Running a gym or a martial arts school of any size is no joke. It requires skills in coaching, marketing, accounting, management – plus sporting expertise as a coach, practitioner, and personal trainer.
We're facing challenging times where the way we work out and go to the gym is constantly shifting, requiring fitness centers to be more digitally connected, more accurate, and more accessible to members.
Perhaps, that's why gyms, dojos, studios, and fitness businesses are on a constant lookout for tools and instruments helping them to manage the ins and outs. This is precisely the reason the global gym management software market is booming and is expected to reach a whopping $381 million by 2027, according to a 2017 marketresearch.com report.
Now is the moment where gym and martial arts management software can make or break your business. In 2024, choosing the right platform for your gym, dojo, studio, or fitness center is essential. Here, we're offering some deeper insights into the phenomenon and reviewing ten leading gym and martial arts software solutions to help you make the best decision.
It does not matter whether you want to open a martial arts studio, dojo, or gymnastics center, you need to know how you will manage it. At this point, you have two options - either do it manually with a lot of grinding and time invested, or get a gym management software that will ease all the administrative tasks and help make gym clients happy.
Obviously, you're aware of what gym management software is – the digital tool saving you from drowning in membership forms, waivers, and admin tasks.
But it's worth recapping the why and how of gym management software – and what it does for your business. Or, at least, what it's supposed to do for your business.
When you stop to think about it, it wasn't that long ago that gyms and martial arts schools didn't have software. Gym owners once managed all operations via pen and paper systems, and then via Excel spreadsheets – a reality that sounds both impossible and outdated to us today.
Thankfully, fitness-specific digital tools are constantly developing and innovating to help gyms and martial arts schools operate.
Even the most rudimentary gym and martial arts software can do the following things:
But having an agile, digital tool taking care of those three aspects of running a gym is no longer a cutting-edge system – it's the bare minimum.
For gyms, martial arts schools, yoga studios and other membership clubs to be successful, they need a software solution that goes above and beyond automating operational tasks. As the fitness industry becomes increasingly competitive, features that help businesses improve and grow are in high-demand.
All gyms and martial arts schools – from CrossFit centers to pilates studios and karate dojos – need a software system to support members, staff and owners.
Regardless of the size of your facility and your niche in the fitness industry, you should be looking for a gym and martial arts software with features that encompass these three areas:
|Why is it important?
|Enables members to have an easy, positive and fulfilling experience with your gym.
|Takes care of repetitive administration tasks so staff can dedicate more time to customer service and other important activities.
|Keeps track of growth, business analytics and growth opportunities so gym owners can make informed decisions.
With a full-scale software solution catering to members, staff, and owners, gyms and martial arts schools can provide exceptional services while sustaining business growth and service improvement.
But what else should you look for in a gym and martial arts software?
Here are five key areas that you might focus on:
Software creators who have never sparred, loaded a barbell or ran a training schedule, probably aren't going to create a valuable product for gyms and martial arts schools – because they don't have a first-hand understanding of your needs, pain points, and goals.
The devil is in the details, such as:
As gym and martial arts school managers, you'll notice when your software features cater to your specific needs.
Being able to quickly and accurately onboard your staff, for instance, personal trainers to use a new system is essential for providing exceptional service – and minimizing stress and mistakes for your team.
Members also need to access your software system to sign-up, attend classes, and communicate with your gym, so a simple and user-friendly program will improve their overall experience and increase retention. These factors are the ones having a direct impact on gym retention.
Find a gym management software that is
It'll save you time, money, and stress.
The global pandemic is changing the way we work out, the fitness industry is rapidly evolving, and software innovation is accelerating forwards.
Because of this, you need a future-proof software provider that is constantly working on improvements and upgrades to keep your studio or dojo one step ahead of the competition.
Look for features such as:
These will help you keep your business on the pulse of industry changes. If the software developers send regular updates, advice, and ask for feedback, you'll know they're invested in your success.
Like any business owner, you want your gym or martial arts school to grow.
This means that your software system should have features that are both scalable and help facilitate the growth of your gym, such as:
The best gym and martial arts software is going to do more than just automate day-to-day tasks, it will facilitate the success of your business. It can be achieved through new ideas and tools to implement them.
We know that not all software solutions are equally matched in the ring – as a gym owner, you might have experienced one of the many clunky, outdated programs that are out there, or struggled with customer service that is not responsive or helpful.
