Top tips for a successful gym design project

Designing a gym, spa or fitness facility is a complex job. There are lots of things to think about and a variety of specialists who need to be involved, from equipment suppliers to interior designers.

Get things right and you can avoid costly overruns and stressful moments. Plan properly and you are more likely to achieve your objectives and get your gym paying back dividends, whether it’s happy residents, engaged employees or making the most of your home gym. 

Our expert gym designers have in-depth experience designing residential and corporate health and fitness facilities, including home gyms and training studios. We asked the team for their top tips on how to keep a gym design project running smoothly and successfully.

Initial consultancy is key to long-term success

The initial briefing and consultation are the foundation for the future success of any gym design project.

At motive8 we use the time to understand your needs and what it is you want to achieve. 

It’s an important time to learn about the people who will ultimately use your gym or spa. We use the insight to make design decisions that will inspire users to make the most of the facilities.

During the gym consultancy phase, it’s also a good opportunity to identify decision makers and partners, as well as any other stakeholders who need to be consulted.

For private residential clients we offer an initial home gym design consultancy for £300 plus VAT. The consultancy includes working with you to produce 2D, 3D, and CAD designs of your space including equipment suggestions and other design recommendations. The fee for the design proposal is 100% refundable if an order is placed with motive8.

Clear communication helps build strong working relationships

Clear communications help everyone know what’s expected during the design project, and make for a better collaborative and trusted working partnership.

We are always mindful about being transparent with clients at motive8. After the initial gym consultancy, we create a design proposal to answer the brief. We outline options and help you to make important decisions to meet your objectives and keep to budget.

The design proposal includes an itemised quotation and pricing for flooring, lighting and other considerations such as the equipment schedule. We provide detailed images and information on each equipment piece. 

Being clear and upfront about the financials, including consultancy fees, helps everyone make better decisions for the successful running and outcome of the project.

Regular checkpoints keep your design project on track

Make sure there are evaluations throughout the lifecycle of your design project. You can use these moments to measure your progress against your original goals. 

At motive8, once the project proposal and budget has been signed off, we appoint a project manager to keep track of project activities and deliver a successful result.

The project manager will organise site visits to see how the project is developing. We make sure that any external partners are fully briefed and adhere to project requirements. We have years of experience working with architects, interior designers, master planners and equipment suppliers.

Once the design project has started, we have regular catch ups with clients to measure progress against the agreed plans. 

If needed, we can identify additional strategies to keep the design project on track. We always keep you updated with any additional, agreed costs and document all design plan alterations.

Allow time and budget for finishing touches and handover

As with a large construction project, there are always small fixes or final flourishes with a gym design project.

Make sure that you allow time and budget for a robust snagging process once the major parts of your design project are complete. We can help you to identify what needs to be done and the best remedies. 

You should allow for a full and thorough handover once the project has finished. It is important that facility managers fully understand the features of the gym or spa, including all the equipment, and receive training so they know how to manage the space effectively.

And don’t forget the end users of your gym, even if that’s you. Induction is a key moment for health and safety obligations and helping people to get the best from the equipment. 

At motive8, we provide trainers specialising in delivering inductions to the highest safety standards and to help you hit the ground running with your gym users.

Plan for management and maintenance

You should be thinking about the management and maintenance of your facilities before your design project ends.

From day one of operations, you will want emergency support in place in the unlikely event that equipment doesn’t work or breaks down.

motive8 offers an individually tailored and swift gym, pool and spa maintenance support service. You’ll get peace of mind that we are there to help and we are the only supplier that covers gym, pool and fitness equipment under one contract.

If your design project is for a residential, student or corporate gym, you will also want to think about staffing and management. We can support any facility or site manager in the smooth day-to-day running of an operation and provide staffing for inductions, specialist instructors, personal training, fitness classes, spa treatments and more.

Get help from the experts

Whether you’re designing and installing a bespoke gym, fitness studio, pool and spa or fully managed site, you will need a gym design partner who can carefully consider and expertly address every need and requirement.

At motive8, we are ready to undertake any project. We are the market leader in full service premium health, fitness and leisure solutions and can offer you in-house gym design expertise, a quality control mindset and industry accreditations.

