Creative Ways to Build Community at Your Gym

Most gyms face the challenge of keeping members engaged during the summer months for a number of reasons. People tend to go on vacation more often in the summer months, for example, meaning people are away from their boxes, while nicer weather often allows them to work outside rather than inside a gym. Whatever the reason, people have a hard time making their way into gyms during summertime, but here at Wodify, we suggest combatting that with a little community building. Frankly, it can go a long way toward customer retention and loyalty.

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The following are a few creative ways to build community this summer at your gym:

Host Summer Competitions

One thing gyms can do is host themed competitions over the summer to supplement the typical workout of the day. Alycia Alves, a Wodify client and the co-owner of CrossFit Aspire, has seen lots of success with these types of competitions.

“One of them is a summer smackdown,” she says. “That’s a partner competition that has a big WWE theme. You can dress up as wrestling duos, and that’s a same-gender partner team of two. We do stuff that is a little bit different than the rest of the area, which helps people hone in on their skills.”

Run Summer Challenges

Any sort of fitness challenge for gym members is a good idea in the summer, as they keep athletes tied to their workout goals. Using the Wodify Rise challenge software, your members can stay linked to their gym community, which is key in holding them accountable even through vacations and familial downtime.

“Every other month, we do a charity challenge,” Alves says. “We pick a charity that resonates with our members, and people in our gym commit to doing a certain number of movements and a sponsor will donate money for every movement they complete.”

These types of challenges are a good way to keep athletes invested, too, and Wodify can help you keep those challenges organized and motivate your members.

Off-Site Workouts

If part of the problem in retaining members through the summer is their ability to exercise outdoors, arrange workouts that actually occur outdoors. Find a local track, trail, or local landmark that could make workouts more fun for members. Anything that shakes up the norm can encourage people to stay involved with their gym community during the sunny summer months.

Invite Members to a Party

The words “party” and “fitness business management” might not feel as though they belong together, but having an occasional celebratory event can be great for community building. In the summer, for example, a pool party could be a good idea, but there are plenty of directions a gym could go in this regard.

“We do social stuff like parties, beach workouts, barbecues and things like that to keep the community going,” Alves says. “You have something else to look forward to, and that’s how people get to know each other better. You’re seeing people in a real-life setting, and that’s how you form those bonds.”

These types of events will help keep your customers engaged during the summertime and continue to build the community at your gym.

Ready to put what you’ve learned into practice?
Download a free PDF handbook with many of NCFIT’s gym management procedures and philosophies that you can implement in your gym today.
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