If a product works well, gyms will be raving about it. Look for case studies, testimonials, and don't be afraid to ask the software company to provide proof of how they'll support your business.
Gymdesk made its debut in 2016 and has been consistently improving to the point where it's one of our top contenders. Its slick and effortless user interface, responsive communication, and growth-stimulating functionality are the main reasons users love their product.
Founded by a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, their focus is on providing the best user experience for gym owners, rather than a laundry list of features. It has everything most gyms and martial arts schools would need to manage and grow their business.
Gymdesk originally focused on Martial Arts schools, however they now serve many gym types from yoga studios to gymnastics gyms and fitness studios.
When it comes to some standalone features this gym management software offers, there are several ones to mention:
It's almost an industry standard in the fitness software market that you need to book a live demo with a sales person in order to get a glimpse of a gym software product. Then on a sales call, the sales person shows you the best version of their software and walks you through a battle tested sales script in order to get you on board.
Not so with Gymdesk - you can start testing their product right away with their 30-day free trial, and the set up process is built around that approach, requiring little to no training.
All gym owners know that an online presence is essential for business survival and growth. Unlike some of the other entries in this guide, Gymdesk provides users with a platform to build their own website, manage their online presence, and improve visibility to prospects. An online shop was recently added as well.
At the same time, they also provide most of their functionality as embeddable widgets that you can put on your existing website to immediately upgrade its functionality and connect it to their platform. Besides, this is a direct path toward better gym sales.
All of the products we reviewed offer some level of attendance and progress tracking for members. However, Gymdesk's offering is by far the most complete and customizable.
You can create multiple programs with customized ranks / levels for each. You can set up promotion tracking based on any combination of time attended, time in rank, number of sessions and skill progression (which integrates with their skill library feature - another favorite of ours).
The end result is a beautiful member attendance screen and an easy to read promotion report that keeps members motivated and staff up-to-date on everyone's progress.
In terms of ease of use, Gymdesk is the tool to speak about. While coupling intuitive interface and easy setup, you don't need to be a tech guru to start using this instrument. Besides, if something is unclear, there is round-the-clock customer support to help you.
Even the best gym management software solutions have both advantages and disadvantages. For Gymdesk, the pros are the following:
On the other side, there are some potential cons to mention:
While pros definitely prevail, one can say that Gymdesk is the tool built for gyms, martial artists and fitness professionals who prefer responsible and intuitive software design.
Finally, speaking of pricing, along with a free trial, Gymdesk offers these plans:
TeamUp is a fitness management software designed to streamline your fitness business in person and online. It simplifies gym, studio, PT, box, or club management with an all-in-one solution, offering robust features, detailed reporting, and better membership management.
Manage in-person classes, online sessions, and on-demand content seamlessly from one platform with TeamUp's versatile software.
TeamUp provides easy class and appointment booking management, automated customer communication, a custom-branded app, and top-notch payment solutions to keep your members happy and classes full.
Get a free switching service and unlimited support for a smooth setup and ongoing assistance.
Efficiently handle customer data, streamline admin and marketing tasks, and optimize sales processes to stand out and provide a solid customer experience.
Let’s explore the pros and cons of using TeamUp:Pros:
TeamUp offers flexible pricing plans tailored to suit your business needs. The pricing varies depending on the number of active members. Additionally, TeamUp offers a free trial period so you can explore the software's capabilities before making a commitment.
Mindbody is an established market leader in business software. It's a full-scale platform with separate programs for fitness, spa, salon, and integrative health programs. Unless your MMA instructors double as nail technicians, we'll assume you're interested in the fitness platform.
Mindbody's all-in-one gym software provides the widest features of any products we reviewed. Unfortunately, the core product seems to have been designed at some point in the early 2000s, and does not appear up to par with 2024's software expectations regarding user experience.
These are some of the tool's standout features to mention:
With the current pandemic restricting many gyms from operating, Mindbody allows gyms to live stream and provide on-demand videos to instruct members remotely. This feature is a game-changer for many gyms that allows businesses to continue despite lockdowns and physical distancing restrictions. Keep in mind that opening a martial arts school can be a costly endeavor.