Reach out to us if you have any questions about your design project and our experts will be more than happy to help you further. You can contact us on 020 8481 9700 or info@m8group.co.uk.

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Victor Adegbesan

Handyman & Equipment Installation Engineer

Victor was welcomed into the logistics and gym install team team in 2023.

New to gym installation and maintenance, Victor is extensively experienced in the involved applications via previous positions, interests and hobbies.

With a long standing passion for fitness and discipline, Victor has been embedded within the gym scene for many years and was the primary attraction to his current position.

In his free time he enjoys staying fit and healthy, and spending time with his family and friends.

Ashley Wright

Head of Gym & Spa Management

Ashley Wright is the Head of Gym & Spa Management at motive8. She is a leading industry expert in gym and spa management, working with gym and spa facilities all over the UK.

Ashley joined motive8 in 2019, initially as Gym & Spa Area Manager before being promoted into her current role. Ashley’s background encompasses Personal Training, working for prestigious brands such as Nuffield Health and Digme Fitness; as well as service management.

Ashley’s on the ground knowledge of the industry coupled with service management experience allows her to take a holistic view of motive8’s corporate and residential offerings. Ashley works closely with Area Managers to support them and their onsite teams in all aspects of running motive8’s managed residential facilities, ensuring residents receive a bespoke service at each of motive8’s gym and spas.

A key aspect of Ashley’s day to day role is to ensure a true community feel is achieved across all of motive8’s sites, creating more opportunities for residents to enhance their wellbeing journeys through events, workshops and specialist classes. She works closely with the Area Managers to support them and their onsite teams in all aspects of the running of motive8’s residential facilities.

Away from work, Ashley still teaches spin classes at a number of gyms across London and enjoys cooking and travelling.

Nick Sadler

Managing Director

Nick Sadler is the Founding Director of motive8 and has worked in the industry for 18 years. He has worked as the lead Gym and Spa consultant on projects across all sectors on a number of prestigious schemes with developers, architects, interior design agencies and managing agents. His expertise and consultancy on projects have ensured that the original design concepts are always met or exceeded whilst maintaining the future operational efficiency of the facility.

Jenny Cromack

DIRECTOR

Jenny is a leading expert in personal training and service delivery, with over 20 years’ experience in the gym and leisure industry.  

A driving force within motive8, Jenny set up motive8 North alongside motive8 Founding Director, Nick Sadler, in 2011, before merging with the wider motive8 brand in 2018.

A key facet of Jenny’s role is to run the motive8 Personal Training studio in Leeds. With extensive experience as a Personal Trainer, Jenny leads motive8’s inductions; working across a range of motive8’s portfolio including unmanned sites and placing a focus on first rate, bespoke service delivery as a key priority.

Jenny has also been instrumental in the development of motive8’s flagship commercial gym in York, Supersonic Fitness, which opened in 2018; as well as working with developers to enhance the functionality of motive8’s own booking system, which is used in both unmanned and manned facilities to manage classes and gym attendance to offer an affordable and effective solution for clients. Jenny brings an informed, progressive approach to business development and innovation for motive8, strengthened by her broad on the ground experience.

Before becoming a Director at motive8 Jenny owned and ran a personal training company for nearly four years, and has previously held positions as Health Club & Spa Manager, working within the Radisson Edwardian for Fitness Express, and Assistant Gym Manager for corporate law firm, Addleshaw Goddard.

A keen duathlete and triathlete who has represented Great Britain for her age group, outside of work Jenny loves spending time with family and friends, alongside her much-loved sports of cycling, swimming and running.

Sarah Cleland-Smith

DIRECTOR

Sarah has worked in the fitness industry for 17 years and is a co-owner of motive8. She has worked across all areas of the business, predominantly the day to day operations of the Gym and Spa facilities we currently manage on behalf of our clients. She has a key understanding of how design must meet operational requirements, ensuring the client and end user receive the best possible service and ongoing running costs are considered in the design. Her current focus is project management and financials.

Richard Moon

DIRECTOR

Richard is a leading industry expert in gym and spa maintenance and has been a Director and a co-owner of motive8 since 2016. He was responsible for setting up the maintenance department 15 years ago, starting with just one maintenance contract, to now, over 250 and has supported across multiple different roles throughout the company over this period.

