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Many of us have made commitments to working out and fitness in 2016, and quite a number of people I’ve spoken to have either already joined a gym for a while or are considering a one-year commitment to a gym. There are quite a few considerations to joining a gym, so today, I’d like to help you answer the simple question of whether a gym membership is actually necessary for your fitness.

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Variety or Focus?

gym membership

Most popular gyms I know have pretty good classes. Premium gyms like Fitness First, True Fitness, and Amore, have daily schedule for an entire array of group classes that focuses on strength, cardio, HIIT and movement. They can include kickboxing, aerobics, dance, spinning, and every other kind of fitness class you can think of. It’s fantastic for people who need to keep things fresh every so often because they can change classes and try out different types of fitness regimes to challenge themselves.

However, if you’re the type that likes to focus on one thing, then a gym membership may not be the most logical result for you. For example, if you’re into running, then a gym membership doesn’t make sense for you because you probably don’t need to use much of the gym’s equipment or join the classes. In fact, it would be a bit of a waste of money.

Convenience vs Cost

Another superb thing about modern-day gyms are that many of them even provide your workout gear for you. Yes, you can walk into a gym in your work clothes, and you’ll get a shirt and shorts from them to use. Just bring your shoes. They also have fully-stocked showers that come with shampoos and body gel, and fresh towels for you to dry yourself off. You probably only need to bring your shoes, and a change of underwear. For the busy working executive, this is a godsend! You can pop out of the office, get in a solid workout, then run back into the office without missing a beat! That’s almost invaluable for time pressed individuals.

The problem with that, is that these gym memberships are pretty expensive. The last I heard, a membership at a premium gym would run me SGD160 – SGD200 a month, and that’s without any personal training involved. Let’s do the math here:

Base Cost        Cost/week  Cost Per session
(Assuming 3 times a week) 
Cost Per Year
$160 (min) $40 $13.33  $1920
$200 (max) $50 $16.66 $2400

Wow. That’s a lot of money. In order to make it really worth your while, you probably have to go more than four times a week.

One and Only? Not even close

KFIT discount code

When it comes to workouts, premium gyms may provide variety at a rather steep cost. The good news is that gym memberships aren’t really the only solution for your workout requirements.

To start off, the ActiveSG community fitness gyms are almost everywhere in Singapore. Remember the FREE ActiveSG credits that the Government gave Singapore Citizens? Yeah, you’ve just received a time extension to use all SGD100 worth of credits! Oh, and guess what? It’s SGD2.50 per entry, and you can work out as long as you want! Sure, there aren’t classes, but I can tell you that the newer ActiveGYMs like the ones at Pasir Ris are clean, well-maintained and have some solid equipment!

If you’re not a public gym type of person, there’s a whole bunch of “fitness pass” apps that will give you all-access to hundreds of fitness classes. That means MMA, yoga, spin classes and even pole dance classes, among many others. They start at SGD129 a month.

Rounding it up

Gym memberships are useful. In fact, I’d say that for the variety of classes and the convenience they provide, they’re pretty good value. The flip side is that gym memberships aren’t for everyone, especially if you’re the type that needs a depth of focus or if you’re on a budget. I admit that hitting the iron is extremely therapeutic and effective, many fitness activities that pack a solid punch can be done outside the gym. Sometimes, it’s nice to be out and about, unshackled and breathing in fresh air.

Remember: Whatever you choose, make sure it helps you to focus on achieving your fitness goals in the most fun, efficient, and safest way possible!

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