Taking Fitness Classes here and there is Well and Good, But When are Health and Wellness Memberships a Better Option?

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 When are health and fitness memberships a better option than individual classes?

There are tons of options out there offering various services at a wide range of prices. How do you
balance all of the things that you want to do with all of the things you can afford? Further, how do you
combine that with your unique health and fitness goals, long term?

On the surface, classes come at a cheaper cost, which is well and good, but the cold hard reality is that you can't cover all the challenges and needs of your health and wellness demands with spotty commitment.. Sure, a single class might be cheaper than a membership, but when you consider the investment of time, energy, effort, and commitment that your health and wellness demands, investing in a membership makes more sense. If you're serious about your health, you're going to have to maintain it for a lengthier period than a single class can cover, and if you decide to purchase class after class, you can quickly see how a membership is going to save you money instead.

Let's take a closer look.


A single class looks cost-friendly, but, is it really?

On the surface, the $20 to $30 you pay for a fitness class doesn't look too bad. Even better are the cheaper outliers, coming in at just $10 and $15. But, do some quick and simple math and you start to see the real cost of these individual classes. These classes start to stack up when you consider the frequency that you're going to have to purchase them if you want to continue to see results from them, much less maintain your overall health.

"In the U.S., the average cost of a yoga class ranges from $15 to $20, on a drop-in basis. In large cities, and at upscale facilities, the price of a group fitness class can be much higher." (punchpass.com, Pricing Your Group Fitness Classes: Get It Right! | Fitness Business)

That $20 can quickly turn to $100, and that $30 or $35 class can go much higher. When it comes to health maintenance, and truly putting in the work to see results, you have to commit to a regular and dedicated schedule. This means that if you go the class route, you're going to have to commit to a much more frequent purchase of those classes. Is that worth it to you (and your budget) over the long term?

What's more, is the question of whether the one or two classes you work in the budget will be enough to cover all your health and wellness goals. And, will you honestly attend every class? If you miss out on a

reservation, you're typically out of that cost. These costs get much higher when you consider what these classes aren't covering, and the possibility of you losing interest in such a narrow range of health and wellness.

When classes might be a good option. Sometimes you might want to test the water on a new exercise or health and wellness program before making a full commitment to it. And sometimes, it's just where you're at. The whole point is to maintain your health and wellness in the way that best suits your needs and the realities of the moment. Take the time to lay out your goals (what do I want to get out of this?) compare your options and find the services that help you accomplish them and go for it. If you're honest with yourself and your situation, you may well find that you just want to test out a new exercise or have a new health experience altogether, without the full commitment to it. That's where the individual classes are advantageous without a doubt. 

Health and fitness should be a long-term commitment

When you think about long-term health and wellness goals, take time to consider the full scope of its impact and its commitment. When you commit to a long-term health goal, you're really committing to all the things you will have to do to not only reach the goal but change your life to do so. This might sound intimidating, but it shouldn't be. Changing your life with health and maintenance goals is a good thing. You're improving your life, lifestyle, and health and fitness with these goals.

"When you start to view health and fitness as a lifestyle rather than a part-time hobby or 30-day challenge, you develop behaviors that will improve many areas of your life." (blog.nasm.org, How to Make Health and Fitness a Lifestyle)

If your goal is to do some short-term exercise routines for a specific result, that's all well and good. That's where you may be better rewarded by taking specific classes. However, if your goal is to maintain long-lasting health benefits, and gain the kind of results that not only lead to better self-confidence but also a better quality of life over a long period of time, then you might want to consider investing in memberships instead.

"When you set extreme goals, you're more likely to feel defeated if you "mess up." When the expectations aren't as intense, you are more likely to stay consistent and enjoy your journey. You don't put that pressure on yourself to be perfect. If you eat something "bad" or skip a workout, you wake up the next day and get right back on track because now it's just part of your lifestyle. This approach is much more attainable and leads to more consistency long term." (blog.nasm.org, How to Make Health and Fitness a Lifestyle)

Gaining health and wellness results, and maintaining them, is more than a casual commitment. They will take time to achieve, and steady dedication to maintain. The real question is, can you do this with a collection of classes that you may only keep for a month or two? If not, could you do this with a membership that allows you the same flexibility and diversity as classes but with a greater length of time to access and make use of their resources? 

When memberships are the better investment

When you consider long-term health maintenance, you can easily see the level of commitment you're going to have to make. Both to exercise routines and lifestyle changes as much as financially, in order to gain access to the resources you'll need to help you accomplish your health goals. You're likely to spend at least $20 to $30 or more for a single class, which makes the case for memberships over classes on its own when you think about how many classes you will need to help you out with health maintenance and fitness goals.

Further, memberships allow you the flexibility and diversity of options, much like classes, but with a focus on longer accessibility. Many times, memberships allow you to access various resources on your terms, and not simply the terms of the class and its restrictions.

All of these things and more are where memberships take the spotlight. If you're considering a big-picture, lifestyle change, then you know you're committing to more than a single month or two of exercises and changes. You can try to piecemeal a collection of classes or, you can buy in bulk (so to speak) and go the membership route. It all really comes down to what you need for the goals you're working to accomplish. 


Closing thoughts

Maybe you're a thrifty shopper like me, especially in these challenging times, and find it cheaper to purchase one thing one time (a class for example) instead of investing in the lengthier option? This begs the question, when are health and fitness memberships better investments than classes?

When it comes to health and fitness, a thing that requires an investment of time and energy, as well as determination and dedication, the question of when joining a membership is actually more cost-friendly certainly pops up. What's more, memberships offer more bang for your buck than a single class.

Why? Because of the time and commitment your health demands. Can you really maintain all the health needs you have, much less resolve various health challenges with a single class for one brief moment? Of course not, and if you can't, then you're going to have to purchase multiple classes. And when you consider this, you begin to see how costly these classes can become, and how quickly those costs can stack up. Classes can be the better option if they suit a short-term goal or health need, but if you're looking to make a long-term commitment, a membership may well be your better option.

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