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8 Things to Consider When Choosing a Gym

A Checklist for Fitness Facilities


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Another thing to do is visit the gym during the hours you plan to be there - a gym can look like it has enough equipment, but if at 5:30 pm or 7 a.m. every machine is in use and that is the only time you can workout, then it may not be the gym for you. I am in this situation and I had to start going to the gym at 5 a.m. to be able to workout on the machines that I like! Report
For me one of the most important thing was finding a facility that was family friendly and could grow with us. The gym that I picked was not the closest, but has great facilities for my child. The hours are very flexible in the child care and they have lots of great activities for my child. They also have a pool area that's just for kids. Having my child be excited about going to the gym sure makes it easier for me to go regularly. Report
I agree to pay special attention to cleanliness & fees. Location is also a great deal to me. Thanks SP for this article. Report
Hi I'm new to spark people. I liked this article & it sounds a lot like what I went through with my past gym. It became so crowded constantly & it made me very uncomfortable. It was also loud which drove me crazy! My solution? I quit the gym & bought myself a threadmill! I love the privacy in my own livingroom, I listen to my ipod or watch TV, I don't have to wait for a machine & it's easy to work out when I am able. I also walk/run outdoors with my little dog! I use free weights for strength training & I have tons of workout tapes that target all body parts. I have lost about 55 pds since Feb 2007. This is/was my solution to a crowded gym situation. Someday I may want to rejoin a gym for the social aspect but it needs to work for me in all areas just like this article states. Report
Great article. Definitely location is the first issue, however, like the author wrote if the atmosphere doesn't make you feel comfortable you won't go. Report
Good article - I felt like Goldilocks when I was looking for a gym. The first one looked great from the outside but the locker room/showers were grungy when I went for a tour. Second one was brand new, everything was very clean but the place was packed, every single piece of cardio equipment was in use when I took a tour at the time I'd be using it plus they were very hard sell - rang me half a dozen times after I said I wasn't interested to persuade me otherwise. The third one was just right - its a chain like the other two but has locations close to my office and home, hours that suit me and they let me make up my own mind with no pressure. Report
This article was right on time. I'm considering joining a gym. The article answered some questions I'd been thinking about in considering joining a gym. Report

I loved this article, it sounds like me, still wanting to be a couch pototo but knowing I have to exercise, excuse me, knowing I want to exercise. Thank you!! SassyLou1 Report
Great article, I like my gym but I am having a tough time actually finding the time to walk in the doors!!!!! I work full time and have a 4year old. I cannot go before work because I have to take him to his grandmothers am, and usually afterwork I have to pick him up. I dont want my kid at his grannys more than with me!!!! I try to do a few lunch visits during my week. But woe is me. My husband works alot of overtime so I cannot complain too much to him. All the arobic classes start the same time I get off!!!! If I join the class 10 minutes late they all have to move to give me space (small arobic room & Lots of ladies)

My goal is to go the one class that is offered at 615 on mondays, its a spinning class. That will kick my butt into gear! There is usually not alot people in this late class so sounds good hu?

I need to stop complaining and start losing!

Thanks for letting me vent!
This article is right on time. My membership is up real soon for the gym I currently go. It's a small 24 hour gym. In the beginning it worked fine for me, but now I need new surroundings, I want a larger space and selection of activities, and the owner just did some upgrades, and made all his back rooms administration offices, which cuts down space to do my ab work, ride the bike, and do my ploymetric exercise in front of the mirrow. In addition, he did all the upgrades to the back, but ignore my request to tint the glass in front. As I'm working out, its easy for someone from the outside to see me, but difficult for me to see anyone which have been a security concern. The one thing it has going for it is location (3 to 5 minutes from my house) and my familiarity with the gym. The gym I want to join is 16 minutes away. Which will kill my routine of working out early in the morning before going to work, so I'm still unsure. Report
Location is HUGE to me...I have always said, and it has held true over the years, if it's not easy access, I'm much more likely not to use it. I pay a little more than I'd like, but the gym is really nice, lots of machines, lots of classes, a great lap pool and outdoor pool for summertime, as well as the fact that it's open 24 hours...not that I use it in the middle of the night, but nice to know that if I'm running late in the evening, I don't have to rush to get there by 9:30 b/c it's closing at 10 or something like that. I love doing classes so that's another major thing I look for! Thanks! Report
I living near a big square and recently (a month ago) i decide to go 3 times a week at 06am to do my gym there, I found there a monitor who has a team of 20 persons they are doing 4 times gym with him, he is excellent in many exercices , really i found the option very practicable than a club fitness , it suits my hectic weekly programme and at07h15 im at home under the bath. Im so motivated to keep on that healthy option. Report
Great article nicely written and very practical. Good job author!

I like my gym because they know me by name there and everyone is very down to earth. It is friendly but not phony.
Good article! I just joined the gym closest to me, having lost motivation when I had to travel by car or bus. Since I live so close and don't plan on using it, I ignored the truly grotty changing and shower room. When I had my tour round, it was pretty quiet and I'm still getting to grips with the opening times and busy periods.

Twice now I have been thwarted by the number of people in there. What was most annoying was that no staff were checking up on the 'courtesey' rule of maximum times on the cardio machines at busy times.

I haven't made the best choice, but I'm not going to let it stop me exercising. I need to figure out when the best time for me to go is, and how I can fit in eating at a sensible time. Report
I joined the Y and it has been wonderful!! The equipment is up to date, there are multiple locations, numerous classes and best of all--FREE child care for 2 hours!! I can use another location, drop my kids off, and run around the park across the street. Best of all--no long term contracts and the rates aren't half bad. Report

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