Getting Fit in the New Year
As we start the new year, millions of people have once again made resolutions to get in shape. Many Floridians use gyms or health studios to help them shed those extra pounds gained over the holidays.
Before beginning any fitness plan or joining a health club, be sure to do your homework or the only thing you may lose is money. Here are some tips from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services for a fiscally fit workout:
- Visit the club during the hours of intended use to determine whether the equipment may be available at that time. Many health studios allow prospective members to use the facility on a trial basis. If the health studio offers this option, consumers should consider trying out the health studio to determine whether it is the right health studio to help them meet their fitness goals.
- Find out exactly what the membership fee covers. Many health studios offer different memberships at different rates depending on the amenities offered or the length of membership. In some cases, amenities such as racquetball and basketball courts, child care and towels may have an additional cost.
- Call 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) to check if a health studio is registered and if any complaints have been filed against the business.
- If long-term memberships are offered, the contract must contain provisions allowing the contract to be canceled within three business days, excluding weekends and legal holidays. If a person becomes physically unable to use the facility, a contract can be canceled and/or a refund issued for the unused time.
- If a health studio closes or moves its facilities more than five miles away, it must designate an alternate facility of equal quality within five miles of its original location at no additional cost to its members. If the studio goes out of business or does not designate an alternate facility within 30 days, members may cancel their membership by notifying the health studio in writing.
Remember, we’re here for you. For any consumer related questions you can visit us online at www.800helpfla.com or call our Consumer Assistance Center at 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) from within Florida, 850-410-3800 from outside of Florida or 1-800-FL-AYUDA (352-9832) en Español.