Before making any important decision, it's always a good idea to weigh out the pros and cons first - and that includes deciding whether or not to join a club. Sports clubs are far more than just a couple of rooms with exercise equipment - they offer several amenities that can provide a well-rounded fitness experience like state-of-the-art exercise areas along with large heated lap pools, racquetball courts, indoor tennis courts, saunas and special fitness classes (yoga, Pilates, cycling, etc.). So with all of the extra options that sports clubs provide, should you go ahead and take the plunge? Here are some things to consider so you arrive at a choice you're 100% comfortable with.
1. Great for beginners
According to a recent study published by the IDEA Health and Fitness Association, roughly 37 percent of health and sports club members are beginners. What this tells us is that many people have a desire to lose weight and get into shape, but they don't quite know where to begin. When you join a sports club, you can have access to personal trainers who can give you expert knowledge and direction on which exercises to focus on to help you accomplish your fitness goals.
A personal trainer can also teach you proper form and technique, as well as the correct way to use the various types of exercise equipment available at the club. This personalized instruction can dramatically shorten your learning curve, and help you maintain focus and direction in your fitness efforts.
2. Fuels your motivation
Let's face it--when you're putting your own exercise program together at home, it can be easy to slack off, skip a couple of days or just abandon your workouts altogether. Joining a sports club can provide you with the motivation you need to get out of bed in the morning, especially when you know that you have a financial stake in what you're doing. Not only that, but if you sign up for a certain fitness class at the sports club, you'll have a set schedule to be accountable to, and you'll have a group of like-minded people that can provide encouragement and a sense of camaraderie in whatever class you choose.
3. Provides the right atmosphere for working out
When you're in a sports club, you know exactly why you're there. Compare that to trying to work out at home, where it's easy to slip into the living room and watch some TV between sets, or grab a bite to eat in the kitchen, or get on the computer and check email, etc. These little breaks can really water down your focus and reduce the effectiveness of your workouts. Sports clubs provide the right atmosphere to help keep you on track and focused on your exercise efforts.
1. What about the cost?
Cost is the main reason why most people don't join a sports club. However, if you look at this expense as an investment into your health, the monthly fee you would pay is relatively minor in comparison with the benefits you can receive. Plus, as mentioned earlier, when you have real cash on the line, you'll think twice about skipping a workout and wasting those membership fees.
2. Is overcrowding an issue?
This may be more of an issue at a gym, but if a sports club is really good, sometimes exercise equipment may not be available at certain times, and personal trainers may be in short supply on some days. Dealing with this aspect of joining a sports club can be unpredictable, but if you give it time, you'll be able to get a good idea of when the peak times are, which will help you to schedule your workouts accordingly.
3. Do I have to say goodbye to outdoor workouts?
There are some days where you want to just get outdoors and get some fresh air while exercising, but sports clubs keep the majority of their fitness amenities indoors. Then again, you can't beat being able to work out in a nice, climate-controlled facility on those rainy, freezing cold or melting hot days. Plus, clubs like Five Seasons offer outdoor tennis courts, outdoor pools, outdoor group fitness classes and more, so there's no reason to stay cooped up inside when you really want to be out.
Still wondering whether or not to join a sports club? Even if the benefits of joining a sports club outweigh the drawbacks, it's a good idea to take advantage of any trial passes that your local sports club may offer, so you can find out if it's the best fit for you. Once you find the right sports club, it will definitely be an asset to your fitness goals, not a liability.