Gym memberships in London can be a costly affair, but of course good health is priceless. Nevertheless it is important to make sure your wellness budget is spent wisely. We explore the different options available to Londoners to discover how you can stay healthy for the least outlay.
Joining one of the mainstream gym chains such David Lloyd or Virgin costs around £55 per month in London. That’s excluding any joining fees or special classes. Opt for one of London’s more exclusive clubs like the KX in Chelsea, and you will be forking out several thousand a year on membership fees alone.
Whilst some of those prices are eye wateringly high, if your gym membership helps keep you fit, healthy and happy then it is hard to deny its value.
However, recent research suggests that well over half of those who purchase a gym membership never attend regularly, and as many as one in ten have not visited even once in the last year.
On average, that’s £660 wasted per year. That is a lot of money that could have been spent elsewhere on actually improving your health and wellness.
Even at one of London’s new budget gyms, which offer no-frills exercise for less than half of cost of traditional gyms, you would have lost around £300.
So how can you ensure that every pound you spend to improve your health is a pound well spent?
It is generally accepted that receiving therapeutic massages on a regular basis is good for your health ... but is it better than going to the gym?
You might be surprised to discover that an hour sweating it out at the gym might not always be as good for your health as receiving a therapeutic massage at home.
To get to the bottom of whether getting massaged will improve your health and wellness more than a trip to the gym, you need to consider certain factors about your personal circumstances.
Your existing physical fitness levels, diet and the type of exercise you plan on doing at the gym will of course influence the final result. But even your personality, the state of your mental health and the way in which your body and mind react to massage therapy, makes a difference as to what might be best for you.
For example, doing the wrong kind of exercise or over-exerting yourself at the gym can be detrimental to your health. Some of these risks can be avoided by hiring a personal trainer, but that adds to the overall cost.
Many first time gym goers complain of feeling highly self-conscious on arrival. Having joined because they felt out of shape and self-conscious, they arrive to find themselves trapped in a room swathed with wall-to-wall mirrors and several well toned, body conscious, fitness fanatics. Not exactly the kind of environment to inspire a return visit! This discomfort is often cited as a key reason why many virgin memberships end up going to waste.
Conversely, mobile massage therapy is delivered to you in the comfort of your own home. No shiny lights or gleaming receptionists. Just you and a professional therapist in attendance, in the calm environment that you are most familiar with. When you receive personal massage therapy at home, there is no need to feel self-conscious and nothing to feel embarrassed about.
Your masseuse will be accustomed to handling all body shapes, sizes and fitness levels. Their objective is to focus on protecting, maintaining and restoring your health .... rather than comparing the size of your biceps to their own. The nature of most massage therapists is to be full of empathy and kindness, rather than being judgemental. Sometimes that is exactly what you need to improve your health and especially so if you have been feeling anxious or suffering burnout from too much work.
With massage therapy, the risk of performing the wrong kind of exercise and hurting yourself is effectively removed. You simply lie down and allow your experienced masseuse to perform the remedial treatment on you, which is always done with your health and safety in mind.
Keeping fit and healthy, in both body and mind, should of course be one of our top priorities.
If we realise that perhaps we have slipped a little in that respect, it is all too easy to have a knee jerk reaction and sign up for a gym membership that we never actually use.
With the average cost of a 60 minute massage in London being £59, you could have enjoyed a whole year of massages at home instead of that wasted gym membership.
If you are one of those people who joined up with good intentions but then never visited the gym in the last year, it's time to reassess how best to get healthy again.
If you enjoy the gym and use it effectively in a balanced manner, then it can be one of the best ways to get fit and stay healthy. But if not, then rather than wasting hundreds of pounds a year on unused memberships, consider starting your journey to improved health with a regular therapeutic massage instead.