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Difference between health clubs & gyms

When you begin your search for workout facilities, there's two main types you might encounter - health clubs and gyms.

In general, health clubs in the UK tend to be more costly, offer more amenities, are more oriented towards service, and therefore are liable to attract an older, more affluent clientele. Gyms, on the other hand, tend to be less costly, offer fewer amenities, and cater to a younger, more hard core workout crowd.

Health clubs will typically offer an atmosphere focusing on the casual exerciser who is interested in general fitness. Here, you are more likely to find someone exercising and talking on their mobile than to find a huge bodybuilder flexing in the mirrors.

These facilities can have a huge variety of equipment, weights, classes, swimming, gymnasiums, etc., so it's easy to find an activity you enjoy. If you enjoy socializing while you work out, this is your kind of place. But what kind of amenities can you expect to find and what suits you?

Standard facilities:
  • Swimming pools
  • saunas
  • hot tubs
  • gymnasiums
  • racquet ball courts
  • tennis courts
  • outdoor volleyball
  • aerobics
  • pilates
  • martial arts
  • boxing & other classes

While some of these services will be available with just your membership payment, there will be others that need to be paid for as you use them. As well as the standard services there are also many extras.

Extras can include:
  • child care
  • caf? or juice bar
  • towel service
  • private lockers
  • recreational sports leagues

Typically "gyms" are more limited in terms of amenities. You should certainly expect a wide selection of free weights, as well as machines for strength training. There will also be a selection of cardio equipment. "Gyms" cater more to the bodybuilding, weightlifting types, and people looking more for fitness without all the fancy extras like massages, pools, snack bars, tennis etc. You'll pay less to be a member so don't expect 5 star service or facilities.




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