How to Create a Friendly and Safe Environment: 11 Ways
The atmosphere you create at your fitness studio or gym can make a big difference in how impactful your clients’ workouts can be. Here are 11 ideas for how to create a friendly and safe environment for your work space:
1. Keep it spacious.
Slip, trip and fall hazards are a leading cause of liability claims in places of business, and in most cases, these kinds of claims are preventable with just a little tidying up. Keeping your public areas uncluttered and spacious is very important to preventing unnecessary accidents and also helps to create a more effective workout environment, too. This includes hallways, staircases and bathrooms―essentially any area that’s accessible to clients should be clutter free.
2. Choose and maintain appropriate flooring.
The condition of your flooring can impact your clients’ safety. Your fitness area should preferably be a bare, hard surface as opposed to carpet. Carpet can wear and fray and potentially cause a tripping hazard. If carpet or carpet tiles are desired, keep a close eye on their condition, especially after they’ve endured a few years of wear and tear. Also keep the floor clean with regular housekeeping. It’s no one’s favorite task, but it’s a very important one!
3. Consider your floor plan.
Plan a spacious layout for your gym/workout space. You don’t want equipment too close together because it could be dangerous for someone while they’re using a particular machine. Most equipment will specify the proper clearance area needed for safe use. And to keep yourself from getting injured, never attempt to move fitness equipment on your own―always enlist the help of others.
4. Practice proper equipment use.
Instructing your clients about the proper use of all equipment is essential to ensuring their safety. Depending on your set-up, it may make sense to have an orientation to familiarize a group of clients at one time on how to use equipment. Or, a one-on-one at your first contact with a client works, too. Be sure to inform your clients that they should never try to do something beyond their capability—no matter the piece of equipment or exercise—without consulting with you (or another fitness trainer) first. All equipment should also have clear instructions posted on or near it that outlines its proper use.
5. Organize smaller gear.
Depending on your fitness specialty you may have lots of smaller, hands-on type of equipment, or very little of it. Whatever the case, designate a dedicated space to store it. Keeping the gym space tidy is very important, and small equipment can easily be overlooked if left lying around—causing a trip and fall hazard. Cubby-style shelving and wall hooks make an easy job of storing all kinds of equipment, and they make it easy for clients to quickly grab what they need.
6. Keep it clean.
Don’t just store the gym equipment and forget it. Make sure it’s disinfected regularly. This goes for large equipment as well as the small stuff like jump ropes, weights, and mats. (You may request that clients bring their own equipment, especially in the case of yoga mats, but you’ll want to have a supply on hand, just in case.) After every use, equipment should be wiped down with a disinfectant spray or wipe and left out to air dry. Equipment that gets heavy use should be washed with soap and water regularly as well.
7. Provide disinfectant wipes.
It’s become commonplace for gyms to provide equipment wipes so users can clean the equipment after they’ve used it, making it more sanitary for the next person. Keep in mind, providing equipment wipes does not eliminate the need for you to disinfect equipment more thoroughly at the end of the day.
8. Launder towels frequently.
As easy as it may be to allow dirty (and sweaty) towels to sit in a clothes hamper for days, this harbors all kinds of bacteria that could spread and cause infections. Having a supply of towels is a courtesy to your clients—just be sure to wash them daily. And keep your dirty towel depository completely separate from the clean towel area.
9. Designate a cool space.
In addition to keeping a clean and spacious workout zone for your clients, you need a cool down area as well. Working out increases blood flow and makes us heat up. So it’s crucial to have a space that clients can retreat to cool down, even if it’s just a corner of the room with an extra fan blowing and a water station. When clients are comfortable, they are more apt to maintain their momentum and an overall healthy balance.
10. Tune in.
Depending on the size of your gym and the atmosphere you want to create for your customers, mounting a TV on the wall allows patrons to tune in so they can tune out what’s going on around them. Following what’s happening on the TV screen is a way to helpful distraction that helps pass the time quickly which can be helpful for individuals who find it hard to engage in repetitive exercise otherwise. Having energetic music playing is also a great way to keep motivation high.
11. Color the mood.
While the color of your space won’t affect its physical safeness, choosing the color scheme of your fitness area can have an effect on your clients´ moods and performance. From wall color, to décor, to equipment, color choice is impactful. For high-energy fitness activities, choose bright and warm tones (yellow, orange, and red) as they are proven to increase physical energy, stamina and pleasure. For more mellow fitness activities, choose from a cool palette (greens and blues) to invite balance and inner peace. Another way to keep your clients motivated during a workout session is through the use of motivational sayings and posters decorating your space. Simple reminders that they can achieve their goals really help to keep them pushing forward.
Using these tips on how to create a friendly and safe environment you’ll end up with a clean, healthy and stimulating space and you’ll keep your clients inspired to put forth their best effort with every workout, while staying safe too. Be sure to purchase personal trainer insurance in the unfortunately event that an accident or injury does happen. Learn more about the liability insurance for personal trainers offered by Lockton Fitness.
Thank you so much for your prompt response. Might I add, Veronica was a delight to work with and her professionalism and attention to detail made this an overall pleasurable experience.