Starting your own paid running, walking or exercise club/group

Starting your own paid running, walking or exercise club/group

If you’re a decent walker/runner etc you could consider charging people to come out on a walk/run with you, at first this will be terrifying but as long as you do some planning, tailor the exercises/locations to your target crowd you should be able to earn a decent side salary.

A few things to consider:

The target demographic

Are you simply wanting to create a club for all people or are you’re going to create a niche group with selective interests?


Would evenings be better than mornings for your demographic? Maybe run a poll or a Doodle.

Which days?

A weekend morning might be for more enjoyable runs Vs weekdays for more intense runs.

Create an online presence

A website/social media page etc will give members a sense you’re professional. Learn how to create an online website

Set expectations

Set people’s expectations from day 1, if it’s not for beginners let people know.

Can you add additional value? or can you create a demographic?

Can you add something else to the runs? e.g. on one of the runs go to your favourite sightseeing locations in your town/city or you may want to add plogging (where you collect rubbish on your route) to one or both of your weekly runs.

Give as much info as possible

e.g. this route will be 1-2 hours long or 3-4 hours etc covering X miles at this Y mph, we will be stopping for breakfast at this location etc.

Think about all the things that can go wrong

and plan for them! People arriving without enough water? Sell bottles of water for £1 each or plan to run past a water fountain etc.

Do a few practice runs with a group of friends first

Even if your friends aren’t really interested or great at exercise this will help you practice and ideally get a friend to bring their camera along for some decent photos

Be consistent, even if the weather is crap

Having a reliable club is important to many, so if you plan it so on a rainy day you do an indoor activity (e.g. exercise in a local multi-storey car park) instead of cancelling many will be thankful and be up for returning each week.

Add a social aspect after your exercise

When you run/walk etc you rarely get decent time to chat with everyone, having a coffee/breakfast/lunch etc planned afterwards allows people to mingle and create friendships, these friendships will ensure members stay part of your club longterm.

Get suitable insurance

We’d also recommend some public liability insurance and consider some basic first aid training (can be found for free).

Increase your income + the gamification of your club

Combine apps like SweatCoin to your club, inviting your club members to the app can also give you an additional income stream!

Learn extra techniques

YouTube is full of useful content but other websites where you can be trained in stretching or additional exercise can add value to your club.

Advertise the club

Advertise the club locally including a start/finish time and location.

Copyright Jay Nunn – Available to purchase on

Add extra value and create something that looks professional

Consider having a logo designed and get some stickers/patches printed to add value to your membership fees.

Consider pushing people to carshare

Again this will increase your numbers of reliable members that attend but also it’s better for the environment.

Copy things that work from other running clubs across the world

You may want to do an annual pool party, 5K-10K timed runs etc.

Create an app or website to manage payments

Now this isn’t that easy for a novice but you can try GetRunClub (US based app), LoveAdmin, Memberful (website) or WooCommerce Memberships (website)

Get a bank card reader to process payments

SumUp has a great little device that allows you to take payments

Don’t be discouraged if nobody shows!

Everything successful started from nothing and it takes time for these things to flourish, don’t be disheartened if only 1 or 2 people turn up the first few times but word will spread!

Be a financial rockstar and share this with your friends, family and co-workers to maximise savings:

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Important things to remember with everything we post:

  • If you earn over your personal allowance (currently £12,570 a year) HMRC need to get their % cut (even if the money is in cash or from another country)
  • If you’re working for yourself / earning an income on the side you need to let HMRC know – There are numerous benefits but also some drawbacks
  • You need to always ensure whatever you’re doing is legal and not hurting anyone else – be careful and always think twice
  • Some income streams may require you to have DBS check, licence, insurance or qualifications before you can start to profit from it, do your research.
  • Be careful that any additional income doesn’t compromise your studies or main income/job
  • If you work for a company check your contract, if you don’t inform them you’re working on other side projects outside of work they may have grounds to ownership on this work

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