This week we’ve been to speak with Fionnbharr Toolan of Virtu about his business at Twin Spires Complex – Read on to find out more.

1. Business Name


2. Tell us about your business

Virtu is a world class training facility empowering men and women to achieve high levels of strength effectively and safely, specialising in the use of three key elements: the kettlebell, the barbell and bodyweight training. Virtu” in ancient greek mythology, means excellence and I believe excellence is a quality we must continually seek – not only in fitness but in all aspects of life. “Virtu” represents my methods and principles, both as a coach and as an athlete.

I have been involved in competitive sport from my early childhood and I have been coaching in the fitness industry for approximately seven years. During that time, I have travelled the world gaining the highest achievements of fitness qualifications within the fitness industry, alongside competing internationally for Ireland in Kettlebell Sport. As the current Irish, European and World Kettlebell Champion, I believe this gives me a rare and potent mix of strength, conditioning and knowledge.

The current member base at Virtu varies from the office worker, business owners, professional coaches and athletes, doctors/nurses, civil servants and to everybody in between. The basis of our services centre around our semi-private coaching and private coaching. As our facility is a private facility for members only, this help us maintain a high quality of coaching and service to our members.

At Virtu, we empower people to build both physical and mental strength that will enable you to be Stronger for Life.

3. Can you describe your experience of running a business in three words or less? 

Exciting, challenging, rewarding.

4. What has been your biggest success, and biggest challenge to date?

Everyday is a ‘rewarding challenge’ dealing with people from many different backgrounds with many differing goals and aspirations.

This has been my first year as a primary business owner (during the past number of years, I have rented space of other gyms). Without a doubt; the biggest challenge and success has been getting through the first year. The growth of the brand and the business throughout the first year has greatly exceeded my expectations. Our member list has grown twice over, which has lead me to employing a coach to help manage and facilitate that growth. To me, that is a success in itself.

5. What does the future hold for your company?

Our aim is to build a team that represent and symbolise the Virtu brand and to also establish ourselves as the leading fitness hub in the country. We will continue to focus on our current members and to make sure they’re striving to be stronger, fitter and healthier everyday.

My coaching principles and methods have been developed through a continued education with StrongFirst, who are the School of Strength. As the highest qualified representative of StrongFirst in the country and also the world wide representative for StrongFirst Ireland, we’re the accredited centre for delivery of StrongFirst certifications in Ireland. This Summer and at the beginning of 2019, we are welcoming visitors and from around the world to certify in the gold standard of kettlebell, barbell and bodyweight training.

6. What advice would you give to someone starting a business? 

  1. There is no substitute for hard work.
  2. Be positive, be persistent, be patient.
  3. Never let success get to your head, never let failure get to your heart.

7. How long have you been located at Twin Spires Complex and what are the benefits of / reasons for locating here? 

We are coming up to a year of trading on the 2nd of July. The members of Virtu travel from all four corners of our city and because of the accessibility of Twin Spires from the motorway, alongside the parking facilities, this makes the complex an ideal location for our fitness business.

8. Do you want to say anything to Ortus as it celebrates its 30th year in business?