Be Informed when Choosing a Gym or Health Club

Health and well-being are very important, especially in this day and age filled with video games, electronics and long commutes. Health clubs and gyms are often key for family members to achieve and maintain healthy habits and lifestyles. Choosing a gym or health club is a very important decision. These tips will help guide you as you make this decision.

Location – Location is key. Much like purchasing a home, location is vital in terms of convenience as well as safety. In most cases, people are more likely to work out at a gym or health club if it is convenient to their home or work. If you are joining as an individual, you should choose whether it would be more convenient for your gym to be close to home or work. Ask yourself whether you will typically be going to the gym on the way to work or the way home from work? Also, will you go during your lunch hour? If so, having a gym close to work would be a convenient option. However, if you are more likely to go on off days or after returning home from work or school, having a gym close to home would be a more attractive option.

If your entire family is joining the gym, you will want to make sure it is convenient for each family member. For instance, if the gym is ten miles from home in the opposite direction from one person’s work or school, it may not be convenient for that person. Safety should also be a concern especially if someone is going to be there alone or at odd hours. Be sure to research the neighborhood and inquire about security at the club and look for a well-lit and secure parking lot.

Features – Obviously, you will want to have as many of your desired features as possible. Consider making a “pro/con” list for each family member. These lists along with membership cost information can really help you when making the decision.

If you have very young children, childcare might be important. Be sure to ask to tour the child care area and inquire about extra costs. You will certainly want to make sure it is a safe environment, but also consider whether there are fun options for the kiddos. The more fun for your children, the more enthusiastic they will be about going.

Gyms and health clubs can be very different. Features can include: weight room, circuit training, aerobics-related classes, yoga, a swimming pool, a track, children’s classes, classes for 65 & over, massage therapists, tanning salons and much more.

Hours – Be sure to find out the gym’s hours for each day. If you plan to work out before school or work, you will want to make sure the club opens up early enough. There may also be other schedule specifics such as pool hours for “open swim” and holiday hours that are important to you.

Fees – Find out if the gym gives family discounts, special discounts for certain days and if childcare is an extra charge. If the gym or health club offers classes, ask if there is an additional fee. Some gyms and health clubs offer classes and activities for children; be sure to ask if there are additional costs. You don’t want to be surprised with hidden costs.

You will also want to find out if you will be required to sign a contract for a specific amount of time, or if you can cancel at any time. Also, many gyms or health clubs offer a free “day-pass” or “week-pass” which is helpful to try out the facility before making a commitment.

Good luck in finding the gym or health club that fits your needs!

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