Grantham gym owner on a wave with global MyZone and gym success
Growing up in the Australian bush, where he sold plums from the family trees, Dave Wright learned the value of hard work.
These days, he runs Myzone, a wearable technology firm that aims to encourage people to exercise.
With his UK-born wife Adrienne, he also owns the Feelgood Fitness centre in Grantham’s George Centre, which this month will double in size with three new studios and become a global centre for his Myzone technology.
Now, such entrepreneurial flair has been recognised by private equity company LDC, which has just named Dave as one of Britain’s top 50 business leaders.
As workmen performed the finishing touches to the revamped Grantham gym, the 45-year-old explained the changes he has brought to the gym, which opened in 2006.
“We have put in three new studios. It’s going to be a training centre for Myzone technology. It is a strap I invented. It is used in 5,000 gyms in 65 countries around the world.”
Grantham was the first gym to use Myzone in 2011. The device measures the heart rate, calories burnt and the effort used, aiming to encourage users to beat their goals and exercise more.
It has led to the creation of a global brand, generating revenues of more than £15 million. The company has four global offices with ambitions to reach 20 in the coming years.
Dave said of his Grantham gym: “I wanted to build a global site for Myzone and also provide training for all shapes and sizes in Grantham, including children. Children can come here for free if they are with their parents, so families can train together in a safe environment. As a father of four, I am really excited about this.”
“I wanted to do this in Grantham. Grantham is a great place. We live locally in Haceby. Grantham is the epicentre for people travelling from London. Rather than send them to London, I would rather bring them to Grantham.”
The day the Journal called, Dave was just saying farewell to clients from South Korea.
He said: “I have married a Pom (from Harrogate, North Yorkshire). I think Grantham is great.”
Dave cites its Marks & Spencer, the new Kitchen & Coffee cafe in Westgate, the Cafe, Miller & Carter steakhouse and Grantham now being the global training centre for Myzone.
He said: “We will be shooting global videos here, inviting customers from around the world to come and experience Myzone technology.”
Dave was born in Nar Nar Goon, a small town in rural Australia, 40 miles south-east of Melbourne, Victoria state’s bustling capital.
It was in the Australian bush that Dave learnt about ambition and hard work.
He sold plums from the family garden to help pay for a community basketball court and often staged discos too.
In a recently-published profile, he explained: “I believe I had the most privileged upbringing because we had nothing but we were happy.
“If we couldn’t afford something, we went without. That meant that from a very young age, I understood that if I wanted something, I had to go out there and work to get it.”
Such ambition means Dave now has seven gyms around Australia, in addition to Grantham.
Dave worked at gyms across Australia for two years. He also travelled the world, which saw him working with children in the USA, where he met his Yorkshire-born wife.
He added: “We travelled the world, including Africa together. We own our own marketing company that promotes fitness gyms around the world. I have an office in Nottingham, Chicago and Melbourne.”
Dave also has an office in Grantham, which led to the gym opening in the George Centre but also because the town needed a ladies-only gym.
It now has 1,000 members though it is also open to non-members.
The completion of the expended gym will create six new jobs, giving ten in total, including managers Helen Elinas and superstar trainer Billy Burchette.
Feelgood Fitness will also feature the first configuration of specialist raining bikes, which are the most expensive in the world and are used by elite sports teams around the world.
The expansion follows Feelgood Fitness recently becoming a Ricky Hatton approved boxing academy.
It follows from Dave being a global figure in the fitness industry, with roles including being chairman of the UK supplies council for the Uk fitness industry and being a board member of the National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity in the USA.
Dave also writes for UK trade journals about fitness and he is a regular on the global speaker scene, attending international conferences in places as diverse as Saudi Arabia, China, Dubai, Australia, USA and around Europe.
He added: “I think the great thing about the health and fitness industry is people leave their identities at the door. Everyone has a heartbeat. We want to get it moving.
“With Myzone, we help people feel good about
exercise, irrespective of weight, gender or fitness levels.
“In my opinion, you are making people happy and healthy.
“What better industry to be in, something that enriches lives irrespective of age. I have a desire to change the world.”
For more information on Myzone, you can visit: www.myzone.org