How to Decide on a Gym
In this day and age, it’s tough to find which gym you should join. From YMCAs to 24 Hour Fitnesses to Crossfit Boxes, there are a plethora of choices out there. And how do you know which one is the right pick for you? From high-class clubs like Equinox to $20/mo Planet Fitness, it’s hard to decide on a gym. More so, it’s hard to choose what will really benefit you (and your family) in the long run. Before you expect me to tell you what exactly you should be looking for, I will tell you that’s impossible. There are so many gyms out there, that I couldn’t give you the proper choice. Sure, I could go through a list of gym chains, but what if you have an incredibly awesome local gym like Ironhouse Gym in Mason City, Iowa? Instead, I’m going to give you a list of questions to ask yourself, look for the answers for these online, and ask the fitness facilities. Make sure they meet your criteria, otherwise, move on. You may not get every little thing you want, but make your list in priority order. Maybe the question, “Is this family-friendly?” is most important to you as you would like to exercise but also either have your kid in daycare or start swim lessons. This is about you! Here’s the list:
1. How close is this gym to my house? Do you care about driving or is walking a must?
2. Is this gym family-friendly? Do they have daycare? Do they have kids’ classes like swim lessons?
3. Is there certain equipment here? Do you care about the newest machines? Do you want heavy dumbbells? Do you want plate-loaded machines? Do you want traditional lifting platforms like squat racks? Do you want TVs on every cardio machine? What matters to you?
4. What kind of atmosphere is it? Non-judgmental? Intense? Supportive? Friendly? Everyone to themselves?
5. Do they have a pool? Sauna? Steam room?
6. Do they have towel service?
7. Is it a community or just a gym? YMCAs are communities, Planet Fitnesses are just gyms.
8. Do they have personal training? How much does it cost?
9. What type of people go here? Meat heads? Families? Young people? Seniors? Athletes?
10. Do they have group exercise classes? And in particular, do they have the ones you are interested in? If you are only motivated when you work out in classes, make sure your gym has the classes you would go to.
11. What type of fitness do they centralize on? Lifting? General fitness? Athletic training? Crossfit? Cardio?
These are just a few questions to answer before you finally decide on a gym. It’s important not to rush into it, because it’s always nice to make the right choice. Although, it is typically easy to get out a gym contract, sometimes it isn’t. And who wants to go through the fuss, anyhow? Go through these questions, think of your own, rank them, answer what’s important to you, then bring these questions to some facilities you’ve picked out. Your environment is very important when you workout! It can make or break your success. Please comment below if you have any other ideas for questions to ask. And as always, stay hungry and fit!
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