Bonnie Micheli and Tracy Roemer met in Chicago, IL during small talk in line at their local Starbucks. After realizing they’d been neighbors for years, they connected instantly over their shared love for fitness and family. Soon they’d combined their 25 years of fitness expertise and vision for a more inclusive wellness experience to create a concept that’s much more than a workout. The result is Shred415, a female-founded, interval-based fitness program that goes beyond the four walls of a studio.
From a shared vision to an epic franchise
Shred415 now runs at a franchise level, but its mission and unique culture are just as palpable as they were when it first opened its doors. Shred415 wasn’t designed to be a one size fits all studio. It was founded to make every person feel welcome, no matter where they are on their fitness journey. Instructors and staff encourage members to start from where they're comfortable, then build.
Their signature “Shred415” program is a combination of strength training and cardio, mixed with four 15-minute intervals—but no two workouts are the same. Each instructor creates their own workout and places their own unique spin on the class. Since opening in 2011, they’ve expanded to over 30 locations and created a wellness movement that has inspired hundreds of people.
Making the Shred415 brand tangible at the franchisee level
What makes the Shred415 brand so special? Not only is it a unique blend of treadmills and strength-building, but it’s also deeply embedded within its community. From the start, they’ve been laser-focused on building their community and, as a result, have touched people’s lives in countless ways. They know that wellness goes beyond the four walls of a studio—it also includes family and giving back to others. To support their values, they offer donation classes, give private charity classes, and reach out to various schools to bring in their sports teams for private training. This type of inclusivity is what you can expect to feel when you step into any Shred415 studio.
Their family-friendly environment isn’t only exclusive to their members, they mean it in a literal sense too. Bonnie and Tracy wanted Shred415 to be a family-friendly environment. Both with families of their own, they created ShredKids—a 45-minute class for children ages 8-12, to allow them to experience the fitness community and its benefits from a young age. They also reiterate a sense of family with their inclusive verbiages like Shredder, Shredfam, Shredbesties, and their tagline, “more than a workout,” which they speak to in every aspect of their brand.
How does this community feel transcended across each of their locations? Bonnie and Tracy believe managing a cohesive brand message starts with active leadership. Tracy explains that for both her and Bonnie it was important to give every person in their business a voice—the managers, trainers, and staff. They know it’s not just them running a business, it’s everyone involved in the process that’s responsible for their success. They also place an emphasis on continuing to teach on a weekly basis to foster a deeper connection with both staff and members. Making sure their staff are in the studios and taking classes themselves when they aren’t teaching is another way Bonnie and Tracy transcend leadership across their franchisees. For Tracy and Bonnie, leadership is about walking the walk—not just talking the talk.
How Mindbody makes branding easy
Shred415 has partnered with Mindbody since day one. For Bonnie and Tracy, choosing Mindbody was easy. According to Bonnie, “It just had everything in one from the POS system to reporting, it was everything they needed.” Over 11 years, they’ve relied on Mindbody to train their staff and grow strategically. Tracy adds, “As we started growing our studios and learning about the ways to reach out to different clients and we started to learn more about what Mindbody was able to do for us. We could communicate and grow more strategically from that point.” Knowing what touch points matter to their members most and being able to grow in that area is a big part of what makes their members feel like a Shredder.
Shred415 and Mindbody have evolved together over the years, which has encouraged their brand to implement new tools along the way. When they started franchising, the corporate dashboard tool was extremely useful to run reports and see cross-regional reporting so people across the country could take classes without having to purchase a new package.
On a franchisee level, they’ve also had a lot of success with Messenger[ai]. In today’s business climate, instant communication is everything. Regional manager Jen Wilkins explains, “the ability to give a quick response and message back and forth in a more personable tone makes it easier to give people a better experience and encourage them to get back in the studios.” Getting a quicker response to clients with Messenger[ai], and the personalized connection it creates, helps increase bookings and get people back in the studio. Jen adds, “It’s added ease of operations to the day at all studios.” It enables studios to stay connected with clients, lets clients easily check out via text, and overall provides a more streamlined client-studio communication.
What’s next for Shred415? They’re currently focusing on getting back to the growth track they were on pre-pandemic and continuing to expand their franchise again—one community and Shredder at a time.