In the modern life of constant chase, people often turn a I blind eye toward their health, which disturbs the balance of quality of life. To help people maintain this balance, Lee Belzberg and Melissa Bentivoglio came up with a ground-breaking idea to fill the void in the fitness industry by providing an innovative approach to Pilates with their venture, Frame Fitness.
Keeping mindfulness and movement in mind, the dynamic duo offers Frame’s modern, patent-pending, and cutting-edge technology. It amplifies and transforms your workout experience, offering a range of classes from beginner to advanced and fast-paced to restorative classes.
Blown by this simple yet unique platform, Insights Success reached out to Lee and talked about how the brand works on its motto “Made for motion,” with its reimagined reformer.
Below are the highlights of the interview:
Briefly describe your professional journey up until now.
Over the past ten years, I’ve been able to build my experience in business strategy through multiple management and finance roles. When I initially embarked on my career, the insurance industry was an archaic one in need of change. I wanted to investigate what innovation could look like in our field and began exploring how to consolidate the benefits and pensions of portfolio companies used by private equity firms. I saw that by utilizing a multi-employer program, we would not only be able to benefit the portfolio companies by adding better benefits at a lower cost but also add value to their EBITDA and maximize their investment. By working with other entrepreneurs and brands, I noticed they all shared a common thread–an insatiable desire for innovation and creativity. When I saw my wife Melissa Bentivoglio building her brick-and-mortar Pilates studio in Toronto, I witnessed that same spark come alive within her. When she approached me with the idea to create the first connected Pilates Reformer, we researched the fitness market and realized there was a void in the Pilates sector. Then, together, we knew we would be the ones to lead a new approach to Pilates that incorporated modern technology into a system people could access at home for a reasonable price for the first time.
What challenges did you face along the way?
Some of the challenges we faced included facing changes in production timelines. With the pandemic, Frame, along with other brands and businesses, encountered shipping and supply chain issues. While this sometimes gave us feelings of uncertainty, it taught us a lesson in adaptability, flexibility, and communication. We’ve been incredibly lucky with certain decisions along the way that have allowed us to operate and launch smoothly. Our board and investors have been very supportive and have also provided invaluable insights that have shaped the success of the brand thus far.
What significant impact have you brought to the Wellness and Fitness Services industry?
With Frame, we are able to provide fitness enthusiasts with an effective low-impact workout through our carefully designed and digitally-connected reformer. For the first time in nearly a century, the Pilates industry will see an innovation that will revolutionize the way we experience Pilates. Reformer machines do not have to be clunky or heavy, and the need for expert instruction can now be met at home through digital streaming. We’re creating a seamless workout experience and platform for Pilates enthusiasts to achieve their fitness goals in the convenience of their homes.
Tell us about Frame Fitness and its foundation pillar.
Frame is rooted in providing effective low-impact workouts that will reveal results while minimizing the risk for injury. Because Pilates exercises often focus on increasing flexibility, increasing muscle strength, preventing injury, improving posture, and increasing body awareness, it is a thorough workout for every level of athlete, including those who may be recovering from injury. Through Frame, we are able to elevate that experience by connecting it to a digital world where users can tap into instructor-guided workouts and a community of like-minded people.
How does Frame Fitness promote workforce flexibility, and what is your role in it?
We have a small but mighty team here at Frame. With everything moving so quickly in a fast-growing startup, we’ve learned that communication is key within our company. Through excellent communication as a team, we’re able to be flexible while still accomplishing the big goals we set for ourselves.
What is your take on technology’s importance, and how are you leveraging it?
Technology is incredibly important in maximizing our efficiency and productivity–and has proven to play a key role in the way we connect with others, as proven throughout the entire pandemic. With Frame, we’re utilizing technology to not only provide a seamless streaming experience through our video workouts but helping them to connect to an entire virtual community of like-minded people. When it comes to health and wellbeing, getting ourselves moving is just the first step. From there, you can continue moving forward, and it’s so much easier when there is support from a community to carry you on your journey.
What will be the next significant change in the Wellness and Fitness Services industry, and how are you preparing for it?
With the pandemic, the fitness industry experienced an unprecedented shift to at-home and private workouts. Group fitness offerings were shut down, boutique studios closed their doors, and larger gyms came with heftier monthly fees. Now, after nearly two years of constrained offerings in the wellness space, those who are leading an active lifestyle have transitioned into finding a routine that works for them, and for many, that routine prioritizes convenience and variety more than anything. Frame offers that and more. We feature a curated video and on-demand library of classes that offer everything from Pilates, yoga, strength, and stretching. We’re targeting the pain points that most people consider when planning their workout regimen.
What are your goals in the upcoming future?
Aside from getting Frame in homes across the United States and Canada, we’d love to expand and bring Frame to Europe, and we have seen a huge demand in Australia, New Zealand and South America as well. We’re seeing Frame’s reach extending far beyond just fitness at home. By working strategically with our partners and leveraging our relationships, we will be bringing Frame to larger audiences, such as hotel chains, condos, and commercial wellness spaces, including sports medicine facilities and fertility clinics. Low-impact workouts are beneficial not only to seasoned athletes but to those undergoing injury rehabilitation programs as well.
What advice would you like to give the next generation of aspiring business leaders?
The best advice I can give to aspiring leaders is to just do it. Just make the leap. A huge part of holding a leadership role is to be able to make decisions and learn along the way. There are so many great ideas out there, and on the way to making them a reality, you will face many failures and setbacks. However, each of those failures is a step forward, and you have to take them as a lesson in how to take the next step toward success.