This weird CrossFit gym makes over $50k/mo


Gym World comes from Kilo co-founder John Franklin, who shares lessons about making money in the fitness industry.

& doesn’t rely on group training…

What’s up Gym World?

Being a CrossFit affiliate means you’re qualified to teach the CrossFit methodology and use the brand name, but it doesn’t lock you into the group training model.

Yet, that’s the path most affiliates take.

And while we’ve seen success with this model in gyms like Dan Chaffey’s, we’ve also seen why it’s not the most efficient approach.

Yet, the large group model is the only one taught by HQ.

Dan Purington from Woodslawn Fitness is a prime example of how an alternative model can be successful. The pandemic forced him to try a smaller group model, which worked well for his business.

Today, his gym generates over $50k/mo—three times what the average affiliate earns—and most of his revenue comes from semi-private training.

Here’s how he did it:

Building Woodslawn Fitness

Woodslawn Fitness (previously CrossFit Woodslawn) opened in 2018 in a former real estate office that came with 28 parking spaces.

💡 At the time, Dan didn’t realize how valuable these parking spaces would turn out to be.

The gym covered 2,000 sq ft with 1,200 sq ft of dedicated workout space, and the rest was allocated for storage, offices, bathrooms, and showers.

2,000 sq gym
This is much smaller than the average affiliate, but we’re big advocates for starting small here on Gym World.

Like most affiliates, Dan initially used the large group training model, charging members $185 per month for unlimited classes.

💡 This rate is slightly higher than the average price for CrossFit group training in 2022, which was $165 per month. But it’s important to note that Dan’s gym is in Oregon, one of the most expensive states in the US.

Transitioning to semi-private

A year later, the pandemic hit, and according to Dan, his area faced some of the most ambiguous mandates in the country.

Large group training became impossible with no clear guidelines for operating gyms. Dan needed to keep his business going, so he got creative.

💡 Remember those 28 parking spaces?

Dan moved the equipment outside and turned the parking lot into an outdoor gym for both private and group training.

small group training classes
To comply with mandates, his group classes were smaller.

While many gyms lost revenue during COVID, Dan’s business grew because he kept his doors open. He invested $15k to add pavilions and more equipment, creating 1,400 sq ft of usable outdoor workout space.

1,400 sq ft usable outdoor workout space

Still, some members were hesitant to come in. When the indoor gym reopened in 2021, these members needed extra support and attention to get back into shape.

Dan considered private and group training, but realized:

  • Athletes felt more comfortable in smaller settings.
  • Smaller classes allowed him to provide more personalized attention.
  • Quality personal trainers were hard to find.
  • Members wanted camaraderie and community.

So, he introduced a semi-private personal training model that could address these needs and ran it outdoors alongside his group sessions.

He capped classes at six people with everyone following the same program based on CrossFit’s methodology. It cost $899 a month and also included:

  • 12 one-on-one personal training sessions (3x a week),
  • A nutrition consultation,
  • A body scan,
  • A walking plan,
  • An at-home workout plan (2-4 days a week).
💡 While the price is high, it’s not unheard of on Gym World. Smaller groups make the CrossFit experience more accessible and less intimidating, creating an environment that people are willing to pay for.

The result

Dan’s revenue has tripled since changing his model:

  • 60% comes from semi-private personal training
  • 30% from group training
  • The rest from nutrition coaching

He’s got six full-time and two part-time staff to run the gym.

💡 A big staff comes with big problems. Chris Travis also runs a similar model, but with just two full-time staff members.

When I asked Dan why he doesn’t fully commit to a smaller model, he said he likes offering group training.

Fair enough.

To put it briefly…

Offering CrossFit in a semi-private group training model tripled Dan’s revenue in just 18 months. This shows successful CrossFit training isn’t limited to the traditional large group model with unlimited classes.

Given this success, HQ should consider exploring and promoting alternative models for affiliates.

For a deeper insight into Dan’s strategy, watch or listen to his full interview on Gym World.



Share This Article

Read more

5 minutes is all it takes to grow your gym.

Get the weekly email that shares the strategies used by top-earning gym owners.

Learn more about GLM AI