We spoke with Rez Barad, Managing Director of BOXR in London, about his experience in the fitness start-up space.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED IN THE FITNESS SPACE?
Both myself and my business partner George Fox, have a professional background in athletic performance and sports, with my personal education stemming from football/athletics, and George’s from the world of boxing. While coaching our clientele on a 1-to-1 basis, we always speculated the possibilities of transitioning our format onto a group platform. Throughout the last year we observed an increasing demand for a medium that facilitates the ‘everyday persons’ participation in group training.
WHAT MAKES BOXR UNIQUE?
The hype surrounding boxing is rapidly growing with the help of recent multi-million hollywood blockbusters, Southpaw and Creed, and boxing now becoming a fundamental part of the training regiment of many supermodels, such as Adriana Lima, Gigi Hadid and David Gandy, the latter having trained at our facilities. We have housed current world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua and continue to be the base for Derek Chisora as well as numerous other professional athletes.
This education ensures that BOXR offers the ‘real’ experience. We take pride in our origins and our users are able to experience an organic boxing/athletic organization with clout and expertise.
Further, being that we’re both relatively young CEO’s, we’ve been able to interlink various fields that we are passionate about. Sporting prowess is key, however BOXR is also a manifestation of our vigorous interest in fashion, music and art.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR RECENT BRAND REVAMP. WHAT LED TO THE DECISION AND HOW DID YOU EXECUTE ON IT?
The project was launched in January of 2016. We had outgrown our previous system as we were consistently reaching maximum capacity. Instead of being content with our success, we decided to revisit the drawing board. By adjusting our premises, through the acquisition of new equipment and investing in our workout and inventory of exercises, we were able to double our capacity. We used our launch as live market research and I think that was invaluable. We all strive for perfection, but often our hesitation in the quest for it can hold us back from doing anything at all. As an outfit we are always looking at innovation and consistently revisit our model to measure its efficiency in all quarters.
HOW DO YOU MAKE DECISIONS AROUND CLASS PROGRAMMING AND WHAT TO OFFER YOUR CLIENTS?
Intrinsic and external evaluation is essential. Regular team meetings and assessment days are partaken to ensure that we keep supplying the quality of service that we demand. Innovative ideas are deliberated upon on a weekly/monthly basis assisting our creative direction, the implementation of which then falls upon our shoulders. Feedback from our clientele is throughly important. We frequently send out surveys and questionnaires to both our most loyal and new clientele. This helps us regulate our service and take into account their wishes while evaluating current activity both positive and negative.
WHAT DO YOU WANT STUDENTS TO TAKE AWAY FROM YOUR CLASSES?
Our brand represents honesty and integrity. In principal, we designed a program that answers a question that we deeply care about: When a BOXR completes a session, how and what do they feel?
Our answer: Reminiscent of finishing a fight but without the bruises.
Having competed ourselves, hearing the final bell or whistle and knowing you’re victorious is an incomparably sweet feeling. You are consumed with pride and joy as your ‘honest’ hard work has been rewarded. From teammates to coaches, you are widely indebted. That feeling of belonging, team work and being part of something bigger than yourself. Capturing those emotions is key so we constructed a system that gives the user their personal micro-victories camp on camp while simultaneously breeding an air of togetherness and friendship. We become a movement rather than solely a fitness venue. Our BOXRs walk out of our doors having worked up a sweat, burnt in the region of 600-1000 calories, and having increased their skill level in the execution of boxing and athletic motion, all in an atmosphere built upon the foundation of hard work and motivation. With distinctively selected playlists, our music gives life to a galvanising atmosphere which encourages the consumer to give 100% each and every time.