Commercial Buyers Guide
The aim of this section is to give some helpful hints about buying your gym. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
There are three broad questions you will need to think about:
- Who will be using the gym?
- What is the budget?
- How much space is available?
Who will be using the gym?
It is essential to know what types of users the gym is aimed at before trying to pick the right fitness equipment. The gym might be your primary business if you are a personal trainer or it could be that the gym is an additional facility for use by your staff, in the case of a corporate gym.
If your gym is to be revenue generating then you will need to work out your target market. If you are aiming to open a weight loss centre for example, your clientele would need very different types of equipment to users of a gym aimed at sports performance. If your gym is being introduced within an existing business like a hotel, the gym must complement the needs of your guests and be in keeping with your other facilities. Gyms for schools and colleges must satisfy the needs of younger users and possibly integrate with your educational syllabus.
We can help you identify your likely users and from there determine what types of equipment you should be looking at.
What is the budget?
This might be a question that you know the answer to immediately, either per month if you want to lease your equipment or your total equipment cost. For most gym buyers, the question often requires an in-depth analysis to come up with the answer! Before you start looking at quotations, it is worth thinking about how much you want to spend. Your budget consideration should take into account the total revenue you want to achieve and the number of users you want to have.
How much space is available?
The floor area and shape of the room will dictate how much equipment you can accommodate and how many users can be in the gym at a time. When you look at the space you have available, start to visualise where you'll put your cardio area, which walls would benefit from a mirror, etc. Ensure you make use of free tools like the Fitness Superstore Gym Planner which will help you try out a few different ideas.
Now it's time to start looking at:
- Equipment Specification
- Gym Design
- Ventilation/Climate Control
- TVs/Audio solutions
What durability of equipment would be suitable for your needs?
This specification denotes equipment that is commercial but not likely to see the same level of usage as a machine in a health club. In general terms, Light Commercial fitness equipment is suitable for between 3 and 5 hours use per day. Light Commercial typically bridges the gap between Home Use and Full Commercial equipment.
Environments suitable for Light Commercial:
- Personal training studios
- Small and medium sized corporate gyms
- Small and medium sized hotel gyms
- Schools and college fitness suites
This specification denotes equipment that is manufactured to the highest level of durability. Full Commercial fitness equipment is suitable for any heavy use gym.
Environments suitable for Full Commercial:
- Health clubs
- Large corporate gyms
- Large hotel gyms - especially those with external membership
- Large school gyms - especially those open to the local community
Based on a thorough analysis of your users, a detailed equipment specification can be put together.
Please see our Gym Planner, where you can build and save layouts for free.
An ideal gym floor should be easy to clean and in keeping with the look of your gym. Smaller gyms may opt for carpet tiles as these are very cost effective, easy to replace if damaged and help to reduce noise. A wooden floor makes a very attractive surface but you might want to consider putting mats under some or all pieces of fitness equipment to protect the floor. Generally, a sprung floor is only required in studio areas. Many synthetic and rubber floor surfaces are suitable for use in a gym. These are often quite expensive but are normally hard wearing. Rubber floors provide a great non-slip surface and can also reduce noise. We would recommend speaking to a specialist flooring contractor.
Effective lighting is an important consideration. We would recommend speaking to a specialist lighting contractor if you are opening a membership gym. Most of our clients make use of overhead fluorescent tubes with spotlights in strategic areas.
Most gym users prefer to work out in a slightly cool environment - not chilly or draughty but towards the lower end of "room temperature". However, during classes such as Yoga or Pilates, a warmer temperature might be more suitable. Most of our corporate and hotel gyms are already adequately ventilated and many have air conditioning already. We would be happy to give you an idea of ideal temperatures if you give us a call.
For technique training, mirrors can be an invaluable aid. In smaller gyms, mirrors can be used to create a feeling of space. Optically, glass mirrors tend to be the clearest but they are much less impact resistant than acrylic or polycarbonate. Glass mirrors offer high levels of scratch resistance while polycarbonate and acrylic mirrors although stronger, do scratch more easily. Mirrors can be adhered directly to your walls (either glued or with screws) or mounted in frames or mirror mounts. The cost of mirrors can usually be included within a lease finance package for your gym equipment.
For many gym users, a TV screen can provide a pleasant distraction. TV screens are usually located in the cardio area and the number of screens will be dictated by the number of machines and users. In large gyms, multiple screens showing different channels are used. For this you possibly need multiple tuners/satellite boxes etc. Will you have personal audio on each machine? Some gyms offer users the ability to plug in their headphones and pick which audio channel to listen to. Other gyms play music through speakers so all users hear the same thing. Please remember that you may need licenses to broadcast audio and TV in a commercial environment.
All gyms should have drinking water facilities, either by providing bottled water or a drinking fountain. Fluid replacement is vital during exercise! If gym users have water bottles, the likelihood of spillage increases, which potentially poses a health and safety issue. Paper towels should be available for users to mop up any spills. Please be aware that water spilled on a treadmill or cross trainer could cause problems with the equipment.
Installing your gym
Once you've decided to go ahead with your purchase this is what to expect:
We will agree with you an installation date for your equipment. All equipment will be set up according to the gym design and professionally installed. Prior to installation we will ask you to complete a site survey or make a site visit to plan the delivery logistics.
All equipment will be tested prior to handover to ensure everything is operating perfectly.
If required, we will set up a training schedule for your staff, which will include detailed instruction on the use of each machine.
Running of your gym
Following installation of your gym we would suggest you think about: inductions, maintenance, warranties and lifetime relationship.
We can arrange regular inductions for your staff or members. All users will complete Pre-Activity Readiness Questionnaires.
Ongoing regular maintenance of your equipment is essential. Your staff can be trained to carry out the daily maintenance. We would recommend a service contract to cover emergency call outs and preventative maintenance.
You get double protection on every purchase. Not only do you get a manufacturer's warranty on your machines, our support team is always at your disposal. In most cases, any faults are rectified within a few days.
When you buy from Fitness Superstore, you are entering into a lifetime partnership. We will be there to help you, no matter what the problem, for the lifetime of your equipment.
If you require more information, please contact us.