Richard’s key responsibility at motive8 is to head up the maintenance division, which provide service and maintenance contracts for all motive8 equipped facilities to ensure longevity and value for the client. The maintenance department currently services in excess of 250 sites across the UK. Richard and his team work with the client and their onsite teams to provide H&S best practice, daily maintenance checks and aftercare packages.

Richard enjoys working at motive8 and within the leisure industry. Internally, he enjoys the people he works with and being part of a team. Externally, he finds it fulfilling to provide a service to his clients that makes him happy: “I am in a fortunate position that the decisions I make have an impact”.

Rob Clarke

DIRECTOR

Rob has worked in the leisure industry for nearly 20 years and brings with him a wealth of experience from the commercial leisure sector. He has provided consultancy to the majority of the country’s top developers, architects and property management companies, and is widely considered as one of the leading experts in residential leisure facilities.

Rob has been with motive8 for nearly seven years, having previously held a long-term position at The Hogarth Group’s The Park Club as Facilities Manager and Health & Safety Manager, before transferring to The Weybridge Health Club & Spa as Operations Manager. At motive8, Rob has been a key member of the team as a Gym & Spa Consultant, Pool & Spa Maintenance Manager, and latterly, Head of Operations, before moving onto the company’s board of directors in 2020. 

Rob’s key responsibilities at motive8 involve business development; overseeing the maintenance and management departments; and consulting on a variety of client projects. A values-driven professional, 2021 saw Rob work with the motive8 team to produce a series of social initiatives including the Empowering Performance ambassador programme, supporting athletes to reach their goals; carbon offsetting with Make It Wild; and creating a Wellbeing Committee for employees.

Sheena Sudera

Office Manager & HR Coordinator

Sheena joined the motive8 team in 2024, with over 15 years’ experience as a PA, her position is essential to the smooth running of the office. From managing office operations to supporting the heads of departments, Sheena’s role is to provide administrative support and develop relationships across all departments within the company.

Away from motive8, Sheena is a keen runner and qualified personal trainer, championing women in supporting them with their physical and mental health.

Nisha Hansewraj

Accountant

Nisha graduated from university with a BA Hons in Accounting and Finance. Since then, she has gained significant experience and knowledge in all aspects of accounting and finance. She has joined our accounts team and is responsible for managing our books and preparing relevant financial reports for the business. She is very productive in challenging roles and as a self-motivated and meticulous person is willing to learn new skills and develop existing knowledge.

Outside of work, Nisha enjoys spending time with her family and exploring nature, especially taking scenic countryside walks. Cooking and baking is another of Nisha’s passions. 

Rolstone Langmead

Logistics & Gym Install Manager

Joining motive8 back in 2013 with the Gym & Spa department, Rolstone brought his experience from the customer service industry as well as 8 years’ experience as a personal trainer, the knowledge of which was spread into the department.

Rolstone now manages motive8 gym installations, ensuring equipment and design are delivered on time, safely and to a high standard. Providing H&S best practice and service support to our customers for all our products with the aid of our team of engineers. Rolstone is also working with our Maintenance team that currently services in excess of 200 sites in the UK to ensure longevity and value for the client.

Albert Spangenberg

Refurb and Technicians Manager

Albert started his career in facility maintenance and operations; he is now motive8’s Refurb and Technicians Manager. Albert launched a new department providing refurbished gym equipment to rent or buy which his background in mechanical engineering and manufacturing perfectly suits. He has worked in the fitness industry for the past 17 years. Albert is meticulous about how the equipment is maintained and is always looking at ways to improve the service motive8 can offer to their clients.

In his spare time he likes spend quality time with the family and work on mechanical projects.

Monika Blaziak

Gym Maintenance Co-ordinator Manager

Monika is the Gym Maintenance Co-ordinator Manager for all gym and pool/leisure equipment and has a background in maintenance and accounts administration for property development companies.

Monika’s skills include accounting, IT and of course the backbone of all busy administration roles, multi-tasking!

In her spare time she likes to spend her free time with her dog Cezar, walking through parks and forests and also likes to relax with a good book at the end of the day. Monika is also interested in psychology, which she is currently studying.

