5 WAYS TO OVERCOME GYM FRIGHT

Whether you’ve just joined a gym or you’re a major athlete, at some point, it is very daunting. Most of the equipment looks completely foreign, you don’t know how to use it, and when you decide to give it a try, you’re afraid of being judged by everyone else who seems to know what they’re doing. Or maybe you’re running on a treadmill next to that super muscular person when all of a sudden, you become self-conscious about how much you’re sweating, panting and how your body is bouncing around. Sometimes this fear even prevents you from stepping foot in your gym. If this sounds familiar to you, then here are some ways to help you conquer your gym fright.

1. STUDY THE GYM FIRST

People tour their gyms so they can familiarize themselves with a new environment to prevent being clueless come time for their first workout. During your tour, grab your mental pen and paper and scope out the facility. Study where certain machines are, where the locker rooms are, and any other areas that spark your interest. Ask about classes, personal training, how to use certain equipment, or simply take mental notes of how people are using complex machines. The more informed you are prior to your first workout in the facility, the less intimidating the experience will be.

2. REALIZE THAT YOU’RE NOT ALONE

You are not the only person in the facility who feels self-conscious or has felt this way. No one likes not knowing what to do, but chances are, a lot of other people feel the same way you do. Once you realize that, you’ll be more comfortable, and lifting your 10-pound weights compared to the person lifting 50 pounds won’t be a big deal anymore.

3. WORK OUT WITH A BUDDY

Working out with someone is already motivating, but it’s even more effective for people who have gym fright. If you continuously feel discouraged, exercise with a buddy for a better support system. Not only will you feel more at ease being there with someone you know who has similar fitness goals, but you will be more willing to try new machines that you probably wouldn’t have tried if you went alone. To top it off, having someone by your side at first is excellent leeway into eventually being comfortable going to the gym on your own. This will ultimately lead to more confidence, better workouts and quality usage of your membership. If your workout buddy doesn’t have the same membership as you, ask your club about guest passes.

4. HAVE A WORKOUT PLAN

On top of initial intimidation, there is nothing worse than walking into a gym with no agenda, especially on a busy day when you have to wait for your turn to use a machine and other people have to wait on you. Before stepping foot in your gym, write out a workout plan on your phone so that you have it with you in case you forget. Decide what days of the week you are going to hit the gym and organize your routine based on whatever you want to work on each day. On Monday, you might choose to do a spin class while Tuesday you choose to do arms and core strengthening. Have other machine-less activities in mind like push-ups and planks that you can do in case you have to wait for a machine to open up, that way you don’t feel awkward standing around wasting your time. The more efficient you are, the faster you will acclimate to the gym and the other members in it.

5. FORGET ABOUT YOUR SURROUNDINGS 

At first this is easier said than done, especially because you feel like everyone is staring at you, but in reality, everyone is so focused on themselves to even care about how much weight you’re lifting or what you look like while doing a squat. It doesn’t matter if you can barely do a push-up while the person next to you is lifting 100 pounds because you’re both at the gym to better yourselves. By keeping that in mind, you’ll naturally find yourself drifting away from what other people are doing and be more in tune with your own to-do list, which is where your focus should be.

HELPING YOUR MEMBERS OVERCOME GYM FRIGHT

It’s easy to get comfortable and send a new member on their way once a contract is signed and you have finalized their membership through My Enrollment, but don’t just take their money and let them figure out the rest because chances are, they still have a lot of questions and feel very insecure.

Being almost two months into the new year, now is about the time when resolutions begin to fade. According to FOX News, the perception that fitness clubs are looking a little less crowded is because gym fright is starting to sink in. Aside from gym memberships being too expensive, three out of the five reasons people are already giving up on their resolutions have to do with self-esteem issues and not knowing how to operate gym equipment.

Consistent guidance and follow-up are not only key to helping your members overcome gym fright but are also crucial to keeping them long-term. Here are some ways you can achieve that.

TALK WITH YOUR MEMBERS ABOUT THEIR FITNESS GOALS

As an owner, there’s a lot to keep track of and you probably don’t know all of the details about a member at top of your head, but you can talk with them about what they hope to achieve, take notes and keep that information in their membership file. Ask them questions, get a feel for their specific needs, and make suggestions about different things their membership entails or how our gym software could benefit them. Use our retention cards as a personal touch to continuously make them feel welcome in your facility.

SUGGEST GROUP CLASSES OR PERSONAL TRAINING

One of the most common reasons for people cancelling their memberships is because they aren’t seeing results, and that can derive from gym intimidation. Whether that means the member is doing certain exercises incorrectly or they are afraid to try new machines, it can usually be avoided by introducing them to motivators like personal training or group classes where they will be around others, won’t feel so lost and will have more customized workouts.

WALK THEM THROUGH ALL NECESSARY GYM SOFTWARE 

Members need a strong balance between details and efficiency, especially if they have specific fitness goals. That starts with teaching them how to use all of the tools that will help them be successful. First and foremost, introduce them to our Mobile App. Then in My Club Business, show them how to sign up for classes and personal training sessions using My Scheduler and Rapid Class Check in. Make sure they are aware of everything their membership offers along with any other add-ons they might need like supplements or childcare. A lot of the time, members don’t take full advantage of everything their gyms offer because they weren’t informed from the get-go.

GIVE NEW MEMBERS A TOUR OF YOUR FACILITY 

New members usually have a lot of questions, one of them being where everything is located. According to FOX News, 49 percent of people are intimidated by the thought of the gym. Based on that statistic alone, it’s more than likely that many of your members avoid certain areas of your facility solely because they don’t know what they’re doing. As you show them around, walk them through how to check in, where lockers are and ask them if they have questions about classes or how to use certain equipment. Member money is valuable, and you don’t want them wasting it because they’re too intimidated by the weight room or they’re curious about using an elliptical but are too self-conscious to try it. If they feel limited, it’s likely that they will eventually cancel their membership, or it will expire and never renew. It is your responsibility to reassure them of why they signed up with your gym in the first place and to keep them coming back.

OFFER GUEST PASSES THROUGH OUR PASS-A- FRIEND PROGRAM

Facing fitness fears with a friend is a lot easier than doing it alone, and new members especially will benefit from this and be a lot more likely to step out of their comfort zones with a workout buddy. Not only does our Pass-a-friend program benefit the member with four guest passes, but it’s also a great opportunity for you as a club owner to gain prospects.

Bottom line is that happy members are lifelong members. The more comfortable they feel, the more they will take advantage of, which will lead to consistent usage of their membership and a greater chance of renewing their contract.