If you are making efforts to get into better shape or to lose weight, one question you might have is about whether or not you should join a gym or other type of fitness center. This is a question that only you can answer, but here are a few thoughts to ponder before you sign up at fitness center or gym.
* Is a contract required? If so, you will want to be sure that you understand the terms of your contract and what the payment schedule is. Some gyms may offer discounts for long term memberships, so know what you’re signing! If you sign up for a 36 month contract, you’ll be held to it, even if you stop going. Don’t be afraid to ask the salesperson to bring it home and read it in its entirety before signing on the dotted line.
* Are the hours and location of the gym conveinent for you? If the gym or fitness center has limited hours, or isn’t close enough to your home, you might struggle to make it there. To maximize your membership at any gym, you have to go! Make sure that it is open hours when you are planning on working out, and doesn’t take an hour to get to. Otherwise your enthusiasm might fade quick.
* Do they have the equipment that you are looking for?
You will want to be sure that your gym has the fitness equipment you need for maximum health benefits. Do they have enough cardio machines such as elliptical trainers, stationary bicycles, treadmills, stair machines etc. that you won’t have to wait to use them? There is nothing more demotivating than arriving at the gym to find you have to wait an hour to use your desired machine. If you are looking to do weight training, you’ll want to be sure they offer free weights, or strength training equipment.
* Do they offer fitness classes? You might feel more comfortable or motivated working out in a group environment. If you are this type of person, look for a gym that offers fitness classes such as step aerobics, pilates, yoga or spinning. Before signing up, you’ll want to confirm whether or not there are additional fees to attend, so you aren’t surprised with additional fees later.
* Do they offer personal trainers? If you are interested in a personal trainer, you’ll want to be sure that your gym offers this service. Personal Trainers are not typically included in base memberships at most gyms, however it is worth asking if there are
any introductory specials that offer a personal trainer for your first visit/ workout.
* Do they have other features that you or your family might enjoy? Some features might be a bonus! Do they have an indoor swimming pool, hot tub, sauna or tennis courts that you have access to? Although this might not be a major selling point, having different things to do at the gym could help tackle weight loss plateaus or boredom in your workout routine.
* Is the gym clean? There is nothing more disgusting than a gym that is filled with dirt and grime. Do they offer sanitizers to clean machines before and after using them? No one wants to sit in someone elses puddle of sweat. Look for signs like dirty floors and unkept bathrooms or locker rooms. These are good indicators of the overall cleanliness of the gym you are considering. Cleanliness is next to Godliness, they say.
These are important things to consider before joining a gym. They come in handy for making an informed decision on whether or not a gym or fitness center is the right one for you.