Skip to content
Pursuits
Businessweek

Wild Secrets I Never Knew About Fitness Trainers Until I Worked as One

A week with Technogym’s in-demand pros reveals requests for $100,000 altitude rooms, obsessive plunge baths, and BDSM in the DMs.

relates to Wild Secrets I Never Knew About Fitness Trainers Until I Worked as One

Illustration: Carolina Moscoso

Forty years ago, Nerio Alessandri requested a meeting with Giorgio Armani. Growing up poor in Cesena, Italy, Alessandri was used to making his own clothes, and he’d become quite good at it. Fresh out of school, he wanted to explore a career in fashion design.

Armani declined, but today Alessandri counts the fashion icon among his most devoted fans—not for couture, but cardio equipment. Rather than move to Milan to pursue fashion, Alessandri applied his design skill to his growing affinity for fitness. In 1983 he founded Technogym in his garage and began constructing a suite of exercise equipment. In the ’90s he expanded into workout software designed to sync one’s progress across a variety of machines.