Countless people join a gym, only to cease attending shortly after. Often this is down to them failing to check the facilities for those little things that will keep them coming back. But what are these things? Even something as small as the quality of the lockers and cubicles matter, but here are five things you should always look for prior to signing on the dotted line:
The help and attention received from staff is vital in regards to keeping members motivated and returning. Ideally you want staff that know your name, and are encouraging and motivating – offering to design you a programme while working with you regularly to check your progress and change your programme around.
The problem is that a quick look around the gym is not sufficient to determine if this level of service is commonplace. Don’t always trust the word of your tour guide – often they are a salesperson on commission, and will say whatever necessary in order to get you to join.
So how can you find out if you’re going to receive the help you need, or are going to get ignored once the gym has your money?
When you’re in the gym itself take a good look around – what are the staff doing? Are they helping members with equipment and their workouts or standing around chatting with each other? Or are they simply absent from the room altogether? Also if you have a chance, ask a few current members about the level of service they receive and whatever you do, don’t be pressured to sign on the day – go home and read some reviews, in order to gauge a true idea of what will happen once your monthly direct debit is safely in place.
While different people want and desire different facilities, it is beneficial to have all the facilities you would like included as part of your membership. Therefore, if you really want a swimming pool, and know you would make more use of it than you would of the gym equipment, don’t be pressured into joining a gym-only facility simply because the price is cheaper or the talented salesperson convinced you to.
Also, if you know you’re going to be showering and getting ready for work or a night out at the gym instead of home, choose a facility that provides adequate lockers and cubicles, as well as extras such as hairdryers and if needed, hair straighteners.
In essence, before beginning your search for a gym, ascertain exactly what facilities you would like. This will make sure you don’t get roped in by a fancy starter package or a convincing salesperson and will actually get the facilities and service you’re after.
Quality of Changing Facilities
Whilst it might seem insignificant, the quality, cleanliness and overall feel of the changing rooms are vital if you’re going to keep coming back. Not only should the environment be pleasant, but there should also be adequate cubicles (for privacy) and secure lockers (for reassurance).
The location of the gym is vital. If it’s too far away from home or work you won’t go – fact. So ensure you choose a gym that is either near to your home or place of work, or is on your way home from work. There is simply no point joining a gym that is located on a route you never take since the effort and expense involved in attending will mean you will very quickly find yourself heading for the television instead of the treadmill.
In fact, location is the one area that I would recommend sacrificing on facilities or service.
While fitness classes aren’t for everybody, they do provide a welcome diversion from the possible monotony of the gym. However, classes are timetabled, and if they don’t fit into your schedule then as far as you’re concerned, they might as well not exist. Therefore if classes are an aspect of the gym that interests you, don’t just look at the range of classes available - look properly at the times they are on. If the times aren’t suitable it may be worth looking at other facilities that hold more classes or classes at earlier or later times in the day.
This article was written by Amy Fowler on behalf of Prospec. Amy writes on a variety of topics including gym facilities such as lockers and cubicles.