Meet Nathan, the Founder of Bourne Fitness
As part of our celebrations for this year’s Black History Month, we’re dedicating our Member Spotlight series to the Black-owned businesses in our community.
We’re delighted to introduce you to Nathan, founder of Bourne Fitness. In this Member Spotlight, Nathan shares his success in transitioning from a corporate career into living his passion as a fitness entrepreneur. He also talks about physical and mental health, and how this has inspired the way he’s celebrating Black History Month this year.
Hi Nathan! Great to chat to you. Tell us about your fitness business and what your top motivation for starting was?
Bourne Fitness is a mobile gym that offers outdoor group exercise classes and personal training sessions in South London. It’s all about educating and inspiring individuals to start their well being journey. As a busy individual, I found that fitness was a key contributor to helping me overcome my own mental health difficulties. This inspired me to help individuals who find it difficult to implement moments of self care due to lifestyle commitments. By collaborating with other physical and mental wellbeing practitioners to offer expert advice, Bourne Fitness offers you a safe place to meet like minded individuals and start living a healthier and happier life.
What were you doing before and what inspired the transition into the wellness space?
Having finished a finance degree, I went straight into a corporate finance role where I enjoyed the challenge and met some amazing colleagues. However, I soon realised this wasn’t what I wanted to do forever.
In my spare time, I qualified as a Level 3 Personal Trainer. When the pandemic started in March 2020, all the gyms closed down. Many of the alternative options had limited or no equipment which was a drastic change to what I was used to in a regular gym. As a result, I invested in a range of high quality gym grade equipment where I could train effectively with limited equipment (and space!) to continue my fitness journey. After months of research, the ‘mobile gym’ concept was born.
What a great business to start in such a difficult time! What do you love the most about running your business?
I actually enjoy the ‘business’ aspects the most; I love data. I’m always looking at ways to improve my business and seeing the growth is really rewarding! I’ve also met some amazing clients, some of which I’ve been training with since the very beginning.
We’re thrilled to chat with you during Black History Month. How are you celebrating?
To celebrate Black History Month, I will be donating a portion of my income to Black Minds Matter. This fantastic mental health charity empowers Black individuals with support and safe spaces, every step of the way. I would like to hope that through my platform, I can help one person start their wellbeing journey to better mental and physical health.
What does Black History Month mean to you?
Black History Month represents a platform for Black individuals to be celebrated and heard. Growing up, I felt as though it was the token thing to do, and that there was little impact. Whereas recently, and particularly in the last few years, I feel there has been a shift in the importance of learning of other cultures in schools as well as the increased inclusion of Black people in the mainstream media. There’s still a very long way to go, but I am hopeful for the future.
What do you think Tide and other corporations can do to amplify the voices of Black business owners and support their businesses?
I believe companies can do more by having more Black voices in the form of podcasts/talks available, especially from small business owners from a range of backgrounds. Being a Black male from South London, I find it quite hard to relate to someone from a private school setting, who’s come from wealth and is starting/running their own business. Likewise with individuals who are senior in companies, as opposed to someone from a similar background as me.
What does growing your business look like for you? What’s next?
The future of Bourne Fitness will be centred around the continued growth of my local community, as well as seeking funding opportunities so I can open up a presence on the high street. The Bourne Fitness Wellbeing Hub will be centred around all things health and wellbeing. For those who aren’t in my local area, I will be developing and expanding my Bourne Fitness Online. This is where you can meet like minded individuals and join a support network. I will be sharing weekly workouts and general wellbeing advice at an affordable price point.
What’s your advice for someone who wants to launch their business?
Before I even picked up a dumbbell with a client, here are a few of the points I focused on:
- Research! Know your competition, and what they’re offering. What are YOU going to offer, what makes you unique?
- Know your potential customer base. What demographic are you trying to reach, and how does this affect the price point?
- Marketing strategy. Don’t underestimate the power of search engines… What would you search to find your type of business, and how can you achieve organic growth?