Firm Up Fitness Programs

There is always the standard set of dumbbells, treadmills, Smith machines, and various cable weight machines. Once the basic equipment is selected, contact a vendor for advice on which machines will meet the patrons’ needs. I have been fortunate to find a vendor who allows me to sample the machines before I purchase them. After all, fitness equipment is expensive, so it’s important to make sure whatever is purchased will be used.

While the equipment is on loan, be sure to survey patrons about how easy it is to use and whether they would use it again. If possible, throw in questions about their age and gender to determine the type of people attending the facility.

In addition to compiling a survey, keep an eye on the weight room throughout the day to see who’s using the equipment.. Sometimes it’s easier to glean this information merely by watching.

Another item to consider is whether or not a weight room is to be supervised. This will have an impact on the purchase of free weights or other similar equipment since there will be a potential for injury, and the facility could be held liable.

Instead, consider guided equipment that does not require a spotter, even though one is still recommended. Also, think about staying away from the standard squat or bench press, and go with a Smith machine instead that can provide both exercises and still be safe without a spotter.

All in all, patrons and available space will dictate a lot within a gym. Be sure to consider both to ensure the success of the facility, as well as the satisfaction of your visitors.

Dan Massey is the recreation manager for the Club at New Territory in Sugar Land, Texas. He can be reached via email at

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  4. Keeping Fitness Equipment Fit
  5. Q & A – Age Restrictions at Fitness Centers

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