Gyms that are part of a large chain attract lots of customers, usually more than the gym can hold comfortably. As these gyms are all about efficiency and profit, they will sell as many memberships as possible within a certain location. When it comes down to it, business is business. But that does mean that the gym gets incredibly busy which can be off-putting for a beginner. Lots of eyes and lots of machines already in use. How do you fit in your workout around that? You’ll probably end up waiting for the right equipment to become available which can halt your workout and slow your progress. If your on your last workout and the machine you need is taken, will you really wait to use it or just head on home?
The Real Experts
In our experience, local independent gyms have a lot more expert trainers that the big chains. They need to hire smart as these gyms are usually made up of small teams, you’ll probably end up talking to the owners at some point. Larger chains will hire less experienced floor staff and keep the trainers for expensive personal training sessions. So where’s the help when you need it? If you’re using the wrong form or using a machine incorrectly, who is there to help out? A smaller gym is much more likely to have trainers on hand to help out with the odd question and give examples of proper form during your workout.
Big gyms tend to be sterile environments where people get in and get out. There isn’t much talking going on and everyone has headphones in. Wouldn’t it be better if you knew some of your fellow fitness fans? Your local gym probably has a much friendlier atmosphere and you’ll get to know familiar faces. If no trainers are around to help out there will more than likely be someone else you can ask for advice on a movement. Also, keeping up with other people’s progress and goals will make you want to achieve yours that much more.
The Right Equipment
If you’ve been to a large gym chain then you probably know the deal. Rows and rows of cardio equipment, a tonne of weight machines and a small corner dedicated to free weights. The thing is, free weights are the most important part of your workout if you’re looking to build muscle and lose fat! Why dedicate such a small area to this? If the free weights section was larger perhaps less people would feel intimidated by it. Not only that, but the big compound lifts should be at the core of every man’s workout routine. Some large gyms will only have a couple of areas for bench pressing and deadlifts!
Smaller gyms are more expert and will usually have more of the right equipment.
All of this adds up to less excuses. That means less chance of becoming demotivated and losing sight of your fitness goals. You’ll have expert trainers on hand, familiar faces to motivate you and the right equipment to grow fast. What more could you want? There’s no doubt that you can get a great workout at a chain gym and definitely reach your fitness goals that way. This post isn’t to badmouth bigger gyms but more to open your eyes to other possibilities. If you’ve tried and failed at a larger gym, grab a subscription at your nearest independent and see if that helps. Good luck and stay on track. Consistency and patience is all it takes to achieve your dream body!