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Seal the Deal

Photo courtesy of David Barton Gym.

Photo courtesy of David Barton Gym.

Attempting to close a membership sale? Your locker rooms may be able to help.

Picking out the perfect health club is no simple task. A potential member considers the staff, cleanliness, atmosphere, and though you may not think so, the locker rooms as well. While your members may spend a short amount of time there, locker rooms do contribute to a member’s satisfaction with your club.

Many gym-goers squeeze in exercise before work or during lunch, and they need a location to change, safely store their belongings and even shower before heading back to the office. So for many, locker rooms are a key deciding factor in membership choice.

“A locker room that is well kept, smelling good and has a wide choice of amenities definitely gets the members’ attention,” said Teddy Teame, the locker room manager at The Houstonian Health Club in Houston, Texas. “The way the locker rooms are presented to a prospective member can make or break a potential membership.”

So how can you seal the membership deal utilizing your locker rooms? According to Teame, cleanliness is priority number one, but there are also several other key factors to consider.

After a long, grueling workout, there is nothing better than taking some time for relaxation. Provide your members with a pleasant experience once they finish their sweat session. “They deserve to be pampered,” explained Teame. “We try and make it as enjoyable as possible. We don’t want them to have any worries. We try to give them everything they need and make it easily available.”

Part of this enjoyable experience at The Houstonian includes high-quality products that are formulated exclusively for The Houstonian Health Club and the Trellis Spa. However, product quality is not the only component to be considered. “We try to stay away from anything that has a scent because we understand that people have different likes, dislikes and allergies,” said Teame. “So we try to keep general products, but stay on the high-end.”

David Barton Gym also strives to create a relaxing post-workout escape for members by incorporating steam rooms, saunas, expansive lockers, high-quality products and incredible lighting.

“We seek to create a home atmosphere for our members,” said Howard Brodsky, the CEO of David Barton Gym. “Our gyms tend to be in urban areas where people may have homes or apartments with smaller bathrooms. When they come to our gyms, we want them to feel like they are being treated to a spa-like environment while still maintaining the feeling of being comfortable and relaxed, as they would at home.”

Showers are an integral part of creating a relaxing escape. After a workout, no one likes to stay sweaty for long. Therefore it’s important to provide members with a clean, tranquil place to hose off.

Photo courtesy of New Orleans Athletic Club.

Photo courtesy of New Orleans Athletic Club.

“All of our newer locations, such as the recently opened David Barton Gym Limelight in New York, have beautiful glass partitions and slightly larger showers with great tile finishes,” said Brodsky. “The goal is for members to feel they are never showering at a gym, but rather are enjoying a luxurious shower at home or a fine resort.”

According to Mike Walters, the general manager of New Orleans Athletic Club, the historic architecture of the club makes the showers appealing. The building was constructed in 1929, which gives it a unique charm. The showers still feature the same marble from the original building, but have been updated with large, overhead rain faucets.

“Because the building is so old we don’t have governors on anything here so there is no gallons-per-minute restriction,” explained Walters. “People love our showers because it’s like a fire hose. I actually have some members that have told me they only will shower here.”

Members also need a convenient place to store their belongings. After all, no one wants to carry their items around the gym with them. The New Orleans Athletic Club offers members annual locker rentals, which seems to be a selling point for the club.

“We have mahogany wood lockers of various sizes from full wardrobe to your standard 18-inch locker,” explained Walters. “We have 625 lockers for rent in the men’s room and about 400 in the women’s room. All of our men’s lockers are at full capacity so it is obviously very important for them to have.”

Not only should lockers be aesthetically appealing and spacious, but safety is also crucial. “Safety is very important because we want to preserve the integrity of the membership,” said Teame. “We try to be at the forefront of security.”

You don’t want your members to be distracted throughout their workout, worrying if their belongings are safe. Providing members with locks can seem outdated so The Houstonian uses lockers furnished with digital keypads where members can set their own code.

“It is personalized so after they use it, the next person can input their own code,” explained Teame. “It is a nice, convenient safety feature because it frees locker room attendants from having to go from locker to locker trying to find an open locker for a member. Having the member set their own combination also frees the club from any liability in the sense that we leave the safety of their belongings to the member.”


By Emily Harbourne

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko is the editor-in-chief of Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at rachel@peakemedia.com.

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