The fitness industry is booming - whether it be fitness clubs, gyms, personal trainers or using exercise equipment at home, more and more people are striving to get fit.
Going to the gym and visiting health clubs does cost money, but the people who use them would usually rather be rich in health than having too much money, so how much does price matter? And what can you expect to pay for a gym membership in the UK?
You may think gym memberships are reserved for those with a lot of money to spare.
But you’d be wrong. With the rise of low-cost fitness centres, just about anyone can get healthier with access to a well-equipped gym and fitness classes.
Weight training, toning your muscles and cardio training with Zumba classes doesn’t have to cost the earth – it all depends on your location and the level of luxury you expect in your gym.
Over the past decade, more and more people have started working out at the gym. Some even find a personal trainer to motivate them on the way to achieving their personal fitness goals whether they be to do with resistance training, cardiovascular endurance, pilates, fitness nutrition, strength training, stretching, sports conditioning, or simply acquiring the knowledge to use the most effective training techniques for your physiology.
First appearing in the USA, personal training has swept across the rest of the world as more and more people seek help in achieving their objectives with a fitness professional.
However, personal trainers don’t come cheap, so many people prefer to create their own fitness plan and use a gym to complete it – so just how much does this cost?
The answer to this question varies from business to business, so we’ve put together a guide of prices for the fitness options available in gyms across the UK.
Find an online personal trainer.
High-End Training Options
Do you need somewhere to get beach-body ready? Are you working towards washboard abs?
If it’s high-quality equipment and added luxuries you’re looking for, we’ve put together a selection of high-end gyms for anyone going all-out when it comes to finding a gym to join.
Our major cities offer the cream of the crop when it comes to cultural outings, gastronomy and just about everything else – including gyms.
Although some of the gyms which feature on this list are out-of-reach for the vast majority of the population, it’s still fun to have a nosey - even if you're not seriously considering a nationally accredited online personal trainer.
Others are marketed for the day-to-day gym user who enjoys a little added luxury and doesn’t mind spending a bit more for the extra facilities – so let’s jump right in!
- Third Space, Soho, London
Situated in the trendy Soho area of the capital, this gym is one of four Third Space centres.
Third Space offers fitness facilities as well as spa and wellbeing services as part of their £169 per month membership.
The high price means you get to exercise in a convenient location (if you work in central London) with beautiful surroundings.
Each Third Space health club is uniquely decorated, and new members are welcomed with an hour-long session where their physical make-up and abilities are assessed to help create a tailored fitness program in line with their personal needs and goals.
Better is a health and fitness company which has leisure centres in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Although Better centres may not be considered to be on London’s level of luxury, their facilities, services and membership prices are at the higher end of the scale.
Where ‘luxury’ fitness centres of the capital imply exclusivity, Better is one organisation that is open to anyone who wishes to spend a little more of their income on keeping fit.
Their membership covers access to all available facilities including pools, group fitness classes, saunas and health suites, as well as a personalised training program and 2 hours of free childcare per day.
However, due to the location, demand and available facilities at each of its centres, the price of their membership varies from gym to gym.
For instance, in central London, an all-inclusive membership will set you back £70 per month, whereas the same membership in Carlisle will only cost £29.95 per month, simply because there are no spa facilities, classes or tennis courts available.
- David Lloyd Clubs
Another very upmarket gym, but this time on a larger scale.
David Lloyd Clubs offers gym and spa facilities and focuses on racquet sports.
Although no pricing information can be found on its website, The Guardian was able to find out that monthly fees can be £90 to £100 per month, with a £50 joining fee in its Manchester Trafford City club.
Why not Google "personal trainer manchester" to find a private coach.
- Nuffield Health
Nuffield Health is a health, fitness and wellbeing organisation with fitness centres all over the country.
Although their main focus is fitness, they also provide spa facilities, physiotherapy and private GP and hospital services.
As a high-end option for gym-goers, Nuffield Health creates individualised personal training sessions based on the ‘Health MOT’ it carries out on each member.
