Switching Gyms

  • Thread starter Thread starter imported_hannesburk
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hey guys

I am working on my final paper (MBA)
the title is: switching behaviour in the fitness industry
It would be absolutely great if you could help me with it by specifying the reasons why you would switch gym

it would also be great if you mentioned other reasons that would be important for you (reasons that I forgot)

thx a lot
I selected "involuntary switching (moving away,job change->distance)" because I recently switched from World to the local Y. I moved, but not so far that I was out of the radius of World. Eventhough the Y sux and has a serious lack of equipment, it's about convenience. Driving 5 mins to the Y as opposed to 20 mins to World makes all the difference when you're short on time. I continued to pay for both memberships for several months, but never once drove to World. The best gym is the one you actually go to.
Let me make a list. I'm sure you have already addressed all of these reasons, but maybe one of them might be added.

-Cost (membership, etc)
-Staff (don't like them or vice versa)
-Social (someone goes there who you don't want to see anymore, or you switch to see someone specific)
-Classes offered
-Thinking going somewhere else will help you "stick to it" (bad logic)
-Training partner
-You move residences
- Curiosity
- New scenery
-Target market (some gyms like bodybuilders, others don't)
-Financial troubles (member may default on dues so now seeks different gym)

I don't know if that helps, but its the list of reasons I am familiar with.
Great list, Bryan! Hannes, I don't know if this is part of your research question or not, but have you considered people who switch from a gym to home or vice-versa? These types of switches might be different from switching from gym to gym. I'd bet that the list of reasons wouldn't be much different that what you already have and what Bryan has offered, but you might want to capture what people are switching *from* and *to* as a separate outcome variable- just a thought!
Am I to vote for the reason I leave a gym or choose a gym.
Ironicly Im in this very position. Have a home gym and am shopping for local ones.
I have the atheletic club or golds. Golds is more spendy but has a better set up and is close by ~5-10 minutes.
Id like to vote but Im not sure what direction the question is asked.
thx a lot bryan for the list

shure it helps...I have spoken to lots of people and all of reasons they mentioned are part of your list

@jake:the work is just about switching to others.
but nice input

The first gym I went to was really close to my house and the prices were really reasonable. I took those two factors into consideration when making my choice, but my main reasing for choosing that gym was that one of my good friends went there and since I was just starting out I thought it would be a good idea for him to show me proper form, etc. I stayed there over a year until I cancelled my membership and started doing calisthenics at home ( this lasted about a month). This time when choosing a gym I had a few more choices: two gyms at work, one gym really close to my house, going back to my first gym, or going with my friend to one about 30 miles away. The gyms at work, althought dirt cheap, were lacking in suitable equipment, otherwise I would have gone with one of them, but my friend took me on a tour of his gym (the one 30 miles away) and convinced me "it wasn't that far" and that I should go there, which I did :confused: . I signed a contract for 6 months but about 3 months into it I realized I wasn't really working out much because of this distance I had to travel to workout... I ended up going back to my first gym mainly because of the price and the proximity to my house; although another factor that I really took into account was the crowdedness at the time I workout.

So really what I'm trying to say it that starting out I really didn't know what to look for so I just blindly followed, which worked out pretty well, but as my experience increased so did my needs I guess you could say. What I really look for in a gym now is the equipment and crowdedness; I don't go to the gym to wait in lines, I like to workout and get out. Price usually wouldn't have been a factor if the quality is all around above average... sorry for rambling... it's a really close race, but I guess my vote goes to equipment...althought I really think crowdedness and proximity are also very important.
[b said:
Quote[/b] (Falco @ Jan. 11 2005,1:46)]The best gym is the one you actually go to.
Amen to that, my friend

I chose convenience although the truth of the matter is I got tired of hearing my husband complain about the mileage on my car.
I loved my little old gym: I knew my way around, almost never ran into the equipment and always had an alternative if someone was using the equipment I wanted.

I have an all club membership with 24 Hour, so there was a location change but not a membership or fee change. What kept me coming back to the new club once I started? Much better scenery
(I love muscle).

The second reason? The "new" gym has a pool, and the additional moisture in this dry Denver air makes it much easier to actually do cardio

The downside to the change? I tweaked an old back injury on unfamiliar equipment. :confused: Had I been sensible and patient, I would have tested things out with "girly" weights first.

Knowledge isn't power if you don't use it!
Another 24 Hrs member here, and I've been using a slightly farther location because of equipment and spacing. The club nearest to my home is about a 5mins drive away, but was rather cramped. The farther location is about 7-9mins away, but features 2 sets of dumbbells (with 2.5lb increments), 4 squat cages, 4 safety racks, etc. fairly spaced out while the nearer one is filled with rusty equipment and only one of each variety. The only other benefit besides proximity is the nearer one includes a pool, which I don't use.
I might consider switching gyms to one with more females, and one with an indoor basketball court.

I'm at worlds gym right now, and it is cheap enough to outweigh the other stuff. So price and right equipment outweigh the former issues... though it would be nice to have them.
I left my gym because the raquetball court situation became a lot more inconvenient. That's the only reason I joined really, I prefer working out alone or with a friend at home. My old gym used to have five courts, they cut that down to three and used the added space to add more machines and equipment. They also installed an indoor pool. It's all good stuff, but not stuff I'd use to be honest. As for the courts, challenge court hours last too long and aren't convenient, and they take up all the courts with that most of the time. Then, on the rare occasion you can make a reservation and get a court one of the staff doesn't write it down. So you show up and someone's playing on the court you reserved. What's worse, several times I've reserved courts and found people playing on them who refused to leave the court. The staff refused to do anything about it too. So my court time would get cut down from an hour to thirty minutes. Ridiculous.

Right now I'm considering an alumni membership at my university. It's not too expensive and they have a great complex there with an indoor track, olympic sized pool, five squash courts, ten racquetball courts, an outdoor track, basketball courts, and a well equipped but crowded weight room. They also have much more interesting classes there than at my previous gym. Kickboxing is more interesting to me than step aerobics.

The racquetball courts aren't maintained the best there. Blood stains on the walls and stuff like that. But it's better than not playing at all.
Historically, the only thing that has made me switch gyms is a major change in life circumstances: finishing college (no more access to the school gym), landing a job that gave me access to a well-equipped gym at the workplace, and moving to a new city.

When on the market for a new gym (I've been with my present one for five years) the things that are most important to me are how well equipped and maintained it is, close proximity to home or work, and price. Ideally, it should also be spacious enough that trainees aren't up each others' noses when they're working out.

I don't care about things like classes or swimming pools. I just need lots of free weights and a few good, well-maintained machines.