – Just as with fighter…it starts with testing…there’s no point someone saying they want to be faster…unless we know how fast or slow they are…so they’ll warm up…do some mobility work and they test. We’ll go through all their physical attributes with them then we’ll put together a program…firstly to make them a balanced athlete…then when we’ve achieved that we’ll set to work on building those physical qualities that will give them the tools to excel in their chosen sport. Some guys won’t be fit enough, some will be too slow, others won’t be powerful enough and yet others may be too injury prone. We could have 15 players from a team come in and each of them could very well end up with 15 different programs. What we’re going to be about is making balanced athletes and giving them the best chance to excel in whatever their chosen sport.

General Trainees – What I hate most is when people tell me that they just want to be healthier…that’s not a goal for me…that’s a by product. No one will be coming to Informed Performance to just be healthier. If you don’t have a goal…we’ll give you one. We’ll find some sort of event or competition somewhere in something that we’ll help you train for. We don’t want anyone wandering through the gym aimlessly…if you are going to come and train with us then lets train for something. Like everyone else…you’ll be tested…we’ll see where you stand and then put a plan in place to get your body in order. I think for general trainees and also to a certain extent for fighters and athletes alike we’ll essentially be running 3 types of programs. In no particular order Informed Performance members will be doing a fat loss, conditioning or strength program. Pretty much every single athlete and client I have is either looking to get leaner and therefore doing a fat loss program. Or they are looking to get ‘fitter’ be that endurance, speed endurance or pure speed and or agility and therefore doing some sort of conditioning program. Or they are looking to get stronger either in absolute or relative terms and on a strength program. Other ‘cults’ have a work out of the day…we’ll have 3 ‘work outs of the day’…a fat loss one, a conditioning one and a strength one….and therefore we’ll be three times better.

The following has been lifted in it’s entirety from Barry’s Blog.
Some more updates on the new gym.
I thought people might like to know how the new gym is progressing. I know I do so in part this is a nice way to keep people informed and have a quick recap for myself.

Things have been pretty crazy in the last while, as you can imagine I’m training for a fight, opening a new gym and running my current one so I’m pretty busy. Here’s a few bits of info for you all to drool over.

Grappling and MMA area: The new 14 metre cage wall is on order and being built in a plant in England as we speak. This will form a barrier on one side of the mezzanine to stop people falling to their deaths but also for training against as a practice cage. The other walls will be padded and the matted area squeezed in between them. All in all the matted area will be 14mX8m which means 112sqm. In other words, massive. To give you some perspective, that’s the length of the current mats, with almost twice the width, and it’ll be wall to wall with no gaps as we have now. There’ll also be a 3mX8m area at the end of the mats for storage, shoes etc. etc.

Muay Thai/MMA/Boxing: The ring is also on order and being custom made to our specifications. It will be ready for our show on April 25th and will have be a 20 footer. Under the mezzanine will be another huge class area which I’m delighted to announce will be the home of a brand new Muay Thai gym called Informed Muay Thai. Paddy has decided to take the bull by the horns (it’s a metaphor, that really happened though) and form Dublin’s newest Muay Thai gym. In addition, we’ll have the MMA fighters doing their ring and skill work from time to time downstairs. The area under the mezzanine (which is huge!) will have a matted area, plus heavy bags, speedballs etc. and we have several boxing coaches already interested in running a class or two there.

Sports/Agility: I went to view the artificial surface at Erin’s Isle GAA club in Finglas yesterday and was impressed enough to tell Will to go ahead and order it for our specialised area in the gym. It is fantastic stuff, about a million miles from the old “plastic pitches” that you may have played on or seen. This stuff is 3rd generation artificial grass and looks and feels like the real thing. about 100msq of our gym will have this surface and it’ll be used for agility drills, circuits and a variety of cool stuff we have up our sleeve.

