DebtSafe Blog

What Will Your Workouts Really Cost You?

Now that 2017 is in full swing a lot of people are still working hard on making a success of their resolutions.  Most people promise themselves to become better people this time round, right? And the first thing many “resolutionists” do is to join their local gym. Is it a good choice? Not always.

The inspiring spark will now have to contend with an exhausting work schedule. Resolutions become a thing of the future and you find yourself in a very expensive binding agreement between yourself and your gym.

“I will stick to my gym routine and get the physique I have always dreamed about.” Well, the odds are not in your favour. According to Statistic Brain the percentage of individuals in America who were successful in achieving their resolutions during 2016, amount to a dismal 8%. ‘Losing weight’ was listed as the top resolution for the year. To be clear, losing weight is an admirable goal, but it could only be in your best interest to invest some thought into your new gym membership.

Gym memberships can amount to thousands of rands over a two year period. The average cost of a two-year membership nears R 8000, including the yearly levy some forget to mention, hiding it deep within layer upon layer of fine print. Some gyms even base business plans on the New Year surge, with increased applications in most cases in the region of about 30 to 50 percent. Economists even have a name for this phenomenon; they refer to it as hyperbolic discounting or in simple terms, it refers to human nature. We want things now and place preference on short-term rewards, overlooking the long-term consequences of our actions – The ‘buy now, pay later’ principle.

The consequences paying for something that is of no use to you anymore or even worse, finding out that the gym debit order you canceled a year ago has now resulted in you being blacklisted on credit bureaus and having to pay back fees in addition to attorney costs.

So, before you put pen to paper, read through your gym contract and educate yourself on consumer law pertaining to gym contracts. If you still want to join your local fitness club after some introspection and a lot of research, do it and please for the sake of all those who have fallen before you, stick to it!

Article contributor
Chris Coetzee
Call Centre Supervisor at DebtSafe