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Dane learned fitness center operations by working for the YMCA of Middle Tennessee, which appointed him Wellness Director for two centers. He left the Y and started Dane Fitness in 2003. He knows every aspect of the industry from wellness to manufacturing. He stays on top of the latest in wellness and the fitness industry through constant contact with industry experts, manufacturers, and relentless research.
For seven years prior to founding his company, Dane Burks advanced through the ranks of the YMCA of Middle Tennessee, one of the largest nonprofit fitness networks in the country, becoming Wellness Director for two centers. A frequent headache—and costly expense—for the Ys was equipment maintenance, servicing, and turnover. As a director, Dane was frustrated as he watched equipment sit idle for weeks waiting for repair. He also knew how much the Y was paying to store outdated and worn equipment. These equipment issues were a nuisance that no one wanted to deal with, so he came up with a plan and took action. He left the Y in 2003 and started Dane Fitness.
The company gained traction rapidly as it provided fitness centers with a single source for relieving the pain of equipment management, offering installation, training, maintenance, service, storage, and reselling. Soon Dane Fitness began carrying new equipment for the major national brands like Nautilus, Stairmaster, Vicore, and Freemotion. The company now has a full-time staff of five (and contracting up to a dozen or more), a warehouse, and retail and online stores.