In order to provide an enjoyable experience to their customers and allow them to focus entirely on their fitness goals, gyms must also take proactive actions to ensure their safety.
In addition to measures aimed at minimizing injuries and other health issues during training, gyms must also counter thefts, vandalism, and other criminal activities. Like most organizations, they are also increasingly exposed to the risk of cyberattacks.
Here are six measures gym managers can take to neutralize or minimize these threats.
1. Access Control Systems
With the right access control measures in place, you can ensure that only authorized customers and staff can always access your facility.
The simplest access control systems include keypads and card readers. Nowadays, it’s also possible to issue digital credentials, so authorized individuals can access the gym using their smartphones. These are usually very practical and effective tools when granting authorization to the gym’s customers.
For sensitive areas that only certain workers are allowed to access, you may consider using more advanced solutions, such as facial recognition technology. You can also implement a multi-factor authentication (MFA) procedure that involves two or more elements, such as a password and biometrics.
2. Modern Lockers
Gyms are also required to protect the belongings of their clients and staff and provide places where clothes, shoes, and accessories can be safely stored.
Lockers come in a variety of designs, materials, and sizes. Many modern lockers feature built-in locks or combination locks for additional safety. There are also lockers with safety-view plus doors that allow users to see inside without having to open the door. This allows users to see if anything is missing without opening the door.
3. Signs and Posters About Gym Protocols
These signs can be posted in prominent places around the facility and remind the customers of their responsibilities and expected behavior.
These signs can be posted in prominent places around the facility, such as near equipment or in common areas. They should include information about age restrictions and acceptable behavior, such as no running, no cell phone use, or no food or drinks allowed.
Additionally, they can provide guidance on how to properly use equipment and maintain cleanliness throughout the facility, as well as what items are not allowed in the gym, what type of clothing is required, and any other information that may be relevant.
4. Video Security Solutions
Implementing video monitoring measures is crucial to a gym’s security strategy. Commercial camera systems can provide an essential visual record of the gym’s activities and help management detect, track, and deter unauthorized entry or disruptive behavior.
First, you should choose the video camera type you want. One of the most popular options for gyms is dome cameras because they can be easily mounted on ceilings and walls and offer a wide field of view. They are also tough to tamper with. It would be wise also to consider using PTZ cameras, which allow you to remotely control the camera’s direction and zoom and thus provide an even wider field of view.\
It’s important to place these cameras in strategic areas, such as entrances, locker rooms, and areas with gym equipment. Avoid placing cameras where people may expect privacy, such as changing rooms, but also ensure there aren’t any blind spots in other areas.
5. Panic Buttons
These small, discreet buttons can be pressed in case of an emergency to alert staff members and law enforcement in case of an emergency. They can help provide an added sense of security to both customers and staff members, who may feel vulnerable in certain situations.
Panic buttons should be placed around the gym, such as near entrances and locker rooms. They are particularly important in areas with a higher risk of injury, such as free-weight areas.
6. Alarm Systems
These systems are a crucial component of your gym’s security strategy. They can be triggered manually (for example, by using the aforementioned alarm buttons) or automatically when one of the gym’s security devices detects danger.
This could be the case of doors opened without authorization, motion detected in sensitive areas or temperature changes that could indicate a fire. In any case, the alarm system should be linked to an emergency response service.
It’s also important to teach the gym’s staff how to properly recognize different types of alarms and how they can assist customers in an emergency.
Some gyms went as far as implementing lunk alarms. The lunk alarm is set off when someone is grunting or slamming weights too loudly and reminds members to keep their workouts at an acceptable volume level. Their purpose is to discourage overly aggressive behavior by members.
7. Cybersecurity Measures
Gyms aren’t only exposed to physical threats. Like most businesses and organizations, they can be the target of cybercriminals.
In order to protect their customers’ personal information, gyms should implement solid cybersecurity measures. In addition to using strong passwords and regularly updating their antivirus software, they should also train their staff to recognize potential threats such as phishing emails and malware. It’s also wise to use VPNs when surfing the web and use encryption technologies to protect customers’ payment information.