Unit 7 - Indoor Training for Outdoor Sports

by Alison in Dunkeld, Scotland, United Kingdom


£10,000 target 14 days left
53% 84 supporters
Flexible funding – this project will receive all pledges made by 28th April 2021 at 9:48am

A gym with a climbing shop, therapy room, and coffee, so you can get pumped, equipped, restored, and caffeinated under one roof

by Alison in Dunkeld, Scotland, United Kingdom

We are In Situ Climbing, a climbing and mountaineering shop in Scotland, established over 4 years ago. We’ve spent the last two years working on a new project to grow our business, which will cater for the needs of our community, outdoor sportspeople, and visitors to the area. 

We are aiming to open a strength and conditioning gym in Dunkeld, to provide:

  • a climbing training area, so locals can train with focus, improve and get good,
  • a home for the local climbing scene, 
  • a sociable space for anybody, no matter what their sport or exercise preference, to work out, to train, drink coffee and plan adventures,
  • an atmosphere to encourage reluctant exercisers from our community, and beyond, to join us for group training and classes, where we can give friendly and informed advice on suitable training and exercise, 
  • and to give visitors a wet weather alternative.

Dunkeld is just north of Perth, and because it has crags, hills, trails, lochs, and rivers it’s not just a great place to live and work, it also attracts a lot of tourism. But it lacks a decent training facility, where locals can train and visitors have somewhere to go when the weather doesn’t play nicely, and that’s what we are aiming to change.


When the weather is good, it's great, but when it's not there's no good alternative

The Project

We are committing to leasing a newly built industrial unit, within walking distance of some of the best climbing in Scotland. The unit will include:

  • the gym - equipped with cardio machines, racks, free weights, Olympic platform, and a bouldering area with 40° Moonboard, 20° circuit wall, campus board, finger boards, and gym rings. 
  • the shop - with a seating area to drink Unorthodox Roasters coffee and plan trips, or just relax. 
  • the therapy room - available to independent health and wellbeing practitioners to offer services like physio and massage, a valuable asset to the community and an added bonus for visitors.

1614778291_wall_sketch.jpgSketch of the planned climbing training area


The Climate Issue

Environmental sustainability is at the forefront of modern business and our model has been created around energy saving and sustainability by: 

  • using a renewable energy supplier for our power needs.
  • taking this a step further, we intend to procure our cardio equipment from Sportsart, The Green Fitness Company, provided by SA Green Fitness. Not only are their machines pretty nice to look at, and have all the functionality you’d expect, they also use technology that can harness up to 74% of human energy, converting watts generated through exercise into AC power and sending it back through the facility power grid to offset energy consumption, effectively reducing our carbon footprint further. So, you can join the leader board and win yourself the yellow jersey for most energy generated…


The strength and conditioning area will look something like this, but probably a bit more "industrial unit"

Why We Need Your Help

The pandemic has changed the financial and economic landscapes, and we were affected but we are adapting fast. The power of crowdfunding not only helps us to raise essential funding, but also gain support for the project, and that goes a long way, so a big thanks in advance. 

We’re asking for your help to get us started - the money raised will contribute to the total cost of the Project, along with the business assets, growth loan and finance package. 

What you’ll get in return – we are offering up early discounts on memberships and services, and a few other wee treats. We'd love you to take advantage of these rewards, share to your friends, and help us to reach our goal.

What Will the Money be Spent On?

The money we raise through the Crowdfunding campaign is a small fraction of our overall budget however it will allow us to place important orders and put down deposits for the initial equipment.  Ultimately it will go towards everything that will make this project an asset to our community and a slick place to visit if you aint from round here.

And There's More

People Matter

The other thing we think is worth mentioning, is our intention to work to create jobs for the local community. We want to build a team as we grow and we'd like to be able to provide jobs that will attract young people to staying in the area rather than leaving for work in the cities. 

We’d also like to work with education providers to offer work experience. We want to invite outdoor activity providers to use the space for meeting and safety briefings, and to provide a booking service for them. We're keen for independent trainers and coaches to use the space to run classes and workshops, so there's something for everyone, no matter what level. 

The therapy room will be available to health and wellbeing practitioners, providing an opportunity to work in a mixed discipline environment which is rare in rural areas. It not only strengthens knowledge and resources but ultimately improves the service for the end user

Who Are We?


