Better Business Bureau offers tips for selecting a gym in the New Year

January 9, 2012 | By | Reply More

Shed the pounds but be wise about signing up for gym membership

many Canadians resolve to shed pounds each New Year.


After over-indulging during the holiday season, many Canadians resolve to shed pounds each New Year and gyms fill with enthusiastic newcomers ready to work towards their fitness goals.



However, joining a gym is the same as making any major purchase; you need to make an informed decision and consider some important factors before signing on the dotted line. Always check out a health club with your Better Business Bureau by visiting

Take the time to do your research before joining a gym and don't give in to high-pressure sales pitches.

“Regardless of how eager you are to start losing weight in the New Year, take the time to do your research before joining a gym and don’t give in to high-pressure sales pitches,” says Business Bureau Southern Alberta and East Kootenays President and CEO Sandra Crozier-McKee.

Business Bureau recommends asking the gym and yourself the following six questions before signing up for a membership:

1. What are the terms of any introductory offers?

Gyms often use special introductory offers to lure you in. Make sure you understand the terms and what the price will be once the introductory period is over.

2. Will my membership renew automatically?

Read the fine print carefully, as some gym membership contracts renew automatically annually.

3. How can I get out of my contract?

Make sure you understand what steps you’d need to take to cancel your membership. Many times, specific actions are needed to cancel, such as submitting a cancellation request in writing 30 days before the requested cancellation date.

4. What happens if I move or the gym goes out of business?

Ask the gym to explain what will happen to your money if it suddenly goes out of business or how moving will affect your membership.

5. Am I feeling pressured to join?

Don’t give in to high-pressure sales tactics to join immediately. A reputable gym will give you enough time to read the contract thoroughly, tour the facilities and make an informed decision.

6. Did I get everything in writing?

Read the contract carefully and make sure verbal promises are in writing. What matters is the document you sign; don’t just take a salesperson’s word for it.

7. Did they show interest in meeting my fitness goals?

Gyms and Health Clubs should always do an assessment, and help you set up a program that can help work with your lifestyle. If they aren’t interested or don’t provide such a service then they may only be interested in your money.

8. How clean were the facilities?

If they aren’t keeping it clean there may be a financial problem. Plus no one wants to work out in a dirty facility.


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