Fitness Venue Checklist

Choosing a fitness venue is something that should be taken into extreme consideration until you find the perfect place for you.

Fitness around Montclair.

Photo courtesy of

How do you know which fitness venue is right for you? Usually, we see a storefront in a convenient location, check the schedule and fantasize that the class will transform us. But how do we bridge the gulf between expectation and reality?

For the past seven years, I’ve taught tai chi, qigong and meditation in New York and New Jersey. I’ve studied movement and fitness for 36 years, and I’d like to share some advice on what to look for.

  • First, research the fitness genre: Google it, watch YouTube videos, read articles. This should wet your appetite, but don’t overdo it! Ease into it so you don’t take on too much too fast.
  • You don’t want to attack your fitness goals. It’s safer and more economical in the long run to ease into them.
  • A sure-fire leap in the right direction is the advice of your doctor or physical therapist. They will analyze your goals and let you know what you can safely withstand. If you suffer from chronic injuries, this is a crucial preliminary step.
  • Next, look for it locally. Montclair has scores of venues from gyms that specialize to yoga studios, tai chi classes, qigong, Pilates, Zumba®, the Bar Method, private trainers, karate, Tae Kwon Do. Try a class. You won’t know it’s for you until you dive in. Most studios offer free trials or discounted classes for new comers, so ask about deals. One great studio located right on Erie Street is dFit; they offer everything from cycling to Fluid Force.
  • Work at a pace that is comfortable for you. With yoga, aim for a light stretch to slowly, safely increase your range of motion. With aerobic activity, you should breathe well enough to speak relatively easily; slow down if you get winded. With tai chi and qigong, make sure you understand proper physical alignment. Ask questions; that’s what we’re here for.
  • When you use muscles you didn’t know you had, you can expect delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) starting within the next day or two and lasting two or three days. If it lasts longer—for instance, if your knees are still bothering you the following week—visit your doctor; don’t wait.
  • Don’t push through pain. If something hurts, stop and alert the instructor. Every fitness teacher must respect your level of comfort. Expect nothing less.
  • Be consistent—you will not see results any other way—and have fun!

These tips should give you a great start in choosing the perfect fitness venue for you!

You must be logged in to post a comment Login