Kamil Reyad

Maintenance Admin Assistant

Kamil is a recent law graduate with a background in customer service and sales, working within the maintenance administration team. His skills include IT, Multi-tasking and customer service.

In his spare time he enjoys going to the gym, boxing, practicing MMA, playing guitar, reading and gaming.

Kim Mead

Gym & Spa Design

Kim’s career began in the property industry, where she spent a number of years working for both estate agents and developers, giving her a broad spectrum of experience and knowledge of how the industry functions.

Kim has worked alongside Nick for the past 11 years and transforms his ideas & designs into 3D visuals and 2D floor layouts via CAD & Visio in line with the architect’s requirements. She brings together all project documentation including equipment specifications, quotes & project drawings. Once finalised and agreed, Kim procures all the required equipment.

In her spare time, Kim loves playing tennis, cooking and travelling.

Sally Ottewell

Gym & Spa Consultant

Sally has over 10 years’ experience in sales. She has worked within the communications industry for 12 years and made the move to motive8 because of her love for all things fitness.

Sally is passionate about gym and spa design and takes pride in each individual project, whether that be residential, corporate, commercial or within the hotel market. She consults, designs layouts and provides product advice on schemes nationwide with a range of developers, designers, project managers and private clients.

She enjoys being active, is a regular gym goer and has practiced yoga since being a teenager, qualifying to teach it in 2014.

Josh Remedios

Gym & Spa Area Manager

Josh has worked for motive8 since 2013 after graduating from University of Portsmouth. He has worked his way up through the gym and spa department from Spa Operative, to Supervisor, Manager and now Area Manager. Josh works with the managers he oversees to provide facilities residents can enjoy as an extension to their homes as well as working closely with the estate management companies to ensure the standards at all sites remain high.

Outside of motive8 Josh is a keen on his travelling and adding to a growing list of countries he has visited as well as being passionate about his own fitness and football.

Lily Lamthong

Assistant design consultant

Lily joined the Gym & Spa design team in 2023. She is an architecture graduate with years of experience in architectural practice, now transferring her architectural skills into her role at motive8.

With her love for the gym and all things design, she provides creative and administrative support to the design team. This includes tasks such as creating 3D visualisations, 2D design drawings and quotes.

In her free time she enjoys cooking, travelling and weight training. She also volunteers her time to the Lao Association in the UK. 

Sarah Humphreys

Gym & Spa Area Manager

Sarah has worked in the leisure industry since the age of 17, starting out as a Fitness Instructor initially, then working as Sales Manager and then progressing to Club Manager. Sarah joined motive8 in January 2020 as a Gym and Spa Manager of our first Manchester gym & spa facility before being promoted into the role of Area Manager to oversee our growing operation in Manchester and the North West. Outside of motive8 Sarah enjoys running, Personal Training as well as spending time with family and friends.

Bradley Dixon

GYM & SPA AREA MANAGER

Bradley has worked in the leisure industry since the age of 16, starting as a Lifeguard and progressing through various management roles which also took him to working and living abroad both in Dubai and Australia. Bradley joined motive8 in June in 2020 as a Gym and Spa Manager before being promoted into the role of Area Manager.

Outside of motive8 Bradley also enjoys teaching various group exercise classes as well as spending time with friends and travelling.

Kate Halsall

Personal Trainer & Biomechanics Coach

Kate is an enthusiastic personal trainer, and qualified biomechanics coach, who specialises in posture and back care. She has worked in the industry since 2009, and her other specialisms include weight/fat loss, group exercise and working with specialist populations.

On top of that, Kate loves working with groups of pregnant ladies as she is also pre and post-natal qualified! Exercise is a real passion of hers, and she can often be found riding her bike, going to fitness weekends, walking in the lake district – and she’s recently started participating in cycling sportives.

When it comes to advice, she claims “give it a try – what’s the worst that could happen?” is her greatest piece.

Emily Forbes

Personal Trainer

Emily is motive8’s in-house nutritionist, and doesn’t stop at just being a great personal trainer. Her effective programming and nutritional advice is highly popular and aimed at helping clients achieve a variety of fitness goals.

Not only is Emily passionate about nutrition though, as she also loves strength training and Yoga. She takes a holistic approach to exercise, nutrition and health as a whole, which no doubt makes for a recipe for success across the board.

Her greatest piece of advice is simply “consistency…this will help you achieve your goals for the long term.”

Warren Killeen

Head of Maintenance

Warren started his career as an Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration engineer servicing a wide range of commercial and industrial systems. He has over 20 years’ experience in the FM industry working for major players across the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors. With his technical and hands-on experience, Warren has always been happy to roll his sleeves up and get involved with works on sites when needed. In Warren’s spare time he enjoys DIY, quizzing and country walks. He is also involved with helping at his local Irish club organising charity fundraising nights and other events.

Alice Ward

Operations

Alice has been in the fitness industry for over 15 years, one of her first places of work being motive8! Since then, Alice has gone on to work for some of the leading U.K gym providers and most recently managed a large corporate gym in Surrey, implementing innovative fitness trends and overseeing the health and wellbeing of the clients, alongside opening a second corporate club and managing a team of personal trainers and instructors. A keen interest in health and fitness drives Alice outside of work, spending regular time working out in the gym, outdoors or at home.

Jo Hunt

Gym & Spa OPERATIONS MANAGER

Jo has worked within the fitness industry for 11 years, starting as a fitness instructor to personal trainer working her way through to being a general manager for the UK’s largest gym operator. 

With Jo’s extensive knowledge and experience within the commercial fitness industry, she is working with our managed London sites to maintain & build processes to streamline our operations alongside ensuring our sites are hosting events throughout each month to build a sense of community. 

In her spare time Jo enjoys going out for long country walks with her dog, playing rugby and teaching dance at her local dance school.

Maintenance and servicing

Protect your investment, meet compliance regulations and prevent costly breakdowns. Our experienced pool engineers schedule regular maintenance visits or can attend as requested for events such as preparing an outdoor pool for summer. Our maintenance covers all kinds of pool, spa and water features for:

Repair & Refurbishment

Keep your facilities looking fresh, modern and in pristine condition. motive8 can advise you on the latest trends in design, sustainability and efficiency to make sure your pool and spa continue to give your site a competitive advantage.

Emergency Response

Keep disruption to a minimum with our emergency call-out service. Our engineers will quickly run diagnostic tests and carry out repairs during the visit if possible. motive8 know how important it is to get your pool, spa or water feature back up and running as soon as possible.

Albert Spangdenberg

Rental and refurb manager

Albert started his career in facilities maintenance and operations and is now a Senior Engineer. With Albert’s background in mechanical engineering and manufacturing, he has recently headed up a new department within motive8 providing refurbished gym equipment to rent or buy. He has worked in the fitness industry for the past 17 years. Albert is very meticulous at how the equipment is maintained and always aims to improve on efficiency of how this service is provided.

In his spare time he likes spend quality time with his family and work on mechanical projects.

Filip Kozlowski

Services manager

Filip is responsible for the day to day running of our Inductions Department, and assists residents across our un-manned gym facilities with arranging their inductions and personal training sessions, as well as managing the group exercise schedules delivered across different schemes.

Outside of the day time job, Filip also delivers Personal Training both in-house as well as on a self-employed basis, which is how he originally entered the Fitness Industry space in 2016.

Always taking the opportunity to promote health and wellbeing whenever possible, a bit of advice from Filip– “The easiest way to always stay fit is having a kettlebell at hand!”

ADRIAN QUINTON

GYM & SPA AREA MANAGER

After working as a professional actor and dancer for almost a decade, Adrian moved into the fitness industry in 2015. He has moved through various fitness management roles within Operations and Customer Service, as well as being a fitness instructor. He joined Motive8 in 2020 as a Gym & Spa Manager before being promoted to Area manager.

Mental health is as important as physical health for Adrian. Outside work, he likes to meditate daily and also still dabbles in theatre through Movement Direction and Choreography.

Lily Lamthong

Assistant design consultant

Lily joined the Gym & Spa design team in 2023. She is an architecture graduate with years of experience in architectural practice, now transferring her architectural skills into her role at motive8.

With her love for the gym and all things design, she provides creative and creative support to the design team. This includes tasks such as creating 3D visualisations, 2D design drawings and quotes.

In her free time she enjoys cooking, travelling and weight training. She also volunteers her time to the Lao Association inn the UK.