What gets you out of bed in the morning? Maybe you are excited about your 6 a.m. spin class — or perhaps you are refreshed from that 1 a.m. weightlifting session. You might decide upon a certain gym because they offer Bikram Yoga or choose another because they offer an outdoor weight loss boot camp. You may need a sauna or a swimming pool, a rowing machine or elliptical facing high-def TV screens. The point is – everyone is different – and the owners of Clarkston gyms are more than ready to let you know how they’re different than the next guy!

Differentiation is more important now than ever. Since 2008, the recession has canceled many gym memberships and the number of recently-unemployed-turned-boot-camp-operator entrepreneurs has gone up. As they say in real estate, it’s really a “buyer’s market!” So you’ve got to do a little soul-searching and figure out what it is that matters most when you’re looking at Clarkston gyms.

Slowly but surely, the old model of Clarkston gyms are being phased out – you know, the ones where you walk in, scan your key-tag, hop on a treadmill and go through the humdrum routine, completely disengaged. People are looking for a more personalized experience, whether it’s group personal training, group weight loss boot camp, or 1-on-1 meetings with a fitness mentor. It’s all about atmosphere and club owners know this. If you walk into a gym and no one knows your name or notices you, it’s less likely you’ll keep coming back. On the other hand, if you’ve got an appointment scheduled with your personal trainer and you’re taking classes with newfound friends, then you’re going to feel accountable to return as often as you can.

Clarkston gyms are offering niche classes like kickboxing, spin, Bikram yoga, stripper pole fitness classes, zumba dance classes, and group rowing intervals. Some of the swankiest centers have oxygen machines pumping air into classes so exercisers can push themselves even harder and water-jet massage tables so they can recover afterwards. Industry experts say that health club spending has gone up 5.9 percent since 2009, with most of that money coming in the form of “non-dues,” meaning selective spending for particular programs or classes.

People coming to Clarkston gyms are, by and large, not looking for the “big box gym” experience. They want an environment that speaks to their interests, awakens their passions, and motivates them to reach their goals. As a result, group class participation is up and class instructors are looking for more creative ways to interest participants. For example, an instructor might have people run carrying kegs, smash tires with sledgehammers or run through an obstacle course of old tires. So if you’re looking for a new health club, you just might be surprised by the diverse array of Clarkston gyms and services available to you.

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