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About the Founders

Amanda Strand

Founder, AmandaStrandFitness LLC; Co-Founder and Managing Director, Content, Freedom Group Exercise, Inc.

Amanda is the creative mind behind the formats BANG ®, Freedom Barre ®, Freedom RISE ®. She launched AmandaStrandFitness in 2021.
Amanda began her career in the performing arts, acting, dancing and directing for stage, film, and TV, in New York and Europe. A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Amanda felt a keen desire to bring her passion for fitness together with her deep experience in the performing arts. This led her to found Freedom Group Exercise, Inc. in 2012 with business partner Benjamin Bidlack. The FGE cardio dance format BANG ® became a staple in hundreds of fitness center venues across the US, Japan, and Europe.
In 2020, after seven years of running FGE and raising it to national and international prominence, Amanda began looking for new challenges to expand her creative ideas and focus on inspiring wellness in the whole person, body and mind, combining physical and emotional well-being. She launched AmandsStrandFitness in the fall of 2021, aiming to return to a more personal and effective one-on-one connection with participants.

Benjamin Bidlack

Managing Director, Creative & Brand

Benjamin is the co-Founder of Freedom Group Exercise, Inc. and the head of Creative & Brand, including music. Benjamin is the former Chief Strategy Officer at FutureBrand (Asia) and Executive Director of Brand Strategy at Interbrand (US/Canada).

He has advised the C-Suite, board and executives of some of the world’s top organizations on brand strategy, including Evernote, Silicon Valley Bank, Spinning, United Overseas Bank (Singapore), Dubai Festival City, Thrivent, Malaysia’s Ministry of Tourism, Royal Bank of Canada, XPRIZE, Con-Way Freight/Trucking and Sony PlayStation among others.

Prior to brand strategy, Ben held corporate strategy roles and led projects for top-tier management consultancies, including former senior partners from McKinsey, BCG and others. He presents regularly at business and health/fitness conferences and organizations, including the London Business School, UCLA Anderson School of Management, USC Marshall School of Business, ECA 360 World Fitness (2008–2017, including a Best Presenter Award selected by peers and participants), Can-Fit-Pro, IDEA Health & Fitness Association, MindshareLA, The American Marketing Association, and the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism.

Benjamin is also a renowned composer and music producer for film, movie trailers, TV, advertising, celebrities, music artists, and fitness professionals worldwide, including Tyra Banks, blockbuster movie producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Nike, Apple, ESPN, ABC, Fox Searchlight, Universal Pictures, Warner Brothers, ECA 360, and international fitness presenter Misty Tripoli (The Groove), Robert Steinbacher (bodyART) and others.

Ben holds an MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business and a BA in English from Haverford College.

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