Are Gym Memberships Worth It?

Are Gym Memberships Worth It?

Now that a new year is upon us, we all tend to sit back and reflect on our newly made resolutions. The majority of people will focus on their health and saving money in the new year. If you are focusing on your health this year, it’s a great time to join the gym, as people are motivated to get back on track and each facility is in competition to gain your attendance with specials and membership discounts. Many gyms lock their customers into annual contracts and some build their models around people not showing up. For those of us on a budget, let’s look into whether or not gym memberships are worth it. 

How Much Should You Pay?

Gym memberships can be costly if you’re not careful, but if you attend regularly it can be worth it. A standard membership at a large fitness like Gold’s Gym averages at about $25-$50 a month. At the minimum, this is about $300 a year.

Studios and training centers are pricier than your average Gold’s Gym or Planet Fitness. These types of facilities have become more popular as classes are conducted with groups of people and you are lead by a teacher. They run about $100-$150 a month. These memberships may last longer, but if you’re not committed a lot of money will be wasted. 

The problem with these annual contracts is many people go once or twice, then forget about their new membership. As long as you are following your workout needs and honest about your budget, and how often you are attending, signing a contract with a gym won’t be a money waster. 

Are you Attending?

It’s a great plan to find a gym that works for you unless you are paying for a program you never use. The trend of going to the gym is typically broken by excuses like “there’s not enough time in the day to” or “the gym is out of the way.” That brings us to our next question, is your gym in a convenient location so you will attend more often?

Consider your commute and your daily routine when shopping around for your new gym. Is it best for you to pick a location close to work or will you attend more of you are closer to home?

Save By Working out at Home

Do you love working out but love to save money even more? Consider working out at home. Working out is something that is very possible to do from home and on a budget. Some ways to stay fit without breaking the bank or signing up for a contract include:

  • Walking, running, or hiking outside
  • Biking outdoors or on indoor equipment
  • Use at home workout apps
  • Follow YouTube video workouts for a more structured workout


Overall, your health is one of the best investments you can make. Most gyms may entice you with their sales pitch about how your goal is only a few steps away, but where you may need the help is motivation to go, the location that works for you, and the correct budget that fits your lifestyle. Do your research before signing up. See what gym can benefit and offer you the most value for your money and help you stick with your resolutions.

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