MOVERS: Kelly Miyamoto, founder and co-owner of The Firm

  • Updated: November 7, 2011 - 9:34 AM

Kelly Miyamoto

KELLY MIYAMOTO: THE FIRM

Title: Founder and co-owner

Age: 48

What's new: Miyamoto and husband and business partner Neil Miyamoto last month moved the Firm into a new, bigger space at 1010 2nd Av. N. in Minneapolis. The new location, she said, offers more free parking, new classes (heated yoga, Zumba, Cross Fit) and no price increases.

Need to know: Miyamoto has found new ways to get clients moving at the Minneapolis health club for 25 years. This time, however, the club -- credited with introducing step, kickboxing and spinning classes locally -- is the one doing the moving.

The couple planned and saved for years to buy their own building for the Firm, Miyamoto said. The strategy was to seek stability and to establish a foundation for future growth.

The Firm, a rare stand-alone competing against fitness chains and franchises, is a "beta site for innovation,"  Miyamoto said. It can act more quickly to introduce new programs and respond to feedback from longtime members and instructors.

Miyamoto looks forward to returning to working out and teaching classes. She began rehab workouts last month, recovering from a bicycle accident in December 2009.

"I've had three knee surgeries and a massive shoulder surgery, so I haven't been teaching this whole time," Miyamoto said.

QWhat classes are you looking forward to teaching again?

ASpinning. (Boxing was my baby, and I'm not able to go back to that.) Just teaching and being there with the clients and that energy and the exchange that happens.

QWhat value does the Firm offer clients?

AIt's all about the staff. This is something I've been passionate about. There's a lot of history and a lot of growth as businesspeople and as teachers that's created a unique and special culture. The clients feel that, and I think they appreciate that.

QHave you considered opening other locations or franchising?

AOver the years we've been approached by a couple of the bigger chains about options. For whatever reason it didn't feel right at that point. Our focus will be to maintain the quality of service, drive revenue and plan options for the future.

TODD NELSON

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