Its gym memberships include free health assessments, full access to gym, pool and café facilities, access to fitness classes, discounts on other Nuffield Health services and access to other Nuffield gyms throughout the UK.
A year-long membership in Bolton will cost just £39 per month, whereas, in Edinburgh, the monthly price can reach £62.
Low-Cost Training and Fitness Classes
Taking up a sport or working out at a gym is great for your physical and mental health – but where do you start if you’re a newbie?
Not everyone has the same metabolic rate and as a beginner, it’s difficult to know how to avoid injury by using the right techniques - it's pretty difficult to learn how to become a true athlete overnight.
So how do you get started?
Some people call on the help of a certified personal trainer or fitness instructor to help them stay motivated and get into the habit of training as they work on a programme which is designed specifically for their needs and goals.
However, personal trainers have to pass exams certifying their competences as a fitness specialist before they become a personal trainer. So, as experts in exercising and tailored program design for all kinds of people who wish to train, they can cost a pretty penny.
Between £20 and £60 per hour, but prices can reach up to £150 in some cases.
However, you are paying for personalised workouts led by a skilled professional with a personal trainer certification, so £20 an hour doesn’t sound so bad for expert advice on your training regime.
If you don’t want to be spending a lot on your fitness, the market for low-cost fitness is booming.
Low-cost gyms now account for an estimated 35% of gym memberships in the UK, and it’s no wonder.
The low-cost fitness industry offers an affordable, contract-free way to access quality equipment without any added luxuries.
So, if you’re after a no-frills gym for under £20 per month, low-cost fitness could be for you.
Here are just a few of the many low-cost gyms available in the UK:
Membership packages start from £15.99 per month, or you can get a day pass for just £8.
For members who are new to exercise, Fitness4Less offers ‘Gym Intro' programmes to help you relax and get to grips with the gym environment.
And if you join them as a regular gym-goer, they’ll help you on the track to improvement through conquering new challenges.
Fitness4Less gyms offer access to gym equipment, classes and the option of a personal trainer, which you choose from their selection at each of their 12 gyms!
So, this option is no-frills, but with a few frills – it depends what your definition of ‘frills’ is.
But if you’d like a low-cost basic gym with the option of one to one training, Fitness4Less looks like a worthy candidate.
PureGym has taken the country by storm, not only because of its low membership fees, but also because of its 24/7 opening hours.
Its lack of restriction when it comes to the time you can visit makes PureGym ideal for people who work non-standard hours and other night owls, including university students!
Membership costs between £19.99 and £26 per month, and students get a generous 20% off!
Fees cover access to high-quality workout equipment and the fitness classes which take place in one of the the 180+ gyms in every corner of the UK.
You can add a secondary gym onto your membership for a fee when signing up, or have full access to every PureGym in the country for £52.99.
What’s more, the PureGym website also has free workout videos for when you don’t feel like leaving the house – so there really is no excuse to miss a session!
- The Gym
Memberships for The Gym start at £10.99 per month, and for £29.99 you can use any The Gym you like!
Just like PureGym, The Gym is open 24/7 – so you can work out whenever you fancy!
And like many other low-cost gyms, The Gym offers membership without a contract, so that you don’t spend money for a service you don’t use.
You can even work on a pay-as-you-go basis with day passes available for just £5, so you can use their high-spec equipment as and when you feel like it.
Membership also covers access to free classes, both in the gym and via video link every hour!
Membership for Xercise4Less gyms starts at just £9.99 for off-peak use (between 10am and 4pm on weekdays and all day on weekends), and for just £5 more per month, you’ll be able to use any Xercise4Less gym nationwide.
There’s also a 20% discount for students to enjoy, bringing the price down to an attractive £7.99 per month for off-peak membership.
Xercise4Less provides the latest exercise equipment for the use of its members, as well as over 200 free classes a month.
So, whether you want luxury, simplicity, or something in-between, there’s something available for you and your budget to get you on track to achieving your goals! Some gyms also have ladies-only options if you are a woman who is uncomfortable working out among men.