My guest today is an expert fitness & hospitality business consultant, owner of multiple successful businesses and a founder of leading Business Consultancy headquartered in Kuwait.
His extensive project portfolio make him one of the most recognised Fitness Consultants. Also, he widely is known as an international networker in the health and fitness industry.
- (00:00:16) - Introduction of my guest today
- (00:01:41) - We talk about a new exciting fitness franchise MuayThai Fit
- (00:07:06) - Yves shares his career journey
- (00:14:18) - Fitness industry in middle east
- (00:15:46) - Fitness jobs, workforce and more around working as a trainer in middle east.
- (00:21:32) - Toughest experiences Yves had while growing his business
- (00:23:08) - Lifestyle Yves now lives as a result of his success and hard work.
- (00:28:55) - How does Yves keep fit to perform at his best
- (00:31:12) - Life is a choice, Yves shares how lives his life
- (00:34:02) - Emerging Fitness markets around the world and work Yves does
- (00:37:13) - There is no point trying to work on something you don't enjoy doing
- (00:38:49) - What Yves wish he did if he could go back in time
- (00:41:04) - We discuss what fitness can and cant' do and selling proposition when it comes to fitness as a solution.
- (00:52:09) - How to get in touch with Yves
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Vit Muller: [00:00:16] Hello, everybody Vit here from Success Inspired Podcast again, my guest today is an expert fitness and hospitality business consultant, owner of multiple successful businesses and founder of leading business consultancy, headquartered in Kuwait.
[00:00:32] His extensive project portfolio, making one of the most recognized fitness consultants.
[00:00:37] He is widely known as an international networker in the health and fitness industry. The focus on turnkey solutions for fitness, leisure, sport, and spa industry, him and his team have completed projects across Europe, the middle East and Africa, their collaborations touch almost every aspect of the lifestyle industry. This includes some of the world's leading brands in fitness and hospitality. Please. Welcome to the show Yves Preissler.
Yves Preissler: [00:01:12] Hello Vit, it's a pleasure to be here. Thank you, Vit.
Vit Muller: [00:01:15] Great to have you on the show Yves. Now, since I've already for introduced you a little bit, uh, what's something that not many people know about you.
Yves Preissler: [00:01:24] I think I'm a pretty open book. People know everything about me. I'm a straightforward guy. I say it as it is. So for my company philosophy is 'Acta non verba', actions not words. And if you have a question, you will get the answer, whether you like it or not
Vit Muller: [00:01:38] I like it, straight shooter. I like it by the way,
We talk about a new exciting fitness franchise MuayThai Fit
[00:01:41] congratulations on your new, new, uh, fitness project MuayThai Fit how did that come about?
Yves Preissler: [00:01:48] I met on LinkedIn, a fellow German, Greek gentleman named totally Toli Makris who approached me about a project. He has started
[00:01:57]and project with him. And we had a few Zoom collaboration calls and have then decided to do this project together, create an international franchise and have developed MuayThaiTen into MuayThai Fit, which is now featuring a 30 minute class, MuayThai Ten which have 20 and 60 minutes class and we have added, flex and relaxed class.
[00:02:17] And making it a wholesome affordable franchise. In the likes of F45 for an investment volume or 200, 250,000 with very nice return on investments. We think it's the right time that the market needs combat and functional training combined yet affordable and a little bit cheaper than the Barry's or, Orange theory that you need half a million dollar for.
[00:02:45] Since fitness is growing and there's so many spaces available, molds and developments, our 150 to 200 square meter franchise fits well.
Vit Muller: [00:02:54] So you combining functional element in today's martial arts type of training as well.
Yves Preissler: [00:03:00] Yeah, exactly. The idea is to use the best of MuayThai without the combat and the bleeding noses.
[00:03:05] And to combine it with a functional, functional training, there is a big demand for combat sports, but not everyone wants to train three, four hours full contact MuayThai or Judo or whatever it might be. So we took, uh, the elements of the striking and kicking into a fitness regime, combined it with standard functional training using dumbbells, kettlebells, plyo boxes.
