Strong Friend Ben Gotting: From Professional Rugby to Entrepreneur
Meet Ben Gotting
I met Ben in 2011 through a mutual rugby friend while I was working at David Lloyds in Chigwell, Essex. Ben encouraged me to come up to the big smoke (London) to work at Gymbox Holborn with him where he was my gym manager.
It was a scary time but hugely transformational for me. I learnt so much from Ben and he was definitely one of my big influences in the early stages of my PT career.
Watching him open up The Foundry has been fantastic and I look forward to learning more from him as his business grows!
Tell me about yourself
I was born in the UAE, and returned to the UK shortly after my 1st birthday. I grew up in Hampshire but spent around 2 years of my life being schooled at Peter House School in Zimbabwe.
I started playing rugby at Camberley RFC at the age of 8 and never looked back. I went on to represent England U21, England Students and British Universities, whilst studying at Brunel University.
After University I signed full-time with Wasps, where I had been in their u21 academy. I spent 4 more years at Wasps where we won the European Cup and 3 Premiership titles. After finishing at Wasps, I spent 2 years with Worcester Warriors and then London Scottish and London Welsh.
During my time at Welsh, I studied to become a personal trainer - something which I thought would compliment my degree and something I had a great interest in.
Tell me about your business
I have now been a personal trainer for 7 years and opened my own facility, The Foundry, in January 2016. We opened our second site in April 2017 and plan for global domination!
What’s the story behind starting out in your business?
It seemed like a natural progression to want my own facility, having worked at Gymbox for 6+ years. I went to look at taking on the lease of The Foundry in Liverpool Street in 2015, currently occupied by Dave Thomas. We connected via social media and then started working together, taking my weekend strongman bootcamp into a now renowned class format of City Strongman. It is now our most popular class on The Foundry’s timetable.
What do you like most about working in this industry?
Full on cheddar alert, but it’s genuinely helping people. I love seeing progression of clients and watching them get stronger.
Tell me about your favourite Success Story at work?
Happened this morning actually. My client of 7 years - a 71 year old Cancer survivor, Chris, deadlifted 100kg for 5 reps like it was a warm up weight. Big things to come from him this phase!
What is the most difficult challenge that you have faced?
Returning from a year on the physio bench recovering from a knee injury was tough. it temporarily retired me for a year and then finally retired me 5 years later. I have now had 7 operations on the same knee but want let it stop me!
Who’s your inspiration in your industry?
Anybody who works their ass off and doesn’t give a million excuses.
What does your personal regimen look like?
Recently my training has dropped right off as opening the second facility has taken up a lot of my time but I need to get my ass back in gear and shed some of the extra weight I have gained!
Any advice to people wanting to start their fitness journey?
Make sure you continually educate yourself. Anyone who just does a PT qualification and no further education is robbing people!
What's your favourite mantra?
Don’t be a dick.
Where’s your favourite place to eat in London?
Loving Boondocks at the moment in Old Street - they have a burger challenge there which is pretty savage.