Kids might not be top of mind when you think about your customers, but don’t underestimate how instrumental they can be to help drive foot traffic into your centre. Children influence their parents’ decisions on a daily basis, and parents are constantly considering how to juggle their day-to-day with a young family.

This includes which gym they choose to sign up with, so ensuring that your gym is family friendly is a must if you want to target a broader customer base. If you don’t offer child minding at your centre, for example, do you think a parent will have the time to find a sitter while they zip off to the gym for an hour?

It’s no secret that our lives are becoming more and more sedentary, and now many children are fixed to their iPad from toddler to teen. Growing up in front of screens rather than playing in the yard has negatively impacted on children’s health. A report from the Australian Government on Australia’s overall health back in 2016 found that 80% of children and young people from the ages of 5-17 did not meet recommended physical activity levels, which is usually 60 minutes a day.

We have a few tips if you want to make your gym or fitness centre more accommodating to families with the help of Gladstone’s gym membership software, and help encourage more physical activity in the younger generation.

Run children’s programs

If you want to encourage more families to use your facilities, think about creating programs tailored to kids and their specific fitness requirements. Growing children don’t need weights or treadmills – they need structured play that helps them develop key physical skills like balance, co-ordination and general athleticism.

Anything that involves running, jumping, catching and laughter is a great start to developing a rave-worthy kids’ activity program! Schedule their class at the same time as popular group fitness classes their parents can attend. This way the whole family can get the most out of their memberships with your facility.

With Gladstone’s gym membership software, you can create junior memberships and limit their participation to only selected classes. For instance, your system can offer a junior stretch class where only members aged 12-15 years with a junior membership can attend.

Offer family-friendly payment options

To make the billing process easy for the whole family, Gladstone’s membership payment software offers consolidated direct debit billing. This means that if you have a family of four as customers, and the parents like to participate in a box-fit class while their children attend a kids’ program, their payments can be consolidated and deducted from one account.

They won’t have the hassle of trying to keep up with paying multiple membership fees, and their overall customer experience will be much more seamless. They can instead focus on enjoying your gym and the classes you offer!

Provide reliable child care

Probably the easiest thing you can do to make the lives of your customers with young families even easier is by offering child care. It doesn’t need to be fancy, as the children will only need to be minded for an hour or so before they’re picked up again.

Creating a safe and fun environment for the kids with games and plenty of things to play will keep them happy and busy. If they’re being supervised by a reliable, trained professional this will help set a parent’s mind at ease and they’ll be more likely to return to use their ‘me time’ in your gym regularly.

Encourage healthy habits

As a gym or fitness centre, you have the opportunity to offer the building blocks for a child’s health and fitness journey and ignite a love for exercise in them that will last well into adulthood. Sparking this interest early on and familiarising them in the process of coming to your gym will ensure that they’re much more confident and comfortable in attending gyms when they’re older.

There are a number of rules and regulations when it comes to welcoming children to your gym as participants, or caring for them in your facility. Be sure to check these regulations and take action on any that apply to you.