- Visit first – Take the time to visit a gym a few times before becoming a member. See if the trainer will give you a complimentary session so you can get a feel for everything the gym has to offer. If you have a friend who's a member, see if they can take you there as a guest a few times so you can get a feel for the facility.
- The right spot – Pick a gym that's convenient to your home or work. Getting to the gym on a regular basis is a lot easier if it's not in an out-of-the way spot. Make sure that parking is convenient. Also, if you plan to work out in the evening hours, be sure that the gym is in a safe neighborhood.
- Explore options – What fitness options does the gym offer? Does it have yoga or MMA-style classes? How often can you work with a trainer? What type of exercise equipment does it have? Are childcare options available? Find a gym with options that appeal to you and your fitness goals.
- Check reviews – Take a look at the online reviews for the gym you're considering. A few bad reviews are to be expected anywhere, but if a location has consistently bad reviews, it may be a red flag.
- Check the amenities – See if the gym you're considering has convenient access to sports drinks and water, as well as healthy snacks like energy bars. Being able to refuel your body after a strenuous workout really helps.
- Check prices – Make sure you understand the pricing structure of your gym. Many gyms have low monthly fees, but then stick it to their members with a variety of annual or quarterly fees. To avoid any unpleasant surprises, be sure to get a clear picture of how gym membership will impact your finances.
- Understand the plan – Many a gym member has been burned by unreasonable gym membership contracts. You're joining a gym, not selling your soul. Avoid gyms that lock you into long-term commitments, and be sure to understand how you can break your contract in case of a medical emergency or in the event you have to move to another city.
Seven Tips for Picking the Right Gym
June 22, 2016