4 Qualities of a Great Gym

What Makes a Great Gym

At it’s most basic level, a gym is a place where people go to train, run, and play. However, many gyms are much more than that. This begs the question: what makes a great gym? Athletic activities, sports, and gymnastics require certain equipment. Whether it’s the hills around your development, the track at a local high school, or the furniture in your basement, it doesn’t take much to create a “gym.”

Here at Abacus we believe a gym is much more. These are 4 qualities that you should look for when designing a gym.

1 – Great Gym Flooring

Let’s start from the ground up. A great gym should have a great gym floor. When you walk into the gym, you want to be in the zone. The colors need to appeal to a mind-set that gets you ready to exercise.  You want to feel welcome and comfortable.

The gym floor is where some people will spend their entire visit. Whether you’re doing yoga or a core workout, you’re going to want the floor to be clean and comfortable. There’s nothing worse than getting down on a gym floor to plank and feeling like you’re outside on asphalt. A resilient gym floor makes all the difference when burpees, push-ups or even exercises with weights are involved. For lifts like snatches, cleans and jerks, many serious lifters tend to drop the bar and the flooring makes all the difference for the athlete and the gym owner. Abacus Sports installs inlaid platforms that are sunk into the rubber flooring allowing it to handle the impact of heavy weights. With the shock absorbance there is a reduced risk of injury.

A good gym starts with a clean and well maintained floor.

2 – Layout

A structure needs to be obvious in the setup of the gym. There needs to be enough space in the gym and it needs to be efficiently utilized. No one likes bumping elbows with the person next to them when they’re trying to lift. Unless it is an uncrowded hotel gym, people will need their space.

The equipment needs to be laid out with the athlete in mind. It only makes sense to put the cardio equipment together and the weights next to the lifting stuff. Incorporated into the layout should be mirrors. Mirrors are a big part of weight lifting when trying to lift properly and avoid injuries.

The Wall Street Journal has an article on the importance of gym layout.  This article details some important lessons for gym designers.  Treadmills should face TOWARDS the weight lifting section of the gym.  Also, new machines should be placed on the outskirts so that gym members may try them out without too many people watching them.

3 – Equipment

There needs to be the right equipment for the what you are trying to get out of the workouts. If you want to do a cardio boxing workout, there should be a punching bag. If you want to dance or play soccer, there should be a studio or some soccer nets. For serious lifters, there needs to be a mix of equipment to train each muscle. There should be free weights, machines and cardio equipment. There needs to be enough of the popular machines for the number of people that go to that gym.  Power racks offer a whole range of workouts and are an important thing to make sure your facility has an abundance of.

The equipment needs to be well maintained and clean.  Facility staff should address broken machines.  They should also wipe down machines and equipment every night.  Consult with your machine manufacture for proper care and maintenance instructions.

4 – People

The people in the gym need to reflect the goals of the individuals who occupy it.  The staff needs to be helpful and respectful. They need to understand what it means to be an athlete and be able to help spot if necessary.There is a fine line on being competition and being too competitive. All of the showing off and excessive noises to attract attention are unnecessary. The trainers are there to teach and help. They should be knowledgeable and have certifications pertaining to their program. They are mentors and should be able to provide the answers. It is often helpful to see someone do an exercise when you’re learning. There needs to be a structure to the program.  Accountability is crucial from both the trainer and the trainee.

When it Comes to Your Gym

These are just some of the main factors to consider when looking into designing a gym. Some other things to think about are location, accessibility, memberships and fees. Think about who you are trying to target to come to your gym if your facility is not associated with a school or university.  Be specific in your niche.  Think about how the customer will use it.

For more information on the proper gym flooring for your organization or facility contact Abacus.  Call 800-821-4557 or email us and we will get back to you.