Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and fitness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kaileigh van Horne, Owner of The Athletic Club, located in Scottsdale, AZ, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

The Athletic Club is a high-quality boutique fitness studio located in Scottsdale, AZ. We work with people of all ages and abilities, as our classes can be modified for each individual. Whether you are a workout fanatic or just starting out, it's time to make The Athletic Club your home. We meet you where you are and help you achieve optimal health and wellness through our motivating and result-driven classes. Each class is designed with you in mind. You will receive a functional full-body workout focused on strength and endurance. At the end of each class, you will feel accomplished and motivated for whatever the rest of the day has in store. We can't wait till you join the club!

Tell us about yourself

I am a native of Arizona. I grew up playing every sport possible and have always had a huge passion for health and wellness. In my freshman year of high school, I lost my brother to his addiction to drugs. It was during this time I really clung to what I knew best- moving my body and sports. Through staying active helped me get through this tragedy and continues to help me every single day. It has always been a dream of mine to create a space where I can be a happy place for others and provide them with workouts that are effective in not only getting people healthier and stronger but also helping them through life's hardships. I had the privilege of being an Arizona Cardinal's Cheerleader for 4 amazing seasons, and through that, I loved being a part of something bigger than myself and forming forever friendships. This continued to pour into my desire to build a space of community and health once my career was over. I am so happy to say in 3 short months The Athletic Club is doing just that- building a strong and caring community while helping people become their healthiest versions! What motivates me to do what I do is the literal feeling of people walking in a space verse walking out. Most times, people are tired, quiet, can seem upset, etc.! After the workout, people are smiling, chatting, and it seems like a weight has been lifted off their shoulders. This is my favorite thing as I know the 50 minutes they spent with me project them into a better day, week, month, year, and life!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

This is a tough one, as I have just been open for 3 months! I would have to say balancing being a business owner while having two little ones at home. To see that my business is doing well and my kids are happy and healthy is a major accomplishment for me. Opening a gym while my kiddos are at the young ages of 1 and 3 was a major decision for me as I knew my time would be pulled. I am proud of myself and my husband for finding a system that works for us. The kids come to the gym after my final class of the day and "help" me clean up. They love coming to the gym, and even if they aren't much help, I love that I get to spend time with them. We are making it work, and that is something to be proud of.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

I would say it is just a balancing act and something that I am still figuring out. Before when I ran personal training out of my home garage, it was easy to say I can't train this week now with a full-blown gym- I can't do that! Each day rain or shine, it's go time! Having to find a balance between hanging with family and friends will be a continuous thing, probably for the first few years.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Start small. I started in my garage with one client. Once I built that to about 50, I knew it was time to make a bigger jump. That being said, it would have been terrifying to open a full-blown gym with one client, and the momentum would be so much slower. Knowing that you are successful on a small scale will help you with the confidence to go a bit bigger!
  2. Schedule "me" time. Whether that is actually just time for yourself or time for your family. Don't get caught up in it all. In owning a business, there is truly always something that you can do for it. You need to take moments away and enjoy the life that is happening right now. Find ways to be efficient with your time so you can put the laptop, phone, and communication away to just be present.
  3. Be genuine and your unique self. In the world of fitness, there are a million gyms. It is hard not to compare yourself to what other gyms or businesses are doing. Since opening The Athletic Club, I have stayed true to my beliefs, my style, and my authentic self. This attracts the people you want to have at your business. If you are your true you and passionate about what you do, the sky is the limit.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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