Fire and Ice Fitness is a brand that believes everybody should have faith in their inner strength. I want to be able to empower people who may have lost their confidence, or perhaps have never believed in themselves before. I want to show that ladies DO have a place with weights, that men CAN prove their strength without always having to look like the stereotypical ‘manly man’ and that the older generation CAN prove that age is just a number.
Our world today is saturated with the aesthetics that make up what society thinks a woman should look like, slender, toned, tight, and ‘bikini goals’ are the types of imagery plastered all over social media. A woman’s place is on the cross – trainer to tighten those legs, not with weights gaining muscle; heaven forbid. Society tells us that in order to be a man, you need muscles on top of muscles. A man without this will look weak trying to lift weights and compete with his peers who rule the gyms of today. Our older generation, surely – belong in their rocking chairs, knitting for young ones and being cared for by others. Wrong.
I intend to break through these stigmas that people face, the fears, judgement and ‘going against the grain’ ideologies that they might endeavour.
Having gained several clients since starting Fire and Ice Fitness in May 2020, the effects of COVID-19 had already hit everybody hard, so I quickly learned the boundaries and restrictions I immediately had to face and more importantly the adaptations I’d need to make, to be successful with my new business.
Approaching new clients, I learned that people were suddenly more restricted to where they could train. Indoors training was no longer an option at this time, and travel distance also became problematic for clients to get to my training space. If only I could take the gym to them.
My style of training is bodyweight exercises and free weights to promote whole body function benefits; mobility, flexibility and strength. I work with key pieces of equipment to train and develop the whole body in an effective manner. Equipment which, as such, is transportable.
The effects of COVID-19 meant that people do not feel safe training in large commercial gyms, they may not be able to afford a monthly contract anymore, and they may no longer have the means to travel and so on.
I propose to have a mobile gym, to which I would have my key pieces of equipment racked within a suitable van. As a business, I will be able to take an ‘all you need gym’ to people’s houses, back gardens, nearby parks, anywhere that is suitable for the client. So much more than just a bootcamp – this will be everything and more people will need to get fit, healthy and strong.
The benefits of having a mobile gym, will be the work I can do with community groups. The LGBT+ community is made up of amazing people, but there is a lot of people in this community who struggle. Looking at the fitness industry in particular, many may fear the daunting prospect of attending a gym, with the fear of being judged. The fear of being amongst a ‘macho man’ environment. A trans person may fear the changing rooms, a gay man may fear being singled out by the group of weightlifters by the mirrors. A lesbian may fear the stereotype they might not fit. A safe and welcoming environment for all LGBT+ people to be able to train with like-minded peers is something I can offer.
I already hold a very strong relationship with the UK’s first and largest LGBT+ business and media hub, The Pride Media Centre, based in Gateshead. The home of community radio station, Pride Radio and production company, Tin Lion Productions, I’m an LGBT+ ally that is often working alongside these businesses. I propose my mobile gym to attend the PMC to offer a safe place for this specific community; offering fun and friendly sessions at an already established LGBT+ business centre will be a welcomed opportunity by many.
I also propose to work with young people of the community. Everybody has been hit hard by COVID-19, but I believe that young people may have been hit the hardest. First to possibly lose their jobs, and the last to find alternatives. Scholars have also suffered immensely, with particular concerns on their mental health due to uncertainty and changes in their school work and studies. With few options to be able to travel to large commercial gyms, not many having the luxury of a car, and with no means to meet a monthly contract, I propose to offer a street gym with my equipment. This will be free of charge, twice per month to 16-24 year olds. The aim is to allow young people to channel their energy, frustrations, work on discipline, set personal goals and hopefully, make new friends. Enhancing not just their physical but also their mental health.
As well as working with the younger individuals of the community, I feel strongly about working with older people also. Our older members of the community may have suffered severely due to isolation, loneliness, the inability to leave the house and a heightened fear of vulnerability. My other hat as a radio presenter on BBC Newcastle, sees me spending hours on the phone to older people of the community who don’t have the luxury of friends and family to call upon. On my evening show, whilst the music is playing, I offer a sympathetic ear and a companion for people to talk to. I found a strong pattern of regular callers simply wanting to talk about their day. My vision with my mobile gym, is to become accessible to these members of our community, and whilst offering companionship during the time I spend with them, I am getting them moving, and working on their mobility. I would offer free sessions to the over 70’s twice per month at a selected village hall or a similar location that is accessible. I would also be keen to offer my services to care homes, and work alongside charities for home visits to the extremely vulnerable.
I have already qualified for my L3 personal training certification, and am a fully accredited PT. Just recently I completed a kettlebell course, so in addition to holding a L3 PT qualification I also hold a qualification to teach kettlebells safely. As well as investing in education, I have also invested what I can into small pieces of kit and uniform to operate professionally and effectively for my clients. With that being said, I have built up a small clientele base, with a group of clients who would already massively benefit from this business model.