Doesn’t it seem so trivial to be asking such a question when people are starving, the world is poverty-stricken, we are dealing with serious issues such as police violence and opiates…why should I even toil myself with such an issue of where to work out? Why should I even bother my readers with this?
Those that run the gyms are making money off of us poor suckers and probably do care about how they stack up against each other. And if you are considering opening a local business maybe you want to think about the factors that consumers think about when choosing which to patronize. What factors do YOU consider when choosing a local business?
LOCATION! Location is primary even to folks who have cars! If you are opening a business, don’t open it in the middle of nowhere! Don’t open it in a place where people can’t park! Don’t open it in a place where the buses don’t go, because you’re shutting out a fair portion of the population. You may want to be a snob, but a lot of people who want to leave their cars behind and “commute” are going to go to the other guy if you situate yourself in some tiny ‘burb off the bus line. Nor open “conveniently” near a dark, abandoned warehouse. I don’t think that will appeal to many people. A great location might be right next to a supermarket. In my opinion, though other people might say, “Right next to a bar.”
Showers. Decent showers and well-planned out locker rooms, that is, locker rooms that are actually separate from the rest of the gym. Lockers that function. Showers that are actually hot. Shower curtains that function and aren’t slimy. Towels for those that forgot theirs, for minimal fee (I don’t think $10 is minimal!). One thing I encountered in one gym was a godawful beeping noise in the ladies’ locker room that NEVER STOPPED. I actually quit the gym due to the nonstop beeping that drove me nuts. I believe this was a CO detector or perhaps some other sort of alarm that needed a change of batteries. Apparently the battery change had never happened in years, according to other patrons. A few others were as driven crazy as I was. That I know of, only some people can actually hear that high frequency. Many lose their hearing ability as they age, and in many ways, I wish I did.
Price. I have found you have to ask. Many of them don’t post their real prices. Many are deceptive and I would avoid the deceptive ones, unless they’re a really small gym that doesn’t have a website. I joined a really nice tiny gym that was so small they didn’t need a website nor did they have those membership cards. They just knew who was a member. The gym was impeccably clean and really a good deal. I don’t live near there anymore otherwise I’d still be a member. However, in general, if they’re not upfront, stay away. Calculate the difference between month-to-month and yearly or partial year. You may find that six months or nine months is a better deal than yearly or several years. Gyms can be odd like that and they assume you can’t do math.
Try it out. Most gyms offer trying it out for free or for under $10. You could probably make the rounds all around town for free, then, make the rounds again and again, all for free, just say, “I’m trying out the gym…” just wear a different outfit and maybe different glasses. Or go when someone else is working.
If you are a senior, join the senior center gym. I’m about to try it out, maybe tomorrow. I wonder if they’ll believe me when I say I’m 60. They might even “card” me. I’m embarrassed to say I do not look my age.
Equipment – some people care about the condition of the equipment or want particular types of equipment, or, they care about the availability or not having to wait for certain machines, or want space to stretch out, or care that there’s a filtered water machine, or care about certain types of classes such as Zumba, spinning, etc. Or some want day care, a pool or sauna. You are paying big money if you want the extras. Some gyms offer massage. Personal training will cost a fortune…usually, but they tease you with a free session.
I figure I’m using up very little at the gym, just the treadmill and the shower. They make out on me. I’m headed over to one of the local ones where i’ve been paying by the day since I’m too cheap to join. Actually I plan to join the senior one since it’s much cheaper. But I’m not telling the expensive one that. Maybe today they’ll just let me in on contingency that “I’m planning on joining.” I’ve already paid them plenty. Well you know….
See you later.