Thursday, January 5,12

Benefits to a Local Gym

With so many options for gyms, fitness centers, and health clubs, you may be overwhelmed finding the right place to become a member. While many find the larger chain fitness centers to be convenient, others prefer the advantages of a smaller, local fitness clubs.


Simply, smaller gyms can have fewer members. What this means is that you have better availability for the fitness equipment. In addition, you can receive more specialized focus from the staff for assistance and advice on how to use the equipment and how to set goals. For the personal touch, a smaller employee staff means the staff is better able to get to know you and vice versa. This gives the staff the chance to learn members’ names and ask about their fitness plans. For the members, you can develop a relationship based on trust, which gives you the comfort you need to ask questions about your fitness needs that might seem otherwise embarrassing.


One of the most common mistakes new members make when selecting a fitness center is by choosing too quickly. Many fitness centers offer deals on one-on-one sessions or classes with professional trainers. Sometimes these sessions are free for new members. Take advantage of all these opportunities to ensure you are selecting the right gym for you. Make sure to check for a variety of male and female trainers who specialize in the areas you might be interested in.


If you are uninterested or uncomfortable about sessions with professional fitness trainers, take a partner with you to the gym. A neighbor, a coworker, friend, or a family member may find the local gym convenient and beneficial. They can give you a different perspective. If you feel uneasy asking someone to accompany you to the fitness center, consider they might be looking for a partner as well.


Local fitness centers also can offer fewer and smaller fees. Many large chains can charge hefty enrollment fees and large cancellations fees, as well as higher monthly dues. However, smaller gyms offer smaller monthly fees, and might even negotiate fees. Also, if you enroll with a partner, many fitness centers and health clubs offer group discounts.


Looking for discounts? Many employers, universities, and apartment complexes have partnerships with local gyms for employee discounts on members and monthly dues. Healthier employees and students can decrease the cost of their employers’ health benefits, and involvement in the community is good publicity and recruitment for many apartment management companies. Consult with your human resources representative or call the employee benefits hotline to inquire what you could receive. Also, guidance counselors and apartment managers can be good resources as well.


So consider the many advantages of a local gym or health club rather than a larger chain. While both offer the chance to get in better shape, to lose weight, to get fit, to socialize and exercise with healthy people, and to boot metabolism, the local fitness center gives you more specialized attention and can offer discount benefits from employers and such. Ultimately, you’ve got the opportunity and support to look and feel better.

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