When you’re serious about getting fit, joining a gym is the logical step.

Not only does it provide you with a bit of accountability, but joining a gym or a fitness facility can motivate and inspire you to work harder and reach your goals.

The one mistake you might make as you enter the realm of gym memberships is signing up for the wrong gym.

Yes, there is a wrong gym and a right gym for every person.

What’s wrong for you might be right for someone else, but not everyone finds what they need at the same facility.

To ensure you’re getting the best possible membership, try asking these 7 questions prior to joining a gym.

1. Do I need to sign a contract and is there a cancellation policy?

There are gyms that require you sign a contract and gyms that don’t.

You can pick either, but it should be based on what you want.

Do you want to sign a contract and obligate yourself to one gym for a year?

Or do you prefer to join a gym that allows you to cancel anytime you want if you’re not utilizing your membership, if you’re not satisfied with what you’re getting, or you move?

It’s a question you need to ask before you sign on the dotted line. 

2. What is the membership fee?

Some gyms charge a one-time annual fee. Some gyms charge you monthly.

What is best for you is a personal decision, but it does depend on several factors.

For example, a monthly fee at the YMCA might allow your entire family to come with you, everyone can work out if they live in your home, and childcare is free.

You also have use of the pool, the athletic courts, and the nature trails.

If you join a gym with a one-time fee, you might not have a babysitter, the gym might make you pay for childcare, and you might not have access to anything else.

3. Are there any deals or discounts? 

Gym membership deals are common, and they’re most common when the New Year rolls around and everyone is looking to get in shape.

Ask about any discounts you qualify for and see if you can find a way to make your membership a little more worthwhile.

You might qualify for a few discounts for being a military member, a teacher, or even a former vet. Ask and find out. 

4. What qualifications do your trainers have?

If you’re interested in working with a trainer at your new gym, you will want to know what kind of experience and qualifications they have.

Do they have training in just weights, in all over health, and even in general well being?

You should ask because it might affect the way you work out.

For example, if you’re a senior, you might have different needs than someone who is much younger. Do the trainers on staff have experience with that? 

5. What type of classes or programs do you have?

One of the biggest perks of certain gyms are the programs and classes they offer.

If you’re looking to lift weights and gain a lot of muscle, you might not care about classes and programs.

If you’re looking to tone and get fit, you might want to have a variety of options.

What about a gym that has group exercise programs? Yoga, Pilates, Zumba, and spin are some of the most popular classes available. 

6. Is the gym crowded and what time are you open? 

One thing you should always ask but many people forget to ask is all about the crowds and the hours.

If you get up at four in the morning because you need to be at work at six, can you work out at 4:30 am or is the gym closed?

You need to know this. If you want to work out at night, what time does the gym close? 

Also, how busy is the gym during the time you like to come?

This is important because it might hinder you if the 5 am hour is packed, and you aren’t always able to grab a shower before you go to work.

You might want to know if it’s crowded to the point you can’t always use the machines you want to use.

7. Can I try it out first?

A good gym is going to allow you a few daily passes to try out their facilities before they ask you to sign a membership agreement.

You want to use those passes and find out what kind of atmosphere you’re working with and how it works for you:

Do you like it? Did it seem better on paper or do you really enjoy what is offered to you?

Try each gym out, and then pick the one you enjoyed the most and has the most to offer based on what you’re looking for. 

Gym memberships are expensive, so you want to find the one with the most to offer.

There is nothing quite like finding out your gym doesn’t have all you want because you didn’t think to ask first.

Now you’re stuck with a membership you don’t want, and that’s a drag.

Your health is important, so go ahead and find a suitable health club, that caters to your needs.

If you like my 7 Questions You Need to Ask Before Joining a Gym, don’t forget to share them with your friends!


Monica May