Speed: I feel the need. I’m currently waiting on a courier to arrive with a sample of the sprint track we’ll be using for our 2 lanes of 25 metre track. Our athletes will be treated just like the most valuable athletes on the planet who also use this surface. I mean that literally, you will be getting the same treatment as the athletes that are worth the most money on the earth. Worth more than David Beckham, more than Michael Jordan in his prime, more than Usain Bolt. Have a guess at who these athletes are. I’d be surprised if you get it. I’ll give you a hint, they’ve often been accused of not being human.

Strength: We are going to have all the usual in terms of strength equipment. The racks and bars and benches. But all the cool stuff like sleds and stuff we’re going to make and have custom made for the gym is going to rock your world.

The Fight Team: I have finally settled on a name for the fight team. It will be called Wolfpack Fight Team and will showcase the fighters in MMA, grappling and Muay Thai from the gym. These athletes will get the very, very best in facilities, on mat coaching, and the very best in off mat strength and conditioning.

Not one of us?
I also want to open up the S&C programme to fighters from other gyms in Ireland to come and have a look at what we do. As someone who is acutely aware that it’s really hard to find the time and facilities to do the work you need to do as a fighter, I want to extend an invitation to anyone in martial arts in Ireland to come along and have a look at what we’ll be doing and how we’ll do it. The biggest thing that holds us back in Ireland is the fact that we’re a small country but we have big country divisions. We don’t train with each other or spar each other, and all of our individual pools are too small to get the sort of experience we need. So I want to offer Irish fighters the opportunity to work with a specialist strength and conditioning gym. I hope this invite is taken in the spirit of cooperation in which it is intended. However my experience with Irish sport in general is that people will think I’m trying to “poach” people. I’m not. You don’t have to train with Informed MMA to do this.

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22 thoughts on “I just got another great email regarding the new gym…and by great I mean completely idiotic

  1. I just think it’s really funny that people think that way. I’ve had absolutely nothing but positivity from my members about the whole thing. Most are delighted to be moving to the best facility around and those that aren’t don’t seem to care either way :D.

  2. Once the template gets set and all of the bugs are worked out, Informed Performance needs to makes its US debut in Las Vegas. I pay the huge sum of $4 per month ( a very special deal offered 12 years ago) to “train” at 24 Hour Fitness and the level of instruction matches the amount charged. Most clients pay about $30 per month to use the “Fitness” clubs which offer cardio equip, machines, free weights, aerobics classes and a small lap pool. There is no coaching to speak of, no one is assessed. The great majority of the people there look the same or worse than they did years ago. Good coaching is priceless.

    • There’ll be bugs? I assumed that everything would run smoothly from Day 1? If good coaching is priceless does that mean by extension that you think mine is crap because I was able to put a price on it?

      • Yes, you can and did put a price on less than good coaching. Not up to Poliquin’s level but you are getting close. I see a pair of blue track pants in your future.

        If I was in Dublin, I would join. You would get me to a 2x bodyweight bench press and a +3x squat and deadlift in the course of a weekend.

  3. Will,

    Are you getting proper Olympic Lifting equipment?

    i.e. proper platform (that won’t be smashed up for other purposes), proper (preferably Eliko) bar and bumper plates.

    • Yes, Yes and No. Yes, we will have proper platforms and they are larger than the one in the gym now…they’ll be 8ft x 8ft. Yes, we will be getting proper bars and bumpers for Oly lifting. No, they won’t be Eliko…there are other companies manufacturer really high quality Oly lifting gear for far less than Eliko. Eliko gear is for organistions that don’t have to spend their own money.

      Suffice to say…we’ll have Oly lifting equipment that will be used for nothing other than Oly lifting.

      • Great stuff. Eliko is well expensive and I agree that there are other brands of a high standard. That’s really what i was getting at when I said it. 1st of May is actually pretty soon when you think about it!!

  4. Hugh said
    Great stuff. Eliko is well expensive and I agree that there are other brands of a high standard. That’s really what i was getting at when I said it. 1st of May is actually pretty soon when you think about it!!
    …and believe me when I tell you…I think about it a lot.

  5. Don’t forget about targeting the stripper and wannabe stripper market. You will need to offer a stripper aerobics class.

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