Let’s face it, there are the times when most of us want to go to the gym and get a toned physique or simply be fitter. But we easily get intimidated by the vision of a room full of buff dudes with protein shakes on one hand and a dumbbell in another. That’s when The Physique Workshop comes in: A chain of gyms in Kathmandu that breaks the stereotype and redefines the work-out experience as being friendly and all-inclusive.
The Birth of The Physique Workshop
People usually associate gyms with getting oiled up and stepping up on the stage for bodybuilding competitions. Ordinary people usually feel they do not belong in such a place. Mr. Sushant Pradhan realized this problem among people just wanting to start a healthier lifestyle but are discouraged from joining the gym. With a vision of making fitness and health mainstream, he founded The Physique Workshop in November of 2013. The industry has changed ever since he started about seven years ago with the majority of females and ordinary people. It currently has five branches all over Kathmandu in Kumaripati, Kamaladi, New Baneshwor, Maitidevi, and Maharajgunj.
“The initial goal was to build a gym for people with basic fitness goals. People from all backgrounds are welcomed with friendly trainers and a relaxed environment.” says Pradhan.
It turned out to be a success which led to more branches. The Physique Workshop is a place where even a couch potato of 20-30 years, can join without feeling judged or intimidated. The experienced trainers help you in achieving your goals, whether it is to pack on dense muscles or to simply get healthy. They also give you an organized workout plan that suits you rather than giving you workouts every day.
COVID-19 and the Rise of Health Awareness
Just like any other business, the pandemic has also affected the gym chain negatively. They had been closed for over three months and still aren’t entirely open for large groups of people. But Mr. Pradhan sees a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel, as the pandemic has affected many people and raised health concerns. When the pandemic subsides, he anticipates a rise in the number of gym-goers and The Physique Workshop will be there to help them progress towards a healthier lifestyle.
With regards to the sanitization, even before the pandemic, it already had a sanitizing spray and a cloth near most of the equipment so that people could sanitize it before and after using the equipment. So, if you maintain distance, your sanitization concerns are pretty much resolved.
The Concept of Universal Membership
With five gyms all around the valley, The Physique Workshop has universal membership for its members, which allows them to work out at any branch. But to avoid the misuse, you get only 12 sessions a month, but after that, pay only Rs.50 per session. This would be convenient if you are somewhere else inside the valley and still want to hit the nearby gym without having to pay a hefty amount of money. You could get a membership at the same price but enjoy the facility of 5 gyms instead.
Tips for someone looking to start a fitter Lifestyle
“Fitness is all about the lifestyle rather than just being muscular or looking good; those are only the side-effects,” says Mr. Pradhan. He wants people to be more aware of their bodies and realize the importance of the physical activity.
He opines that physical activity should be as mandatory as brushing teeth and bathing, “Fitness is not only about going to the gym. If you can’t hit the gym, at least walk 2000 steps or play a sport. If you do decide to go to a gym, The Physique Workshop is always willing to help you reach your goals with organized plans to fit your body type.”
He also encourages the consumption of health supplements like Omega-3 fish oils, multi-Vitamins, creatine and even protein powders. “These aren’t only meant for bodybuilders, but can help regular people to lead a healthier and quality life,” he says.
Future of The Physique Workshop
Mr. Pradhan looks forward to turning The Physique Workshop into an established brand and expanding into product development. You will see the chain of gyms expanding throughout the country with probable locations like Chitwan, Butwal, or even Bhaktapur. He had planned to grow into ten gyms all over the country before the pandemic hampered his intentions. The priority for him now is to manage the five current branches the best he can before branching out to other locations.
We perceive entrepreneurship as a luxury or as a trendy thing to do. Mr. Pradhan feels like this popular view entrepreneurship is very wrong and misleading, “Yes, there is the possibility of immense success, but you should be aware of the hardships behind the success. The journey is seldom a smooth ride, so you must prepare yourself to be consistent and grow through tough times.”
9 out of 10 startups shut down within 5 to 7 years of operation. This might seem like a discouraging statistic, but it must prepare you for long work hours and a strong will to face failures and setbacks. So, be prepared. Do your homework, build yourself up, your personality/skills before you begin your entrepreneurial journey, and finally, have a long-term goal.