A short but sweet history of Planet Fitness

District Manager Enrique and Store Manager Ursula have been with the Alhambra Planet Fitness since it opened in May of 2015.

In the early ‘90s, the owners of a gym called Planet Fitness brainstormed about how to expand their business. They quickly realized there was an opportunity to serve a much larger segment of the population. The challenge was to appeal to the 80 to 85% of the population that did not belong to a gym. Their solution was brilliant and as it turned out, very successful.

It was clear that first-time and casual gym users did not like the “look at me” attitude of over developed muscle builders and the behaviors found in typical gyms. Most gym members just wanted to get fit, stay fit, and get on with their lives.

It was also clear that prospective members did not want to pay a lot of money to give fitness a try. So Planet Fitness completely upended the traditional gym environment by creating the non-intimidating, low-cost model while at the same time offering state-of-the-art fitness equipment in a clean environment that has revolutionized the gym industry and has remained popular to this day.

Planet Fitness gyms soon became known as the Judgement Free Zone®. They offered a welcoming and friendly community where men and women could feel comfortable regardless of their fitness level and personal goals.

The rapid expansion of PF has included the concept of moving into shopping malls and often taking over empty premises of stores that had been forced to close. This had the added benefit of helping brick and mortar malls to stay in business. Such is the case with the Alhambra PF. Prior to the economic downturn, Planet Fitness was competing with big retailers for space. Their timing was right for expansion.

Today, Planet Fitness is one of the largest and fastest-growing franchisors and operators of fitness centers in the United States by number of members and locations. It’s a business model that works creating an economical and safe space as well as a sense of belonging for members, success for the owners, and a boost to the national economy.

Following this simple idea, Planet Fitness has more than quadrupled the number of its gyms since the beginning of the decade. Along the way, PF has been involved in some smart television sponsorships, including the reality show The Biggest Loser. PF is also a major sponsor of the Times Square New Year’s Eve celebrations, ensuring that its name and the low cost, judgement free philosophy is seen by more than a billion people across the globe.

Planet Fitness continues to advocate for its unique mission of enhancing people’s lives through fitness, self-esteem, and community by providing an affordable, high-quality fitness experience in a welcoming, non-intimidating environment.


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Jan 2021


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