25% of gym-goers say they will never return to a fitness club

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/06/30/25-of-gym-goers-say-they-will.html

These people know they can work out at home or outside (safely) right? :thinking:


I’m in the best shape I’ve been in 5 years from doing jumping jacks, pull-ups, push-ups and bicycle crunches in my living room. Turns out if I am at all ambitious, like telling myself I’ll go out and run or go to the gym, my consistency is garbage, at least since I’ve had kids. With my new “do what you can” routine at home, I’ve only missed a few evenings due to fireworks-related exhaustion.


That really depends on their workout routine and personal circumstances.

  • Maybe they live in Studio and don’t have space for the equipment they need.
  • Maybe they’re big into weight lifting, crossfit, or other equipment intensive workouts.
  • Maybe they have room mates that don’t appreciate a sweaty living room.

A lot of equipment is sold out now as well, for example the Bowflex bar bells routinely re-sell for $1,300+ on Amazon.

Gyms are definitely a questionable place to be right now and masks should be mandatory, but I can understand why some people want to go back.


To be fair, 25% of gym-goers aren’t doing anything useful at the gym.


Its still possible to have relatively effective routines with minimal or no equipment and quick looks online will show there’s no shortage of routines for it, however i am mindful about reasons why someone would not want to work out at home. There could be various reasons for it, but one can go to an isolated area in a park or public area as i mentioned as well previously. For those that like to lift heavier weights or need specialized equipment i think adjusting their workout needs temporarily isn’t going to negatively impact them. Personally i would rather do that than catch something that could potentially kill me or someone else.


Gym? Who needs a gym?



Not me. I was a regular gym goer for many years and could never get the motivation to workout at home - despite several thousand dollars invested in equipment. Believe me I’ve tried multiple times over the years. I need that external destination as motivation otherwise it’s too easy to find an excuse not to.

I’ve porked up considerably since early this year and really, really need my gym to open back up soon.


I’m pretty sure that’s the same percentage of people that FINALLY have their contract expire at a fitness club.


I’m digging the Captain Caveman aesthetics.


The motivation factor was something i considered, unfortunately for me i have a hard time getting motivated even at the gym. I would worry about catching COVID at a gym, considering how infectious it can be i can’t see how a gym can safely open. Working out involves people needing to breathe properly and if its an enclosed space/building that’d be a lot of risk to manage. Maybe it can be done but i’m not willing to take that risk.

But good luck to you! I hope you’re able to stay fit and healthy :slight_smile:


Here in a country that is coming out the other side of the pandemic (at least so far) my gym seems to be operating about about 75% of its pre-pandemic membership.

They have taken steps (smaller classes, distancing, endless sanitizing) It’s a HIIT gym so YMMV.

Those of us who just have too many other things to do at home (like eat toast) are only successful if we go to a gym. In my case I also have to have someone telling me what to do or I get lazy quickly.

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I was never the gym-iest person, but the idea of going to a place where everyone is, at the least, breathing hard, in the middle of a pandemic, gives me überagita. People don’t wipe down equipment when there isn’t a good chance of catching a disease, FFS. No way.


An informal poll of my household revealed that 100% of us won’t. The Gold’s Gym we had been going to nearby went out of business, and our contracts were bought/acquired by another gym. When they contacted us letting us know about the transfer, we said “thanks but no thanks.” When they contacted us again to get us to come tour the new facility that was now 20 minutes away (compared to less than 5), we said “really, no.” When they contacted us a third time we said, “NO! FUCK OFF!” Hopefully that stuck.

I’m not even sure if we will return to movie theaters again, but at least they won’t pester us about it.

This. We would wipe our machines down before and after using them, but even then we were trusting what they were putting in the bottles.


I’m packing on weight like a baby elephant these days but thanks for the encouragement. I’m so envious of those who don’t have to struggle with a weight problem. Sucks getting older.


There is a lot of surprising numbers about people with gym memberships and actual usage:

Yes, it does.
My wife and I have been regular attendees of a yoga studio for the last 8 years. They are now open again, but we’re not going to go yet. I don’t care what they say about cleanliness and spacing and taking temps at the front door. Also, I’m not going to wear a mask in a 98 degree room with 50 percent humidity.


The kids and I have been going to our local climbing gym for the past few weeks. They have a capacity quota (which they never get close to), you have to answer The Questions, wash your hands, bring your own water, wear a mask, and use hand sanitizer before starting each route or boulder problem. When you are more than 10 feet away from anyone, horizontally or vertically, you may slide your mask down for better breathing. At first, you could only use liquid chalk, which is a strange material, but now you can use a regular chalk ball. It’s all weird, but I feel ok about it.


Planet Money did a fascinating story on the business model of gyms. Basically, it hinges entirely on 90% of members never showing up. It might be the only product that depends on customers never using it. They can only cover their rent and equipment costs because of how many more people think they will exercise than actually do.


I’m really lousy about working out so my angle has been to watch my eating, which sucks because i love to eat. That said keeping an eye on my meals has given me something to do during the quarantine, i haven’t been hardcore about it but it is nice to see my weight go down slowly (at 145lbs down from 168lbs in Feb!). I still have a pudgy belly and i’m sure the best way to get rid of it will be to be more active, so as much bitching and whining as i do i will need to try working out :sob: