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Things to consider before you join a gym

Before you buy into a gym membership, it’s important to really consider what you need – what YOU need for YOU – not just buy on price alone.

While it’s attractive and human nature to go for the cheapest option available, you really need to review what the membership offers, and read the Terms and Conditions PRIOR to joining up.  Any self respecting gym should have their T’s & C’s available on their web site for review.  We are often asked to price match another local gym which offers $7.95/week.  Their T’s&C’s say they have a minimum monthly billing of $50.  Have you done the math in your head yet?

Off the top of my head, here are a few things  I would consider the minimum questions you should ask yourself:-

Do I really need 24/7?  The idea of going to gym whenever you want to, whenever the mood takes you is an attractive one.  BUT if it’s not your style to get up before 6am, and the thought of going out at night after the kids have gone to bed does nothing for you, then you probably don’t need the option to go at 3am.

Is it close by / in your local area / convenient to home or work? Is there easy convenient (and free) parking close by?  Do you really want to drive half an hour to go to the cheapest place in town?  How much time do you have available to devote to gym?  In between school drop off’s? Between leaving work and going home to the family?  Before work?  The more convenient the gym is, the more likely you are to use it.

Do you need showers available?  Are the showers clean? Would you feel safe using them?  If you’re working out close to home then this option probably isn’t a real requirement for you.

Unisex or Female only?  Can you see yourself lying on the floor doing a pelvic lift in mixed company?

Minimum membership period.  So you’ve decided to join a gym – that’s amazing and you should feel proud of yourself for wanting to do so.  But consider if you really want to lock in for a minimum term of 12 or 18 months.  Many memberships don’t give you an out of any kind, so if you move from the area, need a medical suspension, going on holiday with the family, travelling with work; ask yourself if you would be happy to pay the monthly fee for the remainder of the term (or pay your way out if need be).  Do you need flexibility in your membership to allows you to suspend it (or cancel it) due to life’s many challenges?

Are you motivated enough to just go to gym and work out on your own? Do you know how to use the equipment?  Have you exercised before (or is this your first time?).  Do you want to just come in and exercise or do you want to join in on classes to keep you motivated?  If you need the classes, are they included in the membership prices? Would you prefer a gym that is staffed during open hours?  Would you find it helpful to have assistance in achieving your fitness goal, such as personalised program setting, food guidance.

Just a few thoughts for you to ponder before you join up somewhere.