1614186409_alison_belaying.pngI never thought I'd like lifting weights as much as I do, but it's made a lot of difference to my general ability to function. I've done a fair bit of rehab over the years for various injuries, sustained chiefly from not being very good at mountain biking. But it gave me empathy, so not all bad.

I like to use a combination of science and pragmatism in my approach to my work. There needs to be a paradigm shift in the health and fitness industry, and I want to do my part by keeping up to date with the research and educating clients and athletes, so they have control and confidence in their training and wellbeing. I cringe every time I see sensationalist adverts about weight loss, or the "dangers" of a particular exercise, or bold claims about what massage therapy can do. I'm all about the honesty, and if I don't know something, I'll say so. Then I'll probably go find out.

Boring credentials - the abridged version: I have an BSc Hons in Strength and Conditioning from Abertay University. I'm also a sports massage therapist, and I've done quite a lot of CPD in pain science education, because I have a particular interest in pain and it's impact on sufferers. Another rabbit hole I've found myself down is womens health, because I think it's an important consideration that is often overlooked.


1614182317_kctm53imryagcaksxadf1l-vxpdvurhqbekubtx9dkm5qngj5gs2mulbnxahorjmggdg_i4dmc2cmlle5--fuxwm-j6s3uhxcql5rpajvkh9qps7kl_dbqvv9b3q0aup5oxwxvwdtjxdd9sa2xyrublejrbspkaxr4uvgbrfqi7extyistpogjetjoofmfm6vljsp2mqqr1qubeuqxm_.jpgI’ve called myself a climber for 18ish years, usually seeking out rompy trad but have also enjoyed phases of chasing boulder grades and the occasional Scottish winter climbing self-flagellation trip.  I’m going to blame my limited progression into the higher grades on lack of appropriate training facilities rather than my lack of natural talent and/or (finger) strength.

I’ve lived in Highland Perthshire through most of that time which means lots of schist climb-time, and a good depth of local knowledge, and lore.  Living in this upland playground also allows easy access to other outdoor pursuits – I enjoy and can pass as competent when canoeing, skiing, and wild swimming (aka swimming) though I can appreciate less vertical mountaineering, and mountain biking if I must…   

I do get a bit excited about quality kit – working retail in gear shops has been great for surrounding myself with it, when coupled with drinking coffee and talking about climbing all day – optimum job satisfaction.  Outside the shop/gym (hopefully), I’ve been a retained firefighter for six years – very interesting, rewarding and as you would expect at times, challenging.  Also, because I like to keep busy and that timing is everything, I’m currently 3 years into a BA (Hons) Business & Management degree.  


1614081951_1583482595_rockstar_climbing_lego.jpgCrag dug and terroriser of tiny beasties. Shown here looking magnificent. Better known about the town than either Alison or James, and with a more exciting social life. Originally rehomed from Yorkshire, he's a combination of sheer delight and mortifying embarrasment, depending on his inclination. He really likes sausages.

In Situ Climbing - Where We Started

James opened In Situ Climbing in July 2016 and we were originally two separate businesses - the shop and Alison in the therapy room. James has been a climber for more years than he cares to remember, and he likes shiny things and drinking coffee, so a climbing shop was the best career choice for him. Alison was a massage therapist, and with the premises having a small space to accommodate a therapy room, the combination of the two worked out pretty well.


The old shop on the high street

The gym idea

Things were good, but we wished there was a decent gym in town, an S&C gym with a boulder wall, so we could train and hang out with friends. We weren't the only ones, it was talked about often amongst our customers and regular visitors. So the search for suitable premises began.

The Location

Dunkeld is old, it’s beautiful and historic and interesting but it doesn’t have many modern premises for businesses like ours. We approached Atholl Estates, a local landowner, and asked if they had any plans for industrial development in the area. The planets must have been aligned that day, because as it happened, they did have an area earmarked by the existing Cally industrial units, tucked away right beside the crags. Atholl Estates have been extremely accommodating and helpful, and since this kind of project is a first for both of us, that has been nothing short of good fortune.

How It's Going

What followed was a couple of years of learning a whole new skillset. The meetings, the research, the planning, management and coordination, frankly, it was wild. The opportunity to collaborate with other small business owners, from health and wellbeing practitioners to outdoor activity providers, has opened up a whole new area of potential. The encouragement, support and input from friends and strangers alike has been both humbling and inspiring. Even with a 12 month delay caused by the pandemic it still hasn't dampened the enthusiasm for the project. We are now at a stage where it got very real - the unit is in progress, the fit out is decided, the climbing training area has been designed, and the quotes for equipment are in. 

