Classy upgrade fits the bill for Crossfit clientele

A West-London gym has blitzed its building inside, dramatically upscaling the quality of its fitness and changing room environment and furnishings.

Blitz Crossfit is a member of the 300-strong Crossfit UK affiliation, a network numbering tens of thousands worldwide.

“The beauty of the affiliation is that each gym is different, approaching fitness in its own way,” states co-owner Ben Massey. Once in the camera department of a film company preparing TV commercials and programmes for the BBC and Channel 4, Ben switched to the fitness sector, opening Blitz Crossfit in Twickenham five years ago.

“I love Crossfit and found it ideal when I had really busy days and could gain a great workout in an hour before getting on with my day,” he says. Tired of life on the road, Ben teamed up with business partner Tim Hagon to launch their fitness hub.

“In the beginning, all we cared about was offering Crossfit. The interior was spit and sawdust. We simply provided the programmes. That was our primary focus,” says Ben.

Over time they realised that fully meeting the needs of their catchment depended on also providing a “clean, fresh, creative environment”.

“We are 100% Crossfit to the core but were conscious that we needed to provide the right quality of facilities,” Ben notes.

Cue a £250,000 project to upgrade the building that included sectioning off the interior into Studios 1 and 2, plus reception/business/refreshment area, all soundproofed from each other and fitted with remotely, app controlled lighting and air conditioning throughout.

The reception, with its glass front, serves as both coffee bar, “where visitors can grab a smoothie” and business space for those working mobile.

Studio 2, the larger of the studios, runs the CF (Crossfit) classes, while Studio 1 takes in Sweat, Lift and HIIT programmes.

The Sonos sound and lighting app-based systems form part of a revitalised Smart interior controlled remotely from a device.

Changing provision had to be upgraded too, says Ben. “Before, we provided three changing cubicles and 25 basic wooden cubby holes with no doors on them. “While making the most of what we had, we have moved the standard of changing provision up a few levels by investing in really good lockers.”

After repainting the changing area, Ben sourced bespoke changing room furniture manufacturers and installers Crown Sports Lockers for supplying their storage solution. “Once we had seen the quality of their installations, we knew they were the supplier we wanted for the job,” Ben recalls.

In meeting their mission for a clean, bright setting, Blitz selected 60 holdall lockers furnished in crisp, white laminate with white DCL keypad locks. Also adding atmosphere is white LED lighting fitted around each cubicle, while Rako colour lighting is fitted throughout the gym. Crown also supplied and fitted customised white panelling for the LED strip lighting.

“The lockers are the backdrop for the rest of the changing area,” explains Ben. “We knew they represented a huge upgrade and we would need to revisit the original specification.”

Engraved Blitz Brooklin locker number discs complete a fitout oozing panache and wholly fitting for the gyms Twickenham demographic. “The club wanted their own bespoke font for the engraved number discs,” adds Crown Sports Lockers project manager Sam Palmer, “which we were delighted to supply for them as part of a classy interior upgrade for the building.”

Ben Continues: “At the site meeting, it was soon clear that Sam fully understood the industry and knew what we wanted straightaway, which made the whole process super simple. I didn’t need to worry about whether they had met the brief.

“Their installation team arrived on probably the busiest day of the project, when all the trades were on site, but they were really friendly and hardworking.”

Blitz Crossfit offers a choice of packages – monthly membership providing twice weekly, three times weekly or unlimited sessions, and single, five or ten unit packs. “Most like the unlimited membership,” Ben reveals, “but the 10 packs are popular too.”

Now running a 300-strong membership, Ben and Tim plan to grow that number to 400. Recent transformation of their gym interior will surely help steer the owners towards that goal.

Already planning beyond Blitz Crossfit, they aim to be operating five gyms in the next three years – another two by the end of 2019 and all sites in West London.