We were born from a simple idea:
That a fitness company’s main objective should be to help people get into the best shape of their lives, not help them find new ways to waste their time and money.
WEBercise was founded in 2011 by
Brian Lestz and Sean Young.
Brian and Sean had managed multiple gyms across several of the top boutique fitness companies in the Northeast. The problem was that the fitness clubs they were selling weren’t helping the vast majority of people they came in contact with, and they knew it.
“I remember hearing the CEO of our old company give a speech about the fitness industry, and he said that only 15-17% of adult Americans belonged to gyms,” recalls Brian. “I always considered myself an extreme outsider when it came to fitness, secretly never holding a gym membership until I received the free one which came with my employment. But even to me, I was shocked at how low those national numbers were.”
The real problem for Brian and Sean was what they knew about the fitness club memberships they were selling. “I remember running the numbers in my club and being astounded that we had close to 10,000 members, but I felt like I only saw the same 200 or so faces each week. And what was impossible to ignore was that most of them were already pretty fit. I would sign up people of all fitness levels, but most of them would gradually stop coming after the first couple of weeks. Almost exclusively,
The only people who joined [our gyms] and saw significant results were the ones who purchased personal training…I really started to wonder if the gym memberships people were buying from me were really helping them at all.
— Brian Lestz, Co-Founder
the only people who joined and saw significant results were the ones who purchased personal training. I got into the fitness industry because I love helping people, but I really started to wonder if the gym memberships people were buying from me were actually helping them at all. If a membership only gives people access to equipment, and most people with a real goal struggle without personal training, then why couldn’t we just sell personal training?”
The thing that people seem to find the most helpful about WEBercise is the accountability and guidance. Accomplishing your fitness goals is one of the hardest journeys you’ll ever take on. We hope people find that with WEBercise, they’ll have an expert tour guide on that journey who will never give up on them and won’t let them give up on themselves.
— Brian Lestz, Co-Founder
When Sean first came up with the idea for WEBercise late in 2010, it was actually a complete accident. “I was working with one of those guys who was always coming up with those ‘Get Rich Quick Schemes’, and none of them had anything to do with industries he understood, and none of them sounded like they would work. One day I finally said to him, ‘You know fitness, why don’t you come up with a fitness business? Something like…webcam personal training?’ I’m not even sure what made me think of it, but as soon as the words were out of my mouth, I immediately hoped he would shrug off my suggestion. He did, and I immediately started writing the business plan,” Sean laughs.
After years of testing best practices and building their team, WEBercise officially started doing business in late 2015. Brian explains, “The thing that people seem to find the most helpful about WEBercise is the accountability and guidance. Are there some solid workout videos out there? Absolutely. But are there workout videos out there that can motivate you to press play on the days you’re not feeling up to it? Are there workout videos that can modify a workout on-the-fly if it looks like your hamstrings
are too tight one day or if you’re not doing the exercise correctly? And can those videos answer texts you send them with pictures of your lunch? Accomplishing your fitness goals is one of the hardest journeys you’ll ever take on. We hope people find that with WEBercise, they’ll have an expert tour guide on that journey who will never give up on them and won’t let them give up on themselves.”
“We believe that health and wellness are becoming more top-of-mind with people than ever before, but fitness club memberships aren’t on the rise. Our theory is that the options in the fitness industry have failed to keep up with our pace of life these days. Our hope is that when people find our little company, we’re the answer that they’ve been looking for.”