Sunday, August 19, 2007
Health Club Naughty Secrets
In earlier times, the gym business was different. The owner was also the business manager, bookkeeper, salesman, custodian -- and your personal trainer -- all wrapped into one. If that sounds like too much for any one person to handle, remember that most gyms were independently owned and most had a lot fewer members. There were no Pilates, yoga, step, kickboxing, or spinning classes, either. You lifted iron. There weren't other options.
How can anyone argue against more exercise options? Yet the little secret today is that huge numbers of not truly motivated people join health clubs and soon dropout. The thing is they also usually sign up to have dues automatically withdrawn from their bank account. Then, after dropping out, they tell themselves they will get back in the gym again, so they continue paying dues.
Health club owners don't talk about it, but if everyone who paid dues worked out regularly, there wouldn't enough equipment or hours in the day to accommodate them. Paying for workouts not taken may sound crazy, but I guarantee you that many people do it. Gym owners have a special place in their hearts (and pocketbooks) for those who pay but don't use the facilities.
I do not dislike gyms or gym owners. I have belonged to many gyms and belong to one now. I have known gym owners who became personal friends. But my advice to anyone paying dues to a health club and not using it this: stop! Yes, everyone should exercise. But a gym or health club is not necessarily for everyone. If you are a member of a gym and don't use it regularly, deep down you probably dislike going there. So stop wasting your money. Find a form of exercise that you like and will actually practice several days per week.
Health club owners may dislike my saying this: But if you aren't using the facility, cancel that membership today.