Modern Health Clubs or Fitness Centers

A local Health Club or Fitness Centre is a conspicuous addition to residential areas and localities, especially the more upwardly and mobile, who are extremely conscious about their appearance and fitness. While the wealthier have personal fitness centers or gymnasiums attached to their homes, others find it convenient to become members of health clubs that provide facilities and services to ensure their fitness levels.

With the expansion of services, many fitness centers have not just equipment and facilities for people to come and exercise; physical trainers conduct fitness programs and exercise regimes for those who wish to keep in shape all the time, such as athletes and sportspersons. Some fitness centers double as grooming parlors with specialized services for men and women, many have swimming pools and saunas; these could be called complete Health Clubs.

Workout areas in a fitness centre

The main workout area in a fitness centre consists of exercise equipment like barbells, dumbbells, free weights and others like stationery cycles and treadmills. Generally, people who work out in such fitness centers divide their time exercising on various equipment to get an all round effect. However, others who are required to follow certain procedures to maintain fitness and keep their weight under control are supervised by trainers who supervise their exercise sessions.

The key to losing weight

The burning of body fat is the key to weight loss and toning up the body. Long-term weight loss can be achieved by customized exercises that involve cardio and weight loss programs. Some of the best ways to achieve weight loss and maintain body fitness are:

a. Indoor cycling
b. Weight training
c. Treadmills
d. Bar exercises
e. Floor exercises

Health centers and fitness centers are good alternatives when prolonged adverse climatic conditions and weather force people to stay indoors. However, doctors and nutritionists advise that the benefits of outdoor exercise can never be offset. Here it is also important to note that a ‘one solution fits all’ treatment does not hold good. Machines and equipment are no substitutes for natural exercises like walking, jogging, swimming, yoga and other forms like Pilates etc. Using exercise bars, treadmills, dumbbells and stationary cycles by those who are not required to keep muscularly fit like athletes or sportspersons, can cause injury and bodily harm that may need medical attention.

A report that appeared in the print media about a YouTube video showing children playing on treadmills caused great consternation among the public. Knowledge of safety precautions is very essential while using specialized exercise equipment to avoid accidents and injuries.

Common injuries

Many practitioners of health and fitness advise that training on fitness and gym equipment should always be done under the supervision of a certified physical trainer. Some injuries that arise as a result of extensive fitness equipment usage like treadmills and stationary cycles are:

• Backaches and spine injuries
• Joint pains causing severe knee pain and ligament tears
• Foot problems where ankles and tendons are bruised or inflamed
• Body imbalances that can cause dizziness or spells of fainting
• Shoulder and arm dislocations
• Hip fractures

While choosing fitness equipment for a home or personal gym, it is wise to read reviews and choose the best fitness equipment manufacturers who can provide and install good quality machines at competitive prices. The high quality commercial treadmills installed in specialized fitness centers or health clubs are not only prohibitively expensive but occupy a lot of space and require constant maintenance and are unsuitable for small or personal gyms.