wjxt logo

Black-owned, all-women’s fitness facility set to open next month

Owner started training all women after his mother died at 51 from heart disease

Black Owned All Women's Gym
Black Owned All Women's Gym

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – At 1501 North Main Street in Jacksonville’s Springfield neighborhood, big things are happening. With a grand opening inching closer and closer, personal trainer and NS2 Fitness Training owner, Ryan McGriff, couldn’t be more excited to see his vision coming together. News4JAX got an early peek.

“We’re going to have bikes, we’re going to have weights, dumbbells, you name it,” McGriff said. “We’re going to have the best of both worlds.”

It’s years in the making, but McGriff says this would be Jacksonville’s first women’s only fitness facility.

“To actually see it now starting to come to pass, it’s a phenomenal feeling,” McGriff said. “I take no credit for it, I just moved on a vision that was given to me.”

A vision that came through heartbreak. McGriff says his mother struggled with the complications of not eating right or staying active. He says those complications included high blood pressure and heart issues. He said she also had a brain aneurism and died in 2012 at the age of 51.

“I was given a vision two days after my mom’s funeral to start training all women,” McGriff said. “I tried to help my mom a little too late, but that doesn’t mean I can’t help someone now in my current state.”

02-17-21 springfield gym (Copyright 2021 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

With his personal tragedy, McGriff founded NS2 Fitness Training. He started with a few clients, but soon many more signed up. He still trains them near the Riverside Arts Market in Riverside, but with his own facility, McGriff wants women to know they can come to his business for training, nutrition, and community as well.

“You can do your work here, like a Starbucks type of a feeling,” McGriff said. “Basically, we don’t want you to leave!”

McGriff says creating a business his mother would be proud of is something near and dear to his heart. As one of three, he referred to himself as “the mama’s boy”. He said she was funny, loving, and very much loved her family.

02-17-21 springfield gym (Copyright 2021 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

“We never call our clients, ‘clients’, we call them family,” McGriff said. “I wanted to build that structure around the business.”

As always, for anyone aiming toward a goal, motivation is key. For McGriff, it’s a simple motto: “Don’t wish for it, work for it.”

“That’s not just when it comes to results that you want,” McGriff said. “That also comes to life, marriages, relationships with people, and your family.”

02-17-21 springfield gym (Copyright 2021 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

Speaking of family, as a husband and father of two young boys, McGriff’s goal is to not only save lives but inspire others.

“I’m just trying to leave a legacy for them,” McGriff said. “And also show young Black male entrepreneurs that they can do the same thing.”

McGriff’s wife also owns the meal prep service, Ready Prep Go, so that’s another benefit. The goal is for the gym to open in March. To learn how to register as a client, go here:

The company can also be found on Instagram.

About the Author:

Ashley Harding joined the Channel 4 news team in March 2013 and reports every weekday for The Morning Show.