Quality fitness centers provide individuals with the opportunity to improve and maintain their health, weight, and overall quality of life. It can also prove itself a social hot spot, and a means for people to deal with stress and anxiety. If you are in the market to start up your own fitness center, you should take the time to put together a ship shape business place in order to ensure the overall success of the business. While the market is extremely competitive and quite crowded, there is always room for aspiring business people to jump on in. In this article, we will outline the steps to getting started.


• Financing

• Location

• Business Sense

• Equipment

• Staff

• Facilities (bathroom, shower, etc.)

• Water Fountains

Step 1 - Begin by making up your business plan. With any new venture, it's always vital to have a plan that outlines your financing, operations, and marketing goals. This is a necessary first step, and must be in place in order to move onward.

Additionally, you must secure money to start your business. Determine whether you will be using your personal funds, or if it would be more appropriate to seek out a team of investors. Your plan should include all of this information alongside a three year projection to enable you to determine how the business will pay off.

Step 2 - Find a location. If you are intent of offering classes, you will need at least one space for a studio. This will allow you to provide members with yoga, or spinning classes while other members enjoy the equipment. If this is not part of the plan, you will only require enough area for the equipment, stretching area, and any other offerings. Take into account the amount of space you will need for locker rooms and showers. It is crucial that each and every aspect is taken into account in order to avoid problems down the road.

Step 3 - Obtain your equipment. Find a supplier that is willing to sell you the equipment at wholesale. Make sure to shop around in order to fid the best possible price for the equipment you will need. Additionally, you will want to ensure the products all come with warranties. Find the best deal and get buying!

Step 4 - Find your staff. Place ads in local print publications advertising job openings at your center. Be sure to check up on the credentials of all candidates to make sure they are CPR-certified, and have an extensive knowledge of fitness and exercise techniques. You will also need to find employees to man the front desk and to take phone calls. Check your references, and take only the best.

Step 5 - Open your fitness center. Consider various offers, including "first month free", or special incentives to get people to enroll. Advertise online and in local publications. Pass out coupons and post flyers in nearby health food shops and community bulletin boards. Treat your members like gold, and watch your attendance expand.

You’ve just started a new exercise program in the gym or have taken up running. The following day the muscles you have been exercising are sore, achy and tired. This is Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. The muscle discomfort and fatigue is commonly blamed on lactic acid build up by many athletes. However this is a fallacy. Lactic acid is not the culprit for this muscle soreness.
Lactic acid is produced during high levels of activity when the oxygen requirements of the muscles are higher than can be supplied by the blood circulation system. In order for the body to produce the required energy, then the body begins another process, anaerobic metabolism, which does not require oxygen.
During the breakdown of glucose and carbohydrates, the cells of the body make ATP (adenosine triphosphate) which provides energy for most chemical reactions in the body. Lactic acid is a by-product of this reaction.
Lactic acid has a bad reputation. When it is made by the body, it splits into lactate ion (lactate) and hydrogen ion. The hydrogen ion (H+ acid) can interfere with electrical signals in the muscles and nerves, slows energy reactions and impairs muscle contractions. The burn felt during intense exercise is considered to be caused by hydrogen ion build-up. Lactate on the other hand is an extremely fast fuel. Whenever carbohydrates are used, a significant proportion is converted to lactate. This lactate is then used in the tissues as fuel or it is transported via the blood stream to other parts of the body that require energy.
Rapid use of carbohydrates for energy production during intense exercise accelerates lactic acid production. Temporarily lactic acid builds up in the muscles and blood, causing the familiar muscle burning sensations. If the intensity of the exercise is reduced then the rate of lactate used for energy soon catches up with the rate of lactate production.
Lactic acid is responsible for the burning muscles during and after exercise and this is why many suspect it to be responsible for soreness 24-36 hours after intense exercise. However, lactic acid is completely flushed out of muscles within 30-60 minutes of finishing intense exercise. There is no abnormal levels of lactic acid in the tissues or blood when the dreaded DOMS strikes.
Research indicates that DOMS is more likely caused by localised damage to the muscle fibres membranes, the connective tissue and the contractile elements – namely microtrauma to the muscle fibres. Over the 24 hours after intense exercise, the damaged muscles become sore and inflammed. Chemical irritants are released from damaged tissue, triggering pain receptors. In addition to the injured muscle fibres, there is an increase in blood flow causing a swelling of the muscle tissues which again may stimulate pain receptors. In the morning following the exercise, the muscle fibres are fatigued, have microscopic tears and are inflammed. The muscle nerve supply perceives this as an abnormal state and sends pain messages to the pain.
Typical recommendations for dealing with DOMS include light stretching and exercise, massage (of course!), submersion in a hot bath, etc. All these are aimed at lightly increasing blood flow to the muscles and damaged tissues to facilitate repair (and not flushing out non-existing lactic acid buildup).