Gym owners need to do their best to make coming to the gym an enjoyable experience for all members. This goal is easily accomplished by making the gym more accessible to all members and by offering new services that customers want and need. Giving members a say in which changes the gym makes can also help to encourage members to keep coming back month after month.
Add Disability Accommodations
Not only should gyms have accommodations to help people with disabilities work out, but gyms are also required to have certain accommodations that fit the Americans with Disabilities compliance standards. Following these compliance standards makes it so anyone can have equal access to the gym. Avoiding having these accommodations not only pushes away people with disabilities (whether intentionally or not) but can also leave a gym open to lawsuits if its facilities are inaccessible to people with disabilities.
Business owners should also note that there is no such thing as an older gym being “grandfathered” into not needing accommodations; all gyms legally need to have accommodations no matter when they opened. Some common accommodations include the following:
- Ramp entry/flat (no stairs)/elevator entry to the facility
- Clear space around the machines
- Front and side access to all machines
Offer Events and Classes
One optional way to improve customer experience reports is to offer special events and classes. Many gyms already offer some classes, but adding more classes can help to boost gym membership and encourage members to return more often. Try to vary the classes so there is something for everyone. If a gym owner does not know what kinds of classes to offer, simply asking current gym members is a great way to find out. Trying to theme events, whether it be around certain holidays or a basic theme (cycling, weight training, etc) can also get more people interested in trying them out.
As with any fitness training, there is likely to be some risk involved with trying out a new class, especially if the member is inexperienced. Having members sign waivers before participating in any events can help to reduce the gym’s risk and liability. However, doing this is not required to host a fitness event, just suggested.
Create a Gym App
People love to update their social media status with gym photos, so giving them a platform to track their gym progress is a great idea. There is no limit to what a gym app can allow members to do. Track weight, clock into the gym, record exercises, track calories burned, sign up for classes, and share progress via social media are all great examples of what a gym app can do.
There are plenty of great gym app templates online that app developers can use to get started. If the gym owner does not already know how to make an app, then it is best to hire a professional. This helps to ensure that the app looks great and is user-friendly.
Provide Member Surveys
Lastly, if a gym owner does not know what he or she can do to improve member experience, the best thing to do is to ask! Leaving out printed surveys and pens, or having a member suggestion box, is a great way to get new ideas from people who already use the gym.
If a business owner doesn’t want to go the paper route, then putting up a poll or accepting messages on the gym’s social media page is another great way to get members’ attention. Leave the poll up for a week or two and let the responses roll in. By putting a poll online, gyms may also get responses from people who have not gone to the gym yet but who have been thinking about it. Advertising these polls is a sure-fire way to get some people who do not follow the gym’s social media posts to see the poll.
Gym owners would do well to implement some of these ideas to boost gym member satisfaction. After all, there is no better way to get customers to come back than by giving them what they want.
Mikkie is a freelance writer from Chicago. She is also a mother of two who loves sharing her ideas on interior design, budgeting hacks, and DIY. When she’s not writing, she’s chasing the little ones or rock climbing at the local climbing gym.
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