New social fitness startup “actLive” helps people connect to the activities they love

June 06 22:55 2022

Here’s the deal: How many times have you said, “I wish I had someone to play tennis with today,” or maybe you’re curious about trying a new sport or activity, or maybe you want to start a business where you teach people how to surf. Well, now, there’s an app for that. Whether you’re a newbie or a pro (or somewhere in between), actLive connects you with like-minded people at your fitness level, helps you discover different healthy activities in your area, and even provides a platform to make money teaching others about that new passion you’ve been getting good at.

Countless people in the L.A. area lost their fitness communities during the pandemic. With summer around the corner, our mission is to reignite those folks’ passion for finding their movement by giving them an avenue to make connections with new people.

“In its simplest form, actLive is a platform for people to schedule playdates.”

The actLive story

actLive was built by co-founders and childhood best friends, Cody Anderson and Connor Wynveen. Pick up football on the blacktop, hoops, skating, you name it. Their childhood friendship was all about getting outside and playing with friends. Post college and deep into careers, they became acutely aware of the degree to which their new lifestyles had eclipsed those days when they had the time and access to get together to play with friends. The way they spent their time throughout the day felt indistinguishable from the past. Less easy access to getting outside and moving meant an imbalance between being glued to a computer screen vs. being active. This created ripple effects in their mental health, social lives and feeling of purpose. From this, actLive was born.

actLive is on a mission to get balance back between work and play. To get back to a carefree childhood feeling. When connecting with neighborhood friends was easy. When laughing, having fun, and moving outside was all that mattered.

“Connor and I were talking about our personal challenges, and we realized there had to be so many other people just like us in the same situation,” said co-founder Cody Anderson. “We essentially created actLive to solve our own problems, but we also knew we weren’t alone. Unlike ClassPass or MindBody, which cater to corporate brick and mortar retail businesses, actLive is focused on aggregating classes, events and activities led by independent instructors, coaches and trainers, and searchable by neighborhood.”

According to Anderson’s co-founder, Connor Wynveen, “There’s nothing in the market that has meaningfully captured this opportunity. Some promote events or sell tickets; others promote meetups for liked-minded hobbyists and affinity groups. actLive gives fitness entrepreneurs a place to build and manage their business and maximize their earnings, while helping individuals stay active, meet new people, and deepen their connections to the communities where they live, work and play. We think this IRL social component is one of the most important aspects of the business.”

How it works — an app that makes it easy to go out and play

actLive provides event organizers (instructors, coaches or individuals) with a platform to promote their events and, if fees are involved, manage payments. Individuals looking for an event or activity can search their specific neighborhood, sign up through the app and, if necessary, pay the instructor. All users can create personal profiles, connect with people they met during a session, and arrange future meetups if they feel a vibe.

What’s different: Cody and Connor searched diligently for recurring outdoor sports and activities in LA (e.g., Playa Vista, Santa Monica, Culver, South Bay). Existing online platforms were cluttered with stale or random meetups no one was joining. Instead, they drove around to parks and had to rely on word of mouth to find good runs. “We discovered lots of people organizing all kinds of outdoor sports & activities with no digital footprint. These communities are often led by one or two very passionate people who love the sport / activity that brings their group together. On actLive, we call these passionate people actLive champions. By lifting & shifting these existing active communities onto actLive, everyone in the neighborhood can now easily find and join these groups, meanwhile actLive champions are fired up as their community grows. As we’ve been connecting with champions, their feedback is that they organize via group text or email, resulting in limited reach outside of their immediate contacts, and difficulty for individuals who meet at their events to keep in touch. Finding these activities and connecting with these people should be easy, that’s why we made actLive. Think of it as Google for social fitness activities near you.”

What fires us up: In talking to numerous instructors, coaches and organizers, we learned the compensation model is backwards. Fitness businesses (e.g., yoga studio) typically take 75-95% of revenue generated from a class or session, leaving instructors with only 5-25%. People may sign up initially for the brand of the business, but they continue going for the skill and personality that these instructors bring. We want to put the power back into the hands of the instructors. That’s why actLive allows instructors to set their rate and see 100% of the revenue. It also gives these skilled individuals a platform to build their brand and access to individuals in their area looking for their service. We are most excited about disrupting the fitness instructor and coaching industry to make pursuing it as a career more accessible and lucrative.

Launch plan

When asked about their launch plans, Wynveen said, “actLive is launching in SoCal as it’s one of the most physically active and fitness-oriented places in the world. actLive estimates there are over 200 million local sports or physical activities in LA each year with minimal to no digital footprint. And obviously, LA also has perfect weather year-round and is where Cody and I see a lot of the need.”

“Our plan is to establish a footprint in L.A. with a focus on signing up instructors, communities and other organizers of regular events,” says Anderson. “Many of these people don’t currently have a viable option for promoting their personal brands and growing their businesses. We are teaming up with local organizers, aka “actLive champions” and have a list of 30+ who are eager to start using actLive. By providing a simple platform and helping actLive champions grow their communities we’ll be able to attract individual users to the app”. Launch day is July 9th at lifeguard tower 41 in Playa Del Rey Beach, including several local brands such as Sweat Yoga who will host a full “actLive day” with a variety of different sports, classes and events made accessible through the app (follow @theactliveapp on IG for launch day details). You can download actLive now for iOS, with a robust set of event and activity listings coming this July. 

We also have commitments with a few large organizations interested in using actLive to help manage events they’ve been running for years. This will help grow our actLive member base while also providing an excellent testing lab for new features. 

About founders

Cody Anderson (co-founder) As a strategy consultant for big tech companies, it’s safe to say I’m a problem solver. Pick up sports is my secret sauce and I immediately realized there must be an easier way to find a +1

Connor Wynveen (co-founder)

I come from a systems engineering and software development background supporting the Department of Defense. My love for moving with others runs most of my life, and now I help others find their squad

About fundraise

actLive completed a friends and family round to support their MVP launch in July. Post launch, they are estimating another round of seed stage fundraising to support the launch of actLive in new markets outside of LA. Check them out at act-live.com

Media Contact
Company Name: ActLive
Email: Send Email
Country: United States
Website: act-live.com

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