Crossfit CoalFace gym creates a bigger "one-stop-health-shop" in Newcastle West

More room to move: Ali and Guy Onley, founders of Crossfit CoalFace gym in Newcastle West. Picture: Simone de Peak
More room to move: Ali and Guy Onley, founders of Crossfit CoalFace gym in Newcastle West. Picture: Simone de Peak

NEWCASTLE gym Crossfit CoalFace has grown from a small family business to a “one-stop” health destination in its bigger Newcastle West home. 

Guy and Ali Onley opened their first Crossfit CoalFace gym in Hunter Street in 2014 and slowly built it to capacity. Twelve months ago they moved to Hall Street, near Marketown, with a view to create a bigger venue.

“We had outgrown the other facility and then we were looking to expand into other things other than Crossfit – we wanted a facility that people could move around in their fitness,” said Mr Onley.

The Onleys have expanded their gym offering beyond Crossfit to include power lifting, Olympic lifting, body-building, gymnastics, cardio, strongman and classes for kids and those aged over 55. The new-look multi-purpose gym now offers all-day access to members, rather than just class access.

In addition, they are subletting office space to like-minded businesses in the health and wellness field: Lacor Float Centre and Louisa Cutler Physiotherapy. The Benchmark Cafe and Mrs Onley’s AOCO hair salon complete the business hub.”

“It's more of an all-inclusive space, we have tried to open a one-stop shop for fitness-minded people,” said Mr Onley. 

Each business in the hub can refer to the other, and the business owners are often found at the gym. 

Beyond offering more services, Mr Onley said the move made business sense.

“I think it's trying to cut costs and try and use the spaces smartly – we probably wouldn't be able to afford such a nice gym and building if we didn’t have any businesses attached and weren't sub-leasing, it would be too costly,” he said. 

With two young sons, the couple believe they are setting a positive life example.

“I want them to see that their parents aren't just doing the daily grind 9-5, for me this is 25 per cent business owner, 75 coach and I think I am growing more as an owner of the business,” Mr Onley said.

“I want the kids to see if they see something and want to have a go then they should just do it.”