The downside is that the streaming feature is a paid add-on in addition to the base cost. It's debatable whether the built-in streaming feature is superior to other dedicated streaming solutions such as Zoom. However it's nice to have everything in one place.
Mindbody provides gyms with a branded version of their member app with colors, logos, and images. This provides businesses a platform that members can use to book sessions, read reminders and cancellations, and manage their membership.
Similarly to the virtual streaming feature above, the branded mobile app comes at an additional cost.
In terms of ease of use Mindbody is the instrument that provides functionality at a cost of interface. It means that this gym management software is not that easy to use and you will face some challenges with its outdated user interface.
Taking a closer look at Mindbody, here are some pros to talk about:
Yet, the advantages above are also followed by these cons:
Overall, Mindbody is a great program if you look for the solution to manage member payments.
In terms of pricing, no free plan or free trial is included. That's why you need to choose from these four pricing plans:
Another leading force in gym management software, perhaps Zen Planner is so-called because of its targeted approach to supporting yoga studios and other boutique fitness facilities. However, it also has features that make it suitable for martial arts schools.
This full-scale software product has all the bells and whistles, with impressive features and case studies proving its positive impact on business growth. This focus on business goals and specific customer pain points is what makes Zen Planner a top contender.
As a frontrunner, this tool is well-recognized for these key features:
Martial arts schools can keep track of all students' progress effortlessly. Instructors are alerted when students are ready to test, allowing businesses to sustain a personalized touch without delaying growth.
Zen Planner provides many automation options for communication that allow managers to automatically address concerns and help guide members, which can greatly help with retention.
For example, you can create segments based on rank, and create automated messages to help members through their journey to the next level.
Dashboard reports and tracking tools keep gym owners informed of business performance, areas that need attention, and opportunities for growth.
Pondering on Zen Planner's ease of use, this software was designed with the assistance of a real martial arts instructor. The tool comes with an interface customers can easily navigate.
When it comes to several perspectives on this gym management software, it entails these pros:
On the other side of the coin, there are the following cons:
Putting all of the above together, Zen Planner is the best fit for boosting your marketing and brand awareness.
As to the pricing, the tool does not come with a free plan but has a free trial. If you want a premium access, be ready to purchase one of these four pricing packages:
Unless the name didn't give it away, Kitcksite is a dedicated gym management software for martial arts schools. With over 1500 schools in over 22 countries using their software, this family-owned company has an impressive reputation for innovative and supportive solutions.
Kicksite is famous for its user-friendly interface and its focus on giving students the best educational experience. The platform also supports owners with the tools they need to grow – without overcomplicating the process.
When thinking about Kicksite, these standout features come to mind:
Kicksite allows gym owners to automate messages and alerts to members – from reminders to alerts and cancellation notifications. Users can adjust how, when, and to whom messages are sent via the effortless interface. The software offers free SMS texts, a huge bonus when communicating with hundreds of members.
Users can track belt rank progression, classes attended, and skill level to keep track of students. Martial arts schools can adapt these tools based on their curriculum and approach, so the software is flexible to the style of your dojo.
Kicksite handles complex management tasks like tracking attendance and automatically creating reports. The company assures owners they no longer need to stress over spreadsheets and dig out old paperwork to keep track. However, reviews have explained that the reporting tool isn't very helpful because it only tracks attendance for the entire day – not individual classes.
Speaking of the platform's ease of use, its simple interface and customizability makes navigating through the tool an enjoyable experience. You can start using Kicksite from the get-go and set it up in a few minutes.
As to the pros, Kicksite provides the following ones:
In terms of cons, keep these in mind:
To summarize, Kicksite is the tool best used for streamlining operations and automating administrative tasks.
Yet, to tap into what the platform has to offer, and if a free trial is not enough for you, consider choosing one of three pricing options:
PerfectMind has been around for over 20 years, providing a full-scale software product for gyms and martial arts schools.
PerfectMind's website is very impressive, showcasing a vast range of product features that help business owners with bookings, marketing, payments, and facility management.
It is a top-notch gym management software with the following key features:
PerfectMind can integrate with your existing website. It is fully responsive for students and visitors on any mobile device. PerfectMind also offers web development services for businesses needing an upgraded website and digital marketing support.
PerfectMind doesn't just give you the software and leave you to run your business. The company provides gyms with insights, webinars, guides, and tools to enhance and grow their business.
