fat loss
weight loss health information build muscle


No progress?
Click here

Get 6-Pack Abs

Free info

Fat loss
Weight loss

About us

Contact us


Gym Owners: Tips For Your Business

The traditional gym model relies upon failure for its success. How so? People sign up for a one-year membership usually as part of a New Year's resolution or just before summer bathing suit season. Many drop out after a few weeks and most after a few months.

This model relies on the failure of your gym to meet the needs of your customers. Is that really how you want to do things? Sure, with heavy advertising you can keep getting people to spend $300 or whatever an annual membership is and leave most of that unused.

But there is a better way. First, you need to figure out what your customers want. Then, you need to ensure that you provide a fairly sure way for them to get that. And while they are working on that goal, you need to shift their mindset to something more permanent.

Their goal is usually to "lose weight," by which they mean change their body composition such that they have a lower ratio of fat to lean mass. The fact that your customers are still talking about "weight loss" after the first month at your gym is a red flag of failure.

The "weight loss" folks follow the typical program provided by the typical gym:

  • "Work out" (with little emphasis on real work) using machines.
  • Barely expend any calories, rarely get an adaptive response.
  • Consume a post workout shake with more calories in it than they burn in half a dozen workouts.

Is it any wonder that, after a few months of this, people just give up?

Why gyms have machines:

  • They are relatively safe. Newbies can be let loose on machines that don't challenge their stabilizer muscles, don't require good form, and reduce compound muscle recruitment. These are the same reasons why the machines have such a low developmental plateau.
  • Customers like them. They make "work"-ing out much easier. And they look cool.
  • The people using the free weights seem intimidating, too "into" weights, etc.
  • You can work your whole body in one session!

Suggested approach:

  • Introduce your new customers via the machines, if they are unfamiliar with weight training. But explain that these machines are like training wheels on a bike.
  • Pattern the routine after what would be used for free weights.
  • Think of the whole weight machine experience as a training basis for getting customers oriented mentally and physically to proper weight training.

But many people just want to "get toned." They don't want hard work outs. What can you do about them?

  • Explain that there's no such thing as "toned." Muscles either grow due to the adaptive response brought about by training, or they atrophy.
  • Explain that only genetic freaks using steroids end up packing on huge amounts of muscle like you see in pro bodybuilders. So, it's not as if they have to pull back on the throttle to avoid becoming huge.
  • Ask what the customer's goal is and timeframe is. Get that in specific terms, such as, "Change my body fat level from 18% to 9% in six months." Do not allow measurements such as "how much I weigh" to enter the picture; explain to the customer why this is misleading.

What about those big shakes? A problem that occurs with newbies is they get all kinds of bad advice. They start spending big time on supplements, because they don't see results. Or they start scarfing down extra protein rather than just reducing their junk carb intake. Suggestions:

  • Explain to the customer that his or her goals cannot be achieved in the gym alone.
  • Provide the customer with a food dairy, to be used for the first 3 days of each month. Just that limited time, so it's not a burden. This alone will make the customer more conscious of what s/he is putting in her/his mouth.
  • Put on a nutrition class at your gym. Just 30 minutes will do the job. Make it free. Allow 20 minutes for you to talk about diet and then 10 minutes for questions. Do not ever go over the allotted time, regardless of how many questions there are (people will stop attending).
  • Walk through your gym and ask individuals about their program. Ask them if they are on track for meeting their goal. Then ask them how they know that. If they are guessing, get a body fat % measurement.

Following these tips will dramatically reduce turnover. But only if you make it clear from the outset that customers who sign up are making a contract with you to meet their goals. "If you work with me, I will do my best to help you meet that goal. We have defined it in terms that are reasonable, achievable, and time-bound. If you don't do your part, you keep your body fat and I keep your membership fee."

Yes, you will lose the dilettantes who pay their fee, show up a few times, and don't come back. Or who keep showing up but don't ever change in appearance. Those are not the walking advertisements you want for your gym.

If you get results, you will get more customers signing up and staying on. You can reduce your advertising spend dramatically. Why? Because word of mouth and repeat sign-ups will provide you with the customer base you need to be profitable.


Article Authorship

The articles on this site are authoritative, because:

  • Every contributor is an expert in his or her field.
  • The articles comply with the accepted principles of the bodybuilder literature.
  • The articles comply with the teachings of such luminaries as 8-time Mr. Olympia Lee Haney.

 Where an article is not bylined with a specific author's name, it was written by Mark Lamendola (see photos on home page and elsewhere on this site). Mark is a 4th degree blackbelt, has not been sick since 1971, and has not missed a workout since 1977. Just an example of how Mark knows what he's talking about: In his early 50s, Mark demonstrated a biceps curl using half his body weight. That's a Jack LaLanne level stunt. Few people can even come close. If you want to know how to build a strong, beautiful body, read the articles here.

Supplecity is a subsidiary of When you follow the links from this site to the purchase area, you will go to Mindconnection's secure server.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please view the aboutus pages, or write to mark @ We do want your business.