Kasi Kats Fitness Club aims at keeping its community fit and healthy. Kasi Kats Fitness Club is a proudly black owned township fitness gym that specialises in aerobics and weights. It is located near an intersection and a garage at extension 20, Mamelodi. The fitness gym was co-founded by three gentlemen, Buyi Mnyandeni, Paul Masemola and Tidimalo Tabane. They have been friends since they were children and they had the same vision, starting a gym.
For the love of keeping fit and healthy, Buyi told Tsa Pitori that they started to gym at his place. He said they had nothing but handmade weights, made of paint buckets filled with concrete and cement. He said they saw that was not good enough and they needed a bigger space. They then joined another gym called Lucky’s gym. That did not succeed as well because ‘the place was unhygienic and the service was bad’. Therefore, they came up with the idea of starting their own establishment. The trio started the fitness club from scratch.
It took them a few months to get the building where their gym is located. They had to negotiate with the then owner of the place to agree to sell the place to them. “It took us three months to convince the owner of the place and when we finally got the place, the community of extension 20 were sceptical since we were not from the same community as them”-Buyi said. They had to negotiate with the community of extension 20 to allow them to work there. Even though they struggled to get the venue at the time they wanted it, they managed to negotiate a deal that worked for them and the owner of the place.
He says at first, the building was more like ruins. It was abandoned and they saw a great opportunity to make use of the building. They had to start by cleaning it up and fixing the roof, because it was leaking. They also painted the place so it looked a little bit tidy, welcoming and friendly. Buyi says starting a gym in a township was a great opportunity because it has benefited the people of Mamelodi. “Now people don’t have to travel to town just to workout”-Buyi said. The gym has been existing for 14 months now and it has been doing very well, according to Buyi.
Buyi says they had ups and downs starting their business. Their biggest challenge was finances. They had to make means of getting money somewhere to keep their gym at a right pace. Coming up with different ideas was also one of the challenges they faced because they even got into physical fights just to make things right. “sticking to our vision helped us a lot, now we are proud co-founders of a well-functioning gym”-Buyi. Buyi says if you want to venture into a business like theirs, you need passion for what you do.
By: ZANELE MAGAGULA