Warming upNow 10 years old, Frame is the brainchild of Pip Black and Joan Murphy. The pair met in 2007 and bonded over both their shared love of fitness and the fact that they’d recently completed business degrees. They wanted to hang out and do exercise classes together, but couldn’t find anywhere that offered the variety and flexibility that they desired. “Both of us being quite determined people, we decided why don’t we create something ourselves that other people like us would want to go to?” explains Black. “We specifically launched in Shoreditch because we wanted to create a brand that was cool, specifically in a place with lots of creatives, where people weren’t working out already. We wanted to increase the number of people exercising. Black and Murphy also wanted to encourage new approaches to fitness, and that meant a business model that was relatively rare at the time. “We were pioneers of the industry,” says Black. “Pay-as-you-go didn’t exist 10 years ago, it was a new concept. Online booking didn’t exist, either.”
According to Black, booking classes online was such an alien concept to gym-goers back in 2009 that they would instead email her and Murphy, who’d then have to manually add customer’s names to classes in the back-end of their booking system. Now, we don’t even think about it.