Joining a Gym for Aerobic Activity


Is it better to exercise at home or at a gym? While working  out at home is cheaper, it really depends on your personal  needs and preferences where you work out. If you are self -motivated and prefer the solitude of exercising solo, workout  at home. If not, here’s what to look for when joining a gym  for aerobic activity.

  • Where is the facility located? Research shows that people  are most likely to stick with an exercise program when the  gym is located close to either home or work.
  • Does the facility have the type of aerobic equipment that  you want to use and is it well maintained? Be sure that  there are a variety of machines. Beware of “out of order”  signs, particularly those that linger for over 24 hours. Give  the equipment a test drive to ensure it operates smoothly  and quietly. Also, is it well maintained and is it in good  working order?
  • Are there signs or diagrams near each piece of aerobic  equipment explaining how to use it? If an instructor is not  available to assist you, signs can help you use it on your  own.
  • Do not be discouraged if at first you can exercise for only a  few short minutes on some aerobic machines. It takes time  for your body to adapt to each new piece of equipment,    particularly if you are a beginner. Pace yourself by starting  off slowly and gradually increasing the exercise time.
  • Do the aerobic equipment and/or types of aerobic classes  available interest you? If the activities offered are cycling,  rowing and swimming but you want to play racquet sports  and run on an indoor track, look for a facility that offers  more variety.
  • If you are interested in aerobic  classes, is the floor a sprung  wood floor, which lessens impact  to the joints?
  • Are there a variety of classes  offered throughout the day?  Does the schedule offer separate  classes for beginners through to  advanced participants? As you  become more experienced and  your work and family schedules  change these  factors will become important  in helping you to continue with  your exercise program.
  • Is there a variety of equipment  available for use in classes? A  wide variety of classes, including  those using equipment, will help to keep you motivated  and provide new training goals.
  • Is the facility clean and generally well maintained? You’re  much more likely to return on a  regular basis if the showers are clean and the environment  is tidy and well organized. Most facilities require members  to wipe down equipment with a towel after use. Is the air temperature cool and is there good air circulation? Air conditioning is an important component in the  prevention of dehydration and overheating. Also the  smell of perspiration in the air may discourage you from  returning regularly.Before you begin exercising, are you required to complete a  health screening form or fitness assessment? Both of these  procedures alert staff members to any illnesses or limitations you may have and will help them to evaluate your  capabilities.
  • What is the payment plan? Beware of facilities charging  high initiation fees and demanding long term memberships. Many clubs allow members to pay on a weekly or
  • monthly basis and that’s your best bet.
  • How busy is the facility? Visit during the times when you  plan to exercise. Some gyms are empty at certain hours  and overflowing with members at others. Is the gym able  to accommodate a large number of members during  peak periods? If the place is a zoo, so much for a stressbusting workout.
  • What additional services are available? Many facilities offer  massage, restaurants and social clubs. Though you may not  be interested in these things now, one day you may be.
  • Are you comfortable with the facility’s clientele? Don’t be  scared off by the size or fitness level of the instructors or  members. There are usually people of all levels of experience at every gym. Besides, you can learn a lot from working out around more experienced exercisers. On the other  hand, you may feel more comfortable exercising in a gym  that caters to people of your own sex or age range.
  • Is there an instructor available to design a personal program for you based on your capabilities? If you are new to  exercise or haven’t exercised regularly in the past, it is very important to have a professional advise you on what type  of exercises are best for you.
  • Do the instructors seem genuinely interested in the members or are they more focused on sales? Ask other members how happy they are with the customer service the  gym provides. The locker room is a good place to find out  what members really think.
  • Does the facility hire qualified, certified instructors? To  create a safe and effective program, an instructor needs a  good background in exercise design and technique. Find  out which qualifications are acceptable in your area and  then ask the instructors about their education.

If you have young children, are there babysitting services

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