Guide to Your First Visit to the Gym | Fitness First

Getting serious about working out for the first time can be both exciting and daunting. The gym can be an intimidating place! Much like starting a new job or beginning a university degree, entering the gym for the first time can seem like a foreign experience. But don't worry, we're here to guide you to help kickstart your fitness journey. Whether you've signed up for a gym trial or you're a new member, read on for some tips to help take the worry out of working out for the first time.

What do I need to do when I confirm membership?

When you're signing up to a new gym membership, there are a few quick steps needed before stepping into a studio or heading towards the free weights.

When you sign up, you'll need to fill out a pre-exercise questionnaire, noting any relevant health conditions for your safety as well as answering a few questions on your fitness goals. If you do feel nervous about beginning an exercise program, you need to consult with your GP to identify any concerns.

Lastly, upon your first visit to the club, head to reception and let them know you're a new member. They'll ask you for a few details and then be able to hand you a gym pass for all future gym visits and for access to gym lockers.

What should I wear to the gym?

Comfort is key! While there's no strict uniform, there are a few requirements. With such heavy weight available, it's important to wear closed shoes (sorry, no crocs!).

Remember, you'll want to wear something both comfortable but also able to handle huge amounts of sweat! A tee or tank might go down best.

Our gyms generally have air-con, so unless you're working in our outdoor areas, you'll be able to wear summery attire!

What should I do when I arrive at the gym?

For your first visit, a member of our staff will also provide a tour of all the facilities and amenities, answering any questions you might have. If you're keen to get straight into it and you have any questions on common gym lingo, a member of our staff can give you a rundown on key workout terms: reps, sets, intensity and rest periods. They'll also be able to help connect you with one of our friendly PTs who can get you on your way to putting yourself first!

This is also a great opportunity to ask about our group exercise offering, with plenty of classes available from Body Pump and Body Attack to Yoga and Cycle!

If you work irregular hours, you're an early bird or a night owl, get setup with 24/7 access. A member of our staff will be able to add 24/7 permission to your card following an induction so you can visit the gym even when it's not staffed.

What should I bring to the gym?

Before you head out the door, pack a bag of essentials. Bring a water bottle, a towel, any toiletries if you’re planning to have a shower, and don’t forget hair ties if you have long hair. But leaving these things at home is certainly no excuse to skip your workout! Towels and other items are available to hire or purchase as you enter the gym. Please note: we have a strict no towel, no train policy. 

We have tunes pumping and music videos playing throughout the gym, but we also have interactive equipment so bring a pair of headphones to connect to our treadmills.

All of your belongings can be stored in our lockers (accessed via your swipe card) so don't fret about having extra bags or needing a place to store your work clothes! Keeping bags piled around the gym may present a trip hazard. So it’s always a good idea to secure your personal items in a locker.

If you plan on taking part in a group fitness class, be sure to bring a mat to classes that may need one (Body Balance, Core, Yoga, Pilates etc). Most importantly, bring a friend! There’s no better way to tackle the unknown. Having a gym buddy will help you stay motivated and keep you accountable to your goals.

What are the common gym etiquettes?

From the locker room, to the weights floor, there are a few unwritten rules you should know about to keep your fitness karma in check.

Keep it clean. Everyone sweats while working out, and it's your responsibility to clean this up after your workout. Be sure to use a towel at all times and use the sanitary stations provided in each club to wipe down equipment before and after use. Make sure you wash your hands regularly and remember, if you feel unwell, please stay home. Finish with good form. Returning your weights when you’re finished with them is courteous to other members. There’s nothing more irritating than tripping over equipment that is lying around, or having to search for something that hasn’t been returned.

Share your toys. Sometimes there just aren’t enough toys for everyone. Let another member ‘work in’ by having a turn while you’re in-between sets. Reserving equipment is also a no-no – don’t expect that towel or protein shake will give you ‘dibs’ on the bench press or spin bike.

Don’t drop it like it’s hot. Most people prefer their gym experience to be earthquake-free, so as a courtesy to others, control your movements and avoid dropping heavy weights. Footwear is also mandatory while lifting weights. 

Be an early bird. If you’re joining a Group Fitness class, arrive at least 5 minutes early to get set up and commit to staying for the entire class. Apart from being disruptive to others, you may be putting yourself at risk of injury by skipping the important warm up or cool down.

Should I sign up for a personal trainer?

If you're someone who's not familiar with the gym, you need someone to keep you on track or you're looking to level up your fitness, personal trainers are the perfect option.

Our PTs will take the time to sit down with you, understand your fitness goals and create a tailored workout plan to suit your needs. You might even gain a new best friend!

What are the exercises to do first?

If this is your first time stepping into a gym, we recommend taking it easy. Start with a light intensity as you get to know your current fitness levels. Make sure you've warmed up well or speak to one of our friendly staff. This will help you avoid injuries.

If you're someone who's well versed with equipment and you're used to working at high intensities, we still recommend you taking an extra moment to get to know any equipment you may not have seen before.

For a variety of workouts available, you can also download our Fitness First app.

What to do next?

For an efficient workout, planning is crucial. Many follow a workout regime that focuses on one muscle group per day or splitting between different types of exercises.

Teaming up with a personal trainer can alleviate some of the stresses of planning your next session and ensure that you're doing the right moves. This includes what your week of training looks like, how you should recover and how to make sure you're hitting your fitness goals.

To help keep you accountable, bringing a friend along is a great way to make fitness competitive or turn your next workout into a social occasion.

What If I have no fixed gym schedule?

Not a problem! You can check if your club includes 24/7 access and get one of our staff to set you up. This will let you train at all hours of the day and help you work our around your busy schedule.

When they set you up for 24/7 access, they'll give you an induction of the club - this may include any details such as evacuation, first aid and emergency alarms.

Our gyms are also conveniently located near car parks so you'll be able to get home even if your legs are sore from a new squat PB!

You can find all of our 24/7 Fitness First clubs here and download your 5 day guest pass here.

Keen to sign up now? Join as a member now!


Show by