Like every year, many fitness centers offer amazing prices for their services in this period, giving away entire subscription periods in a crazy sale that only aims to make cash, but what is the right price to pay for Fitness?
What is Fitness and what people think it is
Before asking ourselves what the right price of fitness is, we should clarify what fitness is. If we don’t know what we’re talking about, we can’t give it a price and therefore a value.
Fitness is not done but it is achieved. A good state of Fitness is that in which we manage to optimize the performance of our body. And when I say performance I am not talking about extreme sports performance but more simply about a normal day of any normal person.
The fitness status of everyone is measurable through numerous parameters ranging from weight, probably the most popular and least indicative, to plasma levels, passing through various other indicators that all together contribute to defining the fitness level, or if we want wellness , of a person.
In this definition, the notorious continuum also taken up by CrossFit Inc. in the L1 guide but used in various forms also by other operators in the sector who want to make it clear that fitness is objectively measurable helps us a lot. But above all, fitness is a lifestyle that involves physical activity, nutrition and psychic balance, three elements closely related to each other.
For this reason, the idea of offering fitness courses proposed by the majority of fitness centers is wrong. For example, one may believe that doing Step twice a week is Fitness but in reality he makes three mistakes:
- Be convinced that you are “doing” fitness when, on the other hand, you are practicing an activity preparatory to your state of fitness
- Be convinced that this activity alone can bring it to an ideal fitness state
- Choose objectives that cannot be measured objectively but subjectively
A fitness center worthy of the name should therefore be a place where people are educated to adopt a lifestyle that leads to a state of fitness and therefore ultimately health, best possible, compatibly with their own abilities.
Unfortunately, the message that almost always reaches people, thanks to advertising and the downward price war, is: ” Hey man, with little money we will change your life and make you look good on the beach “.
Obviously the easiest way to convince someone to do something is to leverage their weaknesses and it is believed that proposing solutions that get back into shape without effort and having fun, putting in the name the word Fitness or Fit, is the best way to create value . In reality, only a flow of money is created that passes quickly from hand to hand without creating any type of tangible value for anyone.
It does not create value for the Fitness Centers which despite hundreds of members find themselves systematically with liquidity problems that they solve under paying the staff who in turn work with the enthusiasm of a person sentenced to death on the gallows.
It does not create value for customers who pay little money to receive attention only when they take out the subscription and then be left at the mercy of themselves and their second thoughts.
How much is a good level of fitness worth?
Let’s start from some universal considerations that the constant practice of physical activity, combined with proper nutrition and a low level of psycho physical stress leads people to have to take less care and live a healthier life.
This means that instead of reaching 50-60 years with chronic back pain, blood pressure to the stars, the heart at constant risk and the legs that what they want, a person can think of removing all this from himself for a very long period of time. In practice, one can be self-sufficient for most of his life.
In personal terms I think it is correct to say that this is an excellent prospect that anyone would like to achieve in their life. In addition, being healthy also involves significant savings in money on cures, aids and medications of all kinds. It’s a bit like saving money today to invest it in something that pays off in old age or how to pay for insurance.
I have virtuous behavior today to benefit from it tomorrow. And I believe that here the value, both in purely economic terms and in terms of quality of life, is already very high. Much higher than the fucking 9.90Eur per month I pay for that gym where they give me a printed card with some exercise.
Let’s add that even the social cost of an average healthier population would drop significantly in favor of citizens who have to bear the health costs of those who have an unconscious lifestyle. And here there are dozens of studies that bring up 10-digit figures to demonstrate how well-being and fitness culture has positive effects on society as a whole.
To answer the question a little while ago, I would say that a good level of fitness is invaluable.
So why do we find people who “sell” fitness at 9.90 Eur per month?
Here economics of scale and emulation come into play. The economy of scale is something for which a company that could be for example a gym franchise or a multinational company, implements a low price strategy in front of a very high number of users.
This is why a McDonald’s Hamburger costs five times less than one made at home with the same ingredients. And that’s why a chain like McFit sells subscriptions for Eur 23.90 monthly. We are talking about highly organized machines that, through a user experience studied in every detail and the optimization of resources, sell services that are actually worth what they cost. But of course we are also talking about the minimum level.
It’s a bit like flying with Ryanair that takes you to your destination but doesn’t care about how comfortable you are, about your comfort on board, the check-in in the style of a wagon, the fact that you can only carry a mini-bag and that you have to stay in airport two hours before boarding because “you never know”.
But well, after all, these are companies with a precise mission and a clear promise to the customer from which nothing more can be expected that is kept for what it is.
Returning to Fitness, McFit-type chains do not sell “fitness” nor a lifestyle, which for example Virgin Active does but with very different prices and approaches. Go read their mission and their values and you will understand a lot of things. In the end it is better to choose these chains with the awareness of what we are buying, rather than the first gym around the corner at very low prices.
The real problem are those independent fitness centers, run a bit at random that mimicking the larger organizations considering them their competitors and believe that the low price is the only way to compete on the market. LI’m talking about those dozens of associations, companies and legal figures of various types, without a direction to follow on their reference market, which often do not know at all, who sell courses and weight rooms to the sadly known 9.90Eur per month. Except that corporations do what they do because they have a strategy behind them, while these other Fitness centers just copy without asking questions.
The point is that these people don’t sell “fitness”, they don’t sell a lifestyle or even a way to get there, they don’t sell 360 ° support to the customer. These centers only sell illusions by making promises that are objectively unsustainable neither for their economic / financial balance, nor for the results that their customers expect.
What is worse that many of these entities do what they do only to survive or to satisfy their personal desires but they do not take into account those of the people who give them those little pennies that ask to rent an equipped space in which to move practically to case.
Is this the fitness world we want? Reduce everything to spend little to have nothing in return? No, because in this case Fitness is not worth anything.
Because CrossFit is different and cannot fall into the logic of the low price
“Ah, but you at CrossFit have no costs and you get paid a lot.” I hear this phrase at least twice a day and every time I struggle to hold back the anger. First of all, a Box has costs exactly like any other activity and there are many, especially if you want to offer a service of a certain level.
Secondly, considering the way in which they provide the service, the Boxes charge too little, at least in Italy. They have a limited number of people who can serve because they pay them the greatest attention throughout the class. It is one thing to do a Step class with 100 people. One account is a CrossFit class with a maximum of 15 people.
The CrossFit Boxes, or at least those worthy of the name, also offer a high value customer experience that includes a reference community, education in a specific lifestyle and the not negligible fact that the results have always been and are measurable.
Clearly the customer of the Box CrossFit is not the same as the McFit. There are substantial differences in various profiles but basically there is the fact that the CrossFitter is much more attentive to his Fitness than other people and his profile is closer to that of a sportsman than to that of a gentleman. whatever. At least as long as any man understands the value of his fitness and looking for valid answers he finds them in CrossFit.
All this implies an evangelization of the population which has not exactly economic costs and requires much longer times than an advertisement in which the price and promises of little value are the masters. More time, equal more money and this is why CrossFit must cost more than any other preparatory activity for Fitness.
So to the Box Owners I suggest not to look at the competition only on the basis of prices but to consider everything you do in more respect and it.
I suggest to the managers of the fitness centers to start taking care of their customers by creating complete paths for them instead of trying to get by, starting to think as entrepreneurs and not as ex-something.
To people who care about their fitness, I suggest going into a CrossFit Box and realizing that what they will spend on their fitness much less than what they will spend on running for cover later or by replacing aperitifs and dinners with nice WODs.