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Keeping Gym Members Motivated

The most difficult part of being fit, for many people, is staying motivated in your workout routine. It’s easy for many people to start going to the gym — especially for New Year’s resolutions — but when the fresh routine gets stale, many people start wavering in their attendance. This poses a problem for gyms, as they frequently see a spike around January 1st and a big drop off soon thereafter. So what’s the secret to keeping your members wanting to get to the gym? We break down some of tips to do just that.

Lifestyle over Results

With your personal trainers and gym pamphlets, we suggest focusing on a lifestyle over results approach. Instead of having your members think about the results they want, they should think about a lifestyle they’d like to have, with the results being a positive outcome of that lifestyle. So instead of pamphlets on the best ways to get a six-pack before the summer, have ones that exemplify and illustrate how to get to the gym, by fitting it into your lifestyle. Here’s a great resource on the type of mental framing needed to do this. You’ll then need to come up with creative ways to communicate this to your gym members.

Embrace the Process

The process of working out should be enjoyable. We’re talking about the process starting from where you are. Having a light snack or a smoothie, putting on your gym apparel, saying hi to the people at the gym, working out, the post-workout snack, and showering off the sweat are all part of the routine. You can aid this whole process by selling high quality, delicious supplements, attractive gym clothing, and providing clean shower facilities for your guests. Of course this depends on exactly the type and size of the gym but having these little extras for your guests can help a lot, while also growing your location’s income.

Create a Positive Environment

The experience that your guests receive should be thought of in detail. Your staff’s greeting is the first thing that will affect the mood of your gym members; they should all be trained to be friendly and positive, to encourage a great experience for the member. Encourage your staff to get to know the members. Not every member will be very social but the ones that do will really appreciate the effort, and feel a greater sense of community, each and every time they get to the gym. This can help foster the motivation for them to come, as the whole experience becomes more enjoyable.

Intrinsic Motivation

When you truly love doing something — such as playing golf or a musical instrument — it’s hard to stop doing it and you can’t wait to get started. The same can happen with exercise and going to the gym. Instead of viewing the weight room as a chore, we need to shift the way we view exercise. Michelle Segar — an expert on the science of motivation from the University of Michigan — has figured out that goals like “losing weight”, or “becoming healthier” can actually demotivate. The reason is that we’re hardwired to choose immediate gratification over long-term benefits. By encouraging your members to enjoy their workouts by focusing on the feeling after a workout – getting the “pump”, etc. – they’ll start to enjoy the process, rather than looking for the result.

Want to keep in contact with your gym and fitness members? Need them to continue to get to the gym? Our gym management software helps keep your members engaged, with member portal login and online class schedules, automated marketing, billing and more. See how PerfectMind can help you retain ongoing members, while making business management easier, with a software demo and risk-free trial.

What motivation strategies have worked for your gym in the past?  Let us know on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Google+, to stay up to date with all of your PerfectMind news.

Sophia Munoz
Sophia Munoz

Sophia is the Marketing and Events Coordinator at PerfectMind. She coordinates webinars, campaigns and events, which help empower membership-based organizations to connect with their members.

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