A Reminder, If You Made It This Far

Helping us out by taking up the rewards, donating, and sharing our campaign will make this project happen. We thank you for any contribution, a little help from you will make sure we can help you when we open.


When are you hoping to open?

We’re aiming for July/August 2021 if all goes well.

Is there going to be an age limit?

You’ll need to be 16 years old or over, no upper age limit.

Why no children in the boulder wall?

Two main reasons: There is a fantastic climbing wall in Perth which caters extremely well for children, we don’t want to take away from that. Secondly, strictly speaking it’s a training for climbing area, and we will have an Olympic lifting platform, cardio equipment and free weights in the same space. Getting insurance for children in that space would be very costly.

Where are you going to be?

Unit 7, Cally Industrial Estate, Blairgowrie Road, Dunkeld, PH8 0HU

Will you have parking?

Yes, we will have a limited number of free spaces and we’re close to the Cally Car Park, also free to park. Dunkeld is a 10-minute walk away, with on street and metered parking. We will have cycle racks and encourage none motorised travel.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£5 or more

13 of 100 claimed

Wall of Fame and a Coffee or Tea

Your name will be added to the board of honoured pledgers which will be on display in the shop. You also can get yourself a coffee or tea to enjoy at your leisure.

£5 or more

18 of 35 claimed

Day Pass

If you want to try out the gym before committing to a membership, or if you’re visiting the area, get yourself a discounted day pass (usual price £7) and find out what we’re all about.

£10 or more

2 of 40 claimed

Personal Thank You Video

A personal thank you from Rockstar! A short video of a personal message of thanks sent straight to your phone, email or social media of your choice. You can make a special request if you like or get it as a gift and make someone’s day. Rockstar is getting on a bit, so rewards are limited to prevent terrier burnout.

£15 or more

7 of 200 claimed

Sponsor a Hold

The hold will bear your name on the back forever. When it’s time for it to retire you even get to keep it. It’s the reward that keeps on giving.

£25 or more

Organic Cotton T-shirt

EarthPositive unisex organic cotton, vegan friendly, easy care t-shirt with In Situ Climbing Unit 7 branding and bright colours for high visibility in your photos. What’s not to love? Message us your size - small, medium, or large.

£42 or more

Goodie Bag

EarthPositive T-shirt, DMM locking XRSE carabiner, a bunch of stickers, a 10% off voucher, and a Day Pass. This little lot will keep you happy or I'm a monkeys uncle.

£45 or more

2 of 10 claimed

Shared One Month Membership

Got kids or work random hours and feel you can’t justify a membership with enough workouts? Get a shared membership with a partner or friend and you can both use the gym as often as you like, just not at the same time.

£30 or more

12 of 12 claimed

Introduction to Strength Training

If you’ve ever been put off using a gym because you’re shy, or you’re not sure what you’re meant to do with a barbell, then this is the reward for you. Delivered by Alison, this is not just one, but three one-hour sessions covering the benefits and basics of strength training, in groups no larger than four. It also makes a good gift, so sign up a pal too, because this is an absolute bargain.

£40 or more

5 of 5 claimed

Private Coached Strength and Conditioning Session

Specially priced for this campaign. You tell us what you want, and Alison will deliver as much as she can in a 2-hour session. Ideal if you already train but want to make sure you’re on the right lines, or you want to understand your training in a little more depth.

£50 or more

8 of 8 claimed

Strength and Conditioning Workshop

A 4-hour workshop where you can learn more about how to test yourself, develop a plan, and the different types of training that will improve your performance. Make your training purposeful. This is a special price just for the crowdfunding, and numbers are limited, so grab a place quick and don’t miss out.

£150 or more

5 of 5 claimed

6-Month Membership

We’ve discounted some 6-month memberships, they’re normally £190. Great if you usually only train indoors through winter AND love a bargain.

£300 or more

5 of 5 claimed

12-Month Membership

Get yourself a stonking rate on a full one-year membership, normally £370. This is the S&C gym AND the climbing training area AND our online content. We can’t discount too many so once they’re gone, they’re gone.

Let's make 'Unit 7 - Indoor Training for Outdoor Sports' happen

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