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The Vision

I’m 2014 I was offered the opportunity of a lifetime.  I was offered the chance to manage a health club in the Sunshine Coast of Australia on a 4-year visa with the chance of residency at the end.  I’d fallen in love with Australia and the idea of returning ever since I travelled there in 2009/10.  To manage a club right on the beach where I could surf every day and live an outdoor lifestyle was the dream for me.  I thought I’d hit the jackpot.  It took me exactly 0.1seconds to say yes.

However, several months and several visa complications later had taken some of the shine off the idea.  I began to question whether it was the right move at this stage of my career and life.  I felt in limbo and without a clear direction as I couldn’t get a clear time frame from the visa immigration service.  I debated the idea over and over again with family and friends which possibly made the decision even more difficult.  I really was torn 50/50.

One afternoon in the gym I spoke to Simon and William my now business partners.  I said if I’m going to stay then I need a good reason.  We had toyed with the idea of opening a PT studio in 2013 which had never really come to anything.  We didn’t feel that was the right direction for us; we wanted something bigger and more challenging.  In March of 2015, we agreed to go for it, take the big city gyms on and open our own club.

After many meetings regarding the gym and what direction we wanted to take I met up with my friend Steven Rinaldi who was also Powerhouses sales director.  I had known Steven for several years though the fitness scene, and he had previously sponsored me as a Smart-tec nutrition athlete as well.  The reason behind the meeting was to discuss using Powerhouse as our equipment provider.  Going into the meeting, Steven wasn’t aware of our plans to open a gym but when I told him I could see the excitement on his face.  I could tell he was trying to keep calm as he told me he would love the opportunity to come on board as a director.  I left the meeting no further forward on equipment but with potentially a third business partner.

Simon and William agreed to meet with Steven to discuss him coming on board.  The meeting lasted about 20mins and finished with a handshake that put the Club Gym wheels in motion.  Every one of us was determined, ambitious and desperate to force a change in the industry.  We had all grown frustrated by the current state of the fitness industry in Scotland.  We wanted our club to be different, exciting, motivational, fun and educational.  At the end of the meeting, I knew I had made the right decision to stay and that this was our chance to make a difference.

~ Derek / Derek Brettell Personal Training