The Grinch “Gets” Gyms


By: Wendy Hunt for the Mansfield Pointe Claire

Choosing the right gym to join is no easy task.  There are gyms dedicated to hot yoga, spinning or cross fit.  There are gyms with no classes or many classes.  Gyms with no floor space but lots of machines, gyms with only personal training and gyms with optional personal or small group training. Prices vary depending on the services provided and the range is impressive.

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There are many factors to consider when joining a gym and there are many articles written on this subject. This article is not one of those, because at the end of the day, you can always find a gym to match your budget or training interests.  But if you don’t pay attention to the culture and character of a gym, you may be missing out on what should be the tipping point in your decision making.   


This all came clear to me at a recent 5 à 7 cocktail evening at the Mansfield Pointe Claire in the West Island.  First of all, the intent of the evening was for the Club Management to express their thanks to the members and staff for their loyalty to the Club.  The event was free of charge and there was wine and hors d’oeuvres served. 

With the snow falling gently and the live Christmas tunes and folk music warming up the room, everyone settled in to celebrate friendships and achievements and life changing events.

There was the story of a man who, post heart attack, is fitter than ever thanks to his trainer; or the charming 70-something man who is still able to travel and work only because he has stayed so fit thanks to the classes at the gym.  One woman who joined the gym when it opened 9 years ago is still a faithful Zumba class attendee – claiming it keeps her young and mobile!  There were stories of epic weight loss and friendships forged on spinning bikes.  Some members with diverse backgrounds were so bonded by their small group training experience that they still share monthly dinners together.  As the trainers mixed with their clients, sharing a glass of wine and a few laughs, more members wondered in, still glowing after their training, and a holiday cheer infused the room.

On this holiday evening , these clients were gathered to be celebrated by the Club Management for their loyalty.  But at the end of the day, the evening was a celebratory toast to the gym itself, because for everyone present, this gym was an important piece of their lives that they wanted to celebrate. 

So when you are choosing a gym, think like the Grinch and let your puzzler tell you what the gym feels like, because last night at this west island gym, that feeling was priceless. 

Wendy Hunt’s professional career spans over 25 years working as a nurse and clinical researcher in the biotech industry. An avid cyclist, tennis player and cross country skier, Wendy brings her love of sport and her healthcare background to offer a unique perspective on issues related to health and fitness.