“You just kind of ride the wave.”
One of the top New Year’s resolutions time and time again is to get in shape, to live a healthier lifestyle. That can prove to be good news for gym owners and athletic clubs. It can also prove difficult to handle the sudden increase in members.
Dan Smith has been with the Sports Academy and Racquet Club for 15 years, 14 years as its general manager, so he’s very familiar with the wave of gym members every January.
“It’s definitely busy,” Smith explains. “There are two times of the day when it is a little overwhelming. For the most part regular members are expecting the New Year’s rush, so they are a little bit more patient and know the club will be a little bit more busy.”
Smith says it’s important that his employees make sure all the equipment is working properly and that they fix problems as quickly as they can so they can accommodate as many people as possible.
For those people who are joining a gym for the first time, or at least making a greater commitment to attend a gym more regularly, Smith says it’s important that they get off on a good first step.
“With fitness, if you come and hit the gym hard you are going to be really sore,” he continues. “The last thing you want to do when you are really sore is say ‘Oh, I want to go work out again.’
“We try to make sure to educate them on getting balance with their health and fitness, easing into it a little bit and helping your body establish those regular habits and patterns instead of jumping off a cliff and hoping there is water at the bottom.”
Smith says his club offers a fitness evaluation and gym orientation with all of their new members so they understand the basics of working out and understand realistic, short-term goals that can lead to long term success.
For the regulars who have to deal with a sudden increase of people, Smith says they try to be patient and wait it out.