7 Best Gyms for Beginners Near You

Ask any pro bodybuilder what they remember about their first day in the gym! Most likely, the reply will be about that moment when they felt intimidated and wanted to run home!

A gym, without any doubt, can be a really wild place for a beginner. When you enter there, what you might notice the most are those muscular dudes flexing themselves, the sounds of metallic weight pieces clanging, or those people showing off their beautiful physiques.

If you are already low on confidence, you won’t be having the perfect start to your fitness journey!

But the truth is, it doesn’t necessarily have to be this way always. Because, there are some great gyms for beginners where you can start off your fitness journey without getting intimidated.

Through this article, we will introduce to you 7 good gyms to consider joining if you are a beginner:

7 Good Gyms to Join For Beginners

Gyms for Beginners

If you are a beginner and are trying to find which is the best gym to join, there are a number of factors that you need to consider.

First of all, what matters most is the attitude of the gym staff. Of course, you will be going there as a complete beginner and in such situations, you will badly need a trainer who can guide you along without putting too much pressure on you.

Also, it will be better to start off your fitness journey where no one judges you for what you are; because such judgments may affect the confidence of some kinds of people.

Another key factor to consider is whether they offer free trials or guest passes. You don’t want to simply grab a membership in a gym right away. It will be always better to get a first hand experience of the club before deciding whether or not to join there for a committed membership. The reason is that most gyms have complicated contracts and once you join, it may not be easy to cancel your membership.

Next, you also have to keep in mind how much money you can afford to pay. While some can afford a slightly expensive gym and are looking for excellent facilities that come in return, others might be looking for a cheap basic gym plan.

Luckily, here in the United States, we have options for everyone!

While listing the best gyms for beginners, we considered all these factors, viz. Workout culture, cost, group classes, facilities, etc.

Here goes the list!

Planet Fitness

Planet Fitness
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There are not one, nor two, but three reasons why we put Planet Fitness very first in our list of best gyms to join for beginners.

First of all, they have perhaps the most comfortable workout environment for beginners. They are famous for their ‘no judgment’ motto that demands their members not to judge or mock others.

To make it even more clear to you, members there are not even allowed to wear dresses that expose their muscles, or to flex them in front of others. All these may look a bit too much for an experienced lifter; but for a beginner, this policy may rather come as a blessing.

So, at Planet Fitness, you can certainly avoid intimidating first days, making it a good gym for beginners!

Secondly, they offer some of the cheapest gym memberships in all of America. A monthly plan at Planet Fitness usually costs just $10, which is quite affordable.

You can hardly find a cheaper gym membership, especially considering the facilities they offer.

With just $10 a month, you will be able to make use of their facilities for weight training, cardio, group classes, and many more!

Thirdly, they have more than 2000 gym locations across the United States. That means it won’t be hard for you to find one of their clubs near you!

All these make planet fitness a great place for beginners. But if you have serious fitness goals, there may be some better options, which we will discuss in detail later in this article.

But whatever, you can always try out the Planet Fitness club near you through a free one day trial that they offer to aspiring members.

The free trial will help you learn about the facilities and workout environment they offer, before grabbing a committed membership!

Crunch Fitness

Crunch Fitness
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If you are not interested in joining a gym like Planet Fitness and are more serious, but neither like to spend big bucks on your gym membership, consider Crunch Gym.

The prices at Crunch Fitness come in the range of $10-$21.99 for the basic membership. So price wise, it is comparable to planet fitness; but the difference is in their fitness culture.

Unlike planet fitness where they may even discourage being too serious, crunch fitness has a comparatively inspiring workout environment. They have really supportive staff, good quality workout equipment, and other facilities!

The group classes at Crunch include HIIT, group cardio, Yoga, Pilates, Cycling, and many more. In fact, Crunch Fitness is often hailed as the best gym for group classes. When you are a beginner, group classes are greatly helpful to adapt to your fitness journey!

By paying $10 more per month, or at a monthly fee of $30, you will have access to extra facilities like tanning and hydromassage.

Ignore that, but by paying more, you can also hire experienced personal trainers to help you do things right.

So, if you have serious aspirations and are also looking for personal trainers, crunch gym is perhaps where you should go. Like Planet Fitness or almost any other gym we are about to discuss in this article, Crunch Fitness also offers free trials, mostly for a single day. But, some of their clubs, in some seasons, may also provide 5 day or 7 day trials!

Overall, considering group class opportunities, pricing, and workout cultures, Crunch gym is perhaps the best gym to join if you have some serious fitness goals.


Image: Jonathan Weiss / Dreamstime.com

More than a gym, YMCA is basically kind of a youth club. But they are neither only for small kids, as they have great gym workout facilities.

