Will 24 Hour Fitness survive/recommended alternatives?
July 31, 2020 2:14 PM   Subscribe

Been going on-and-off to 24 Hour Fitness for decades (mostly because I've been grandfathered into a very sweet deal on annual membership). However, with 24H going into Chapter 11, I'm wondering if they'll still be around by next year and, if not, if there are any decent non-expensive alternatives folks would recommend. (I mostly use the machines, sometimes the bikes, no free weights).
posted by gtrwolf to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
24 Hour Fitness is having trouble renewing its leases in some locations, leading to closures of individual gyms. It's always possible that they'll be bought out, rather than shuttered entirely, and sometimes when that happens, the memberships are sold as well and you can keep working out at the same gym under new ownership, although there's no guarantee you'll get to keep your rate. If there's a VASA Fitness near you, they have a low monthly rate for membership without any add-ons like group classes, guest privileges, child care, etc.
posted by danielleh at 3:09 PM on July 31 [1 favorite]

Planet Fitness often runs a no joining fee (or a dollar joining fee) special and a basic membership is $10 a month. For $20 a month you can also bring a guest with you every time you go, use their aqua massage beds or tanning beds if that’s your thing. Each planet fitness is basically just cardio machines, some weight machines, an area of an work outs/stretching and a circuit workout station with weight and steppers to do aerobics in between the machines. I’m not sure about group classes, some locations might offer it. I don’t think any have child care.
posted by raccoon409 at 3:26 PM on July 31 [2 favorites]

Planet Fitness can be a little hokey but is fundamentally a cheap gym with acceptable equipment and good quantities of it, clean locker rooms, and excellent hours. The $20 also gets you access to any of the locations, whereas $10 is just one.
posted by teremala at 3:49 PM on July 31 [2 favorites]

Good luck! Both for-profit and non-profit gyms have a very slim chance of surviving this if the situation doesn't change very soon. (I know this from personal & professional affiliations. My local gym has lost 75% of its membership.) I recommend you buy your own equipment and/or hire a personal trainer.
posted by TDIpod at 5:51 PM on July 31

There will be gyms after the pandemic. They might not be national established chains like 24, but the demand for them is still there (and might have a bump after lockdown ends), and so there will be small businesses near you opening gyms, possibly in the same location as the old ones with the same equipment but new owners.

Right now your alternatives are to buy your own equipment and watch Youtube videos or get online training/coaching somehow.
posted by meowzilla at 6:27 PM on July 31 [2 favorites]

I've belonged to ZipFitness for several years and have been generally happy. It is in the neighborhood of $10/month for access to a single gym, but somewhat higher for access to any ZipFitness in the area. Whether it will be able to reopen eventually, though, is anyone's guess.
posted by DrGail at 7:32 PM on July 31

Don't give planet fitness your checking account info if you end up going with them! They are in no position right now to be choosey about what payment methods they take.
posted by flamk at 10:14 PM on July 31

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