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Owen Bowling, 2011 Anthill 30under30 Up-and-Comer


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What is 30under30?

30under30 is an Anthill initiative launched in 2008 to encourage and promote entrepreneurship among young Australians. This year’s batch of nominees was extensive and impressive. So much so that we believe several young talents who didn’t snag 30under30 top honours still deserve your attention and recognition. We call them our Up-and-Comers. More.

Owen Bowling, QLD (b. 1984)

Name: Owen Bowling
Age: 27 (Born: March 1984)
Gender: Male
State: QLD

Want a quick workout? Just listen to Owen Bowling’s trade show escapade for his CrankIt exercise straps. It’s enough to burn a few calories just sitting at your computer:

“Three weeks before the biggest health and fitness expo in Australia, a stall became available. I booked the stall using a friend’s credit card, promising to pay them back with sales from the expo.

“With almost no budget, I organised in three week what takes most companies three-plus months and tens of thousands of dollars. The result — we sold enough products to triple our overall exhibition expenses, and created relationships that have resulted in ongoing sales and business opportunities.”

That’s the energy behind CrankIt Fitness, Bowling’s business and creation. The oh-so-portable straps combine resistance training, gravity and the user’s body weight to make available¬† hundreds of different exercises.

In addition to the product itself, Bowling sells exercise courses and gift cards. CrankIt now has more than 60 qualified coaches who have taught more than 400 people. He has a YouTube channel that shows how to use the straps (and show off some high-end exercises by some outrageously fit people).

He even figured out a way to attract interesting from the bodybuilding industry, which usually looks askance at simple resistance training tools such as CrankIt. At a fitness expo this year in Sydney, he set up a challenge: Participants has to perform a single-arm bicep at a horizontal body angle. “It attracted hundreds of people who would otherwise by dismissive of bodyweight-based exercise,” he says.

His goals as an entrepreneur are simple: to help people be more fit and healthy, and to have a positive impact on the world (as an example of the latter, CrankIt’s website has a link to the Buy1Give1 social enterprise).


Anthill asks: NAME, what’s your superpower?

“I have a force field that affects anyone who comes into contact with me, inspiring them with enthusiasm, excitement and the ability to make a difference. I am driven by a sense of purpose that cannot be shaken by the many obstacles that stand in the way of a young entrepreneur.

CrankIt Fitness promotion


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To check out the full list of Anthill’s 30under30 winners, click here.