Exercise! - Joining a gym

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01-15-2007, 02:12 AM
Hi everyone :)

I've decided to join a gym and have made appointments to tour 2 gyms this week. One is sounding like it would suit me better than the other, but I guess it's best to have a look at both. I've had a look at the website of other gyms in the city, but they're either inconvenient for me to get to, aimed towards a different sort of person than me, or people I know have found the gym to be not thag great.

I've never joined a gym before and want to be able to make the best decision. I would really appreciated it if someyone can give me an idea of what questions I should ask and what I should be looking for when I have a look around - I don't want to commit to a contract and then discover that a few weeks or months down the track. My fitness is pretty much non-existant so I'm hoping to ease into things and gradually work my way into becoming a gym bunny.

Huge thanks for any advice or suggestions that you can give me - it's very much appreciated

01-15-2007, 02:33 AM
Some questions that come to mind:

1) Is there a short term or trial period contract you can sign? this will allow you to try out the gym before committing via contract.

2) what personal training services are available? Is someone available who can show you around the equipment or are you on your own? If you decide to hire a personal trainer, what are the rates like?

3) during the busiest hours, how long is the wait time for machines? Are there time limits on cardio equipment? Are they enforced?

4) Check out the locker policy. Do you need your own lock? What about towel service (its a pain, IMO, to bring your own towel...much nicer if they take care of it for you but not all gyms do). Check on parking space. If you have need for it, what about childcare?

5) Try to visit during the hours you'll actually be using the gym - see how busy it is and if you are comfortable.

6) Read any and ALL contracts to make sure there aren't unreasonable cancellation policies or other unreasonable terms.

01-15-2007, 12:31 PM
Never ever join a gym with out a trial membership. At least a week

01-15-2007, 01:36 PM
First and foremost, make sure the gym is convenient to get to. The closer to your home, the better. That, for me, is by far the most important criteria, assuming they all have good cardio and weight machines, personal training, etc., because if the gym took too long to get to, I don't think I would go as often. As mine is only 5 minutes away, I can roll out of bed, throw on my clothes, and go. It also makes it easier to run home and shower and then head out on errands, or wherever I'm going. I hate to pack all the stuff I need to get ready for the day and shower at the gym.

One thing I wish my gym had: sweat towels. We have to bring our own, and it's easy to forgot, plus it's a pain.


01-15-2007, 01:59 PM
Good for you for joining a gym. I agree with milehimama, once you've established that the gym has reasonably up to date equipment and the price is OK, LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION. If its inconvenient to get to, trust me when I tell you that you won't make it over there. You will come up with lots of excuses for not going because it's difficult to fit this into our busy lives, so you don't want the distance to be yet another reason not to go.

01-17-2007, 03:48 AM
Huge thanks, everyone, for all your suggestions.

I've had a look at both gyms now. The gym that I didn't think would be a good fit definitely wasn't what I wanted or needed - I knew that if I signed a contract with them, I'd end up not going after the first couple of months. The other gym feels like it would work for me - and it's five minutes from work, with another gym that's about 10 minutes from home for the days that I don't get to that side of town that I can use if I'm on leave or at the weekend. I'm ninety nine per cent sure that I'll sign up with them, but I just want to have a read through of the contracts away from the gym where I can make a decision without feeling pressured.

So thanks for all your suggestions and advice - it's certainly been a great help

01-17-2007, 09:22 AM
I joined the YMCA yesterday, because I`v started classes that will last for 4 for weeks.I`ve got to travel thur the town to get to classes so figured on my way home I can stop and work out . I`m 54 so , starting a new life, hopefully a new job soon after classes!
YMCA here was clean, plenty of equipments and exercise classes but most of all NO CONTRACTS! Been there,done that. Never again.
Rarein to go this morning and there is sleet and snow today. :((