When an anonymous writer on a Quora thread asked the top reason for quitting the gym, a large number of replies cited monotony and boredom. According to a local survey carried out by the startup, 80 per cent people drop out of their gym/fitness classes because of boredom.
Vishesh Goel had the same reason for quitting gym, not once, but several times. After trying over 10 different gym memberships since college, it was a constant struggle to find the right gym to keep himself coming back to work out. Taking cue from his personal experience, he with other two co-founders, Nidhisha Varshney and Lalit Singh, found a solution to end gym monotony. In June 2015, the trio launched FitMeIn, an online platform that offers monthly multiple fitness studio membership.
“The convenience of getting access to the best fitness studios at affordable prices forms the core of its operations. It offers affordable monthly membership starting at Rs 2,499, in lieu of which customers earn 20 virtual FitCoins that can be redeemed at partner studios for a workout of their choice,” says Vishesh.
Users can book their preferred spot for the entire week through the online portal, using FitCoins. With typically 0.5-1.5 FitCoins required to book a session, customers can easily work out for the entire month. These FitCoins can be topped up at any time. The company will be launching its Android and iOS apps soon to ease and supplement its website reach.
With access to a wide network of over 250 workout destinations and fitness instructors across Delhi NCR, FitMeIn offers a wide range of workouts including zumba, pilates, aerial yoga, crossfit, boot camp, spinning and swimming. Currently, the venture offers over 5,000 workout sessions every week and plans to increase the number to over 15,000 sessions per week by December 2015 in major cities across India.
The company claims to add a sense of adventure and exploration to the traditional way of working out, to make it more fun and engaging and get customers coming back for more. “FitMeIn’s mission is to provide customers means to work out anywhere, anytime and of any form at the touch of a button, without them having to enter into expensive long-term commitments with a single fitness studio or gym. By offering a wide variety of workout options, it also helps avoid monotony in their fitness regime,” says Vishesh.
According to a study by FICCI and global consulting firm Price Waterhouse Coopers, the fitness and slimming market was estimated at Rs 60,000 crore in 2012.
Like e-commerce, logistics and beauty segment, fitness and slimming category is no longer lagging behind in the online startup space. New business ideas have maintained the relevance of the segment and have helped the category show continuous growth. Recently, FitMeIn raised USD 1,00,000 in seed funding from Green House Ventures. The platform has also been selected for GHV Accelerator’s 12-month acceleration programme.
FitMeIn is not alone and there are other players as well offering different sorts of services in the segment. Hobbyix, FlexiPass, Fitternity, and Gympik among others are some of the ventures that make the segment vibrant and competitive.
Hobbyix, a monthly, credits-based fitness membership pass that gives users access to a variety of fitness studios and activities, poses direct competition to FitMeIn. FlexiPass, a subscription-based model platform where customers can pay single subscription fee to access hundreds of gyms and studios across NCR and Mumbai, as of now, is also a direct competitor.
In July this year, Mumbai-based fitness discovery and marketplace platform Fitternity raised pre-series A investment of USD one million led by Bengaluru-based Exfinity Venture Partners, a fund formed by industry veterans like TV Mohandas Pai, Balakrishnan V, Girish Paranjpe and Deepak Ghaisas.
The recent progress is the harbinger of coming developments in this space. Though not many have been able to raise large funding, the hope is high as the space expands. Besides, with more players venturing into the segment, tough market competition among players is impending.