Ready to equip your gym? Whether you’re opening a small local gym or a large fitness center, the weights, barbells, dumbbells, racks and other equipment you choose can have a massive impact on your gym’s success.
Buying commercial gym equipment can be a daunting job, especially if it’s your first time setting up a gym. Should you opt for the latest and greatest high-tech equipment, or stick with gym gear that’s a little simpler? Should you purchase domestically made equipment or import from abroad?
From the specific type of equipment you should buy to key indicators of quality you should look for, we’ve shared three simple, useful and important tips below to help you purchase your new gym equipment with total confidence.
Avoid Cutting Corners on Quality
As the saying goes, quality doesn’t come cheap. Search online for gym equipment and you’ll find everything from powermills to power racks at a huge range of prices, from budget items to premium equipment that costs two, three, four or five times as much.
If you’re opening a gym for the first time, it can be tempting to lower your costs by purchasing inexpensive, cut-price gym equipment.
At first glance, this approach can make sense — after all, why should you spend more on your equipment than you need to? However, over the long term, buying “cheap” gym equipment can actually cost you far more than you expect.
In a busy gym setting, your equipment is constantly under pressure. From the weight of steps on the treadmill to the powerful impact of a barbell being set down into a rack, gym equipment needs to be strong and durable in order to hold up to years of regular use.
Opt for cheap gym equipment and you might save money in the short term, but end up needing to replace most or all of your equipment six months, one year or two years down the line.
Instead of opting for the cheapest equipment available, it’s best to set aside a larger budget for your equipment and choose racks, weights, barbells and other machines that are built to handle the heavy use they’ll encounter in a commercial gym environment.
Not sure which equipment is best? Look at product reviews from other gym operators to check how a certain piece of equipment performs not just one month after it’s installed, but one, two or three years later. Commercial grade fitness equipment is the most durable and easier to get parts for if something goes wrong.
In short, think long term. The longer your gym equipment lasts, the less you’ll spend on it over the long term, even if buying premium equipment instead of a cut-price alternative costs you a little bit more in the short term.
Buy Equipment With Your Business Goals in Mind
One of the most common mistakes first-time gym owners make when purchasing equipment is buying for the gym they have now, not they gym they want to have in the future.
As your gym becomes more popular, you’ll need enough equipment to accommodate a larger membership base. This usually means you’ll need several units of popular equipment, such as treadmills, stationary bikes, elliptical trainers and power racks.
It can be tempting to buy these items as you need them, but doing so isn’t always the optimal way to stock your gym. Instead, it’s often better to buy all of the equipment you need for the near future at once.
One advantage of this approach is that you’ll have a “fully stocked” gym from day one, with a huge range of machines and other equipment. This can make your gym far more appealing to prospective customers, helping you convert more visitors into paying members.
Another advantage of this approach is that it shows to prospective customers that your gym isn’t just a small, local business, but a serious place to get fit, improving your value proposition as a business and helping you generate more buzz.
Finally, buying all of your equipment at once helps you avoid having to restock your gym with new equipment in the future, minimizing your workload and letting you focus on running your business instead of purchasing new weights, barbells and machines. As new versions come out, they will look different than the ones you first start out with. Purchasing gym equipment at the same time ensure you will have equipment that looks and operates the same, as usage (wear and tear) will also be more uniform.
In short, it’s always best to buy with the future — rather than just the present — in mind. When you’re shopping for gym equipment, think of where you’d like your gym to be in one year, not just right now, and purchase equipment with future growth as your top priority.
Buy What Your Audience Needs
Finally, it’s essential that you stock your gym with the type of equipment your target customers need.
Another common mistake made by gym owners is trying to cater to everyone, from enthusiasts and fitness gurus to casual gym visitors, weekend warriors and total beginners alike. The final result is often a gym that appeals to everyone, all while standing out to no one in particular.
Instead of trying to satisfy everyone with your gym equipment, focus on stocking your gym with the equipment your target customers are looking for.
Are you opening a commercial gym aimed at people that want to slim down, firm up and get into shape for the first time? Focus on versatile equipment that’s easy to use, such as treadmills and other cardio machines, dumbbells, resistance machines and other easy-to-use items.
Are you opening a CrossFit Box? Focus on the essentials for a CrossFit circuit workout, such as barbells and weight plates, chin-up bars, dip bars, kettlebells and other equipment designed for functional training.
Are you opening a serious bodybuilding or powerlifting gym? Set aside a large percentage of your budget for barbells, dumbbells, weight plates, cable machines and other equipment used by serious athletes and hobbyists.
Are you opening an MMA gym? Focus on open space with grappling mats, a sparring ring, a range of bags and other equipment related to martial arts training, as well as the cardio and weight training equipment your members need.
In short, buy what your target audience needs, not what every other gym has. By focusing on your target audience, you’ll create a gym that’s more appealing, helping you close more deals and convert more prospects into paying customers.
View Our Range of Commercial Gym Equipment
Ready to start equipping your gym? We offer a large range of gym equipment from the world’s top manufacturers, complete with financing/leasing packages for gyms. View our entire range online or contact us now for more information on how we can help you equip your gym.