With more than 2700 clubs in different cities, it won’t be difficult to find a YMCA club near you. Also, contrary to what you might expect, most of their clubs have excellent equipment for weight training, cardio, racquetball sports, pools, etc.

Speaking of the workout culture, most YMCA clubs have a large member base with diversity in terms of age, race, gender, fitness levels, and goals.

That means, you can easily see and make bonds with people having similar capabilities and goals as you do.

Also, they have experienced coaches, who can guide you in your first days of gym workouts. Thus will come as greatly helpful for you to catch up and improve quickly.

All these reasons make YMCA one of the best gyms to go to as a total beginner. But also keep in mind that the prices here can come around $40 per month for adults.

If the YMCA membership prices are okay for you, go get a membership there right away.

Finally, keep in mind that not all YMCA clubs may offer a free trial, though some may! So, if you can find a YMCA gym near you, reach out to them and ask if they offer free trials or even paid passes.

LA Fitness

LA Fitness
Image: Jshanebutt / bigstockphoto.com

LA Fitness is basically a low-mid range gym that is present at close to 600 locations. The membership prices here come at $25-$30, which is reasonably affordable for a beginner.

What makes LA Fitness among the good gyms to join, is the best facilities they offer at this price point. Besides weight training and cardio workouts, you can also access pools, basketball courts, and more!

Speaking of the ease of accessing machines, LA Fitness has in fact the best collection of equipment for weight training, group training, cardio, and many more.

So, if you have some serious fitness goals and are thinking about some good gyms to join or to consider joining, LA Fitness definitely deserves a place on your wishlist.

They also offer free trial passes using which you can get a first-hand experience of the gym before deciding whether or not to join there. The free day pass is 3 days long in most of their gym locations.

So, make use of this facility; chances are that you will be impressed with their facilities and workout culture.

Anytime Fitness

Anytime Fitness
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Anytime Fitness is a bit expensive compared to most other gyms we have already discussed. They have monthly fees in the range of 40 dollars, which puts it among the mid range gyms, but on the comparatively cheaper side.

The biggest attraction of Anytime Fitness as a gym for beginners is their great collection of workout equipment, like in LA Fitness. But unlike LA Fitness, Anytime Fitness has more programs for beginners.

Speaking of the workout facilities at Anytime Fitness, along with a vast collection of equipment for weight training and cardio, they have facilities for group classes.

Also, as the name suggests, workout anytime will be open 24 hours a day.

So, even if you have a hectic life schedule and will be free only at midnight, you can always go to your Anytime Fitness club.

Anytime Fitness offers a free 7 day pass to those who wish to try it out. So, make use of this chance to learn how good your nearest workout anytime club is!

Snap Fitness

Snap Fitness is also a mid range gym. It may not have the most modern facilities or a vast collection of machines, but have small clubs with supportive staff.

Snap Fitness basically has weight training and cardio facilities. Although they don’t have bigger facilities like pools or courts, they do have a good variety of machines. Also, they have a cool mobile application that will help you track your progress regularly.

Speaking of the prices, the monthly cost at Snap Fitness comes around $40, or north of it. So, it is a good gym to join if you are willing to spend some bucks in exchange for a more comfortable workout environment.

Most Snap Fitness clubs have free trials in their policies. The trial may be as long as 3 or 5 days, varying from club to club. Reach out to their club near you to learn more about the guest pass facilities they offer.

LifeTime Fitness

Different from all other clubs we have discussed so far, Lifetime Fitness is basically a comparatively expensive gym. The cost for an individual membership at Lifetime Fitness ranges between $72 and $219!

But what makes us include it in our list of best gyms for beginners is the excellent facilities they offer, especially those that are beginner friendly! In addition to a huge collection of weight training and traditional cardio equipment, they have facilities for more efficient group classes and other activities.

Now, speaking of the free trial, Lifetime Fitness, unfortunately, doesn’t offer free passes. However, most of their clubs do offer paid guest passes for like 7 days. The pass may cost somewhere around $20; so, contact the club near you to learn more about it.

Don’t miss:

Gym Memberships for Students
No Contract & Month-to-Month Gyms
Gyms with Indoor Tracks
Gyms with Personal Trainers
24 Hour Gyms

The Bottom Line

Those were some of the best gyms to join for beginners in the United States. Most of these gyms generally are present in a decent number of locations; so, more likely you will be able to find their clubs near you rather easily.

Also, never forget about the free trial or even paid passes. Such passes are great ways to first learn about the gym facilities before getting a committed membership there.

Also, no matter which gym you go to, it is important to remember that even the biggest bodybuilder on earth was once a beginner like you. So, never be intimidated seeing all those buff dudes or massive machines; just keep in mind that it all takes time!