Danny Walker – Fitness Trainer

When Danny started on the Restart Scheme he had been suffering with anxiety and depression for several years. At it’s worse he found it difficult to function, hard to get out of bed and slept most of the time. He admits he had no routine, could not think straight and regularly skipped meals, sometimes going days without food. This had been going on for around 18 months. Eventually he reached out to friends and family and got the support to start rebuilding his life.

He joined Restart in October 2021 and initially found the idea of working for an employer daunting. Danny spent some time working with his Restart Adviser, Amy Smith, exploring his options and working out what he wanted to do. He had always wanted to set up his own business and with skills in Personal Training and Strength and Conditioning he decided to pursue his dream. He discussed this with Amy and she referred Danny to Jan Melia the Business Adviser at Momentic for specialist support.

Jan worked with Danny and helped him to develop a business plan and cash flow forecast, register for self-assessment and he attended training in marketing and bookkeeping.

Amy Smith, his Restart Adviser, arranged funding for his branded workwear, professional business cards and also provided a new laptop which has helped him keep his bookkeeping up to date, develop a website and deliver online training. Danny was also assessed as Gainfully Self Employed by his local Job Centre and has been given a 12 month start up period to help him get his business off the ground.

He set up DW9 Training on 21st February and has now been trading for 6 months. He says “It’s been crazy, there have been a lot of challenges. In the first three months, everything I had initially put in place, collapsed. However, I was fortunate that I had continuous business mentoring from Momentic for 6 months. Jan and I were able to meet up and look at new goals and marketing ideas to kick start the business again. If it had not have been for Jan’s continuous support, I think I would have given up.

Whereas I have now been trading for 6 months and have goals in place to help me focus on reaching my 12-month target.”

Danny is currently working with Oldham Roughyeds as Strength & Condition Coach to the Men’s Team and Women’s Team, providing weekly training sessions and pre-match warmups. He is also working with a number of personal fitness clients who he trains on a weekly basis at a local gym and several athletes, providing online strength and conditioning.

With established clients he is now developing two online shops – one selling Herbalife and the other his own brand of sports clothing, which will be launched within the next month along with his new website.

Danny says “The business is now developing, and my reputation is growing, and I am confident that I can achieve business success. My lifestyle is more structured, it gives me something to focus on, I enjoy my job and the added advantage is that its socially rewarding too. What’s great is that I am much happier and can manage my mental health much more easily. It’s a Win Win all round!”