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How to Introduce Senior YMCA Members to New Fitness Equipment

January 7, 2016

In order to maintain complete customer satisfaction from all of your YMCA members, it’s important to address the needs of all of your members, regardless of age. With a large senior member base, it’s up to you to explain new fitness equipment to those who may not exactly be up to date on how to operate and use it. To make sure your senior members stay in the loop and safe at your YMCA, follow these tips:

Tell Them Why They Should Use a New Piece of Equipment

If a person hasn’t been exposed to something in the past, it’s often intimidating for them to try it in the future—especially for seniors. Even then, sometimes it’s not that they’re intimidated, but they just don’t see the need to use fitness equipment. Explain to senior YMCA members the benefits of fitness equipment, such as how to achieve a more targeted and efficient workout. Talk with your senior YMCA members to get an idea of what they’re looking for. Do they want to increase their range of motion, or maintain muscle? Once you’ve determined what they need, guide them to the right piece of equipment. Assure them that fitness equipment is safe and your employees are readily available should they need assistance.

Explain & Show How to Properly Use the Fitness Equipment

While climbing on a piece of fitness equipment may seem like second nature to most of us, seniors may have difficulty. Fitness equipment has changed over the past few decades with additional technologies added, so senior members may need additional help. Offer to take senior members around your facility and explain how to operate each vital piece of equipment you offer—especially if they’re new to fitness equipment. Senior members who have gym experience will appreciate the refresher, but actively listen to their feedback to make sure you’re not talking down to them. After you’ve explained what each piece of fitness equipment does, demonstrate how to operate them. Make sure you address important features such as the removable safety key on treadmills so that they may exercise safely. Demonstrating how to operate the consoles on your cardio fitness equipment would be extremely beneficial as well. Show them:

  • What the data readouts indicate
  • How to check their heart rate
  • How to select different exercises
  • How to start and stop a workout

Assist Members Using the Equipment

Not all senior members may need assistance when using fitness equipment, but make sure you are readily available if they need your help. Remind your senior members that you are there for them should they need help and not to hesitate to ask. Let them know that it’s better to ask for help than attempt the exercise on their own and risk injuring themselves.

Post Helpful Tips and Instructions

Explaining and demonstrating the equipment is a lot for anyone, young or old, to take in and retain. For additional help, post exercise tips and instructions in layman’s terms next to each piece of exercise equipment. Adding your own tips for each piece of fitness equipment will help senior members feel comfortable and confident about their workout.

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