AKT Fitness Franchise Is Spreading Its Wings. Clients Get Hooked On The Company's Dance-Based, Aerobic Workouts
The AKT franchise offers a dance-based, full-body fitness concept for clients with all fitness levels and body types. AKT, one of 10 boutique fitness brands under the Xponential Fitness franchisor umbrella, plans major growth as franchisees sign on for an enticing investment opportunity.
President Melissa Chordock says her company’s trump card is to make fitness fun so that clients keep coming back for more. AKT’s cardio workouts push members to sweat, dance and burn calories in a high-energy, supportive atmosphere. Cardio dance is interspersed with strength and toning activities during AKT workouts, which improve circulation, bone health and flexibility.
Why AKT Appeals Now
Chordock believes AKT’s expansion is perfectly timed. She points out that Americans were cooped up for months during the worst of the Covid pandemic, but today it’s bye-bye, couch potato and hello, workouts. “After years of Zoom calls and social isolation, people are clearly ready to move their bodies in a fun, expressive and communal way.”
Another factor is increased stress. People are having to commute to their offices again, inflation is a concern, and they still have stress arising from the many responsibilities in their lives – from property upkeep to parenting. AKT members defuse that stress with endorphin-releasing workouts that simultaneously build a sense of community during group fitness sessions.
“Most of our members use AKT as their primary fitness facility, enjoying four types of classes – bands, circuit, tone and dance,” Chordock says. “Women make up the majority of AKT membership, but you’ll often find men in our higher-intensity bands and circuit classes.”
How Covid Affected AKT
Chordock says the pandemic both hurt and helped the AKT franchise. “When Covid struck, we had only four newly opened franchise locations and nearly 20 in development. We were on the cusp of substantial expansion. And with shutdowns mandated by government officials, plus social distancing recommendations as lockdowns began lifting, people were cautious or apprehensive about returning to fitness facilities.”
Through months of Covid cases spiking and receding, AKT had to get comfortable reassessing and reworking to continue growing. “As a brand, we had to learn to adapt quickly, to be scrappy, resilient and persistent, to build awareness and momentum,” Chordock says. “Along with our sister brands across Xponential Fitness, we had to become masters of detail and work diligently with each studio in development to tweak the process to best fit what was going on in their individual communities. The adversity has resulted in stronger strategies and operations because we were forced to tweak and try new things early on.”
AKT Franchise’s Staying Power
After rising to the pandemic challenges, Chordock is confident that AKT is here to stay. “With four distinct class varieties and new content debuting every three weeks, there is something for everyone at AKT. Its appeal is rooted in movement and influenced by dance, both of which have been embraced by many cultures for centuries as an expression of joy and celebration. We have the advantage of not being tied to a single piece of equipment. We incorporate various props such as foam rollers, hand weights and gliders.”
In addition, Chordock thinks the community spirit that’s integral to AKT has supported its sustained success and will help drive its ongoing expansion. “Community is at the core of every successful studio. We bring people together to realize the best version of themselves and celebrate the small and big wins alike. The variety of class offerings and ever-evolving content ensures our clients remain engaged and loyal.”
A Snapshot of AKT Franchise History
AKT was founded in 2013 in New York City and opened its first franchise site in 2019. Entrepreneur magazine ranked AKT among its 2021 and 2022 Top New Franchises.
AKT has more than doubled in size since the pandemic began, Chordock says, and franchisees are turning profits within just one year in business. “AKT is a great opportunity for anyone looking for a semi-absentee business investment. We provide dedicated support at all times, and our onboarding and opening strategy is heavily focused on the training, development and empowerment of studio general managers. This allows owners to spend a lot less time a week operating a studio.”
AKT leaders and trainers guide franchisees through the entire buildout process from layout and construction to interior design, music and technology. AKT provides comprehensive, continuing sales training and marketing assistance, with phone calls and expert guidance from day one. This assistance extends to helping franchisees hire and develop their teams to cover all business needs.
The Ideal AKT Franchisee
An AKT franchise owner is a high-energy person who wants to own their own business, Chordock says. The ideal franchisee possesses skills necessary for operating a business, including managerial duties and team-building. Franchisees should be:
• Passionate about fitness.
• Respectful communicators.
• Able and willing to follow the franchise’s proven operational guidelines.
• Critical thinkers.
It costs roughly $320,000 to $500,000 to launch an AKT dance fitness studio. The franchise fee is $60,000. The franchisee should have a net worth of $500,000 and have at least $100,000 in cash on hand. To learn more about the AKT franchise, visit www.theakt.com/franchise.
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