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  • Rachel Barac

Elva Li

Founder of Vis by Versus

Can you tell us where you’re from and where you got the idea for Versus? I am born and raised in Shanghai. At the age of 18 I went to Bates College in Maine. After graduation I became a management consultant for LEK Consulting. I got the idea for VERSUS in 2015 when I was on a stretch assignment in Sydney. The workout community in Sydney was so much fun, had lots of variety and great energy. When I came back to Shanghai, I realized that I needed to build the type of community I had been longing for. Why are you passionate about bringing an active lifestyle to women? I haven’t always been active or healthy throughout my professional life - far from it. When I was working in consulting, late nights and fast food was my daily routine and completely ruined my health. And I wasn’t alone. I noticed more and more women in professional environments as well as young moms needed guidance and awareness in terms of embracing healthy and active lifestyles. That’s when I realized that this is what I really want to do. You started Versus in 2015, how did you grow the business so quickly and get such a loyal following in just a few years? We started VERSUS in 2015 focusing on young professionals like myself and my friends. The environment was youthful and energetic and our classes were fun and different. It was not too hard for us to build the VERSUS community. As it turned out, many young professionals needed the workout community I too had been craving. As VERSUS grew and became more professional in the fitness and wellness area, we soon realized men and women had very different training goals and therefore needed very different training methods. Women particularly have different health needs throughout different life stages. In 2017 we launched VIS by VERSUS, a fitness space that is female-only. We started to gain expertise and a good reputation in the women’s health and wellness industry. Since then, our growth has been even faster seeing as there aren’t many fitness studios in the market focusing just on women. How do you balance work and personal time? Ha! I haven’t figured that one out yet. Funny thing is, I don’t think I have ever worked a 9-to-5 job. After I started VERSUS, my work and personal life became even more entangled. Luckily, I absolutely love what I do and I try my best to live the active and healthy life that my work advocates as well. It also helps when my husband (ha! That’s also new) supports and loves what I do too. What is your healthy living philosophy? You VERSUS You. Today VERSUS Tomorrow. Just try to be a bit better everyday. Just focus on oneself and no one else. If you had one piece of advice for someone just starting their fitness journey, what would it be? Find a buddy! Don’t do this alone! It is so much more fun if you have a workout buddy. No matter if it’s a friend, or a professional trainer to guide you on the path. Have someone by your side and motivate each other. No one should workout alone! If you would like to find out more about VIS by VERSUS you can find them at: WeChat: visbyversus健身 Instagram:


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