Wasps player launches fitness studio

Ben Harris, Jonathan Blood and Jack Gibson

Wasps player Ben Harris is co-launching a personalised fitness studio in Leamington after going into business with a gym owner.

The 31-year-old prop – who helped the Black and Golds to a second-place finish in last season’s Gallagher Premiership – is behind a new joint venture called Studio Worx, which is offering members one-to-one and group-based training programmes.

The fitness studio – which is creating eight jobs – will be based on Livery Street in Regent Court, and is set to open its doors in January after finalising a ten-year lease with Wareing & Company.

Harris is opening the studio alongside Jack Gibson, who has launched five of his own gyms over the last seven years under the Fitness Worx brand, which has a presence in Kenilworth, Warwick, Southam, Bidford and Shrewsbury.

Gibson said: “Unlike Fitness Worx, our Leamington base won’t be a gym, but more of a place where our members can come to embark on their own body transformation programme, under the guidance of a qualified fitness instructor.

“We will have space for up to 120 members to embark on their own physical journey – whether it is losing body fat, building body strength, improving cardiovascular fitness or a combination.

“I’ve become good friends with Ben as we both go to the gym together in Kenilworth – and when I suggested the concept of a boutique style fitness studio he was really supportive of it.

“The idea for Studio Worx came about because I’d noticed that a lot more people wanted the benefits of going to a gym that had a private feel about it – and our concept for Leamington has been vindicated so far, as we have had 80 sign-ups ahead of launching.”

Harris added: “I have always wanted to open a gym, and in Jack I have the ideal business partner to learn from and make this a success.

“Lockdown gave us the time to press ahead with developing our plans, and it soon became apparent that there was a gap in the market for a smaller high street-based fitness destination which you see quite often in bigger cities such as London.

“I’m really excited to get the business up and running, and it will certainly help me to prepare for later life when I eventually decide to retire from elite level rugby.”

Jonathan Blood, of Wareing & Company, helped Ben and Jack to find a suitable location for their business.

He said: “Variety is key to the success of any town centre, and Studio Worx provides that with a different approach to fitness.

“Memberships for the studio are growing already, which will boost footfall into the town centre which will hopefully have a positive knock-on effect for neighbouring businesses.”