[00:03:27] Uh, without any fixed machines of strength and cardio. So therefore you need a space. You need a few boxing bags, you need 10 squares and you do 10 rounds or 20 rounds of exercise combining MuayThai and functional. In order to take part of the mobility and the meditation aspect of MuayThai fighters, we came up with Flexible & Relax by MuayThaiFit, which is a mobility yoga inspired workout.
[00:03:55] And it ends with a little bit of meditation and mindfulness. So it's a perfect to get started into the fitness regime. If you're not someone who wants to do any MuayThai or touch, Any weights, you'd join those classes in order to transition yourself into a Muay Thais side of training.
Vit Muller: [00:04:12] I love it.
[00:04:12] This is great. You're basically covering all basis is, is great for anybody who is just starting out, has a stressful job, not ready to take on the Muay Thai classes. They can start with that really like a bit of a relaxation stuff, improve their mobility and then delve into the functional training. That's a, that's a very good idea.
[00:04:30] And what I also like about it is that you combine. Uh, obviously the why aspect, that's where they get the cardio out of. And then if the functional training, that's the strength part, right. Um, this is great. I really like it. I mean, um, in comparison, not to compare, but just to on the side note, I think, um, I like it more than for example, orange theory.
[00:04:50] Um, just because, um, I think they use
[00:04:53] For the cardio part, um, which is not that it's bad, but I think this is going to provide people, uh, more, uh, more variety, uh, and, and the business can, has more flexibility with the programming if, if the kicking and punching and all the other combos. Right.
Yves Preissler: [00:05:10] It certainly does it's something anyone can do, because you pace yourself, you use Myzone heart rate monitoring.
[00:05:17] And so you go by your own pace and in your own zone. So if you are a newcomer to fitness, you're still going to get a great workout within your zone. If you are fit like yourself, uh, you, you go just a little bit harder because you have to take long to climb. And we also believe that MuayThaiFit is I think the only boutique concept in the world, which has a history.
[00:05:37] I mean, there's MuayThai behind it. So if people want to take it to the next level, uh, we've partnered up with professional company, Elite Boxing. So you can go to the MuayThai events. You can actually go to the real fight camp like MuayThai or whatever, if you're inspired to do so. And which other boutique fitness brand has, um, a really connection to traditional history of sports?
[00:06:00] I think there's none in , Orange Theory is an amazing concept, works and Barry's Bootcamp is an amazing concept. But these are. New school fitness activities. We have combined in old traditional martial arts and bring it to the masses. And people can explore this by traveling to Thailand, by attending MuayThai events on global level.
[00:06:20] I think that will be attractive then combine it. Of course, if the usual merchandise and everything else. So you can have your brand that you can have all of that too, but it's not for me important to create that story and connect it real MuayThai which we have done.
Vit Muller: [00:06:37] I mean, I looked at your website, um, of the Muay Thai Fit business.
[00:06:41] Um, it looks great. Um, so yeah, congrats, well done. Um, I, I think this, this, this might be a new trend in the industry, like more, more martial arts type of training. Because, that hasn't really become mainstream yet. I mean, you have UFC gyms, the sort of, they've got some classes, but I think that that might be one of the trends.
[00:07:01] Right. But before we talk about trends and talk about future of fitness, um, back to you,
Yves shares his career journey [00:07:06] What, what compelled you to, to become, um, fitness and hospitality consultant?
Yves Preissler: [00:07:14] Well, uh, it happened, uh, rather naturally I've done Judo since the age of 5 until 25. I played a little bit of football. I wasn't good at it, but it was a fun team sport.
[00:07:24] And I started frequenting gyms with the age of 16, going with the motorcycle to the gym and, and start training. So I enjoy this environment and completed my a levels and a certain service. And start getting a little bit more interest in doing a very basic C lessons for fitness training over a weekend. Liked it so okay. Let's do some more.
[00:07:44] Got licensed. And then until the personal trainer diploma. And not wanting to be a train on all my life, uh, than went back to school again, and did a business, uh, an administration degree in English and French language, which has then allowed me to travel the world and speak the languages, which I wanted to speak.
