Double Check That Gym Contract

January 14, 2024


It is the start of the new year and many of us will have made resolutions to make this one a more healthy affair. Gym memberships sky rocket in January with people looking to get back in shape and get over their overindulgence over the festive period. However, there have been concerns raised that some of the gym contracts are misleading and have lead to people getting into financial troubles due to the lack of get out clauses.

Spacious Gym Floor Category:Gyms_and_Health_Clubs

Spacious Gym Floor Category:Gyms_and_Health_Clubs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The main points that you need to consider when signing up to a gym contract are:

  • How long is the contract?
  • Can you cancel early if your circumstances alter or if you change your mind?
  • Will the contract be automatically extended after the initial membership period?
  • Do you have time to go to the gym and can you afford the monthly payments?

The OFT and Citizen’s Advice have spent the last year looking over many of the chain gyms’ contracts and have found that many of the long-term contracts have complex terms and conditions that may lead people to sign up for something that they didn’t want. We feel that one of the most important points to focus on is the get out clauses. Should you become unemployed or suffer an injury making it not possible to go to the gym, where do you stand? Will you be forced due to the contract to keep up the payments for a gym that you can’t use?

It is also important to really think about if you will make the most of a gym contract. It will be for 12 months usually and we all start with the best intentions but these may fade over time. If you feel that your gym contract may be unfair then look to the Citizens’ Advice for guidance. There have been cases recently where gym contracts have been ruled unfair and you may be able to get out of any contract that is too long or has poor get out clauses.

English: GYMS, LA's High-Tech NEW Gym!, Person...

English: GYMS, LA's High-Tech NEW Gym!, Personally Fit LA's High-Tech NEW Gym! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is great to consider hitting the gym to improve your fitness and generally feel better about yourself. If you are considering signing up for the gym there are many options available to you so make sure that you take the time to look over what is available and what suits you best. Many gyms offer “trial contracts” that allow you a month’s access to see how going to the gym fits into your lifestyle and if it is something that you are interested in doing for the long term.

There are also many other options than simply signing up to one of the gym chains available. There are many no-frills gyms appearing that don’t run on contracts but they require a monthly payment to allow you access and many of them are open 24 hours. This style of gym might suit those who are just starting out going to the gym before making any financial commitment to a long term contract.

So make sure that you treat a gym contract the way that you would treat any other contract,  be sure to read it thoroughly, understand what your rights are and most of all make sure that you will actually use the gym, you are paying for it after all.

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