It can be hard to find an accessible software provider. PerfectMind offers 24/7 support via phone, email, and live chat which is highly valuable for your staff. It must be fixed immediately if something goes wrong at the front desk.
In terms of ease of use, PerfectMind is a gym management software that does not require too much effort for setting up. Besides, after the setup you can easily navigate the tool's user-friendly and intuitive interface.
Speaking of the pros coming with PerfectMind, perhaps, focus on these:
In turn, while not an all in one solution, PerfectMind entails these cons:
Overall, PerfectMind is best for managing business operations with a focus on improving member experience. Regardless of technical expertise, the software is accessible to gym owners and administrative staff.
The tool does not offer a free trial. What is more, its pricing is not publicly available. However, when searching through customer reviews, one can estimate the platform price ranging between $125/month and $325/month.
Image source: Wodify
Wodify is among the gym management software leaders offering gym owners everything they need to control their business fully. With tons of expertise and years of experience in the game, Wodify takes away all the stress related to having and running a gym, fitness center, and/or dojo.
A whopping 5,000 gyms all over the globe use Wodify. Perhaps, these companies were taken away by the degree of control this platform offers regarding all gym-related administrative tasks.
At this point, Wodify is the tool coming with these key features:
Wodify entails a toolkit allowing gym owners to monitor numerous aspects affecting business. These can be factors like revenue, payroll, and retention. It will not only keep you gym afloat but make it prosper as well.
With this feature you won't lose any business-related documents again. The platform ensures all the important contracts and waivers are kept secure and easily accessible by gym owners.
This feature is all about tracking how fast your gym members progress. You can instantaneously check their levels, experience, and belt rankings. It offers a general overview of the retention and aspects that need to be updated.
Wodify is recognized for its user-friendly interface. This means the tool entails an ease of use aspect to it.
In terms of pros, consider these:
Yet, there are also some cons to keep in mind:
Putting all the puzzle pieces together, one can say that Wodify is best for gym owners looking for a software solution tailored to the needs of a specific gym or fitness center. In such a case, this tool is the one allowing you to run business efficiently.
Finally, speaking of pricing, consider that Wodify does not have a free trial or a free plan. Besides, it comes in three pricing packages:
Image source: Tech.eu
Glofox is one of the frontrunners among gym management software solutions. This tool comes with a toolkit allowing gym owners to run their operations smoothly.
What is great about Glofox is the fact this platform tailors its services to particular niches, from instance gyms, yoga studios, fitness centers, HIIT, and martial arts centers.
As a result, it is apparent Glofox is versatile and there is something to benefit from for every gym owner out there
Glofox relies on these features to do what it does:
Glofox comes with an integrated CRM system. This allows gym owners to speed up the sales process and manage member onboarding way faster. Besides, all the membership-related information is kept in one place, and staff can easily access it.
Glofox is one of the few gym management software solutions coming with both a flawless website and mobile app. This not only boosts members' experience but also provides them an easy way to book classes, purchase memberships, and engage with your business.
With Glofox, gym owners can automate the process of communicating with members. There are automated emails and push notifications you can customize and deliver in one click. This will provide gym members with all the relevant information and updates.
In general, when you speak about the ease of use, Glofox is the gym management software that does not come with hard-to-navigate user interface or steep learning curve.
You can handle it in a matter of minutes
Turning to the pros, focus on these ones:
As to the cons, emphasize these:
As a summary, Glofox is best for taking control of your gym, fitness center, or yoga studio.
When it comes to pricing, it is not that easy. Glofox does not have a free plan as well as its pricing options are not disclosed.
Image source: Capterra
GymMaster is a cloud-based gym management software designed for gyms of all shapes and sizes. With this tool, you can have your business running almost on its own.
Besides, GymMaster helps establish a direct line of communication between staff and members. It makes dealing with various issues a lot easier and helps decrease retention as well as increase customer engagement.
At this point, GymMaster is the tool coming with these key features:
The platform entails an elaborate access control function. It helps gym staff to track and manage any gym-related access. These can be check-ins, and member attendance. With this feature, you can be sure members take the most of their memberships.
GymMaster comes with the focus on making everything possible to equip gym owners and staff with detailed reports showing pre-selected metrics. This helps understand how the business is moving forward and whether there are certain areas to improve. In most cases, you can emphasize metrics like retention, attendance, and revenue.
