All You Need To Know Before Joining A Gym
Before considering anything about joining gym, you must first be sure that you ‘want to join a Gym’. What I want to say is when you decide to get yourself into better shape or you want to lose weight, you must first question yourself about whether or not you really want to join a gym or any fitness center. Joining a Gym is a major decision just like making a major purchase. It not only requires true dedication from your end but also is a huge financial commitment. So before getting into any gym take a tour of gym, clarify your queries, take the free-workout sessions of at least 2-3 gyms and then only get to any decision.
While joining a Gym you are supposed to make an informed decision. A good gym will fit your requirements and will motivate you on daily basis to come back and exercise. Apart from these there are various criteria that you must consider before joining a gym. Here are the things you need to keep in mind while making the decision.
Normally, people don’t consider the location of gym as an important issue. But do you really think that if your gym is on the other side of the town, you would be able to commute to the gym on daily basis. Convenience in location is quite an important factor in motivating you to work-out regularly. The ideal location for a gym should be somewhere between your workplace and home or if you are a home maker, it must be nearby your home. If you will have to struggle to reach gym daily, your enthusiasm to work-out might fade away pretty soon. On those hectic days when you won’t have time, having a proximity to gym will make things easier for you. After all, a good work-out is about relieving stress not increasing it.
While joining a Gym, make sure that you ask them about the time slots of the gym. Some gym are open 24*7, while some are open during day, others are closed on weekend. Doesn’t matter at what time of day work out, make sure that gym is open and fit your schedule; else you would end up paying for something you can’t access. Also, if you plan to work-out every day on a fixed time, you might ask about the situation of the gym at that time. Whether gym is packed or free? Is there a line for machines you would like to use? Joining a Gym is not going to help you if you won’t be able to use machines as per your requirement.
3. Trainers and Staff
Most important aspect of any gym is its trainers. Try to attend one or two free demo classes to see if the instructors and trainers know their stuff. Unfortunately, there is no government authorized association or institute in India that provides any certification and training in fitness. There might be some private institutes that provide fitness training, so before finalizing a gym, do ask about the certification of trainers and instructors, else you might end up getting hurt. Another important aspect of trainers is their availability. Are they available when you need them? Are they courteous and supportive? Do they answer your questions?
4. Machines and Equipment
During your first visit to gym, take a good look around the gym and see if there are all “popular” machines and equipment available. You also need to know, if the other members have to wait long for their turn to use the machines. Because, let me tell you, there is nothing more frustrating than waiting for an hour in line for your turn to use machines. You need to make sure that there are variety of machines and not only an array of cardio machines. You can also notice if instructions are posted on machines or not. Be careful of the machines that are out of order, as it portrays the picture of poorly managed Gym.
5. Hygiene and Cleanliness
However, there are no set standards for the cleanliness of gym, but keep your eyes open during your visit to gym, if there is dust piled up on or around the equipments. Also make sure that towels or napkins are available to wipe off the equipments after you use it. Also, see if the staff and trainers enforce the hygiene. Do not forget to peek into the locker room, showers and wash rooms to check the cleanliness and hygiene level.
Cost is usually the deciding factor while joining a Gym. Talk to them about their fee structure. Whether they charge joining fee or not? Or do you need to pay fees on monthly basis, quarterly basis or annually. Ask them, is it possible to cancel the membership without penalty or if fees is non-refundable. And most importantly, does the gym fit your budget or is it creating a hole in your pocket. Because let’s face it, no matter what amenities gym is providing you, if it does not fit your financial equation it worth nothing.
7. Additional benefits
Some additional features could be bonus for you. So, before joining the gym don’t forget to ask about the freebies. Do they have sauna, hot tub or any other facility to relax after workout? Some gyms have in house nutritionists to help you with your diet plans while others have juice and snacks bar that provide post-workout meals. There are gyms that also provide you with physiotherapists and compulsory diet plans.
Each and every person reacts in a different manner to people around them, and you should keep this in your mind while choosing a gym. You should not be intimidated or embarrassed by the people around you. You need to work out in a healthy environment that makes you comfortable and relaxed. Some gyms are unisex while some are gender based; some gyms also provide different time slots for males and females. So just make sure, will you be comfortable exercising around the current members.
All the above points are necessary to consider while joining a gym. Do not hesitate to ask anything before joining and make an informed decision of whether a gym is fit for you or not. Be choosy, ask your friends about the gyms they have been to or are the present members, take tour of gyms until you find the right gym that meets all your expectation and doesn’t dig a hole in your pocket. After all, as I always say, being healthy is a lifestyle and finding a perfect gym is all about finding a key to healthy lifestyle.