Ambition Fitness: Empowering Women

“There’s no way I could have done this without the Small Business Development Center.”

Two years ago, Katie Daniel had the idea for a business that would help empower women and provide them with a comprehensive, effective fitness plan for long-term results and body confidence.

“There’s something about when you have a dumbbell in your hand you feel tough,” Katie says.

It was through learning how to properly lift weights that Katie took control of her own health, strength, power and weight.

But what she found in most gyms was intimidating for women: unwanted advice from men, being told to go use the machines instead; not to mention the look and feel of dirty and dingy weight rooms.

“I thought: What if I create a studio for women that combines the clean, attractive atmosphere we want, along with support and proper training, and the camaraderie of other women,” Katie says.

She started by selling her husband on the idea, and then slowly began building toward this dream.

Making It A Reality

For months, Katie thought about how to turn this dream into a reality, she just couldn’t let the idea go. So, she started working with a broker and looking at potential sites. None of those locations worked out, thankfully, as Katie admits that she just wasn’t ready at that time.

Then she found the Kentucky Small Business Development Center in Louisville and joined a free business planning workshop in May of 2018 and it was here that she began to understand all of the details associated with starting and running a business. KSBDC offers these types of workshops and one-on-one consultations for free to small business owners and would-be entrepreneurs in Louisville and throughout the state.

Katie’s expertise was in fitness, knowing which classes to offer and how to develop programs to help women meet their goals. What she didn’t know was how to finance the business, how to apply for and obtain a business loan. She also didn’t know enough about her competition, and she needed advice and information on other important business issues like hiring a contractor and evaluating the terms of a lease.

“Dave Oetken at the Small Business Development Center helped me so much through all this. Every time I called him, he always got back to me to help me make informed decisions.”

“Once we had the business plan and projected financials all compiled, Dave introduced me to a lender… That lender has been amazing to work with.”

Katie also learned more about how to do competitive research by using a database to see the revenue, number of employees, number of members, and profits of other local boutique studios and studios around the country.

“That was so helpful. It made me feel so much better about opening my studio to know those numbers,” she says.

Katie was able to successfully open Ambition Fitness on Dec. 1, 2018.

“There’s no way this would have happened without the small business development center,” she says.

Making A Difference

“There has been so much lack of sleep, and it has been such an emotional rollercoaster, but I would not change a thing about having made this decision,” Katie says. “We get this feedback from women, such as, ‘I have never gotten so much out of a class.’ Even with a couple weeks of classes, their bodies are adapting and they already feel better and stronger… It’s so reaffirming as to why I opened the business, which is to help women feel good and to see changes.”

Her advice to other people thinking of opening a business:

1.Come up with an idea that that fills a need in the marketplace that you’re so passionate about that you can’t stop thinking about it.

2.Turn to your local business development center for guidance.

3.They will help you do the research on your competition and your own financials and put together a business plan, along with helping you with other important steps.


5.Work really hard to make your business successful.

About Ambition Fitness

“Come learn everything you’ve wanted to know about using weights to sculpt your physique, lose body fat, and gain control of your body shape,” says the website. “It’s like having a personal trainer, but for less. This isn’t bootcamp. We’ve perfected a structured, regimented program for personalized head-to-toe conditioning.”
3900 Shelbyville Road, Suite 15, Louisville, KY 40207, 502-632-2126 ,

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