GymMaster emphasizes the ability of gym members to have a greater control of their memberships. There is a self-service portal granting users an access to personal information, class booking tools, and payment processing options.
In terms of ease of use, GymMaster has a user-friendly interface and is simple to navigate. You will be pleased to work with it.
When it comes to the tool's pros, keep in mind these:
While pounding on some particular cons, these comes to mind:
Putting all the puzzle pieces together, it is apparent GymMaster is best for business-owners looking for a flexible gym management software with a focus on members having a greater control of their gym experience.
Finally, GymMaster comes with a free trial option. What is more, it entails four pricing plans:
Image source: Software Advice
PushPress is a gym management software designed and built by gym owners. It means people standing behind the solution know exactly what you need to meet operational needs.
PushPress is a great solution if you need to deal with a lot of basic tasks. This platform offers a hassle-free experience and provides help via user-friendly tools and features.
PushPress is there to help gyms of all sizes. This gym management software delivers on its promises with the help of these distinct features:
PushPress comes with a member portal offering gym members various self-service opportunities. Users can self check-in, as well as sign-up in several steps. Besides, the member portal delivers some notable updates on new offerings and ongoing memberships.
When using PushPress you can sync your calendar with the app's dashboards. It means members see when they have classes and what activities lie ahead. In addition, calendar sync allows integrations with other programs and apps you have.
As to the advanced reporting and analytics, PushPress made sure gym owners have all the relevant information in one place. Centralized dashboards offer an overview of each day's activities, and provide in-detail visual reports granting an easy and quick business-related analysis.
Speaking on the tool's ease of use, PushPress entails a user-friendly interface and grants simple setup options. Moreover, this platform has some intuitive features making billing, invoicing, check-in, and check-out hassle-free.
Pondering upon some distinct pros this instrument comes with, there are these ones to mention:
On the other hand, PushPress also entails these cons:
Overall, PushPress is best for gyms that want to engage their members in a better way.
Finally, this tool has a free plan for smaller gyms and studios. For mid-size gyms and large studios, there are two pricing packages available:
If you run a martial arts school, a yoga studio or a gymnastics gym, you need a tool to further your business. Better still, you need a gym management software designed with your specific needs, goals, daily struggles, and passions in mind.
Choose a modern, easy-to-use software product that will make your life easier and help your business grow in the 21st century - and let your gym be a step ahead of the rest.
Which is why we think Gymdesk takes the belt in the title fight for software in 2024, for its best-in-class user experience and innovative features that are a cut above the field.
Other considerations might make you choose a different product: If you run a complicated fitness business where you subcontract different parts of your gym and need to manage those accordingly, perhaps Mindbody would be a better fit as they support any gym configuration possible.
And if 24/7 phone support is critical for you, PerfectMind might be the best choice despite having an average product. Moreover, you can decide between Glofox and GymMaster. Yet, it is highly unlikely there is a tool that can top Gymdesk.
Choosing a tool to manage your business is always a tough decision. If you are still on the fence, try out all of the competitors we listed above - we're sure you'll find your match within this bunch. If there is no match you prefer, contact us and we will deliver a perfect gym management software solution in no time.
As a large fitness enterprise, Planet Fitness uses different software solutions. These should help manage operations, and include marketing tools. The evidence dictates Planet Fitness utilizes Zen Planner, ABC Financial, Joans Fitness, and Mailchimp for marketing purposes.
It is hard to estimate the cost of gym management software from the top of one's head. There are many variables involved. It all depends on the provider, features, gym's size, and integrations. Yet, when it comes to giving a particular price range, the gym software costs from $50 for basic plans, and about $500 for more comprehensive packages.
Gym management software is a software solution specifically designed to help manage gyms, fitness centers, yoga studios, and martial arts centers. These include features helping businesses owners streamline operations, automate manual tasks, and improve member experience. With this software you can have billing, scheduling, and reporting automated. This takes businesses to a whole new level.
Martial arts software is a software solution designed for martial arts studios and schools. It helps to manage various operations and make business more efficient. With martial arts software you can engage in belt tracking, automated billing, class scheduling, and student management.
Gym CRM stands for Gym Customer Relationship Management. It is software allowing gym owners to effectively manage customer relationships. The key objective of this tool is to build strong connections with gym members and make sure the retention rates are high.