Colin Niblo is founder and owner of Phoenix Gym in Falkirk Town Centre.
When did you start your business?
I started the business in 2009; at the beginning I was instructing classes and boot camps in different places across the area. I realised I wanted somewhere that we could do everything under one roof and create a community, so in 2014 we got the gym. Everything then began to fall into place!
What inspired you to start a business in the fitness industry?
I’ve been in the industry for 12 years, but I always participated in competitive sports. I swam at club and national level and competed across Europe until I was 15 years old. I then started Muay Thai and trained for 9 years and competed at the professional K1 level. At 24 years old, around the time my son Jaxon was born, I decided to stop competing. I then got involved with CrossFit and weightlifting. I was training a lot more and training with people who were taking training seriously, and it got me into training people.
What did you do before starting your own business; describe that journey to entrepreneurship?
I am also an electrical engineer. I was with Scottish Power for 7 years and was working 60-70 hour weeks. While doing this I was also setting up the gym and training in the hours I wasn’t working. So I decided to focus on the gym since it needed more of my time to make it work. I took the risk, left Scottish Power and worked more flexible style working in the Falkirk area. In 2014, co-owner Andrew Boyle got involved in the gym and we’ve grown from there.
Can you list all the services provided:
At Phoenix Gym we offer classes, fundamental classes, 1-1 coaching, personal training, small group training, class memberships and nutrition consultations. Our dietary plans are created by coach Derek. Derek is a fully qualified sports nutritionist and also an award-winning chef. He makes nutrition easy for people to understand. We have six coaches including myself at the gym: Andy, Scott, Christine, Julie and Derek. We all are passionate about relating to people on an everyday level. People’s lives are their priority, how can we fit this into your life. Our key word for exercise and nutrition is adaptability.
What are fundamental classes? And who are they targeted at?
They are a basically a four-week course with two classes per week. They are perfect for those with no previous experience or no knowledge and by end of the course you will have a better understanding of what we do at the gym. Some people are intimidated by just jumping into any class, so this gets you prepared for the regular classes. By doing these fundamental classes we’ve been able to bring people in who were hesitant at first. 75% of our members used to be athletes who competed but that’s flipped with implementing our fundamental classes and now we have a diverse group of people from all different backgrounds, varied age groups and occupations, who train together under one roof for health both physical and mental.
Favourite aspect of running your own business?
It’s definitely seeing the community growing and expanding within our members. There’s no better feeling than seeing people achieve healthier and better lifestyles. It’s great to see our members become friends. This drives me to want to keep going and making it bigger.
Key component for success:
I wake up at 5am every morning and I’m not home until 9pm at night. So I would say that utilising your time and realising you need to put in the hours is the key. There’s no point putting the hours in if it’s not correct, so you need to manage your time. I delegate among the 5 coaches at the gym and this takes the load off me. Working as a team is important as they feel valued and trusted, plus we all have our own strengths. Our coaches are a part of the gym and they contribute towards the business. We work in a loop, and this benefits everyone.
Describe your team:
At Phoenix Gym we have five coaches. I have implemented monthly team meetings. At these meetings I tell the team: “If you bring a negative to the table, also bring a positive. If it’s an issue to you, you’ve also clearly thought about how you’d make it right. I am all about positive mindsets. I drill positive into people as I’m not the calmest person by nature but I’ve had to change my mindset. You need to deal with negatives with positives.
‘A rising tide raises all ships.’ If we all work together and every day we look out for each other then we will all rise and get better together. Everything needs to be improved on constantly for the business to continue to thrive.
Get in touch with us on our social media or view our website for more information. You can view timetables and book via our website or our app.