Consider your needs
Consider what you need from a gym before signing up to make sure you get the best value for money.
The cost will depend on what services are provided, such as the pool or classes, and also on things like the quality of the facilities – for example, changing rooms.
Many low-cost gym chains have sprung up across the UK, often with much lower membership prices. Gym Group this week offered memberships starting at around £13.99 a month, although in some locations there are introductory deals from £9.99 a month. Meanwhile, PureGym offers multiple rates – for example, in some locations like Glasgow, Bury and East Kilbride you can pay around £10 a month for off-peak hour access.
Many contracts offer monthly, which means you’re not tied to an agreement and can cancel whenever you want.
This service will often be basic – there may be no pool, for example – and you will often have to bring your own towels, shower gel, and locks.
Local gyms can sometimes offer better value for money than large chain health centers.
If you know that you’re only interested in a particular element – for example, gym machines, swimming, or classes – you can get a membership for just that one.
“Aside from the health benefits, what would you like to gain by attending a facility or exercising in general,” says Steven Scales, member and field development manager for industry body ukactive. – whether it’s a solo activity with your headphones in or a social connection through a group exercise class motivated by a group of peers and an instructor. “
Gym membership contracts are notoriously hard to get out of, so make sure you fully understand everything before signing up.
Look at prices and consider how often you need to use the gym for value for money.
If possible, check how long you will be locked out and how much you will have to pay if you need to end your membership early.
Follow Citizens Tips.
Waiting for special offers
If you can wait until your favorite gym holds a sale, you can get a discount, a free month or no joining fee. The latter is one of the most popular offers.
In January, many gyms offer special deals to attract the post-Christmas fitness crowd.
Summer can also be a good time for deals. At the time of this writing, Gym Group is running a special offer where you can “save up to 50%” using the code SUMMERSAVE.
That is National Gymnastics Day September 21, and many gyms will be offering free activities and trials to mark the event.
You’ll be able to search for participating gyms and fitness centers from the end of August, but in the meantime, you can sign up for the online mailing list.
“Be sure to check out special offers throughout the year,” says Scales. “Visiting gyms, clubs and recreation centers and experiencing the offerings first-hand is also a great way to find the right product for your needs.”
Use the free trial
Before you commit to a membership, if possible, make sure you try out a gym you love with a free trial.
You’ll get free use of the gym and time to consider your decision before signing.
You should also check to see if you can take a free session with a personal trainer as part of a trial.
If there’s no free trial ad, ask the gym if they can arrange for you to try before you buy.
You can also ask your gym-loving friends if they have any free referrals or cards that you can use.
There is no obligation to sign up for a membership after trying out at the gym.
If you only do one activity, such as boxing, spinning, or yoga, check out specialist gyms in your area that may offer special introductory offers.
Some gym chains offer shorter membership periods so you can try before signing up for a long-term contract.
“Many operators offer options to help spread the cost, offering tasting sessions or beginner offers to let you find your match,” says Scales.
How much do pay that much
Many gyms will allow you to pay as you use the gym, pool, or sports fields.
This is a more expensive way of paying if you plan to go often but if you think you will only use the facilities once, it can be a good choice.
You can use the Hussle website to get money through the day so you can pay when you visit various fitness centers.
Check out the discount
Check what benefits package your employer offers, as it may include gym membership discounts.
If you are a student, you will also be able to pay lower fees. For example, Nuffield Health offers a 20% student discount, Better Health offers a membership discount, students can get a 12-month membership from £159 from Gym Group and PureGym offers up to 30% off members. fixed term membership.
Concession rates and free classes are generally available to older adults and low-income households.
You can get a cheaper deal if you just choose a gym instead of a multisite membership.
Many fitness centers also offer off-peak memberships, so if you can get in at less common times, this can be a money-saving option.
If your goal is to get in shape, you don’t need to sign up for a gym and there are cheaper or completely free alternatives.
Home workouts boomed during the lockdown, and many fitness centers and trainers are still offering digital classes at lower prices.
You can join a local running club – you can find a list on British Athletics website. Most will have a membership fee but it can also be much cheaper than a gym.
Fitness apps and plans, such as Couch up to 5K CZK are also ways to approach a structured workout regimen without having to join a gym.