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| By Wellvyl Media Editorial

How are Gyms Being Competitive?

With technology pushing the envelope of making everything convenient in the United States (who can get over ordering your groceries online, seriously) obesity continues to rise at an alarming rate. However, Americans are also more concerned with their overall health, which the traditional route of the healthcare options is less of an option than ever before. Functional healthcare, wellness, and fitness/gyms are more sought out than ever before. People are sick and tired of having a doctor prescribe twenty pills to have prescriptions change and take control of your life, especially if it for things that good ol’ nutrition and exercise can fix.


For example, a good HIIT workout combats anxiety, depression, and stress and weight management than anything a doctor can recommend. That being said, like the rush of California Gold during the 19th century, so are the rise of gyms and small fitness companies. On the other hand, the fitness industry, particularity the gyms are incredibly competitive. For example, employees that work with Equinox Fitness Gyms are not allowed to work and/or collaborate in the Lifetime Fitness Gym franchise, otherwise, face automatic termination. This is as a result of both gyms being high-end competitors. In addition, there are chain gyms that would have locations that are super close proximity to specialty gyms, particularly if it’s CrossFit and Yoga/Pilates respectively.


If you also look at it from a gym rat's perspective, sometimes having a lot of options is awesome, after all, competition is a huge motivator and more people want to feel good about themselves. Being competitive at gyms has its pros and cons. Unleashing our inner “beast mode” according to Bhrett McCabe, Ph.D., a sports psychologist in Birmingham, AK.  “can increase confidence, make us more aware of our strength, and improve our focus.” But if we go overboard and using competition as our primary motivator, can do more harm than good, risk your emotional health and potentially lead to injuries. "Consistently tying your workouts to your outcome in relation to other exercisers can negatively affect your mood and set you up for injuries," according to Justine Reel, Ph.D., associate professor of health promotion and education at the University of Utah.


Lastly, people tend to use gyms, wellness, and health as a status symbol, which is a huge factor in the consistent occurrences of the rising competition among gyms. Gyms feed into the wants as much as the needs.  We at Wellvyl also see how “people tend to focus on the next big thing instead of putting the effort to prevent illness and disease through self-care activities.” Long story short, the demands of what people want, ranging from retail to different types of training is the main source of gyms being incredibly competitive. For those who are in the fitness industry, understanding that this is a very difficult industry to build a business, whether you are a floor trainer at a gym or a gym owner. Being good at what you do does not cut in anymore if the end goal is to attract new and committed members. With hundreds of gyms out there, the only way to combat this is to be unique. Know what makes you unique as a gym and develop the unique services around it. The most important thing is not to try to convince someone to join your gym, but add a unique value that will enrich and empower their lives for the better.