[00:08:06] And then combine that with fitness, starting as a trainer, starting as a personal trainer at a club in Kuwait. And training basically, uh, the high society of Kuwait back in the day in that club, it was a $20 million club for 750 high rich Kuwaiti people. Uh, had three gyms in there. Um, three squash courts, two tennis courts at the beach.
[00:08:28] I progress from personal training into the being the health fitness manager stayed there four and a half years before getting headhunted by another individual from Kuwait. Uh, we had agreed to start the company for home personal training, uh, in Kuwait, which was the first of its kind at that time, grew it to 10 to 12 trainers, then ventured into Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
[00:08:52] And on the way I was asked that, can you design gyms? I said I think so to do a normal machine layout and then naturally progressed. Okay. The layout is not enough. You need to have a financial. You know, assist them behind it. And the investing needs to be guaranteed to get into visibility's market studies.
[00:09:10] We start meeting architecture companies and interior design. So you pick that knowledge up to, and then decided to solely build the company around being a turnkey solution company where investors can come and can have everything from a pre concept to concept development and even to operation, including recruitment.
[00:09:29] Something like this does not exist a lot in the world that people come and can have everything. You have often have fitness consultants being personal trainers who then believe they can build such a business and work with equipment companies together who usually fill up your space with as much equipment as they can.
[00:09:49] And the personal trainer has great ideas and creating programs and the front part of it. But we have often the case that those businesses are financially not successful. And we combine all of this to make sure that we start with that in mind, it's a business and a, not a charity or just an activity. So we'll try to put it all together in a way where, you know, the invested money is returning as per industry standards.
[00:10:15] Because I rather say if you have a million dollar, buy a building, get, get branded and have no idea, or build a gym and get real money
Vit Muller: [00:10:24] or, or buy into a franchise.
Yves Preissler: [00:10:27] Or that you, if you just want to make money and you enjoy fitness and service, I think a franchise is a great tool to get, um, the systems and, uh, designs afford and have something which is already proven and working and then scale it, then scale it.
Vit Muller: [00:10:43] Absolutely. Definitely like there's so many aspects when it comes to developing a fitness club, right? Like you really need to have that experience, have to have that knowledge of all the aspects. So like you said, if you just a personal trainer who is passionate about training and you might be passionate about putting few pieces of equipment on an open space and thinking that's all there is to it, that it, that now that it it's not.
[00:11:09] Um, and the other thing is, um, What I like about this, that you guys provide the turnkey solution because, you know, oftentimes you can go do fitness, fitness, expos, and, and you've got all the providers there, you know, from fitness equipment to flooring, to, uh, business, um, business consultancy, but it's kind of like bits and pieces.
[00:11:30] And then, and then you kind of have to work with all these different providers to assist you, um, hoping that they will communicate. Together properly, which, um, which might even add additional costs. Right. So having it like turnkey, one company that does it, everything. And has that, um, proven track record behind them, I think that's makes perfect sense.
Yves Preissler: [00:11:51] We are consultants. We get paid by the client, not by the equipment provider. So we have, uh, sometimes heated discussions with the equipment provider , why did you to take that why did you put some more cardio because it's not needed. So the concept is that this is how it's going to work.
[00:12:04] This is the club capacities. I don't need 15 treadmills. I need 12. Obviously not to the liking of the equipment company, but you, on the side of, of the investor, you're responsible to, to perform that the business performs. And we have been successful in building performing businesses. That's why we work with additionally, the hotel consultants who hire us to build certain parts of the hotel operations, which is fitness, but that's what we will be asked by different franchisees to look at things where there's an existing franchise system. Is that okay if you know the local market? Why don't you tell me about Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar.
[00:12:42] If this is. The right product for this market. We experienced a lot in the middle East that people bring over on concepts in the States or from Europe. And they're not performing as well in the local society because they are not made for the local society, starts from, from setup costs, how the entrance is done, but parking is there.
[00:13:00] What social media, how the trainers are dressing and what's on the trainers of social media. I mean, it goes that far that you have to look okay, who works on your business. If you book in a conservative place, a Saudi Arabia might not be a as appropriate to show up in the bikini on the social media. Not that you cannot, but you have to simply think what does this do to the society you are serving?
[00:13:21] That will