Most every gym offers a membership option for only two classes per week. This option has long been the standard 'starting-point' for new athletes or those who think they can handle three days a week of grueling classes.
The truth is that this membership type doesn't provide great value to your new members or show your gym's true spirit.
Here’s why you need to have those members on three classes a week, if not unlimited membership:
When you have a member coming in sporadically two days per week, they are only getting a limited number of progressions, movements and cues. You’ll find these members having difficulty to retain knowledge about every movement (what is a hang power clean is again?) and how to scale properly. Every class feels like their first class. Coaches are more effective when they can focus on improving movement not just explaining what it is. Having them in just one more time a week increases their likelihood of retaining your coaching cues and becoming more autonomous (and safe) in class.
Let’s face it. When members are only in a couple days a week, they are unable to perform and high intensity since it’s not a regular mode for them. When they do follow your intended stimulus and achieve high intensity, they are much more likely to be so sore that they can’t come back for a few days. A regular schedule of one day on, one day off will allow them to work out the soreness instead of waiting for it to wear off before coming in.
Group fitness classes are all about community and keeping each other accountable. Three classes per week allows them to see the same folks in class, catch up with them, and build rapport. Two days a week of attendance is too little when many athletes are in the gym day in and day out. Plus as their coach, you can help keep them accountable when you know they should be in frequently as opposed to always feeling like you haven’t seen them lately. When they are a part of the community, they are more likely to engage in extra programs like strength and nutrition coaching as well as extracurricular activities with gym mates.
It’s all about making the member happy, and when they start seeing results, they will want to be in class more often. Hitting them gym for just one more hour a week will help them see far better results and allow them to see the real value of your programming, coaching, and gym.
If your members have a better experience, make stronger connections with your staff and members and get better results, they will stay members longer. And yeah, your revenues will be higher with a 3x/wk membership, but the real value comes from creating a stronger community filled with people who love being at your gym. And at the end of the day, if your gym is filled with loyal members, your business wins.
Founder of Affiliate Supplements. Long-time CrossFitter (L1) and fitness nut. New-time dad.
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